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FIJI BIRDING

January-February 2006

By Jeff Skevington (JHS) and Michael Mathieson (MM)

Introduction

All coordinates are taken using GPS with WGS84 planetary model. This was primarily a research trip for me so birding was secondary. Nonetheless, I managed to see most of the expected species. I met MM after the bulk of my research was conducted, and we swung back through the better sites that I had visited with more of a bird focus.

Itinerary, Accommodation and General Birding Notes

17 January 2006: JHS arrived from Honolulu at 06:00. Drove from Nadi to Vereni Falls near Lautoka (17º40'42" S, 177º31'23" E). This area has a nice picnic ground and river access for swimming. Not too many birds. We then continued on to our accommodation at the Emperor Guesthouse near Nadaarivatu (17º34'23" S, 177º57'26" E). This would be a good option for groups interested in exploring this area. It is a large house with several bedrooms, a kitchen, shower, and large living room. Very rustic and Spartan but moderately clean, inexpensive and would work for most people wanting to explore this area. The only semi-difficult birds that we saw in this general area included Many-colored Fruit Dove and Scarlet Robin. The area immediately around the guesthouse is disturbed, second growth forest. There are tracks into nice, montane forest, but permission is needed to enter any of these areas. It is not easy to find out who owns particular areas so permission could be hard to get. Long-legged Warbler apparently occurs about a one-day hike from here (overnight camping and guide would be required).

18 January 2006: Drove up to Koro Ni O northwest of Nadaarivatu (permission required). We collected insects around two communications towers here (17º34'32" S, 177º56'02" E and 17º35'06" S, 177º55'10" E). Metallic Pigeon was the only interesting species that we saw here, but I was not doing much birding. It looked like an interesting area for those with time to explore. Returned to Nadi in afternoon to retrieve our baggage that did not arrive with us. Continued on to Suva where we stayed in the Raffles Tradewinds. This is a bit expensive, but very convenient, clean, has polite and helpful staff, a good restaurant, etc. Note that I will not provide costs for accommodation throughout this report as we were staying at reduced government rates everywhere. I do not know the actual cost in most cases.

19 January 2006: Traveled to Waivudawa west of Lamitown (terminus of logging road at 18º04'24" S, 178º21'51" E). Entrance from main highway is at 18º06'52" S, 178º22'06" E. This is private property and permission is essential. Do not enter without permission or you will spoil this for others. Contact Akinisi "Cagi" Caginotoba for permission to enter (Her name is pronounced Thangi. She can be contacted at: work phone: 331-5174; e-mail: atokotaa [at] hotmail [dot] com). We feel that this is the best single birding site in all of Fiji. It is earmarked for designation as a World Biosphere Reserve and hopefully will get protected. The landowners are aware of its significance and are protecting it from logging and development. You will likely need a guide to find your way into this site, even with coordinates. You will also need a 4 wheel drive (4WD) and considerable nerve to negotiate the potholes and washouts. The road is not being maintained to prevent illegal logging in the area. It may be washed out entirely by the time you come. If it is, plan on a long walk (~8 km uphill from the start of the forest). It's worth the walk! Start very early as the best birding is half way up and higher. Virtually all Viti Levu species can be seen at this site, and it is less than 30 minutes from Suva. Among the regular species, we saw Slaty Monarch, Streaked Fantail, Blue-crested Broadbill, Vanikoro Broadbill, Lesser and Black-faced Shrikebill, Golden Doves, Polynesian Starlings, Masked Shining-Parrots, Island Thrush, Golden Whistlers, Wattled and Giant Forest Honeyeaters, Pink-billed and Fiji Parrotfinches, Fiji Woodswallows, Collared Lorys, Peale's Imperial Pigeons, Fiji and Long-legged Warblers here. Coordinates for the rarer of these species are given below under the species accounts. Stayed at the Raffles Tradewinds in Suva again.

20 January 2006: Drove up to Nakobelevu Mountain in late morning (18º03'51" S, 178º25'00" E). This is the large communications tower visible north of Suva. Permission is required to enter this area. The road traverses some excellent mature forest and although we saw few birds (arrived at 11:00 am), it is known to have Pink-billed Parrotfinches and all of the other regulars. We were told that one site for PBPF is at 18º02'59" S, 178º24'37" E. More generally, this is the lower logging road just before the end of the road; to the left and downslope. These birds undoubtedly wander around a lot (in fact, they are thought to be nomadic), so use the specific site only as a starting point if you get up here. We found that PBPF tended to occur in dips in the mountain (mini-passes that cross the roads – fern-filled gullies between the ridges would be another way to describe these sites). The birds may use these 'passes' as they move from site to site. This general area is also apparently good for Black-faced Shrikebill and Golden Doves (we saw none of these but were there at mid-day only). We flew to Kadavu in the afternoon (arrived at 16:30). We stayed in accommodation at the north terminus of the road through Vunisea (turn right out of the airport and follow the road along the ocean until it ends (~2 km). We rented a beach house (2 beds and a crib, all with mosquito nets – necessary). This was really inexpensive and although perhaps not clean enough for everyone, it was a great place to stay. The owners provided meals, and all endemics could be seen from here by foot (or by taxi if you want to go to Solodamu). The cabins required a 500 m walk, so if you have a lot of luggage this may not work for you. There was no electricity when we visited, but there were wires and lights, so this could change. They also had accommodation that did not require a walk, but this involved sharing a large room with anyone else staying there. It wouldn't be for everyone. Snorkeling the reef from the shore here was good during this visit. During our next visit it was windy, and the near-shore reef was murky.

