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Friday 23rd November - Saturday 8th December 2007

Hannu Jännes

The second Birdquest tour to Goa was even more successful than the first, thanks to a combination of factors which included a very respectable number of species seen (299 + three heard only species), one very rarely encountered global rarity, and all the available South Indian endemics. The prize of the most surprising and best find of the trip must go to the Lesser Florican, but some of the more regular specialities, which included such mouth-watering species as Sri Lanka Frogmouth, White-bellied Woodpecker, two species of hornbills, Black-backed Dwarf Kingfisher, Nilgiri Woodpigeon, Malabar Trogon, Indian Pitta, Blue-faced Malkoha and Malabar Barbet, were all much admired, as were widespread, but still very appealing Oriental species like Heart-spotted Woodpecker, Paradise Flycatcher, Black-capped Kingfisher and Crested Treeswift. Including recent splits, we managed to see 40 of South India’s endemic or near endemic species. A nice bonus was the good number of local rarities, that entertained us during our stay, including White-tailed Plover, Eyebrowed Thrush, Red Avadavat, Streaked Weaver, Yellow-browed Warbler and Yellow-breasted Bunting. We followed the same 'Easybird rules' as on the first tour, which gave us the chance to combine a relaxed holiday with quality birding in a near perfect climate, with excellent food and a good quality hotel with its own swimming pool.