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NEW CALEDONIA & FIJI

Friday 5th October - Sunday 21st October 2007

Richard Thomas

The October 2007 tour to the island archipelagos of New Caledonia and Fiji was hugely successful and recorded more species in the region than any previous Birdquest visit. Highlights on New Caledonia included all the main island and Lifou extant endemics, stunning views by all participants of the notoriously skulking and elusive New Caledonian Grassbird, superb views of male Cloven-feathered Doves, two Crow Honeyeaters, and all topped off with a staggering eight individuals of the incomparable Kagu. Our visit to Fiji recorded 21 endemics. Highlights of this tropical island nation paradise included a stunning array of fruit-doves: Many-coloured, Velvet, Golden, and of course the incredible Orange Dove, plus an unknown “Yellow Dove” that first appeared on Taveuni following a typhoon and which may prove be a species as yet unknown to science. Once again we recorded several of the increasingly scarce and elusive Black-throated Shrikebills, including a pair at Colo-i-Suva. The tour recorded 125 species, 40 of them endemic to either New Caledonia or Fiji, plus around 20 regional specialities.