21 January 2006: Kadavu. Explored Solodamu (Forest Reserve); guide and entrance fee required. Locals will know who to take you to for this. This is a great birding site a few km's from the airport. Hire a taxi to take you to the site to meet your guide. Entrance to the trail is near 19º04'09" S, 178º07'38" E (coordinates taken down the trail a ways). We saw all of the endemics here easily. Also saw Golden Whistlers, Slaty Monarchs, and Black-faced Shrikebill here. Also visited Namalata Creek (19º02'31" S, 178º10'46" E). This site had a nice, fast-flowing stream and waterfall. Great for insects and nice, mature forest. We arrived in mid-afternoon and thus saw few birds. It looked good for birding though. Stayed at beach house in Vunisea again.

22 January 2006: Walked from our beach house up to microwave towers behind town. Permission required (land owned by beach house owner's family so permission was easy to get). This is about a 30 minute walk at the most. There is a fair bit of forest around the tower, including some large trees. It has been logged but still held all of the endemic species except Whistling Dove (this was likely also there but I was focused on insects). This is a great site for someone who is going in and out of Kadavu on a flying trip. Flew to Suva in afternoon and stayed at the Raffles Tradewinds again.

23 January 2006: Flew to Taveuni in afternoon. Drove part way up road to Mount Devo. Saw Red Shining-Parrots and Orange Dove, but little else on this short trip. Stayed at the First Light Inn. This was clean and very affordable compared to most places on the island. I had a nice room facing the ocean where I could watch Frigatebirds and Fruit Bats early in the morning and in the evening. A rental car is needed if you stay here. This is expensive but allows you to stay in cheaper accommodation away from the airport and gives you mobility to explore the island. We rented a car this trip and used taxi's and buses the next time we visited. I preferred the car rental option and staying at First Light Inn. We ate next door at an upscale accommodation but could have eaten more inexpensively at the First Light Inn.

24 January 2006: Up Mount Devo today. Entrance Fee. Stayed at First Light Inn again. Coordinates for relevant locations: Mount Devo road entrance off main road (16º48'15" S, 179º59'26" E); there is no sign for where to pay, pay at the house on the west side of the dirt road at 16º48'27" S, 179º59'52" E; gate (as far as you can drive) (16º50'23" S, 179º58'09" E); entrance to inconspicuous woodland trail near summit, less than 1 km walk above gate (16º50'35" S, 179º57'58" E); entrance to best birding trail roughly 1 to 2 km below gate (16º50'20" S, 179º58'12" E). The latter site was certainly the best birding site on the island and perhaps our favourite birding site on the trip. It would be easy to spend an entire day on this trail. We saw all of the endemic birds for Taveuni along this trail. Also visited the 'official' date line site near the island hospital today (16º47'47" S, 180º00'00" E).

25 January 2006: Flew from Taveuni to Vanua Levu in morning. Little time for birding. Stayed at Geoff Taylor's Guesthouse less than 5 km west of Savusavu (16º48'37" S, 179º19'35" E). Very inexpensive, clean, well maintained, beautiful gardens and view of ocean, good snorkeling offshore. Not particularly good birding, but Golden Whistlers and Many-colored Fruit-Doves around the property. Need your own mosquito net to put above the beds (2 bedrooms, 3 beds).

26 January 2006: Drove to insect collecting site at Vatudiri about 4 km SE Lomoloma Village (16º37'46" S, 179º12'29" E). White-throated Pigeon and Giant Forest Honeyeater the only significant birds observed here. Stayed at Geoff Taylor's Guesthouse again.

27 January 2006: Collected insects and did a bit of birding in second-growth forest near coast near Nauavanadi at 16º46'32" S, 179º30'58" E. Also went to area of predominantly farmland near Rotusalisa. Only significant species were White-throated Pigeon, Orange Dove, Giant Forest Honeyeater and Red Avadavat. The latter was in agricultural land near Rotusalisa, and the former 3 species were scattered through the mountains en route. Stayed at Geoff Taylor's Guesthouse again.

28 January 2006: Flew to Taveuni to meet Michael Mathieson and do some more serious birding. Still collecting and doing field research, but focus now more on birds. Travel day. No significant sightings. Stayed at Bebe's Hideaway near airport. Fairly expensive but clean with food available nearby. For inexpensive food, order Indian Food from the proprietor (they buy it from the neighbour's). The options near the airport are generally very expensive.

