Friday, 4 August 2017

Indonesia Trip 2017 Day 11

Indonesia Trip Day 11 - Tuesday 1st August 2017

Sulawesi with Mike Nelson from Bird Tour Asia.

The first part of our 6 week Indonesian trip was birding the island of Sulawesi. Today we were 

On the morning of Tuesday 1st August 2017 we left the Patra Jasa Hotel in Kotamobagu at 4.30 am driving an hour and a half to Tambon to visit the Maleo Conservation  Centre.

Maleo is the national bird of Sulawesi and is a Megapode (a turkey). The centre was set up by a local conservationist called Max about 20 years ago. There is a natural hot spring at the site which the Maleo use to incubate their eggs.

The male and female dig a hole and bury their egg in the sand. The biggest predators are Monitor  Lizards and humans. So the centre dig up the eggs, incubate them in a safe place, look after the chicks before releasing them. As well as seeing a male in a tree, I held a egg that was being incubated, watched Max find a new egg and then got to release a chick. It was a fantastic experience, and another example of eco-tourism saving birds.

We then drove half an hour for lunch and a rest in a local hotel, where we had rooms.

In the afternoon we birded a trail that Max had found in Tapakolingtang.

The best birds of the day were White-faced Cuckoo Dove, Oberholser's Fruit Dove, Black-billed Koel, Sulawesi Serpent Eagle, Ruddy Kingfisher, Pygmy Hanging Parrot and ivory-backed Wood-Swallow.

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