North Sulawesi Birding

by Sultan Birding Tours Indonesia

Sultan Birding Tours Indonesia offers a range of private and small group birding tours throughout Sulawesi, Halmahera, West Papua, Java, Bali, Flores and Lesser Sunda allowing birders to select from a variety of destinations.

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North Sulawesi Birding

Best of North Sulawesi’s Endemic birds with seven days birding covering hot birding sites including Dumoga Nani Wartabone National Park, Gunung Ambang Reserve, Maleo breeding Center, Gunung Mahawu Reserve and Tangkoko Nature Reserve.

Duration: 07 days
Starting city: Manado (North Sulawesi)
Ending city: Manado (North Sulawesi)
Physical difficulty: moderate to difficult
Focus: birding
Bird Photography: is the best, special the Sulawesi bird endemic
Walking condition: the walking ranges from easy to moderate, but there will be a few tough days in GunungAmbang in Dumoga and Temboan hill near Tangkoko Park
Type of Land Transport & Road: We will use minibus or cars. Road is some part in good condition and some part in bad condition. While for mangrove boat trip we will use small boat.
Accommodation: In Kotamobagu we will stay Three nights at standard hotel has hot water shower and internet access WIFI, in TomohonGunungMahawu we will be staying in the hotel or cottages which has hot water shower and has also internet access WIFI, In Tangkoko park we will be staying in basic guesthouses with no hot water but has aircondition room, no internet connection
Min group size: 2 persons
Max group size: 10 persons

Day 1: Manado arrival – Kotamobagu.
Upon arrival at Manado airport, direct 5 hours car drivingto Kotamobagu. Today much of the day will be spent traveling. Three nights will be spent at hotel in the town of Kotamobagu.

Day 2: Dumoga Nani Wartabone National Park
Fullday morning and afternoon we will explore the Maleo breeding Center, the most handsome of all megapodes is the endemic MacrocephalonMaleo of Sulawesi. Its black-and-pink plumage, erect tail and grotesque helmet or cephalon (hence its scientific name) and characteristic rolling call make the Maleo a must for bird-watchers visiting Sulawesi.and on same days it is possible to help with the release of chicks back into the wild. After spending some time searching for Maleos, we will walk in this small forest patch, searching for a local endemic, Sulawesi crested Myna, White necked Myna, Maroon-chinned Fruit-Dove, Yellow-billed Malkoha, the strange white-eyed race of Hair-crested Drongo, Black-billed Koel, Bay Coucal, Black naped Fruit Dove, Sulawesi hanging Parrot, White breasted Woodswallow and Sulawesi hawk Eagle. These forests also hold Sulawesi black Pigeon and perhaps get further chances at Sulawesi Pitta.

Day 3: Dumoga Nani Wartabone National Park
Fullday morning and afternoon birding in Toraut, another forested section of the park, where we hope to find the regularly roosting Speckled Boobook within the park buildings, and we might see other species; Pied Cuckooshrike, Sulawesi Dwarf-Kingfisher, Lilac cheeked Kingfisher, Green backed Kingfisher, Maroon chinned Fruit Dove, Superb fruit Dove, Grey headed Imperial Pigeon, Red Knobbed Hornbill, Sulawesi dwarf Hornbill, Grey headed Fish eagle, this area also good for the endemic Ivory-backed Woodswallow, and is great for mynas, with Finch-billed, White-vented and Sulawesi (Crested) Mynas, Barred (Sulawesi) Honey-Buzzard. In the afternoon we will move onto another area of the park checking the roadside paddies and wet areas for Barred and Buff-banded Rails, and Wandering Whistling-Ducks on the way.

Day 4: Gunung Ambang to Tomohon.
This morning we will start very early and explore some of the surviving montane forest in GunungAmbang Nature Reserve. Here we should find the localized Matinan flycatcher and we will also be hoping to encounter the beautiful but elusive Scaly breasted Kingfisher and if we are really in luck we will spot the purple-bearded Bee-eater, Red eared Fruit Dove, Sulawesi blue flycatcher, Sulawesi leaf warbler, Superb Fruit dove, Ornate lorikeet, yellow and green lorikeet, Black billed Koel, Sulawesi Pitta, Sulawesi Pygmy Woodpecker, Ashy Woodpecker, Malia, yellow sided flowerpecker, Sulawesi myzomela. After morning here we will back to Kotamobagu for Lunch then after that we will drive 4 hours to reach Tomohon.

