Tuesday, May 14, 2024

General Birdwatching Tour in Klabili village of Tambrauw Regency

I have just returned from a 4 day-3 night birdwatching and sightseeing tour covering two beautiful places in Papua Barat Daya Province of Indonesa. They were Sausapor town and Klabili village of Tambrauw regency. We started from Sorong city on Day 1. I guided a couple from the Netherlands. 

Eastern Hooded Pitta
Eastern Hooded Pitta in Tambrauw regency
We went there by a chartered 4WD car. It took around 4 hours to reach Sausapor town. After checking into our rooms, we continued our activity by doing general birding at the outskirt of Sausapor town. There are several interesting birdwatching sites in Sausapor that we visited. We stayed at Sansapore Pacific Park. It is a beach resort. At the outskirt of Sausapor town, we saw a lot of species of birds including Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Palm Cockatoo, Blyth's Hornbill, Brown Oriole, Red-cheeked Parrot, Helmetted Friarbird, Sacred Kingfisher, Hooded Butcherbird, Coconut Lorikeet, Black-capped Lory, Frilled Monarch, Rainbow Bee-eater, Yellow-faced Myna, Glossy-mantled Manucode, Willy Wagtail, Pinon Imperial Pigeon, and a lot more.
Dendrobium orchid, zinnia, red hibiscus, passion flower
Some flowers at the frontyard of Sansapore Pacific Park Resort

Because the resort had its own beach with coral reef, visitors could enjoy snorkeling. There are colorful flowers that grow in the resort including Red Hibiscus, Zinnia, Beach Hibiscus, Passion Flower, and Dendrobium Orchid. The flowers attracted various species of butterflies including Ulysses, Cruiser, Great Eggfly and Taenaris butterflies. Sansapore Pacific Park Beach Resort is a recommended base for butterfly watching trips in Sausapor town of Tambrauw regency.

White-bellied Sea Eagle at the outskirt of Sausapor town
On the third day, we continued our trip to Klabili village. There, they watched more interesting birds including: Hooded Pitta, Papuan Pitta, Lesser Birds of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise, Twelve-wired Bird of Paradise, Red-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, Rufous-bellied Kookaburra, Torresian Crow, Palm Cockatoo, Hooded Pitta, Western-crowned Pigeon, Oriental Dollarbird, and etc. 

While sitting at the verandah of Klabili homestay, we saw a female cassowary entered the frontyard.

a young cassowary bird in West Papua
An immature Cassowary in Klabili village
Nightwalk was also organized during the tour. The forest in Sausapor and Klabili is the natural habitat of monitor lizard, snakes, bandicoot, cuscus, and nocturnal birds. 

When we arrived in Sorong city, we had a short visit to Mangrove forest to find Orange-breasted Fig Parrot, Orange-fronted Fig Parrot and other birds. 

After the tour, they continued their trip to Raja Ampat. 

If you are interested in taking a sightseeing and birdwatching tour in Tambrauw regency of West Papua and want me to organize your tour, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by whatsapp to: +6281332245180 or by e-mail to: peace4wp@gmail.com.

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Thursday, May 9, 2024

Paradise Bird Watching Tour from Sorong City

The interest of international visitors in watching paradise birds is increasing. There are places in Sorong city where visitors can enjoy birdwatching during day tours. Lesser Birds of Paradise birds are the main target of observation. However, visitors can watch a lot of other birds too such as Red-cheeked Parrot, Pinon Imperial Pigeon, Pink-spotted Fruit Dove, Shining Flycatcher, Rufous-bellied Kookaburra, Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Common Paradise Kingfisher and etc.

Lesser Birds of Paradise (Paradisaea minor)
Lesser Birds of Paradise

Usually the time to watch the paradise birds is early in the morning. Participants need to start very early in the morning at around 04:00. 

I usually organize the tour by car. Arriving at the foot of the hill, tour participants still need to go hiking to the site of the paradise birds for around 1 hour. 

Eclectus Parrot (Eclectus roratus)
Eclectus Parrot

Bringing binoculars and camera will enhance the birding experience. This tour can be combined with snorkeling or fishing if the sea weather is calm. 

The day tour to watch paradise bird at the outskirt of Sorong city can also be combined with trips to see unique buildings whose architectural designs were inspired by nature, and culture. 

For multiple day trips, the places that are good for birding include Sausapor town, Klasow valley, and Raja Ampat. 

