My Binoculars and Spotting Scopes Supported by Swarovski Optik

12 Days Birding & Bird Photography Tours In Sabah, Borneo

Review of Swarovski Modular Spotting Scopes

94 species of birds in 1 day at Tabin Wildlife Reserve

Monday, November 16, 2015

14 Days Birding With Paul and the Gang

1st - 14th November 2015



Paul's last visit to Sabah was in 2010 and on his recent tour with the group, they managed to get around 310 birds on the usual birdwatching hot spots and particularly Danum Valley continued to impressed visiting clients for the wildife, lovely view of the rainforest and many more.

Highlights of the trips:
  • Red-breasted Partridge (A pair was seen feeding while singing at Mt. Kinabalu)
  • Chinese Egret (Single bird at Tg. Aru)
  • Bornean Falconet (Scope view plus some videos of it feeding the large Cicada)
  • Large Frogmouth (Heavy bird according to Paul!)
  • Cinnamon-rumped Trogon (Unbelievable too close!)
  • Ruddy Kingfisher (Playing hide and seek at Kinabatangan River)
  • Helmeted Hornbill (Single male with fruit on its route to the nesting tree at Danum Valley)
  • Grey & Buff Woodpecker (Early morning bird at RDC)
  • Long-tailed Broadbill (Excellent view at Tambunan)
  • Whitehead's Broadbill (Big and very obliging at Mt. Kinabalu)
  • Giant Pitta (My 2nd view of this very shy Pitta at Danum Valley)
  • Bornean Bristlehead (A family of four responded to the playback at Danum Valley)
  • Grey-bellied Bulbul (Daily seen feeding on the fruiting trees next to the restaurant at Danum Valley)
  • Everett's Thrush (3 birds were seen feeding near the road at Mt Kinabalu)

Some of the images capture during the trip. Taken with Nikon D3s + 300mm 2.8 VR II and Swarovski STX95 + Nikon V1 + 18.5mm. All Rights Reserved ©


 

Mountain Wren-Babbler (endemic)



Mountain Blackeye (endemic)



Green-ringed Cicada


 

Whitehead's Pygmy Squirrel (endemic) feeds on algae and fast too!


 

Golden sunrise at Mt. Kinabalu


 

Yellow Racer Snake


 

Orang Utan with the juvenile at Gomantong Cave


 

Scoping the Black and Yellow Broadbill


 

Brown Wood Owl, 2nd common found in Sabah


 

Flat-headed Cat (lifer)


 

The largest Stork-billed Kingfisher in Sabah


 

Hooded Pitta


 

Black Hornbill


 

Lesser Fish Eagle


 

John at the canopy walkway, Danum Valley


 

Banded Broadbill


 

Cinnamon-rumped Trogon


 

Birding along the access road at Danum Valley


 

The nomadic Grey-bellied Bulbul


 

Olive-winged Bulbul


 

Yellow-rumped Flowerpecker (endemic) sub-adult


 

Common Tern between Gaya Island and the harbour



The trip ended at Manukan Island and saw the Tabon Scrubfowl, Mangrove Blue Flycatcher and Mangrove Whistler.

Good birding!



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Friday, October 30, 2015

Blue-banded Pitta

30th October 2015



One of the elusive Pitta found in Sabah, this endemic preferred hill slopes for feeding and usually moves in pair. Record shot taken on the East Coast with the gang during one of the bird survey last September.

Taken with Nikon D300s + 300mm 2.8 VR II. All Rights Reserved ©


 

The necklaced type band on its neck






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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Mountain Blackeye

24th October 2015



On the recent 7th Borneo Bird Festival held at Mt. Kinabalu, this bird became one of the favorite among bird race teams because of it unexpected behavior flying low near the ground then perched on the barbed wire at the Timpohon Gate. 10 years ago, it was only possible to see this endemic when climbing Mt. Kinabalu which is common around the Laban Rata rest house. Due to the effect of El-Nino, it is now mostly seen at the lower elevation of the Park. It moved in flock and noisy too.

Taken with Nikon D3s + 300mm 2.8 VR II. All Rights Reserved ©


 

Quite hard to get a proper image of this beauty!



 

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Saturday, August 8, 2015

Bornean Ground Cuckoo




Best places would be at Kinabatangan River, Sabah and also at Sungai Wain, Balikpapan according to friends who went to Kalimantan a few times in search for the Bornean Peacock Pheasant. Based on my records, this bird moved quietly on the floor without making any noise and when it replied on the playback, usually on the horizontal branches or logs on the ground.

