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ULTIMATE PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Friday 10th June - Thursday 30th June 2016

Chris Kehoe

The rarely seen Forest Bittern (Chris Kehoe)

The rarely seen Forest Bittern (Chris Kehoe)

Our recent tour to Papua New Guinea, including an extension to New Britain undertaken by all participants, produced numerous highlights. Birds-of-paradise (Bops) inevitably featured prominently during the main tour as we enjoyed views of many species including memorably close encounters with the likes of Twelve-wired and Raggiana Bops plus marvelous display performances by males of King and Greater Bops. Blue Bops were seen well at two sites but most popular of all was a fabulous male King-of-Saxony Bop that put on an extended performance of calling and antenna waving. There was much else to occupy us of course, spectacular Southern Crowned Pigeons never fail to impress but a rare Forest Bittern at Varirata was a real bonus, as was a stunning Pheasant Pigeon there. A New Guinea Woodcock showed exceptionally well in the spotlight at Kumul while on New Britain a Pink-legged Rail was another prized find as was a Black Honey Buzzard. The supporting cast to such stars included an impressive five species of Paradise Kingfishers, including the rare and poorly known Little Paradise Kingfisher, eight species of Fruit Doves, stunning Blue-capped Ifrits, three species of Tiger Parrots, showy Chestnut Forest Rails, close-up Papuan Harriers and a fabulous pair of Chestnut-backed Jewel Babblers to name just a few. The weather throughout was largely favourable, we lost little birding time to rain, and apart from one extended flight delay of four-and-a-half hours the tour logistics ran smoothly.

Brown Sicklebill (Chris Kehoe)

Brown Sicklebill (Chris Kehoe)