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The island of New Guinea in Indian Ocean has some of the most exotic birds on this planet, and notably the Birds of Paradise. The Eastern half of the Island is the country of Papua New Guinea which holds to itself some of the best known secrets of Mother Nature. In this specially crafted birding experience, we look to unravel those secrets one by one. We attempt upto 21 species of Birds of Paradise through this trip, however these are not chance attempts. Over the years our local team has painstakingly built different hides for different birds of paradise. We shall be privileged enough to make the best use of those hides and observe many of these exotic species going about their natural behaviour, and also photograph the same.
Apart from birds of Paradise there are many other exotic and endemic birds to be seen here, and quite a few will be through well-designed hides or the guide will be taking you to a roosting location. At a birding location like Papua New Guinea, it is next to impossible to walk around in the dense forests and find these birds, that is where our guide network and these specially crafted hides and blinds show you the best of the local avifauna in this limited time of 18 days. This is an experience you will surely remember for the rest of your lives, and a one to narrate to your grandchildren!
The birding tour begins this morning in the Capital of Papua New Guinea.
The exploration of the region will begin from Port Moresby.
You will be stationed for two nights.
The tropical rain forest lies in the landscape of the Eucalypt Savanna of Port Moresby.
We will spend time around the foothills of the Port Moresby region, navigating through Varirata National Park.
You can spot hundreds of different bird species.
The rare and uncommon birds you solid look for are Crepuscular Spotted Whistling Duck, Australian White Ibis or Australasian Darter, Grey Teal, the pretty Green Pygmy Goose.
If fortunate enough, you could catch a glimpse of the exotic Raggiana Bird of Paradise, one of the 'classic bird species'.
Catch a look of a few more rare birds, that include Pygmy Eagle, Gurney’s Eagle, the retiring Pheasant Pigeon, and White-eared Catbird.
Visit town of Kiunga
Today, we depart to fly west to the town of Kiunga, and
drive to foothill forest Tabubil, for a two nights stay.
In Tabubil we will begin to explore various areas for finding different birds flying around.
Particularly, we will then en route towards Ok Tedi River for capturing a glimpse of fascinating Little Ringed Plover.
Be watchful, you might even see the spectacular Pesquet's (Vulturine) Parrot.
Ok Tedi Mine to Tabubil
Tabubil has the moistest weather conditions.
Famously, it is known as the world's largest copper mine center. We will explore the southern foothills of the Star Mountains.
Two of New Guinea’s least-known birds, Greater Melampitta and the Obscure Berrypecker, are seen here. It depends on luck to see these two birds especially, the Melampitta. Frequently spotted birds are Magnificent Bird of Paradise and White-rumped Robin.
Tabuil to Kiunga
After finishing the touring of the Tabubil area, we shall go back to Kiunga for a one-night stay.
|Days 6 - 7||
The day starts early, and you will be taken to Elevala River tributaries.
Two-night stay at a basic lodge surrounded by forest ambiance.
If we are lucky enough, then we could spot some rare bird species namely, Wallace’s Owlet-Nightjar, Papuan Hawk-Owl, Marbled Frogmouth, little-known Spangled Owlet-Nightjar, and Papuan Nightjar.
12 Wired Bird Paradise: It's a display area where the male birds fly up-down to win his female companion. The time of this strange activity is during the early morning so we need to rely on the knowledge of local guides to witness such happening.
Hopefully, after encountering birding activity, we go-ahead upstream in cruise to see dozens of wings flocking together.
The group has large flocks of Blyth's Hornbills, Glossy-mantled Manucodes, spiky crested Palm Cockatoos. Eclectus parrots and Sulphur-crested Cockatoos easily catch your attention.
Rare birds like White-bellied Pitohui, Papuan Babbler, pretty little Paradise Kingfisher, and Hooded Monarch are difficult to see in a dense forest.
We will return to Kiunga for an overnight stay.
During our time at Kiunga, we will visit breeding areas of both Raggiana and Greater Birds of Paradise.
The region is home to both male and female birds, wherein males compete for the female producing a hybrid bird species.
Distinctive whistling operas of long-billed cuckoo cheers up guests' moods.
Hunting down Emperor Fairywren, Meyer's Friarbird, Black-eared Catbird is worth it.
We take a flight to the capital of the Papua New Guinea highlands, Mount Hagen.
Our flight will present us with an extraordinary view of mountain cliffs, unbroken foothill forest, green cultivated valleys of the New Guinea highlands.
We will stay in Enga Province for a three-night stay.
|Days 10 - 11||
A land of Red-collared Myzomelas feeding on the flowers, White-winged Robins, Friendly Fantails, Rufous-naped Whistlers (or Rufous-naped Bellbirds) are garden birds, with a guest appearance of Grey-streaked Honeyeaters most times.
We will visit a hillside where Blue Bird of Paradise can be seen.
Seeing the terrific King of Saxony Birds of Paradise with its exceptionally long head-plumes is surreal. Also, we will check out grassland areas that are home to Yellow-breasted Bowerbirds.
Brown Goshawk, Brown Quail, Modest Tiger Parrot, Forbes’s Forest Rail, Goldie’s Lorikeet, Rufous-throated Bronze-Cuckoo, Mountain Kingfisher, Yellowish-streaked Honeyeater, Macgregor’s Bowerbird are yet a unique group of birds to watch out for.
Today, we will fly to the Tari Valley.
You will stay at the famous Ambua Lodge, for four nights.
|Days 13 - 15||
The Tari Valley is inhabited by the Huli tribe, well-known for its famous ‘wigmen’ cult.
The fringes of the valley covering the mountains are encircled in virgin forest spanning over all directions.
The unbroken forest consists of mosaic grassland, cultivation, and dense woodland.
The mountain dome-like peaks are covered in a thicket.
For night bird hunting we will go in search of Archbold’s Nightjar, Papuan Boobook, and the rest nightbirds. If lucky enough we might find a Feline Owlet-Nightjar.
The elegant New Guinea Harpy or Papuan Eagle can be heard around as it's a very secretive bird so spotting it is difficult.
We will finish up the birding outing at Tari, and fly back to Port Moresby for a two-night stay.
Varirata National Park
The Port Moresby region is rich in birdlife. So today, we will venture into Varirata National Park.
So again get a chance to revisit your favorite species or look for the ones you missed earlier.
The Ultimate Papua New Guinea birding tour finishes off this morning, at Port Moresby.