Half Day Birding in Malang

One of the best locations for birding in Malang area, especially to see Javas montane endemic birds is at Raden Soerjo Greater Park Forestry. Read more about the location here. This location is also listed in The 100 Best Bird Watching Sites in Southeast Asia. In July this weather in Malang, Batu and surrounding areas is great for birding, mostly sunny from morning to afternoon. Only occasionally 1-2 times there is a small and short rain in a week. Similarly, on Monday, July 17, 2017 at one birding site Raden Soerjo Greater Park Forestry named Watu Ondo.

The sun was shining brightly when we were arrived around 08.00 AM. We were greeted by 2 Indigo Flycatchers families who were nurturing their already flying chick. The immature have chest and throat spots red-pink, brown-red slices, black beak and legs.

This is surprisingly make us happy after the #Savebirdnest project several months ago and still running. After a while there was a Javan Hawk-eagle soaring above the parking area, followed by a Crested Serpent-eagle whistle then appearing above us. The presence of the two species of eagle indicates our arrival at the site late to see various types of birds, because the birds must have gone to find food. Moving ahead of the regional ticket sales counter, there was the sound of many bird species. There’s a herd of Crescent-chested Babbler and Horsfield’s Babbler on the jungle floor, then on the canopy a family of Snowy-browed Flycatchers is watching the immature descend on the pavement of the highway. Immature spotted birds brown, sliced dark brown, black beak, legs gray to brown. In the upper canopy are two species of endemic birds, a pair of Chestnut-fronted Shrike-Babbler and the Sunda Streaked Bulbul flocks that are eating the remains of fruits and insects in the leaf armpits. After the flocks of the birds disappear, return to the parking lot again. Suddenly a Lesser (Sunda) Forktail flies and lands on the ground. This bird is feeding behind the dried leaves that are around the parking lot. Not so difficult to observe and photograph this bird, just walk slowly and squat to the desired distance.

Lesser (Sunda) Forktail that is observed is male birds because it has a crown and nape of gray to black. Around the area there was Pygmy Wren-Babbler’s voice behind the thick grass. I waited a little longer but the bird did not come up with the form.

At 10:00 AM the area became deserted from the sound of birds, so we headed to the food stalls and waited for the birds to reappear. While waiting for me to try along the creek beside the stall, walk about 100 meters and then a Fulvous-breasted Woodpecker alighted on a small branch of a tree beside the river. When I take the camera that I leave at the food stall, the bird actually disappears. I went back to the food stall.

Until 11:00 AM the condition was still quiet, we were only entertained with a group of Ebony Leaf Monkey who eat young leaves in the trees around the stall. It’s easy to meet and observe Ebony Leaf Monkey around the Raden Soerjo Greater Park Forestry which is Vulnerable status according to IUCN Redlist and only exists in Indonesia.

We decided to go home when the fog began to rise and it would be difficult to photograph the birds in that situation. Back to the parking area we were greeted by a Flame-fronted Barbet who was eating. We try to get close and look at it. We are trying to take pictures but the light is not good and the fog is annoying to get good results. Finally we just took a record shot and went home.

The results are not so disappointing because we get 11 species of birds, and 5 species are endemic birds within a short time.

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