Birding at Nantu


Famous as a site to see Babirusa and other mammals, but also pretty good for birding too.

Key bird species:

Snoring Rail, Blue-faced Rail, Sulawesi Ground-dove, Maroon-chinned Fruit-dove, Pied Cuckooshrike, Stephan’s Dove, Sulawesi Dwarf Kingfisher, Ochre-bellied Boobook, Lilac-cheeked Kingfisher, Sulawesi Black-pigeon

Birdwatching locations:

The main attraction is a blind at a clay lick, where mammals and birds come to drink water and ingest minerals. Maroon-chinned Fruit-dove, Stephan’s Dove, Sulawesi Black-pigeon, Brown Cuckoo-dove, and Barred Rail are common there. On a recent four day visit, a Snoring Rail was observed once for about thirty seconds one morning. The field staff at the station indicated that they had seen it at other times as well. They were also familiar with with Blue-faced Rail and Sulawesi Ground-dove and indicated that they frequented the clay lick. The surrounding forest has not yet been birded intensively, but Sulawesi Dwarf Hornbill and Pied Cuckooshrike were common by voice. Ochre-bellied Boobook, Lilac-cheeked Kingfisher, and Sulawesi Dwarf Kingfisher were seen/heard on the short hike to the blind.

Mammals are very easy to see at the blind. Babrisua, Sulawesi Wild Boar, and Heck’s Macaque come in daily to the clay lick. Anoa is less common, but still regular; one animal crossed it twice in four days. Whitish Dwarf Squirrel, Celebes Dwarf Squirrel, Sulawesi Giant Squirrel, and Bear Cuscus are also present in the forest.

The boat trip to Nantu can be productive for birding. Species seen on the way include Spotted Harrier, Brahminy Kite, Black Eagle, White-breasted Waterhen, Buff-banded Rail, Sunda Teal, Wandering Whistling Duck, Common Kingfisher (ssp hispidoides), and many herons and egrets.

Access and Accommodation:

To visit Nantu Forest preserve, send an email to as far in advance as you can. The price is affordable, and profits are shared with local communities. Transit from Gorontalo takes most of the day, and is split between car and boat.

More info:

Scroll down the page for related information, including photos, comments, trip reports, guides and services, articles and news.

Site map:

To download the kml file click here


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *