Satu tanggapan untuk “Birding in Sungai Wain Protected Forest

  • Oktober 18, 2015 pada 1:33 pm

    Logistics and cost have changed quite a bit. It is actually very straightforward to visit now.

    Access from Balikpapan: The easy option is to take a taxi (IDR150k). The first taxi I found outside of the airport knew right away what I was asking for, because there is some kind of a Perminata employee resort being developed near the reserve. This resort is the big portal with hornbill statues. Drive past that, turn right after some sort of military checkpoint (?), before arriving to the village and the Perminata industrial compound. Get dropped at the big wooden building which is the reserve office and ask around for Pak Agustin. Note: There are numerous angkots plying the busy road between Balikpapan and the turnoff to Sungai Wain, so if short on cash you could try this option: first get an ojek from the airport up to the main road, then get an angkot going in the direction of Samarinda and get dropped at km15, where you now need to find an ojek to Sungai Wain village.

    Accommodation: There is a “big” and a “small” guesthouse. The big one is basically a middle-class type house that is apparently not used (or maybe used by visiting Perminata officials). It accommodates several people. The small guesthouse is next to the big office building. It is perfect for small parties but the bathroom is very small. For security reasons (poaching) it is not allowed anymore to use the quite derelict building at “Camp 3” in the forest.

    Contact in advance agusdin_wain “AT” yahoo co id

    Fees: I was charged IDR150k for the guesthouse, IDR20k for packed meals (either in the field or in the guesthouse – there are very limited options to buy food in the evening but I had access to the rangers’ kitchen), IDR350k for full day guiding in the reserve (might have included a reserve fee but this was not mentioned), and IDR150k for guiding at night. Guiding is compulsory. Pak Agustin, the reserve manager, accompanied me for two days and a half which was nice of him. It might however be worth asking for a non-English speaking guide to cut costs. Agustin is certainly the person on Earth with the most experience with the peacock-pheasant, and he also knew the stakeout for Large Frogmouth at dusk. But he’s not a bird guide, more like a bird photographer himself. It was also quite uncomfortable that the manager of the reserve would take two days off his normal duties just to accompany me during my forest strolls, in the middle of the wild fire season.

    Birding: The avifauna is lowland Sundaic with few Bornean endemics around. The very notable exceptions are
    1) Bornean Peacock-pheasant. The main draw to the area. It is definitely gettable. To reach the first stakeout there is a small side trail to the left shortly after passing Camp 1, going along a ridge through very open understory up to “the log”. The male frequenting this area is almost habituated and gave awesome views on my second evening and third morning. I also flushed a probable female from the main trail nearby. The second stake out is the portion of the main trail between Camp 2 and about two-third of the way to Camp 3. I did not see any pheasant there but noticed several patches of scratched bare soil and was shown a display area from last May.
    2) Bornean Ground-cuckoo. A family party was in the swampy bit before Camp 1. This species is however very difficult to see there. I got to about 10 meters of them before they noticed me. From then on they would constantly keep at least 50 meters between me and them …
    3) Bornean Wren-babbler. One bird was seen shortly after Camp 2. Pure luck as I did not have the tape for it.
    4) Bornean Bristlehead. One bird was glimpsed from the first stakeout for the pheasant. This species is however irregular at this site.
    Other excellent species seen: Garnet Pitta (near Camp 3), Large Frogmouth (stake-out along ecotourism trail 1), Great Slaty Woodpecker, Malaysian Honeyguide (from the access road, flying into agricultural/settled area), Rhinoceros Hornbill. Grey-breasted Babbler is possible but not seen by me.


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