29 January 2006: Up Mount Devo again. Arrived earlier than previous trip and focused on trail that we found on previous trip (entrance at 16º50'20" S, 179º58'12" W). A superb day with good numbers of most species that can be seen on Taveuni. A spectacular rainforest walk. The highlight of our trip. Allow a full day or even two days to explore this magnificent trail. This is one of the few spots in Fiji where you can bird from under the canopy. Most birding areas are along logging roads, etc. Stayed at Bebe's Hideaway.

30 January 2006: Took a taxi to what we were told was a good birding site – 'Longilowi'. Wasted best part of morning in agricultural land as a result. The forest here might be worth a visit but expect an hour walk through farmland. Should take a guide and have permission if you try this. After our failure here, we went to Bouma Falls (upper falls is at 16º49'48" S, 179º53'23" W – we did not get coordinates for the entrance). This was a beautiful trail with 3 magnificent rainforest pools for swimming. Birding was disappointing though. The habitat looked good but one Silktail was the only interesting bird. After our hike we found that Ben or Sake are guides that will lead visitors onto their land at Vidawa (the Vidawa Rainforest Hike). Ben seemed moderately knowledgeable but most importantly, would be able to get you into what sounds like some pristine high elevation forest similar to Mount Devo. It would be a good spot to try for Red-throated Parakeet or Shy Ground-Dove if you dip on these at Devo. Ben also knew of the Longilowi site and could lead there (he is from there), but said the habitat at Vidawa is better. Call 921-9671 or 920-5833 to arrange a hike with Ben. Stayed at Bebe's Hideaway.

31 January 2006: flew back to Suva. Little birding today. Had planned to fly to Kadavu but flight cancelled after a long wait at airport due to weather. Stayed at Raffles Tradewinds.

1 February 2006: birded in the morning before flying to Kadavu. Pipeline Road traverses some of the best lowland habitat that we saw on Viti Levu. The area protects the water supply for Suva. We took a taxi from our hotel to the gate. Birding was very good with Masked Shining-Parrot, Peale's Imperial and White-throated Pigeon, Golden Dove, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Blue-crested Broadbill, Streaked Fantail, Lesser Shrikebill, Fiji and Pink-billed Parrotfinch, and Wattled and Giant Forest Honeyeater. Arrived in Kadavu in afternoon. Had a long wait for our boat ride to Mateva (resort – at 19º02'45" S, 178º23'56" E). Mateva was very nice but expensive (particularly the boat ride there) and took a long time to get to. Not a good place to stay for a short trip. It would be worthwhile for several days though if you are interested in diving, snorkeling, fishing and birding. MM went birding and I went snorkeling after we arrived. He cleaned up all of the endemics during his walk.

2 February 2006: Birded around Mateva in the morning. Habitat near the resort is young second growth with few birds. A 45 minute walk above the resort will get you to some good primary forest. MM saw an Island Thrush at the beginning of this habitat (19º02'06" S, 178º23'51" E). All of the endemics were easy to find in this forest fragment. Flew back to Suva in afternoon. Stayed at Raffles Tradewinds.

3 February 2006: Birded Waivudawa again (06:30 to 13:00). This is truly an amazing spot. It would be good to arrive even earlier than we did. We still saw lots of almost all of the Viti Levu forest birds though, including Long-legged Warbler and Pink-billed Parrotfinch. One of the trip highlights. After leaving Waivudawa, we headed through Suva to Suva Point and area. We hit it perfect – right on high tide. The birds started to appear as soon as the tide started to fall. This would be tough to bird at low tide as the birds are spread out then. Within 2 hours either side of high tide is excellent though. We didn't find any rarities but saw good numbers of all the expected shorebirds. This area is worth a visit on any trip. We didn't see concentrations of shorebirds anywhere else. Stayed at Raffles Tradewinds.

4 February 2006: Heading towards Nadi today. Stopped at Ocean Pacific Resort first. Resort entrance off main highway is hard to find – watch carefully for the small sign on the south side of the highway. Some fantastic lowland forest exists back in this resort. Roadside birding is OK but the best area is a short trail with the entrance 2.6 km from highway at 18º10'16" S, 178º15'30" E. This trail gives stellar views from the top of a ridge out over the forest. It is a great spot to see Golden Doves and Pink-billed Parrotfinch. We stayed at the Raffles Gateway Hotel across from the airport in Nadi. Staff were generally miserable, and the cost was high. This is the only place that we stayed where we met unpleasant people. Others I spoke to had the same impression. I would not recommend it, but it is convenient, clean, has a nice pool, etc.

5 February 2006: Nadi to Nasauri Highlands and back. The habitat in the Nadi area is hammered. Even the highland habitat is highly impacted. This area is really only a last resort if you have no time to get anywhere else. We enjoyed exploring it since we had half a day to blow off, but it was pretty desolate. Giant Honeyeater, Fiji Goshawk, Many-colored Fruit-Dove and lots of Red Avadavat's were the highlights. The latter seems more common in the fields around Nadi than anywhere else in Fiji.

