October 15, 2014
Leaving Ambua for the Sepik
We spent the morning hanging out at the Ambua waiting for information about our flight. The sunrise was again spectacular, with a fog bank that looked like snow.
I stepped outside of the main lodge and Thomas immediately pointed out a Prince of Princess Stephanie’s astrapia bird of paradise. So now I’ve seen two! Princess Stephanie’s astrapia (Astrapia stephaniae), also known as Stephanie’s astrapia, was named in for Princess Stephanie of Belgium, wife of Crown Prince Rudolph of Austria-Hungary. When seen close up, which of course we did not, you would see an iridescent blue-green and purple head, silky plumage below and two very long, broad purplish-black central tail feathers.
We were supposed to leave on a small chartered plane from a small runway at the Ambua,but instead the plane was going to meet us in Tari. So after breakfast we got back on the bus and headed down the mountain back to the Tari airport. Although at first were disappointed, it turned out to be a great ride and we got to see and take pictures of some things we had not seen along the road before, like the “gas station,” some more “recycling,” a “car wash,” a woman walking her pig, some more men on the street with their headpieces (just to prove that they don’t just dress for the few tourists that are visiting).