After yesterday's excitement with Scaly Kingfisher and Matinan Flycatcher being seen at Gunang Ambang we had an exciting day in front of us as we headed to the famous Maleo site at Tambun, arriving as the sun’s rays began to light the hillside above us and enjoyed several Great Eared Nightjars hawking for insects above us. After last year’s protracted 2 day search I wasn’t sure what to expect, but having walked maybe 30 yards into the reserve and seeing a pair of Maleos in the tree above us certainly wasn’t high on the list of possibilities!
Totally unbelievable and then to be able to watch one for the next 20 minutes really took the biscuit. That left us a couple of hours of nice, general birding when we could enjoy our first White-necked Myna and Green-backed Kingfisher to the full. Other birds here were all common things such as Grosbeak Myna, Hair-crested Drongo, Slender-billed Cuckoo-dove, although the local race of Imperial Green-pigeon was rather nice and a flyby Stephan’s Dove was also new.......
We left here and drove to Dumoga Bone passing rice fields full of egrets and stopping to look at Barred Rail, Black Eagle, Little Pied Cormorant, Oriental Hobby, Large Sulawesi Hanging-parrot, Purple Needletail, Slender-billed Crow etc
|Little Pied Cormorant|
Upon arrival at Dumoga Bone National Park we crossed the river on a bamboo raft and followed the trails for a couple of hours, and despite the heat managed to pull out Pied Cuckooshrike and Sulawesi Triller from a flock of Grosbeak Mynas, Black-naped Oriole and other common birds. A Bay Coucal proved too fleeting a glimpse to make it onto our lists though and we also saw a Crimson Sunbird in the same bush as a family of Yellow-sided Flowerpeckers.
After an excellent lunch and siesta we paid our respects to the roosting Speckled Bobook in the nearby abandoned house, scoped a cracking pair of Knobbed Hornbills from the car park and returned across the river. Unfortunately the heavens opened and we got soaked again, but did see a pair of Sunda Teal on the river, Silver-tipped Imperial-pigeon, Blue-backed Parrot and a brief Sulawesi Dwarf Hornbill. The rain eased at dusk and as we made our way back to the river a Sulawesi Masked Owl began calling and we had a couple of flybys from this little beauty and heard several Sulawesi Scops-owls which didn’t cooperate with us at all. In fact this latter species was becoming something of an ongoing saga and we were thinking that we would dip on it this year.........