Saturday, April 8, 2017

Coastal Birds of Raja Ampat

When I went to Raja Ampat last week, I visited a lot of coastal area of the eastern region of Waigeo. White sandy beach, small tropical islands, coconut trees and mangrove forest are the typical scenery of most Raja Ampat areas. In addition to swimming and snorkeling, I also did some birding where I saw several species of coastal birds.
Plover birds in Waim island
Plover in Waim Island
In Waim island, I saw a group of plover birds that was walking on the sand, perhaps they were feeding on small fish or beach worm of the island. I used my digital camera to shoot those birds. It was a Fujifilm Finepix HS50EXR. I had to lower my body and walked slowly towards the birds. They were not aware of my presense at first. But later when they saw me, they cautiously began to walk away from me. I was able to make some shots of the birds. They did not fly away because, I tried not to intimidate them by just walking slowly.
Radjah Shelduck
Tadorna Radjah at the beach of Waigeo Island
At the beach of Waigeo island, I also saw a group of Radjah Shelduck that was also walking at the beach. They were quite fast to follow. I had to use the optical zoom of my camera to shoot the birds. It was during the sunset time with the sun was already at the back of the island and there was only a little light for me to shoot the birds. I had to use Aviary photo editor to brighten the picture of these Radjah Shelduck.
Crested Tern in Raja Ampat archipelago
Tern at the sea
Other coastal birds that I saw in east Raja Ampat islands were tern. I think they were Crested Tern. They were sitting on wooden frames that were constructed at sea for fishermen to catch fish. Because I was sitting inside a moving boat, I could not make sharp pictures of the birds. I also saw kingfisher at the branch of a tree at the entrance of the lagoon but I could not shoot the bird with my camera. The boat that took me to the Fish Lagoon was moving quite fast.
Pacific Swallow
Pacific Swallow near Fish Lagoon
This bird was small compared to the birds that I mentioned above. I had the opportunity to shoot the bird near the Fish Lagoon. Coastal birds or sea birds like to use jetty, tree branches above the sea water or man-made structres that were built in shallow waters as their sitting platform.
Forest Birds in Waigeo Island
I saw significant number of forest birds while hiking in the jungle of Waigeo island. Some of them include Papuan hornbill, western black capped lory, eclectus parrot and brahminy kite.

The scenery of east Raja Ampat region
Birding and Snorkeling Tour in Raja Ampat
As a tour guide in West Papua, I offer and organize tour to east Raja Ampat islands for tourists who are interested in snorkeling and birdwatching. The activities during the tour will include visiting small tropical islands in the region where visitors could see pristine coral reef environment and tropical fish and hiking in the rainforest of Waigeo island to see birds, trees, flowers and butterflies.
I highly recommend that visitors who want me to guide them to east Raja Ampat region to travel in a group of at least 4 to 6 people to share the cost.
Booking
If you are interested in visiting Raja Ampat islands particularly the Waim island, Mamiaef island, Fish Lagoon and the rainforest, you could contact me (Charles Roring) for customized itinerary and cost by email to: peace4wp@gmail.com or text/ whatsapp message to my number +6281332245180.