Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Birding Tour in Susnguakti Forest of Arfak Mountains

I have just completed a birding and wildlife watching tour for 4 French visitors in Arfak mountains. We spent 3 days/ 2 nights in Susnguakti forest watching Lesser Birds of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise, Magnificent Bird of Paradise. Several birding huts had been built by local guides to increase the chance of birders to see the birds.
Lesser Birds of Paradise

Birding in Susnguakti forest of Arfak mountains
In addition to watching birds, they also enjoyed night walk to see cuscus possum. Local guide who accompanied the French visitors immitated the sounds of female cuscus to attract the male one. When the male cuscus had come down from the tree through a hanging vine, everybody could see him and take picture of the animal. Cuscus possum is a marsupial and nocturnal animal that usually goes out at night to find food and mating partner.
If you are interested in visiting Susnguakti forest of Arfak mountains or other places in West Papua, and want me to be your private guide, please, contact me by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or send text message to my whatsapp: +6281332245180.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Birding in highland and lowland of Manokwari

Magnificent Bird of Paradise
I organized a birding tour for 3 French tourists last week. I guided them to high elevation forest in Arfak mountains for 3 days and then to Mesirokow forest in lowland region of Manokwari for 3 days. While in Arfak range, we watched Magnificent Bird of Paradise, Vogelkop Bowerbird, Western Parotia, Western Smoky Honeyeater, Vogelkop Melidectes, Feline Owletnightjar, Mountain Owletnightjar and a lot of other birds.
In lowland forest of Manokwari, we watched Little Egret, Palm Cockatoo, Eclectus Parrot, Great-billed Heron, Pink-spotted Fruit Dove, Lowland Peltop, Pacific Baza, Little-ringed Plover, Gray Wagtail, Variable Goshawk, Blyth's Hornbill and a lot more.
Birding in Lowland Forest of Manokwari
In addition to birds, we also saw cuscus possum, butterflies, and forest lizards. The temperature in lowland forest of Manokwari was quite warm but we enjoyed the birding walk very much. We could swim in the river after that. We walked along the banks of the river in the mornings and in the afternoons. I provided dome tents, mattrasses, cooking and eating equipment for my clients so that they did not have to bring heavy things from their country. Bruno, one of the three participants brought a Swarovski HD spotting scope. It greatly enhanced our birding experience. With that device, we could see birds that were resting on the branches of distant trees clearly.
Birdwing Butterfly: Ornithoptera tithonus
We stayed in tents It was a nice birding experience. The scenery was very beautiful and local people were very helpful. If you are interested in taking a tropical birding tour in Manokwari, please, contact me by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180. I could guide single traveler and also a group of visitors with 2 to 8 participants. The itinerary can be customized according to the needs and wants of the participant.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Golden Myna in Love

Golden Myna
Golden Myna in Klasow Valley
I often see Golden Myna (Mino anais) when I guide visitors on a birding tour in Mesirrokow river forest of Manokwari, in Klasow valley of Sorong regency. The best time to watch the bird is between 17.00 to 18.30 local time. They like to sit on top of trees especially on dead branches and twigs. Golden Myna are usually seen as couple but they also like to fly together in a group to find fruiting trees. The head, wings, and underparts are black. Its chest, and nape are yellow. Field guide book Birds of New Guinea written by Thane K. Pratt and Bruce Beehler says that the bird is uncommon. In contrary, in Klasow valley, our chance to see the bird is much higher.
If birds of paradise are seen as King of Seduction, Golden Myna could be called King of Romance. Paradise birds are polygamous meaning that they have got more than one sexual partners whereas Golden Myna is monogamous.
Golden Myna (Mino anais)
Golden Myna (Mino anais)
Birdwatching is an environmentally friendly hobby for millions of people. Birders often travel in small groups of 2 to 8 people. But there is also solo traveling birder whom I serve. To enhance birding experience, I often provide a good pair of binoculars, and spotting scope. If you are interested in traveling to West Papua to enjoy swimming, snorkeling and watching tropical birds, please, contact me by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com.

Also read:
Birds in Raja Ampat
Parrots in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat

Eclectus Parrot

eclectus parrot
Female Eclectus Parrot
Here is the picture of a female Eclectus Parrot that was flying fast in Waigeo island. The bird had red wing feather and blue underparts with dark beak. I also saw a male one but my camera could not follow him. He had green feather with red feather under his wings. They are sexually dimorphic. Eclectus Parrot live in lowland and lower montane forest of mainland New Guinea and a lot of smaller islands around it.
It is easy to see them in Klasow valley of Sorong regency and Mesirokow forest in lowland region of Manokwari. When I visited Numfor island in Cendrawasih bay of West Papua, I saw them too. Local people considered the birds as pests. They caught them and sold the birds to pet lovers in Manokwari city or Biak town.
Eclectus Parrot
Eclectus Parrot in Numfor island

Monday, November 20, 2017

Magnificent Bird of Paradise

Male Magnificent Bird of Paradise
Here is the picture of Magnificent Bird of Paradise in the forest of Arfak mountains. I watched the bird when I guided three French visitors on 1-week hiking and birding tour in higher montane and lowland forest of Manokwari. To watch the paradise bird, we had to wake up early in the morning at 04.00. First, we needed to make preparation such as wearing suitable clothing and shoes for hiking and checking our cameras and binoculars. Second, we needed to have tea or coffee and some snacks so that we had enough energy for 1-hour morning walk to the birding ground.
Magnificent Birds of Paradise began to be active at approximately 06.00 when the sun rose in the east. He would call his female counterparts. Both male and female birds were sexually dimorphic with male had more colorful and beautiful feather.
Magnificent Bird of Paradise are polygamous. It means they have got more than one sexual partners.
After spending 3 days/ 3 nights in Arfak range, we continued our birding trip to Mesirokow forest un lowland region of Manokwari.