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Malang Bird-Photography Trip

I had the opportunity for visited Raden Soeryo Greater Park Forestry, Malang. The area is a mountainous forest on the slopes of Arjuno-Wilerang-Anjasmoro mountains. This place is one of the best locations to birding / bird watching and bird photography typical Javan mountain birds I have ever visited. There are two birding site I've visited, Watu Ondo waterfall and hot spring baths Cangar. Visiting this place always makes eyes was struck with the beauty of the landscape and the colorful bird hopping among the leaves.

Bird of the day, Pink-headed Fruit-Dove

This second chance visited the area, I was accompanied by a courtier of Birdpacker, Waskito Kukuh Wibowo, Nurdin Setio Budi, Swiss Winnasis, Ahmad Yanuar, Arif Budiawan and M. Hilmi. Thanks are the highest and lift the cap for those who have guided observation wholeheartedly. For nearly a week of observation, 31 species can be observed very well. Of the 31 species observed, I'll tell the highlight from day to day.


Day 1, Monday, December 19, 2016 I arrived at the Watu Ondo waterfall at noon, too bad. Fortunately, my observations at the very special place. Though it was daylight still a lot of birds that can be enjoyed. Flame-fronted Barbet is one bird that is very easily found and photographed in the first day. A kind tree from family piperacea that was bearing fruit became it favorite food and we can found these birds easily very closely. This bird is one of the endemic birds of Java with the dominant color green, very pretty. Flocks of Sunda Minivet break my focus while observing and photographing barbets. Dominant orange contrasting strongly with green leaves around, makes it such a beautiful flower that broke-fracturing. This bird is endemic to the highlands of Sumatra and Java, very easy to seen in this place.

Later I was invited to the site, not far from the parking lot Watu Ondo waterfall and its location is easy to reach. After waiting a while, finally Javan Hawk-eagle appeared and perched on a tall tree. I tried to take pictures with 400mm lens, but was still very far to reach.

Dorsal view of Javan Hawk-eagle

Not long from the first encounter Javan Hawk-eagle, it persistently reappeared. This time perched lower than before. Even had flew right over our heads. Even had flew right over our heads. Finally I succeeded in photographing Javan Hawk-eagles from a short distance. Yeay! On the first day I was also guided to observe Mountain Leaftoiler’s nest. The Nests laid on top of the plant that is not too high. Several times the birds were seen carrying food into the nest. Most likely the eggs had already hatched a few days ago and now in parenting by both parents. I succeed to shots when the birds return to the nest. Day 2, Tuesday, December 20, 2016 I was very lucky because the next night to stay in the area, so I could birdwatching and photographing birds earlier than before. Lucky the weather was quite bright despite the night it rained. Some birds appear gathered in the courtyard of pavilion which filled with grass. Interestingly, among the flocks, there are several Common Myna. Its population in several places in Indonesia is the result of the introduction, mainly from domestic birds loose. Distribution of Common Myna is actually in Afghanistan to Western China, Southeast Asia and the Malay Peninsula.

After breakfast, I continue the observations in the park around the hot spring Cangar. Several kinds of small to medium sized birds such as the Little-pied Flycatcher, Indigo Flycatcher, Blue Nuthatch, Ruddy Cuckoo-dove can be easily found here. Even if photographing Ashy Drongo that can be found in the tree behind the public toilet of this hot spring. Similarly, along the small stream close to the hot spring, could meet with Grey Wagtail and Lesser (Sunda) Forktail.

Clear view of Lesser (Sunda) Forktail