Annotated Bird List

Red-footed Booby (Sula sula) – only seen once.

29 January 2006, 15, Taveuni, coast near Airport

Brown Booby (Sula leucogaster) – seen on 3 occasions.

29 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, coast near Airport

30 January 2006, 9, Taveuni, coast near Airport

31 January 2006, 4, Taveuni, coast near Airport

Great Frigatebird (Fregata minor) – seen twice.

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, coast near airport

1 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, coast near Mateva

Lesser Frigatebird (Fregata ariel) – easily seen on Kadavu and Taveuni, seen once on Viti Levu.

22 January 2006, 8, Kadavu coast near airport

23 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, coast near airport

29 January 2006, 32, Taveuni, coast near airport to base of Mt. Devo

30 January 2006, 50, Taveuni, coast near airport to Bouma Falls area

1 February 2006, 10, Kadavu, coast near airport

2 February 2006, 50, Kadavu, coast near Mateva

3 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva Point

White-faced Heron (Egretta novaehollandiae) – easily seen around Suva, but not seen elsewhere; Suva Point, wetlands near the airport, and Raffles Tradewinds were good sites.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

20 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

31 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

3 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

4 February 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Suva area

Pacific Reef-Heron (Egretta sacra) – common along most coastal areas.

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

20 January 2006, 6, Kadavu

21 January 2006, 6, Kadavu

23 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

25 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

27 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

30 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, airport to Bouma Falls

31 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, airport and area

1 February 2006, 16, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

2 February 2006, 2, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Suva Point

4 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Suva to Nadi

5 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Nadi area

Striated Heron (Butorides striatus) – easily seen around Suva, but not seen elsewhere; wetlands near the Raffles Tradewinds the best site.

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

31 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva area

4 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

Pacific Black Duck (Anas superciliosa) – local, not particularly easy to find.

17 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

19 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva area

27 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

4 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

5 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nadi area

Swamp Harrier (Circus approximans) – widespread, easy to see. Area around airport in Suva a reliable spot.

18 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva area

19 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva area

20 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Suva area

22 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva area

23 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

29 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

31 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

2 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Suva area

4 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Suva to Nadi

Fiji Goshawk (Accipiter rufitorques) – fairly common but it took me over a week to see my first one. On that basis, it could be missed on a short trip.

24 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, at International Date Line sign near hospital

25 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

29 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, mid-way up Mount Devo

31 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, near airport

1 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, Mateva

4 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva to Nadi

5 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) – unexpected; maybe breeding on building in downtown Suva.

22 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, downtown Suva

Buff-banded Rail (Gallirallus philippensis) – could be missed, but generally conspicuous and often loud.

22 January 2006, 3, Kadavu, Vunisea village, crossing road near town centre

24 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, crossed road mid-way up road to Mount Devo

29 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, crossed road mid-way up road to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, near Bouma Falls

2 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, Mateva

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) – only found in the area where we saw it, would be easy to miss.

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, along coastal road near Bouma Falls

Pacific Golden-Plover (Pluvialis fulva) – common around airports and in a few coastal areas such as Suva Point.

23 January 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Suva area (most at airport)

31 January 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Suva area airport and Taveuni airport

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Suva area (most at airport)

3 February 2006, 400, Viti Levu, Suva Point

5 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nadi area

Bar-tailed Godwit (Limosa lapponica) – Suva Point is the only reliable site that we found for this species.

31 January 2006, 1, Taveuni airport

3 February 2006, 120, Viti Levu, Suva Point

Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus) – Suva Point is the only reliable site that we found for this species.

3 February 2006, 7, Viti Levu, Suva Point

Wandering Tattler (Heterosceles incanus) – scattered along coast, but most reliable near Suva Point.

29 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, along coast near airport

30 January 2006, 3, Taveuni, airport to Bouma Falls

31 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, near airport and Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Suva area

3 February 2006, 120, Viti Levu, Suva Point

Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres) – Suva Point is the only reliable site that we found for this species.

3 February 2006, 50, Viti Levu, Suva Point

Great Crested Tern (Sterna bergii) – fairly common along coast of all islands.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Raffles Tradewinds (near Suva)

20 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

21 January 2006, 2, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 2, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

30 January 2006, 3, Taveuni, airport to Bouma Falls

31 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, near airport and Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Suva area

2 February 2006, 4, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 50, Viti Levu, Suva Point

Black-naped Tern (Sterna sumatrana) – fairly easy to find along coast on all islands except Viti Levu; on the latter, best to look at Suva Point.

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Raffles Tradewinds (near Suva)

20 January 2006, 3, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

24 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, from First Light Inn

25 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

27 January 2006, 4, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

30 January 2006, 3, Taveuni, airport to Bouma Falls

31 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, near airport

1 February 2006, 3, Kadavu, Mateva

2 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

3 February 2006, 5, Viti Levu, Suva Point

Brown Noddy (Anous stolidus) – only seen on Taveuni; should be expected here.

