Thursday, August 16, 2018

Birding Tour to Aibogiar village of Tambrauw Mountains

Mountain Swiftlet
I have just completed a-3 day hiking and birding tour in Aibogiar village of Tambrauw mountains. I went there with Ashley, an American travel writer who wanted to see the rainforest, and wildlife of West Papua. When we went birding in the region, we saw several species of birds including Mountain Swiftlet, New Guinea Vulturine Parrot, Pinon Imperial Pigeon, Pink-spotted Fruit Dove, Magnificent Birds of Paradise, Sulphur Crested Cockatoo, a green pigeon which I could not identify (because it does not exist in field guidebook Birds of New Guinea), Helmetted Friarbird, Blyth's hornbill, Palm Cockatoo, Papuan Cicadabird, Variable Goshawk, Lesser Birds of Paradise, Mountain Peltop, Mountain Swiftlet. Because I am a birder, I could hear and identify the sounds of birds that I heard during the trip. Some of them were Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Magnificent Riflebird, Rufous-bellied Kookaburra.
Mountain Swiftlet in the hands of American tourist, Ashley
In addition to birds, we also saw butterflies, dragonflies, and heard the sounds of a lot of frogs. Aibogiar village was located in a very remote area of Tambrauw mountains. To reach that village, we needed to fly by a small plane from Manokwari to Kebar and then continued our trip by a 4wd car to high elevation mountainous area. We bought biscuits, coffee, tea, sugar as contact materials with the villagers. For our food, villagers provided vegetables, cassava, peanuts, and sweet potatoes. When we were there, we saw that the birding and wildlife tourism innitiatives were in their very beginning stage of development. Villagers were doing their best to serve tourists. They had built a guesthouse. It was quite a luxurious building if I compare it to guesthouses in Arfak mountains and homestays that are operated by villagers in Raja Ampat. Unfortunately, there were only a few pandanus mats that were on the floor. We used them for sleeping.
Ashley - an American tourist -
was watching birds in Tambrauw mountains
Birding in this forest was easy because visitors could walk along the road to watch birds especially in the mornings. For watching more wild animals, we need to walk deeper into the jungle for approximately 3 hours to a river area. There, deers, wild pigs, wallaby, tree kangaroo, and birds of paradise could be found living in more pristine forest.
There is a salt pond which these animals like to visit to drink its water. It is a very nice spot for watching wild animals that live in the rainforest of West Papua.
If you are interested in traveling to Aibogiar village of Tambrauw mountains to watch birds and see the landscape of the forest, please, contact me by e-mail to: peace4wp@gmail.com or send whatsapp message to my number: +6281332245180.
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