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NEW CALEDONIA & FIJI including Vanuatu and Samoa

Sunday 21st October - Friday 9th November 2018

Mark Van Beirs

Samoan Parrotfinch (Mark Van Beirs)

Samoan Parrotfinch (Mark Van Beirs)

The unique Orange Fruit Dove was the undisputed highlight of our very enjoyable foray to the Melanesian islands of Vanuatu and New Caledonia and the Polynesian islands of Fiji and Samoa. These little dots sprinkled about in the western Pacific Ocean hold an amazing variety of endemics and specialities and on our recent trip we managed to see the majority of these. The best birds of the main tour, which covered New Caledonia and Fiji, included the gorgeous Cloven-feathered Dove, the magnificent Kagu and the terrific Golden Fruit Dove. The Vanuatu pretrip will be remembered for Tanna Fruit Dove, the adorable Buff-bellied Monarch, Vanuatu Megapode and the retiring Vanuatu Kingfisher, while the Samoa extension gave us splendours like Mao, Red-headed Parrotfinch, Blue-crowned Lorikeet and Samoan Whistler. The large island of New Caledonia is a mixture of French and Melanesian cultures, where the fantastic and much-wanted Kagu makes a living. As it is the only representative of its family, we were all very keen to get to grips with this very unusual-looking species. Our day trips to two of the Loyalty Islands added several rare and little known endemics to the tally. The Fiji archipelago exudes a very different feeling and pride of place must go to the three amazing Fruit Doves that make a living on the different islands. Australasia is pigeon and dove heaven, but Fiji definitely is the capital, as it holds the best looking, most attractive species. 147 bird taxa were seen on this very enjoyable tour.

White-bellied Goshawk (Michael Chinn)

White-bellied Goshawk (Michael Chinn)