29 January 2006, 100, Taveuni, seen from coast near airport (very distant)

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, airport to Bouma Falls

31 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, near airport (seen from restaurant across from airport; appear to be nesting on rock islands about 1 km from shore)

Rock Dove (Columba livia) – seen daily on all islands except Kadavu.

Metallic Pigeon (Columba vitiensis) – not an easy bird to find and an even harder bird to see well; Pipeline Road is likely is likely the easiest spot to see one for most visitors.

18 January 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu

26 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village

27 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi

1 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road (Suva)

Spotted Dove (Streptopelia chinensis) – seen daily on all islands except Kadavu.

Many-colored Fruit-Dove (Ptilinopus perousii) – We expected this to be fairly easy from other reports that we received, but we found it quite local; they were easy to see when they were found; although we missed them here, friends of ours saw them at Bebe's Hideaway on Taveuni.

17 January 2006, 1, Naadarivatu

29 January 2006, 5, Taveuni, mid-way up Mount Devo

5 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Crimson-crowned Fruit-Dove (Ptilinopus porphyraceus) – This species should be fairly easy if you get to any of the smaller offshore islands; however, it was quite unexpected on Viti Levu. The birds were feeding on figs along the main coastal road from Suva to Nadi.

4 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, along main highway between Suva and Nadi at 18º15'25.5" S, 178º03'53" E.

Orange Dove (Ptilinopus victor) – This species was surprisingly easy for a Fruit Dove. Would be hard to miss from our experienced. Seeing a male is harder (we saw lots of female type plumaged birds and only 2 adult males). They will be concentrated around areas where there is a lot of fruit. Most of our birds on Mount Devo were at 16º49'59" S, 179º58'31" W.

23 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, mid-way up Mount Devo

24 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, mid-way up Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, mountains west of Savusavu (sorry, coordinates not taken)

29 January 2006, 14, Taveuni, mid-way up Mount Devo

Golden Dove (Ptilinopus luteovirens) – Widespread in the highlands of Viti Levu; more vocal but harder to see than Orange Dove in our experience.

19 January 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

Velvet Dove (Ptilinopus layardi) – Fairly quiet. Would be easy to miss on a short trip. Should be findable right around Vunisea Village (in forest at NE end of town or on trails behind the microwave tower). Solodamu is a great site for it but you need to arrange for access and a guide to enter this area. Anyone could set it up and drive you there. All of the endemics were in this forest in good numbers. They were also all around Vunisea but some were a bit harder to find there. Mateva was expensive and difficult to get to. Not recommended for birding. Good place if you are planning on diving and snorkeling.

21 January 2006, 3, Kadavu, Solodamu

2 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, Mateva

Peale's Imperial-Pigeon (Ducula latrans)

17 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Naadarivatu

19 January 2006, 14, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 12, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

21 January 2006, 20, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, and Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 6, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

25 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 15, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 25, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

30 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 15, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

3 February 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 15, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

5 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

(Red-throated Lorikeet (Charmosyna amabilis))?

29 January 2006, possible birds of this species heard, Taveuni, Mount Devo trail, 16º50'20" S, 179º58'12" W. We heard what sounded like parakeets flying by as we stood on the rim of the crater (roughly 2 km walk along this trail). Unfortunately, we didn't see the birds and only heard them once. It is worth spending some time here, as this species was thought to be extinct until recent sight records.

Collared Lory (Phigys solitarius)

17 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Naadarivatu

18 January 2006, 80, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

21 January 2006, 6, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, and Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 6, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

23 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

24 January 2006, 15, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 8, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 25, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

30 January 2006, 25, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, airport and area

1 February 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 6, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

3 February 2006, 15, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

Crimson Shining-Parrot (Prosopeia splendens) – Would be hard to miss on Kadavu.

20 January 2006, 12, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

21 January 2006, 15, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, and Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 6, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

1 February 2006, 4, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

2 February 2006, 8, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

Red Shining-Parrot (Prosopeia tabuensis) – Would be hard to miss on Taveuni. Harder to find in Vanua Levu.

23 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

26 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 14, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

30 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

Masked Shining-Parrot (Prosopeia personata) – This was the only difficult Prosopeia parrot to find in our experience. Although we heard several at Pipeline Road and Waivudawa, we only had good looks at a couple. They were absent or at least hard to find in many suitable sites.

1 February 2006, 5, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 12, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

Fan-tailed Cuckoo (Cacomantis flabelliformis) – This is almost certainly splitable as an endemic species. It would be easy to miss on any trip.

29 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Mount Devo, black phase juvenile being fed by Golden Whistler female. At beginning of trail to crater lake (16º50'20" S, 179 58'12" W).

1 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road, singing male, light phase. Recorded.

Barn Owl (Tyto alba) – apparently a rare bird in Fiji. We traveled a lot at night and only saw this one bird.