Traveling further to North Sulawesi for Birding

For birding site that can be visited from Sorong city, the Minahasa highland in the Province of North Sulawesi should also be considered. It is only around 1 hour, 25 minutes flight. Sonder forest, Mount Mahawu are good places for watching birds such as:

  • Black-crowned White-eye
  • Mountain (warbling) White-eye
  • Crimson Sunbird
  • Sahul Sunbird
  • Chestnut Munia
  • Black-faced Munia
  • Scaly-breasted Munia
  • Black-naped Oriole
  • Sulawesi Cuckoo Dove
  • White-faced Cuckoo Dove
  • Gray-cheeked Green Pigeon
  • Pale Blue Monarch
  • Sulawesi Hanging Parrot
  • Sulawesi Drongo
  • Hair-crested (White-eye) Drongo
  • Grey-sided Flowerpecker
  • Yellow-sided Flowerpecker
  • Cattle Egret
  • Little Egret
  • White-browed Crake
  • White-breasted Woodswallow
  • Collared Kingfisher
  • Eastern Yellow Wagtail
  • Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker
  • Sahul Sunbird
  • Black Sunbird
  • Sooty-headed Bulbul
  • Brush Cuckoo
  • Barn Swallow
  • White-nest Swiftlet
  • Sunda Teal
  • and a lot more. 

Black-naped Oriole, Sulawesi Cuckoo Dove, Sulawesi Pygmy WoodpeckerPale Blue Monarch
Some birds in Minahasa highland of North Sulawesi

If you are interested, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180. 

Friday, April 19, 2024

Sorong City Sightseeing and Birdwatching Tour

Sorong city is the main gate to Raja Ampat islands - a popular destination in Indonesia for marine tourism. A lot of tourists who like swimming and snorkeling fly to and leave from Sorong city every day. They spend one or two weeks in Waigeo, Mansuar, Kri, Gam, Arborek, Batanta and Misool islands.

So far most visitors think that Sorong city is only a transit point or transportational hub. As a matter of fact, there are interesting sites which tourists can go, to see and enjoy the natural beauty of the region or to see the wealth of the biodiversity of its flora and fauna.  For Sorong tours, here are some of the attractions:

In e-bird, this bird is called Blue-fronted Fig Parrot (Cyclopsitta gulielmitertii) 
This bird was named after William III - King of the Netherlands (1849-1890)

In field guidebook Birds of New Guinea by Thane K. Pratt and Bruce Beehler, the above parrot is called Orange-breasted Fig - Parrot (Cyclopsitta gulielmitertii). In Greek mythology, Cyclop was a race of one-eyed giants. Psitta is parrot family. Gulielmi means William and tertii or tertius means the third. So, the bird is named after William III - the King of the Netherlands who ruled his country from 1849 to 1890.  

Most of the land in the suburb of Sorong is still covered by tropical rainforest. It is the habitat of a lot of species of colorful birds and butterflies. They can be watched when visitors take 1 or 2 days sightseeing and birdwatching tour. 

sorong city tour
Sightseeing Tour in Sorong city

Taking this tour, the participant will be taken to forest area in the hills and coastal areas to watch such birds as Pinon Imperial Pigeon, White-bellied Cuckooshrike, Orange-fronted Fruit Dove, Yellow-faced Myna, Helmetted Friarbird, Sahul Sunbird, Brown-backed Honeyeater, and a lot more. 

Mangrove Tiger butterfly (Danaus affinis mytilene)
Mangrove Tiger Butterfly

Birdwatching and sightseeing activity is easy because participants will walk along the roadside and boardwalk. 

During the wildlife watching activity, spotting scope will be provided to enhance the watching experience of each participant. 

Visitors can bring camera to take pictures of flowers, birds and butterflies that exist in the surrounding areas.

Love Hill of Sorong city
Sightseeing Tour in Sorong city

In addition to exploring the surrounding nature, during the Sorong tours, we will also see unique or historical architectural design of houses or buildings in the city. One of them is the Catholic Church of Christ the King in Kampung Baru area. Its design is inspired by the 'nest' structure of Vogelkop Bowerbird (Amblyornis inornatus). 

cathedral church of Christ the King on Sorong city
The Design of the Catholic Church of Christ the King was inspired by the structure of the "nest" of Vogelkop Bowerbird.

For tour package and cost, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by whatsapp to: +6281332245180 or email to: peace4wp@gmail.com. 

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Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Birding in Raja Ampat, Tambrauw, and Sorong of Southwest Papua, Indonesia

I often guide tourists to watch birds and wild animals in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat regency; Sausapor and Klabili in Tambrauw regency; Malagufuk and Mangrove forest in Sorong regency. These are important birding sites in Papua Barat Daya Province of Indonesia that can easily be reached from Sorong city. 