Sometimes it takes hours before we get a glimpse of this rare birds too... The images below were taken at Kinabatangan River on cruise.

Taken with Nikon D300s + Nikon Fieldscope EDG85. All Rights Reserved ©



 It was also seen feeding on carcass at Danum Valley several years ago by researchers.



Rare and exquisite...




Happy birding!



For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Monday, August 3, 2015

White-fronted Falconet




Considered the smallest Raptor in the world, it is only found in Sabah and Brunei at Borneo Island. Main diet includes Nymph Butterfly and smaller birds such as Eurasian Tree Sparrow, Common Iora and Sunbird. If you are driving along the Kota Kinabalu-Sandakan Road, look for bare or death trees where it likes to perched and wait for its preys.

The series of images was taken in several places around Sabah with Nikon and Swarovski Optik spotting scopes. All Rights Reserved ©






 

 My favorite taken at Tenom





For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Monday, July 27, 2015

Mountain Serpent Eagle




On my previous tour in March with Alex, Katie and Alison, one morning while driving up to Timpohon Gate, I couldn't believe me eyes when I saw for the first time, a perching Mountain Serpent Eagle on the electric cable! Oh My God! Then the story goes...

Image and video taken with Swarovski STX 95 + TLS APO + Nikon V1 ~ All Rights Reserved ©



Then it flew up to one of the bare branch and sing for few minutes. Endemic to Borneo.



Comparison with the Crested Serpent Eagle that is found from lowland to 1000m asl. The cheek is paler and has different type of call too. In flight seen from below, the mountain species has wider white tail band too. Taken at Kinabatangan River.



It was harassed by the Bornean Treepie



I have been birding since 2013 and that was my first time to have a closer view of this magnificent Raptor that only seen mostly high up on the blue skies!



Happy birding!



For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Swarovski Optik New EL Family Binoculars




Swarovski Optik, Austria has released a new lineup to their legendary EL binoculars family. Known for its perfection in producing high quality optics, the new EL binoculars will be available from September 2015 at exclusive specialist retailers and online at www.swarovskioptik.com.




Watch the new EL Family video.







For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Red-breasted Partridge




Another montane endemic found in Borneo. These Partridge usually moved in flocks and allowed lucky photographers to get as close as possible for pictures, videos etc.

Taken with Nikon D3s + 300mm 2.8 VR II ~ All Rights Reserved ©


 





For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Crimson-headed Partridge




One of the 2 endemic Partridges which is found on the higher elevation at Mt Kinabalu. It is commonly heard but required luck to see this shy bird.

Image taken with Nikon D300s + 300mm 2.8 VR II. All Rights Reserved ©


 

Male and female is identical and responded with playback.





For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Thursday, July 2, 2015

Greater Painted Snipe

30th June 2015



One of rare birds in Sabah, I only see them probably once or twice a year by pure luck at the paddy field. So far no sign of the immature. By the time I took these picture, saw the male sitting next to the female late in the afternoon.

Digiscoped with Swarovski STX 95 + TLS APO + Nikon V1 ~ 30x = 2430mm. All Rights Reserved ©


Sacred Mt Kinabalu from Tuaran district


Female is more prettier than the male



Happy birding!



For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Birding With Kees Scharingga

26-27th June 2015



Kees and wife has been around Sabah for 2 weeks mainly for birds and other wildlife. He sent me his target birds which he missed and we spent 2 days looking for it at Keningau and Tambunan area. Mahua Waterfall was the first destination followed by birding along the busy Tambunan road, Crocker Range HQ, Gunung Alab Sub-station and Sugud Forest at Penampang.

Key birds seen:
  • Pygmy White Eye
  • Bornean Bulbul
  • Mt Barbet
  • Bornean Barbet
  • Bornean Forktail
  • Red-crowned Barbet
  • Green Broadbill

 Images taken with Swarovski STX 95 + TLS APO + Nikon V1 ~ All Rights Reserved ©



Bornean Forktail seen along the river at Mahua in the morning


The uncommon to rare Red-crowned Barbet at Sugud


Andrew were busy with the Rufous Woodpecker


Kees at Gunung Alab Sub-station looking at the Mt Blackeye




Happy birding!



For birdwatching/bird photography tours, please check my other blog http://birdersofborneo.blogspot.com/


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