Day 5: Gunung Mahawu – Tangkoko Park
Gunung Mahawu is a forested Volcano (1490 meters above sea level), Inside the crater is a steaming, emerald-green lake ringed with yellow sulphur deposits. From the summit you can see neighbouring Mount Lokon with its ever-present plume of smoke. On the clear day you can also see both the Sulawesi sea on the west and to the Maluku sea to the east, GunungMahawu is located near the village of Rurukan where Sir Alfred Wallace lived for a while. Now GunungMahawu is one of the Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas( IBAs ) in Asia by BirdLife International. In this birding place we have some interesting Sulawesi endemic species, It is one of the easiest and most reliable sites in Sulawesi for the Scaly-breasted kingfisher-Actenoidesprinceps but please note this star bird of Sulawesi is very skittish and always hide so to spot them still need luck. Bird species at GunungMahawu and Tomohon; Scaly-breasted kingfisher, Lilac-cheeked kingfisher, Green-backed kingfisher, Blue-eared kingfisher, Collared Kingfisher, Sulawesi scops owl, Speckled boobook, Ochre-bellied boobook, Sulawesi babler, Chestnut-backed Bush-Warbler, Sulawesi Blue-Flycatcher (split from Mangrove Blue-Flycatcher), the ultra rareRufous-throated Flycatcher, Pale-blue Monarch (split from Black-naped Monarch), Isabeline-bush hen, Barred rail, White-browed Crake, Sulawesi Myzomela, Island Flycatcher, Citrine Flycatcher, Grey-sided Flowerpecker, Yellow-sided Flowerpecker, Crimson-crowned Flowerpecker, Black-fronted White-eye, Mountain white-eye, Streak-headed Dark-eye, Mountain Tailorbird, Purple-winged Roller, Yellow vented Whistler, Crimson sunbird, Black Sunbird, Olive-back sunbird, Sooty-headed bulbul, Hair crested drongo, Yellow-billed Malkoha, Ashy Woodpecker, Sulawesi pygmy Woodpecker, Grey wagtail, Yellow wagtail, Chestnut Munia, Scaly-breasted munia, Rusty-breasted Cuckoo, Brown-cuckoo dove, superb-fruit dove, Sulawesi black-Pigeon, Sulawesi-hanging parrot, Black Eagle, Black Kite, Osprey, Spotted Kestrel, Peregrine Falcon. During our stay here also we have a great chance of finding Purple swamphen, White-browed crake, White-breasted waterhen, Common Moorhen, Javan pond heron on the Lake Tondano. Late afternoon we will arrive in Tangkoko for two nights stay.

Day 6: Tangkoko.
This reserve on the eastern tip of the Minahassa Peninsula, is one of Sulawesi’s flagship parks, the excellent lowland jungle and mangrove forest providing superb birding site, The reserve is especially famous for kingfishers, having no less then eight resident species, of which four are endemic but remember that Tangkoko also has much more to offer than its kingfisher though and with the assistance of the skilled our local team, we will be search for Lilac cheeked kingfisher, Green-backed kingfisher, Sulawesi-dwarf kingfisher, Sulawesi Pitta, Rudy kingfisher, Common kingfisher, Blue-eared kingfisher, collared kingfisher, Red-Knobbed Hornbill, Sulawesi dwarf Hornbill, Ochre-bellied boobook, Yellow-billed Malkoha, Bay Coucal, Lesser coucal, Sulawesi-Hawk eagle, Sulawesi serpent eagle, Black eagle, Black kite, Sulawesi cicada bird, Rusty-breasted cuckko, Sulawesi triller, Purple-winged roller, Ashy woodpecker, Sulawesi pygmy woodpecker, Sulawesi hanging parrot, Ornate lorikeet, Golden-mantled Racquetail, Blue-backed parrot, Grey-cheeked Green Pigeon, Black-naped Fruit dove, Green Imperial Pigeon, Grey-headed Imperial Pigeon, White-bellied Imperial Pigeon, Silver-tipped Imperial Pigeon, Sulawesi Black Pigeon, Stephan’s Dove, Brown-cuckoo dove, PhilipineScrubfowl, Barred rail, Isabeline Bush hen. During our boat trip to the mangrove we may find other species; White-rumped cuckoo-Shrike, Common kingfisher, Great-billed kingfisher, Pink-necked green Pigeon, Osprey, Great Frigatebirds, Lesser frigatebirds, Pasific reef egret, common dollar bird, Striated heron, Little tern, Sacred and Collared kingfisher, White-bellied Sea eagle, Brahminy kite and Purple heron. After spending much of the day birding but we have time also to see interesting mammals such as Black-macacanigra, Tarsier spectrum and bear cuscus in Tangkoko Park.

Day 7: Morning birding in the Park and at 11 AM transfer to Manado airport. END

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