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, near Bebe's Hideaway guesthouse

White-rumped Swiftlet (Aerodramus spodiopygius)

17 January 2006, 100, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 250, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 100, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 60, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu and Kadavu, Vunisea Village

21 January 2006, 15, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, and Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 4, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

23 January 2006, 25, Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

24 January 2006, 40, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 30, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 50, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 30, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 30, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

30 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 15, Taveuni, airport and area

1 February 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 15, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

3 February 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

Collared Kingfisher (Todirhamphus chloris) – The status of this species is uncertain. It is almost certainly not Collared Kingfisher as presently described.

17 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

19 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva to Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Suva to Nakobelevu and Kadavu, Vunisea Village

21 January 2006, 3, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, and Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

23 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

24 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 30, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 3, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 3, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road to Kadavu: Mateva

2 February 2006, 4, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

3 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)

17 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

19 January 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Suva to Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Suva to Nakobelevu and Kadavu, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 10, Kadavu, Vunisea Village to Viti Levu, Suva

23 January 2006, 35, Viti Levu, Suva area to Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

24 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

25 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 4, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 4, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, airport and area to Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road to Kadavu, Mateva

2 February 2006, 2, Kadavu, airport to Mateva

3 February 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

Polynesian Triller (Lalage maculosa)

17 January 2006, 5, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva to Waivudawa

22 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Vunisea Village to Viti Levu, Suva

24 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

25 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road to Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) – Common in disturbed habitats on Viti Levu and Vanua Levu.

17 January 2006, 50, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

19 January 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Suva area

22 January 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Suva area

23 January 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Suva area to Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

26 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 4, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

31 January 2006, 20, Taveuni, airport and area to Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road and Suva

3 February 2006, 35, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 100, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Island Thrush (Turdus poliocephalus) – This is almost certainly a complex of species, with different taxa on different islands throughout Fiji and the Pacific. They are secretive birds that were hard to see everywhere except at Mount Devo on Taveuni. The Taveuni birds were fairly conspicuous and easy to pish in. Despite this, they could be missed if you don't pick up on their call or use pishing to attract them.

24 January 2006, 5, Taveuni, Mount Devo

29 January 2006, 50, Taveuni, Mount Devo. Most were seen along the trail to the crater lake (entrance at 16º50'20" S, 179 58'12" W).

2 February 2006, 1, Kadavu, Mateva. Michael found this bird about a 45 minute walk from the guesthouse up into the mountains (19º02'06" S, 178º23'51" E). It was in the middle of the trail when he saw it but could not be re-found when I arrived about 15 minutes later.

3 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa. A single bird was heard calling about half way to the top.

Fiji Bush-Warbler (Cettia ruficapilla) – one of the most common native passerines and easy to find on all islands that we visited. Readily pished in.

17 January 2006, 5, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

21 January 2006, 4, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

24 January 2006, 14, Taveuni, Mount Devo and area

25 January 2006, 4, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

29 January 2006, 20, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

1 February 2006, 60, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road to Kadavu, Mateva

2 February 2006, 10, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 15, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

5 February 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Long-legged Warbler (Trichocichla (Megalurulus) rufa) – Apparently occurs along pristine mountain creeks with dense overhanging vegetation. We found two in this situation at Waivudawa. They have now been found at several sites such as this on Viti Levu.

3 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa, along little creek overgrown with ferns and other vegetation (18º04'25" S, 178º21'48" E). This creek crossed the road just south of the small shelter at the top of the road. The birds were on the west side of the road. Following this creek (difficult) would likely result in finding additional pairs. The birds responded well to pishing and came very close. The thick vegetation made it tough to get good views though. We were there a bit late in the day (11 am) so the birds were not singing. They immediately gave alarm calls when we started pishing. Try sitting quietly in the creek valley near the little waterfall or at an opening in the vegetation along the creek and pishing.

Streaked Fantail (Rhipidura spilodera)

17 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

24 January 2006, 10, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 3, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 5, Taveuni, Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 5, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

Kandavu Fantail (Rhipidura personata) – Not too hard too find. Would be hard to miss on even a one day trip.

21 January 2006, 4, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

2 February 2006, 8, Kadavu, Mateva

Slaty Monarch (Mayrornis lessoni) – widespread bird of forest edges, but occurs in low numbers; responds well to pishing.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

21 January 2006, 4, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

2 February 2006, 8, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

Fiji Shrikebill (Clytorhynchus vitiensis)

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

21 January 2006, 6, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

24 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, Mount Devo

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 40, Taveuni, Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 6, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

5 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Black-throated Shrikebill (Clytorhynchus nigrogularis) – This species would be very easy to miss. We saw only one adult male, but the large bill is distinctive and female plumaged birds are easy to identify.

