Bougainville - 12th - 22nd July 2010

Published by Ashley Banwell (otusbrooki AT


This 10 day trip to Bougainville was a great success with most of out target species being seen as well as a couple of bonus birds. We landed in Buka and immediately headed south to Arawa where we stayed in a comfortable guesthouse.

The following morning we birded around Arawa where we had good scope views of a Woodfords Rail after this we headed into the 'no go zone' of Panguna mine. Birding around here was as good as ever, we soon saw Bougainville Monarch, Yellow-throated White-eye, White-winged Fantail, Scarlet-naped Myzomela, Grey-throated White-eye and a Bougainville Crow. The following morning we took a trail taking us up to 1200m where we all had good views of Odedi, Brown Fantail, Black and white Monarch, Bougainville Honeyeater, Midget Flowerpecker and Red-knobbed Imperial Pigeon. A distant calling Crested Cuckoo Dove was a frustration.

Having seen most of our expected targets we headed back down to our guesthouse in Arawa. The next morning we found a pair of Ultramarine Kingfishers which could not have shown any better, low down and just at the side of the road in the sunshine, a great start to the day. The Bougainville Hawk Owls were still at the same day roost as last year and were in view until we had our fill of them, thankfully last years mosquitoes were not around. Other good birds around were Duchess Lorikeets, Ducorps Cockatoo and White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike. Our persistence finally paid of the next morning with brilliant views of 2 Sanford's Sea-eagles right overhead, night birding finally paid dividends that evening with 2 Fearful Owls picked up as they left their day roost and then perching up together.

The next 3 days were spent exploring the higher areas on Mt Balbi, this was a very tough few days with lots of rain making birding difficult but we persevered and saw some good birds. Mountain Whistler proved to be common the higher we made it, Odedi, Scarlet Robin, Imitator Goshawk, Yellow bibbed Fruit-dove, Rufous Fantail, Brown Fantail and Mackinley's Cuckoo-dove were all seen. Finally we made it back down and headed back into Buka for a couple of days birding around the island. A Bougainville Crow showed very well for us as well as another Sanford's Sea-eagle and 3 Ultramarine Kingfishers, after lunch we took a boat to some off shore islands where we saw yet another Sanford's Sea-eagle. Other goodies were 2 Beach Kingfisher, Roseate Tern, Grey-tailed Tattler, Terek Sandpiper and Torresian Imperial Pigeon.


Species Lists

Little Pied Cormorant Phalacrocorax melanoleuco
Great Frigatebird Fregata minor
Lesser Frigatebird Fregata ariel
Pacific Reef-Heron Egretta sacra
Striated Heron Butorides striata
Rufous Night-Heron Nycticorax caledonicus
Pacific Black Duck Anas superciliosa
Osprey Pandion haliaetus
Pacific Baza Aviceda subcristata
Brahminy Kite Haliastur indus
Solomon Sea-Eagle Haliaeetus sanfordi
Variable Goshawk Accipiter hiogaster
Pied Goshawk Accipiter albogularis
Imitator Sparrowhawk Accipiter imitator
Oriental Hobby Falco severus
Woodford's Rail Nesoclopeus woodfordi
Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio
Pacific Golden-Plover Pluvialis fulva
Greater Sandplover Charadrius leschenaultii
Terek Sandpiper Xenus cinereus
Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos
Gray-tailed Tattler Heterosceles brevipes
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres
Great Crested Tern Sterna bergii
Roseate Tern Sterna dougallii
Black-naped Tern Sterna sumatrana
Bridled Tern Sterna anaethetus
Brown Noddy Anous stolidus
Mackinlay's Cuckoo-Dove Macropygia mackinlayi
Stephan's Dove Chalcophaps stephani
Superb Fruit-Dove Ptilinopus superbus
Claret-breasted Fruit-Dove Ptilinopus viridis
Red-knobbed Imperial-Pigeon Ducula rubricera
Island Imperial-Pigeon Ducula pistrinaria
Pale Mountain-Pigeon Gymnophaps solomonensis
Ducorps' Cockatoo Cacatua ducorpsii
Rainbow Lorikeet Trichoglossus haematodus
Meek's Lorikeet Charmosyna meeki
Red-flanked Lorikeet Charmosyna placentis
Duchess Lorikeet Charmosyna margarethae
Eclectus Parrot Eclectus roratus
Brush Cuckoo Cacomantis variolosus
Shining Bronze-Cuckoo Chrysococcyx lucidus
Solomon Hawk-Owl Ninox jacquinoti
Fearful Owl Nesasio solomonensis
Glossy Swiftlet Collocalia esculenta
Uniform Swiftlet Aerodramus vanikorensis
Moustached Treeswift Hemiprocne mystacea
Ultramarine Kingfisher Todiramphus leucopygius
Beach Kingfisher Todiramphus saurophagus
Sacred Kingfisher Todiramphus sanctus
Dollarbird Eurystomus orientalis
Blyth's Hornbill Aceros plicatus
Pacific Swallow Hirundo tahitica
Yellow-eyed Cuckoo-shrike Coracina lineata
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike Coracina papuensis
Cicadabird Coracina tenuirostris
Clamorous Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus stentoreus
Island Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus poliocephalus
White-winged Fantail Rhipidura cockerelli
Friendly Fantail Rhipidura albolimbata
Brown Fantail Rhipidura drownei
Rufous Fantail Rhipidura rufifrons
Bougainville Monarch Monarcha erythrostictus
Black-and-white Monarch Monarcha barbatus
Steel-Blue Flycatcher Myiagra ferrocyanea
Scarlet Robin Petroica multicolor
Golden Whistler Pachycephala pectoralis
Hooded Whistler Pachycephala implicata
Olive-backed Sunbird Cinnyris jugularis
Midget Flowerpecker Dicaeum aeneum
Yellow-throated White-eye Zosterops metcalfii
Gray-throated White-eye Zosterops ugiensis
Bougainville Honeyeater Stresemannia bougainvillei
Scarlet-naped Myzomela Myzomela lafargei
Bougainville Crow Corvus meeki
Metallic Starling Aplonis metallica
Singing Starling Aplonis cantoroides
Brown-winged Starling Aplonis grandis