|Red Bird of Paradise|
The rainforest of Waigeo island is a good destination for visitors who want to see the wildlife of Raja Ampat. From previous trips that I organize for tourists, we saw a lot of beautiful birds such as Red Bird of Paradise, Wilson's Bird of Paradise, Moluccan King Parrot, Eclectus Parrot, Palm Cockatoo, Beautiful Fruit Dove, Pinon Imperial Pigeon, Pied Imperial Pigeon, Blyth's Hornbill, and Common Paradise Kingfisher and a lot more. Birds are usually active in the mornings and in the evenings. To watch them, we need to bring binoculars and if possible spotting scopes. Sometimes we go birding and wildlife watching by car to reach remote areas in eastern and southern region of Waigeo island. For visitors who want to watch White-bellied Sea Eagle, Beach Kingfisher, and Spice Imperial Pigeon, they could take a tour to Kabui bay. I organize sightseeing and birding tour by boat to the bay.
|Anemonefish in Raja Ampat|
For taking pictures of wild animals in the forest, we need camera with telephoto lens. In the past, I used Nikon P500, Nikon P600, Fujifilm HS50EXR. Now I use Canon 200 D with 150-600 mm lens. Visitors who want to buy camera for taking pictures and videos of wildlife could buy such cameras as Nikon Coolpix P900, Nikon Coolpix P1000 or Canon SX70HS. Professional photographers usually bring D-SLR cameras with telephoto lens.
This birding and wildlife watching trip to Raja Ampat is combined with swimming and snorkeling activities where participants can see anemonefish, butterflyfish, parrotfish, wrasse, moorish idol, surgeonfish and a lot more.
Birds are not the only animals which we can see in the forest of Waigeo. If we are lucky, we can see ikaheka white snake which is very venomous, Idea durvillei butterfly, cuscus possum and soa-soa lizard.
|Soa-soa Lizard of Waigeo island|
For plants, there are a lot of flowers which we could find in the forest including Red Pitcher Plant of Kabui bay, Beach Hibiscus, and the Tiger Orchid.
Most often the rainforest wildlife watching tour that I organize is combined with snorkeling activities where tourists can swim over coral reef area to see tropical fish such as moorish idol, grouper, lionfish, butterflyfish and even the tasselled wobbegong. There are several beach areas that are suitable for snorkeling including Warduwer beach, Gam Karst, Friwen, Mioskon and Five Rocks. Bringing a waterproof camera such as Gopro, Nikon W300 will enhance the snorkeling experience. I use Fujifilm XQ2 with water housing and Nikon 130.
The duration of the wildlife tour in Raja Ampat can be as short as 3 days to as long as 2 weeks.