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

21 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

3 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

Vanikoro Flycatcher (Myiagra vanikorensis)

19 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 12, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 10, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 4, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

5 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Blue-crested Flycatcher (Myiagra azureocapilla) – very local in distribution but vocal and moderately easy to find where it does occur.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

29 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Mount Devo

1 February 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 5, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

Silktail (Lamprolia victoriae) – It would be difficult to miss this species on even a short trip if you get off the road at Mount Devo and walk a trail in the forest. We saw them from the road in a couple of places but they were fairly numerous, vocal, and pished in readily when we were in the forest. Try walking the trail to the crater lake (16º50'20" S, 179 58'12" W) at Mount Devo for this species.

24 January 2006, 8, Taveuni, Mount Devo

29 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

Scarlet Robin (Petroica multicolor) – This species was tough to find in our experience. Mount Devo may be the best bet. We saw one of the two birds there at the entrance to the Crater Lake trail (16º50'20" S, 179º58'12" W).

18 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu (along road ~250 m north of Nasaga River at 17º35'53" S, 177º58'01" E)

29 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, Mount Devo

Golden Whistler (Pachycephala pectoralis) – This almost certainly represents a species complex, with different species on most of the islands (although Watling discusses variation and hybridization between the taxonomic units). The currently recognized subspecies have different songs, don't respond to playback of each other's song, and look and behave very different. More research on the group is clearly needed. I missed seeing the Vanua Levu subspecies (P. p. aurantiiventris), but it was singing at around our guesthouse during my stay.

21 January 2006, 4, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village (P. p. kandavensis)

22 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Vunisea Village (P. p. kandavensis)

29 January 2006, 3, Taveuni, Mount Devo – 1 feeding juvenile Fan-tailed Cuckoo at entrance to Crater Lake Trail (16º50'20" S, 179 58'12" W) (P. p. torquata)

2 February 2006, 20, Kadavu, Mateva (P. p. kandavensis)

3 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Waivudawa (P. p. graeffi)

4 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail (P. p. graeffi)

Layard's White-eye (Zosterops exploratory) – Common and widespread in forests.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

21 January 2006, 15, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 10, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

24 January 2006, 25, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 25, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 15, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 16, Taveuni, Mount Devo

1 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 20, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 35, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

5 February 2006, 12, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Silver-eye (Zosterops lateralis) – Common and widespread in disturbed forests, gardens and urban areas.

17 January 2006, 15, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

23 January 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Suva area to Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

29 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, airport and area

1 February 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 20, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Orange-breasted Myzomela (Myzomela jugularis) – Common and widespread in gardens and forests.

17 January 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 50, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

20 January 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

21 January 2006, 4, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 20, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

23 January 2006, 4, Viti Levu, Suva area

24 January 2006, 4, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 15, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 5, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 4, Taveuni, airport and area

1 February 2006, 50, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

2 February 2006, 30, Kadavu, Mateva

3 February 2006, 80, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 20, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Wattled Honeyeater (Foulehaio carunculata) – Common and widespread on all islands except Kadavu.

18 January 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

23 January 2006, 10, Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

24 January 2006, 15, Taveuni, Mount Devo

25 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 1, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 50, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

5 February 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Kandavu Honeyeater (Xanthotis provocator) – Not particularly numerous but vocal and even occurring in Vunisea Village (in the trees near the post office); would be unlikely to miss.

21 January 2006, 1, Kadavu, Solodamu, Nomolata Creek, Vunisea Village

22 January 2006, 2, Kadavu, Vunisea Village

2 February 2006, 12, Kadavu, Mateva and Vunisea Village

Giant Honeyeater (Gymnomyza viridis) – Another species complex likely involving two species. The Taveuni and Vanua Levu subspecies (G. v. viridis) is darker overall, has a yellow bill and feet and has a different song than the Viti Levu subspecies (G. v. brunneirostris – olive bill and feet in adults, juvenile apparently has a yellow bill). The nominate subspecies also did not respond to playback of the Viti Levu subspecies in our few attempts. Vocal and easy to hear but somewhat difficult to get good looks at these birds. The Crater Lake trail at Mount Devo afforded plenty of good looks as did Pipeline Road in Suva. They pish in, but don't often come close; shy.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nakobelevu

24 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, Mount Devo

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 15, Taveuni, Mount Devo

1 February 2006, 12, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 25, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

5 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Nausori Highlands

Fiji Woodswallow (Artamus mentalis) – Easy to find everywhere except Kadavu.

17 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 6, Viti Levu, Suva to Nakobelevu

22 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Suva area

25 January 2006, 8, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 6, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 12, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Suva, including Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Polynesian Starling (Aplonis tabuensis) – This species proved to be surprisingly hard to find and even harder to get good looks at. It may be declining and could easily be missed based on our experience.

19 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Waivudawa – in shrubs along creek about 500 m from top of road.

24 January 2006, 5, Taveuni, flock in top of dead tree near end of agricultural area not too far from base of Mount Devo (16º49'39" S, 179º58'57" W).

3 February 2006, 1, Viti Levu, Waivudawa - one in top of tree mid-way along road up to Waivudawa.

Jungle Myna (Acridotheres fuscus) – Abundant on all islands except Kadavu.

