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MikeBirder - Malaysian Birds


Welcome to my Malaysian Birding Blog. I migrated to as my blog at closed shop in 2012. I wish to showcase all Malaysian birds that I have photographed whether here or overseas. My countdown of lifers started in 2005. Coming to April 2019 my countdown of lifers photograph has reached
526/688 species of birds of Malaysia in photos.

My shooting gear was a EF400mm f4 DO lens and Canon 7D body which to me is the ideal setup for mobility and bird chasing at that time. Eventhen the weight over my shoulder is more that 5.5 kg. As of June 2016 I have also acquired a Fuji XF 100-400mm OIS lens to complement my travelling cum birding trip overseas. The Fuji X-T2 is now in hand ; the weight over my shoulder is much lighter now by 30%. In December 2018 I acquired the Nikon Coolpix P1000 as supplementary camera for distance shooting of 3000mm.
Meantime I am hoping Sigma or Fuji will come out with with a 200-600mm lens for my Fuji body. As for a new body I will only consider an upgrade when the megapixel hit 30..........

I am a weekend birder. Do feel free to drop me a line at and I see whether you can tag along in my outings. My usual day trip is just an hour ride away to Hulu Langat, Lancang, Kemensah, Krau, Awana, Hulu Kali, Gombak Ole Road, Fraser's Hill , Bukit Tinggi and KSNP & Coastal Sg Janggut Jeram side of the coast . Overnite trip to Merapoh & Cameron, Air Hitam and further north to Kuala Sidim is a seldom affair but for lifer we travel. Panti in Johor is another good birding site that I yet to go. Then there are the Borneo birds of Sabah and Sarawak of Malaysia which I seriously much go to chalk up more lifers. This I did in 2018 to Sepilok Sandakan and Kinabalu Park. Next Danum and LahatDatu.......

WARNING Birding is an addiction once you started its hard to stop. The wifey and children are now birding widow and orphan.



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Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Avian Field Report - Bukit Tinggi May 2019

In the second week of May, the ficus tree is again fruiting and starting to ripen. Maybe 10-20 %. Already the frugivorous are gathering here. There were 6-7 species of Barbets to shoot at the venue in the same day. In the coming weekends in May do expect birders to congregate to get a piece of the action.

The common ones are the Sooty and Blue-eared Barbets. The juvenile Sooty has pinkish  beak compared to the adult one. The adult Blue-eared Barbets was collecting 2-3 fruits to feed its brood There were at least 3-5 birds. Occasionally the fledgling in pale uniform coat some times dropped by to ka-poh and look see.

The juvenile Blue-eared.

The third Barbet is the largest of its species Golden-whiskered Barbet (or rather yellow) is dominating. There was a pair of them.  As it is the start of the fruiting period; every barbet comes in to feed at one go. So the shooting can be frantic and any bird is seen in open we just shoot first. The pair were feeding more in the foliages and the only open perched shoot was this one at the canopy.

Next the less common one is the Yellow-crowned Barbet. There was a family of 2-3 with their brood which swoops in to feed in quick moments.

 I think the picture below is a juvenile  Blue-throated Barbet as the throat is still green.

Blue-throated has pale legs 

Barbet no 6 is the Red-throated. It has no brood. I think I only saw one bird but I cannot be sure as the birds come in and out in succession. No clear shot this time.........

Besides Barbets, the bulbuls which are  also frugivorous and you can see several species including my favorite Scaly-breasted and Black-crested were around. The common ones here are the Red-eyed, Striped-throated, Ashy and the Ochraceous.


There were at least half a dozen of Ashy
The Ochraceous was plucking to feed its mate or fledgling in the opposite tall trees.

The feeding action shooting of the birds required a shooting speed of 1/125 to 200 is  and ISO must be kept low at 800 to avoid soft images. For my, Fuji set up I was shooting at 1/60s. The lighting was quite good ie overcast except in the later part of the morning the dark rain clouds arrived.

Green Broadbill
 This is first time Joe and I sighted this female or a juvenile Green Broadbill joining the fruit-fest congregation. As you notice the broadbill also feed on the fruits. It came out only twice in the morning It stayed discreetly in the dark area away from the other birds. A Silver-breasted Broadbill did appear but no clear view.

