My Binoculars and Spotting Scopes Sponsored by Swarovski Optik

12 Days Birding & Bird Photography Tours In Sabah, Borneo

Sunday, December 18, 2022

Birding with Singaporean gang

 11-13th December 2022

It was a target birds trip and we got the Bulwer's Pheasant, Crested Partridge and Bornean Banded Pitta from the hide at Mt. Trusmadi. The weather was misty at Mt. Alab bird hide, only Crimson-headed Partridge, Chestnut-hooded Laughingthrush and Snowy-browed Flycatcher appeared. Overall the trip was satisfying and they will be back next year for a trip to Danum Valley and Tabin Wildlife Reserve

My current Sabah Big Year 2022 list at 477 and hoping to get into 480 by end of December...

Images taken with Nikon. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 

Along the road at Tambunan Rafflesia Forest Reserve

Bird hide at Tambunan

Border of Trusmadi Forest Reserve

Misty morning at Mt. Alab

Thick mist at Mt. Emas but we got the Grey-chinned Minivet here

Shooting the Red Avadavat and endemic Dusky Munia at Penampang paddy fields


Final stop at Sadong Jaya for the resident Nankeen Night Heron

Sunda Laughingthrush (only found in Java and Borneo)

Crimson-headed Partridge (endemic)

Little Pied Flycatcher

Golden-naped Barbet (endemic)

Bulwer's Pheasant, the star bird for the trip. Considered rare endemic in Sabah. It was my lifer after searching it for 15 years...

Female Bornean Banded Pitta (endemic)

Crested Partridge aka Roul-Roul

Grey-throated Babbler, quite common in flock at the mountains

The female Roul-Roul looks confiding

Low's Squirrel (endemic)

Another common montane Temminck's Babbler

Female Siberian Blue Robin (migrant)

Dayak Blue Flycatcher (endemic)

Grey-hooded Babbler

Happy birding and festive seasons :D

Monday, November 7, 2022

Birding with Bob and Gabby

 29th October - 2nd November 2022

Their first birding trip to Sabah since they started to enjoys birds in the Philippines late last year. We started at Mt. Kinabalu for a nite then drove to Sepilok for another 3 nites plus day trip to Kinabatangan River. It was around 137 birds recorded for Bom and Gabby and close up view of the Golden-naped Barbet and Orange-backed Woodpecker adds more excitement to their life list. For the river, we also got the Storm's Stork, Little Green Pigeon and Bat Hawk at its usual perch near Gomantong Cave.

While having lunch at Sim-Sim water village, saw around 8 Aleutian Tern (vagrant) and added to my Sabah Big Year 2022 to number 455 birds as of November. They were impressed with the bird life here including excellent facilities catered for tourists etc. They will be back!

Images and videos taken with Swarovski Optik. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Watching the endemic Whitehead's Trogon

Now joined by Ali and Nde

Lily's Cottage, my favourite place to stay at Mt. Kinabalu!

My lucky charm the miniature Whitehead's Trogon for attracting more birds in the wild :)

Gabby with the Swarovski STX95 spotting scope + iPhone for the endemic White-fronted Falconet found along the Ranau-Sandakan road

At Sepilok Giant tree

Great canopy walkway at Rainforest Discovery Centre, Sepilok

Both got the Terek Sandpiper and Whimbrel including the rare Aleutian Tern!

Bat Hawk!

At Kinabatangan River

Final morning at RDC

Yellow-bellied Bulbul taken with the Swarovski Optik STX95 spotting scope + smartphone

With Gary and John for the Aleutian Tern at Taman Harmoni mudflat, Sandakan. Found around 13 Aleutian Tern and 2 Gull-billed Tern

I will be away for another waders survey from the 10-15th November in Tawau and Sandakan. Hope I will be able to get the Black-hooded Oriole, Abbot's Babbler and also Greater Flameback for my big year...

Happy birding!

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Birding with Fernando and the gang

 11-24th September 2022

The trip supposed to commenced in 2020 but due to the Covid19 stuff etc, the group arrived early September and birding started around Tempasuk Plain and Kuala Abai, Kota Belud and we got the Common and Black-naped Tern with Temminck's Stint, Oriental Pratincole. Then a must visit garden at Tg. Aru Beach for the Blue-naped Parrot and Long-tailed Parakeet, Collared Kingfisher, Dusky Munia (endemic) and Green Imperial Pigeon.

The next few days at Danum Valley Field Centre proved to be a bit tough for those Pittas but Striped and Black-throated Wren-Babbler gave some compensation for the group including Bornean Bristlehead, Chestnut-naped Forktail, Green Broadbill and Great Slaty Woodpecker.

They continued the trip at Kinabatangan River with Romzi and got the Large Frogmouth and along the access road to Gomantong Cave, we nailed the Bat Hawk in the open, Rufous-collared Kingfisher and their first Black-headed Pitta!

Hooded Pitta and Copper-throated Sunbird showed well at Rainforest Discovery Centre, Sepilok and Whitehead's Trogon, Everett's Thrush, Mountain Blackeye, Fruithunter and Crimson-headed with Red-breasted Partridge were the star birds at Mt. Kinabalu and Mt. Alab.

The trip ended with Nankeen's Night Heron at Sembulan Waterfront, Kota Kinabalu with a total of 200++ species were recorded.

Images taken with Swarovski Optik. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


Sabah Chestnut-necklaced Partridge digiscoped with Swarovski Optik STX95 + smartphone

Thick-billed Green Pigeon taken with Swarovski Optik STX95 spotting scope + smartphone

Short stop at Zudir Platform, Taviu Hill, Telupid

At Mt. Kinabalu for the Whitehead's Broadbill :D

John and Ron admires the sunrise from Mt. Alab, Tambunan

 With Fernando and Jose

 Looking at the Malay Civet under the truck
 The common migrant; Asian Brown Flycatcher

Waiting for the Rufous-collared Kingfisher

Bat Hawk from the roadside at Kinabatangan River digiscoped with Swarovski Optik STX95 spotting scope + smartphone 

Swarovski Optik cap

 Watching the Black & Yellow Broadbill from the tower at Danum Valley

Fernando points at the Mountain Blackeye to the group

Short footage of the Sabah Chestnut-necklaced Partridge

Happy birding everyone!