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: 

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Watercolour Sketch of Bird

Watercolour Sketch of Bird
Fruit Dove from Tropical Rainforest

Vector Art Drawing in Inkscape

Vector Art Drawing in Inkscape
Swimming with Whaleshark

Vector art illustration in Inkscape

Vector art illustration in Inkscape
Baby leatherback turtle was reaching for the sea

Drawing of Paradise Bird

Drawing of Paradise Bird
Lesser Birds of Paradise art print on classic T-shirt

Digital Drawing in Autodesk Sketchbook

Digital Drawing in Autodesk Sketchbook
A Couple of Red Bird of Paradise