The other first for me is this juvenile Thick-billed Green Pigeon. It did not approach the ficus tree but stayed across it. It was about 60-70 feet away from our port.

 The regular Yellow-vented Green Pigeon only visited a few times during the morning. There is at least a pair but they were a bit skittish. Joe got some open shots compared with mine. Well, that's bird life......

The other cameo  are as below...........
Fire-breasted Fp (female)

Gey-breasted Spiderhunter
White-rumped Munia

Male & Female Greater Leafbird
AF bluebird female. Male missed the opportunity.

The Fuji focussed on the foreground leaves thus the warbler image is blurred out.  Really cannot id it Could be the Dusky ? ....sign

Thursday, 9 May 2019

Avian Post Nesting - Birding April-May in Bukit Frasers

In the month of April-May is a good time to go out birding as the breeding period is the best time to see some action photo-shoot. Last week we encounter several species in post-nesting activity.

1. This Grey-throated Babbler brood of two came out to feed with its parent in the month of April 2019. The adult have orangy eyes whilst the juvi have pale whites.

2. Meanwhile, at the Gap side,  we manage to shoot the Slaty picking up grubs to feed its hatchlings.

It was more active in the early morning and come out in half-hour interval. Maybe the nest is a distance away up the slope hill.

3. The Bronze Drongo also have a pair of brood as we were shooting at a close distance of 20-30 ft as they called & waited to be feed by their parents. As usual it will flutter their wings to attract their parents. They still have a dull coat and fluffy feathers.

4. Further away at the Hermant's port. A pair of juvi Buff-breasted Babbler showed up but did not come out to feed but kept in the background chirping non-stop.

Tuesday, 7 May 2019

Avian Sighting - May 2019 - Collared Owlet

During the mating season, the Collared Owlet was rather amorous as it approaches us closely while we were chasing after the Common Green Magpie. This was my best shot of the bird in the open . Most of the time its perch behind the heavy foliages.

Monday, 6 May 2019

Avian Sighting May 2019 - White-tailed Robin

The White-tailed Robin is a regular bird to see at the Hermant's port. With some splendid lighting I manage a few good shots of this passerine Male. Here it can be seen coming out in quick hit and run feeding session. Usually, you are lucky if it comes out a few time during the morning session.  Last seen also at the Paddock's port but the lighting there is a bit low for any good photos.

These are my best captures of this WTR for the past years. I hope AT  & ML got some good shots too. I would like to see the female bird but it never showed. Breeding and nesting should have already begun  for this bird in May. Maybe the female is hatching the eggs and the Male is out as a lookout. With the successful nesting last year I think it will do well this year.

So guys it is good time in another 2 weeks to see some feeding and then in another 3-4 weeks the fledgling will be feeding at the port.....................

Ooops this is the Large Niltava which is a regular presence at this port. Looks similar in color and size

Thursday, 2 May 2019

April 2019 Avian Behavior - Ferruginous Partridge mating ritual

The female would purposely caress the male belly.
A pair of Ferruginous Partridge can out quite late in the morning then its usual time. Mating is in progress as the female kept cuddly aka  "manja-manja"  to the male and many occasion it will caress the belly of the male. Only one time I witness the male offering food and feeding its partner. It would be another 6-8 weeks before a new brood can be seen here. 

The pair stayed the longest time of more than 20 minutes at the port. Even when the Mountain Peacock came out to harass the pair' they did not budge from the spot. The peacocks are coming out separately and on long duration. I suspect nesting is in progress and within 3-4 weeks I will be happy to see their chicks coming out to feed. Keeping my finger crossed there will be half a dozen of them.

Mating ritual. The only shot for record.

The elder sibling teasing the younger one with food but never giving it 
 No migrant birds were around in the month of April. There are a few post-nesting activities that I sighted. The resident OMR have two fledglings which came out to feed together  at the port in late April 2019.

Meanwhile the resident Shama  also have an offspring which is quite self-dependent but the adult still feed it on one or two occasion during my encounter.
The juvi calling to be feed

The juvi Stripe-throated Bulbul (pinkish beak) with their fluffy coat still expect to be fed as they chase their parent around Bukit Tinggi.