I usually start the birding trip by meeting my clients at the airport of Sorong city and then organize their transfer by 4wd car to Sausapor town in Tambrauw regency. We usually spend around 2 days and 2 nights exploring the coastal area and the forest to look for such birds as Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Oriental Pratincole, Little-ringed Plover, Black-nap

ed Tern, Gray Crow, Blyth's Hornbill, Hooded Butcherbird, Black Butcherbird, Palm Cockatoo, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Slender-billed Cuckoo Dove, Helmetted Friarbird, Brown Oriole, Red-cheeked Parrot, Yellow-faced Myna, Lesser Birds of Paradise, Western-crowned Pigeon, King Bird of Paradise, Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Long-tailed Honeybuzzard. There are several birding sites at the outskirts of Sausapor town that we can visit.

Lesser Birds of Paradise, Willie Wagtail, Moustached Treeswift
Some birds in Tambrauw regency

Butterfly Watching in Sansapore Pacific Park

Not only birds that we can see in the forest and coastal areas around Sausapor town. We could also watch butterflies and see various kinds of flowers such as zinnia, beach hibiscus, red hibiscus, Barringtonia asiatica, orchids and etc. Sansapore Pacific Park Beach Resort is a good base for visitors who love butterflying in the area. Some butterflies that we could watch in Sausapor town include Great Eggfly (Hipolimnas bolina), Dark Tiger (Tirumala hamata), Blue Mountain Swallowtail (Papilio ulysses) God Art's butterfly (Cyrestis acilia), Common Green Birdwing (Ornithoptera priamus) and a lot more. 

Sansapore Pacific Park in Tambrauw regency
Some Flowers at Sansapore Pacific Park
Great Eggfly butterfly (Hipolimnas bolina), Dark Tiger Butterfly (Tirumala hamata), Godart's Map butterfly (Cyrestis acilia)
Butterflies in Sansapore Pacific Park
Beach Resort of Sausapor town - Tambrauw regency

The next destination for birding in Tambrauw is Klabili village which is a great site for watching Red-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, King Bird of Paradise, Twelve-wired Bird of Paradise, Lowland Peltop, and Rufous-bellied Kookaburra,Frilled Monarch, Papuan Frogmouth, Marbled Frogmouth, Common Paradise Kingfisher, Palm Cockatoo, New Guinea Vulturine Parrot, Papuan Babbler, Golden Myna, Helmetted Friarbird, and a lot more.  

birding in Klabili village
Wildlife watching in Klabili village of Tambrauw regency

In Waigeo island of Raja Ampat, our targets include Red Bird of Paradise, Wilson's Bird of Paradise, Spice Imperial Pigeon, Pinon's Imperial Pigeon, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Radjah Shelduck, Eclectus Parrot, Beach Kingfisher, White-eyebrow Wagtail or Willie Wagtail, Pacific Reef Heron, Crested Tern, Whimbrel, Osprey, and a lot more. 

I also organize excursions to islands and beach near Kabui bay to look for birds such as Coconut Lorikeet, Sahul Sunbird, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Lesser Frigatebird, Moustached Treeswift, Metallic Starling, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Beach Kingfisher and Pacific Swallow. Birding at the beach is relaxing. 

Visitors can also enjoy snorkeling during the excursion. My preferred choice is Lesser Urai Island or the beach of Gam island that faces Kabui bay. 

boat excursion to Lesser Urai island in Kabui bay
Birding Tour in Raja Ampat

It is not only birds that we photograph during the tour in Raja Ampat but also butterflies and flowers. Every time I see beautiful flowers such as plumeria, hibiscus, passion flower and orchid, I will stop and aim my camera at the flowers to take pictures of them. There are a few orchids that I have seen both in the forest and flower gardens of the homestays and resorts. 

Dendrobium orchid
Rainforest Orchid in Waigeo, perhaps, Dendrobium lanceolatum

Another rainforest orchid that I used to see in Raja Ampat was Grammathophyllum scriptum. It was not in the jungle but at the flower garden of a beach resort.

Grammatophyllum scriptum
Tawa-tawa Orchid Flower in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat

In Sorong city, the usual birding sites are Mangrove forest, Love hill and Batu Lubang areas. There we can watch birds such as Orange-bellied Fruit Dove, Pink-spotted Fruit Dove, Brown-backed Honeyeater, Orange-fronted Fruit Dove, Shining Flycatcher, Sacred Kingfisher, Orange-breasted Fig Parrot, Golden Monarch, and a lot more. There are introduced species that we may see such as Spotted Dove, Scaly-breasted Munia and Yellow-vented Bulbul. Sorong city is a good site for any visitors who want to enjoy an outdoor activity before leaving for Raja Ampat or flying back to their home.

birding walk in Indonesia
Birding and sightseeing in Sorong city

It is also the main entry point for visitors who want to spend their holiday in this Southwest Papua province enjoying swimming and snorkeling at the beach of Raja Ampat and Tambrauw as well as rainforest birdwatching and wildlife watching tour in Sorong and Waigeo. 

