Welcome to Birdquest
Friday 12th August - Thursday 1st September 2016
Daniel Lopez Velasco
Our second tour to Papua New Guinea – including New Britain - in 2016 was a great success and delivered an unprecedented number of high quality birds. A total of 21 species of Birds-of-paradise (BoPs), - undoubtedly one of the most extraordinary, and “out of this world” bird families in the world, were recorded, perhaps most memorable being a superb male Blue BoP, scoped at close range near Kumul for as long as we wished and showing one of the most vivid blue colours in the animal world. Just as impressive though were spectacular performances by displaying Raggiana and Greater BoPs in excellent light, with up to 8 males lekking at a time, a stunning male King BoP and two displaying males Twelve-wired BoPs at the Elevala River, a cracking adult male Magnificent BoP in the scope for hours at Tabubil, several amazing King-of-Saxony BoPs, waving their incredible head plumes like some strange insect antennae in the mossy forest of Tari Valley, great sightings of both Princess Stephanie ´s and Ribbon-tailed Astrapias with their ridiculously long tail feathers, superb scope studies of Black and Brown Sicklebills uttering their machine-gun like calls, and so on. While Birds-of-paradise are certainly the signature family in PNG, there is of course plenty more besides, for example we recorded a grand total of 33 species of pigeons and doves, -they reach their greatest diversity here in New Guinea, as do kingfishers-, including nine Fruit Doves, a rare New Guinea Bronzewing feeding on the road, and, during the extension, both Black Imperial Pigeon and Pied Cuckoo-Dove.