17 January 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 100, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

19 January 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Suva to Waivudawa

20 January 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Suva to Nakobelevu

22 January 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Suva area

25 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

27 January 2006, 1, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 40, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 100, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 30, Taveuni, airport and area to Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 40, Viti Levu, Suva, including Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 200, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 80, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis) – Abundant in disturbed habitats on all islands except Kadavu.

17 January 2006, 200, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

20 January 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Suva to Nakobelevu

22 January 2006, 30, Viti Levu, Suva area

23 January 2006, 100, Viti Levu, Suva area to Taveuni, Mt. Devo lowlands

24 January 2006, 30, Taveuni, Mt. Devo area

25 January 2006, 20, Vanua Levu, Savusavu area

26 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 10, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 100, Taveuni, Bebe's Hideaway to Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 100, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

31 January 2006, 200, Taveuni, airport and area to Viti Levu, Suva area

1 February 2006, 200, Viti Levu, Suva, including Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 300, Viti Levu, Waivudawa to Suva Point

4 February 2006, 500, Viti Levu, Suva to Ocean Pacific Forest Trail to Nadi

5 February 2006, 100, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Red Avadavat (Amandava amandava) – Easy to find in agricultural areas around Nadi; much more local elsewhere.

17 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

27 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

5 February 2006, 60, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Fiji Parrotfinch (Erythrura pealii) – Surprisingly widespread and easy to find in a variety of habitats (disturbed to mature forest edges or gaps).

17 January 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Nadi to Vereni Falls to Nadaarivatu

18 January 2006, 10, Viti Levu, Koro Ni O northwest of Naadarivatu, Ywaikubukubu

24 January 2006, 4, Taveuni, Mt. Devo area

26 January 2006, 6, Vanua Levu, 4 km SE Lomaloma Village to Savusavu

27 January 2006, 2, Vanua Levu, Nauavanadi to Savusavu

29 January 2006, 4, Taveuni, Mount Devo

30 January 2006, 2, Taveuni, Bouma Falls and area

1 February 2006, 8, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road

3 February 2006, 12, Viti Levu, Waivudawa

4 February 2006, 15, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail

5 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Nadi to Nausori Highlands

Pink-billed Parrotfinch (Erythrura kleinschmidti) – A very tough bird to see well. Although we found them at four locations, we never had very satisfying views. All birds were seen in flight. They are distinctive and vocal but you would have to be lucky to have them land near a trail. The closest that we came to getting good looks was one bird at Waivudawa that took off from a roadside thicket. Had we spotted it first the views would have been terrific. A site for this species that we did not visit is apparently along Namosi Road (between Suva and Ocean Pacific). A guide would be needed as it is private property. We were told to contact Waisea or his Dad Rotu at 359-0553 as possible guides for this area. We were unable to contact them but it might be a useful reference for others.

1 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Pipeline Road. At 18º04'47.5" S, 178º26'43" E.

3 February 2006, 3, Viti Levu, Waivudawa . At 18º05'42" S, 178º22'07" E and 18º04'52" S, 178º21'57" E.

4 February 2006, 2, Viti Levu, Ocean Pacific Forest Trail. At 18º10'12" S, 178º15'25" E.

Species missed

Pacific Pigeon (Ducula pacifica) – unlikely on the main islands. It seems that it is seen mostly on smaller offshore islands. A boat trip off Taveuni to one of the small, nearby islands could produce this species.

Friendly Ground-Dove (Gallicolumba stairi) – Perhaps more likely on the smaller islands in the chain that we did not visit. More time walking forest trails would certainly help. Maximize your time on Taveuni and Kadavu walking these trails and you may have more success than we did.


Links

Jeff Skevington's page on the Fiji Arthropod Survey

Pacific Birds Fiji - Dick Watling's website, with trip reports, checklists, and publications.

BirdLife Important Bird Areas in Fiji Project

Fiji Images - Viti Levu - Fiji Arthropod Survey

Fiji Images - Taveuni - Fiji Arthropod Survey

Fiji Images - Koro - Fiji Arthropod Survey

Fiji Birding Trip Report by Susan Myers, March-April 1996.

Fiji Birding Trip Report by Phil Gregory, December 1996 - January 1997, on WorldTwitch.

Fiji Birding Trip Report by Tony Clarke, August-September 2000, on Surfbirds.

Fiji Birding Trip Report by Josh Engel, November 2004, on Surfbirds.

Fijian Bird Rediscovered After 109 Years. By Guy Dutson, BirdLife Interrnational, 28 November 2003. Long-legged Warbler Trichocichla rufa.

Book

Dick Watling. A Guide to the Birds of Fiji and Western Polynesia, including American Samoa, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu & Futuna. (2001). 272 pages. 16 color plates by Chloë Talbot Kelly. Revised and reformatted edition of Watling's Birds of Fiji, Tonga & Samoa. Order from Dick Watling's website, PacificBirds Fiji.




Copyright © 1992-2012 John Wall