Flying Routes

Visitors who are interested in taking this tour need to fly to Sorong city. There are daily flights from major cities in Indonesia such as Jakarta, Surabaya, Denpasar and Makassar to Sorong served by domestic airlines Garuda, Lion Air, Batik Air. 

flight route to Sorong city
Flying routes to Sorong city

Visitors can enjoy their holiday by combining Manado city and Sorong city as their travel destination. 

If you are interested in taking a holiday tour in Sorong city and its surroundings (Raja Ampat, and Tambrauw) and want me to organize your tour, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by whatsapp to +6281332245180 or by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com. 

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Saturday, March 16, 2024

Birdwatching in Minahasa Highland

Recently I visited Sonder, a small town in Minahasa highland. I was there for around 1 week. I did birding walks around the forest of the surrounding hills and rice fields, I also went to a mountain near the town. It was an interesting trip. 

Black-naped Oriole, Pale Blue Monarch, Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker
Some Birds in Minahasa Highland

I stayed at a homestay in Tounelet village and watched birds in the nearby forest. Most of the photograph of birds that I took were taken from the forest. I was surprised to see that there were a lot of species of birds that lived in that small forest. I saw Sooty-headed Bulbul, Sahul Sunbird, Black Sunbird, Grey-sided Flowerpecker, Yellow-sided Flowerpecker, Chestnut Munia, Eurasian Treesparrow, Black-naped Oriole, Pale Blue Monarch, Sulawesi Blue Flycatcher, Grey-cheeked Green Pigeon, Barred Rail, Cattle Egret, Black-crowned White-eye, Sulawesi Hanging Parrot, Sulawesi Swiftlet, White-nest Swiftlet, and Slender-billed Crow.

birdwatching trip in Sonder of North Sulawesi
Yellow-billed Malkoha, Collared Kingfisher, Warbling White-eye, and Hair-crested Drongo

In the rice field area, I saw White-breasted Woodswallow, Collared Kingfisher, Cattle Egret, White-browed Crake, Grey Wagtail, Chestnut Munia, Collared Kingfisher, and Scaly-breasted Munia. 

Another interesting birdwatching site in Minahasa higland is Mount Lengkoan. I saw some unique birds there including White-faced Cuckoo Dove, Black-faced Munia,  Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker (Picoides temminckii), Crimson Sunbird, Sulawesi Cuckoo Dove (Macropygia albicapilla), and Warbling White-eye, Collared Kingfisher, and Hair-crested Drongo (which James Eaton's Birds of Indonesian Archipelago names it, White-eyed Spangled Drongo). 

Lake Linow and Lake Lahendong are also good for birdwatching. We could see Wandering Whistling Duck (Dendrocygna arcuata),  Sunda Teal, Barn Swallow, Gray-rumped Treeswift, Collared Kingfisher, Cattle Egret, and etc. 

Blanchard's Ghost, Manado Yellow Tiger and Blanchard's Wood Nymph Butterflies

In addition to birds, I also saw various species of butterflies including the Helena Birdwing, Blanchard's Ghost, and Blandchard's Wood Nymph (Ideopsis vitrea) butterflies that like to feed on nectar of flowers in the mornings. 

Bamboo Orchid (Arundina graminifolia)
Bamboo Orchid

Sonder town

Sonder is a small town in Minahasa regency. It is a nice destination for nature lovers who are interested in seeing mountains, farmlands, ricefields, hotsprings, and forests while watching birds, butterflies and other wildlife in the region. 

Sonder town
Sonder town in Minahasa highland of North Sulawesi, Indonesia

How to get to Minahasa?

Manado city is the main gate to visit Minahasa.

  • It is very easy to visit Minahasa. First, you need to fly from your country to Singapore. After that you could take a direct flight by Scoot Air to Manado city
  • If you fly to Jakarta, Surabaya, or Denpasar, you could continue your trip by taking domestic airline to fly to Manado city.
  • There is also daily flight between Sorong city and Manado city.

traveling to Minahasa
Flying Route to Manado City
Minahasa highland map
Sonder is a small town in the highland of Minahasa

I could meet you at the airport and organize your trip to Minahasa or other regencies in North Sulawesi.

If you are interested in taking a nature tour in Indonesia by combining West Papua and North Sulawesi regions and want me to organize your trip, you could contact me by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180. 

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