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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 May 2020 my countdown of lifers photograph has reached
539/688 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, 29 November 2016

Avian Sighting - White crowned Hornbill

The majestic hornbill high up the conifer. Today the pair was a bit cautious of of us and stays a bit higher in the canopy. My Fuji XF100-400mm  had a hard time getting a full frame shot at the distance of 100m out.  However my XT-2  24 mp sensor still manage some good details of the bird  even after cropping to 3.5mp.

Surprise ........ this is actually  my first time seeing a pair of mating birds in the natural habitat. The last I shoot this bird was in the infamous tiger sanctuary in Bangkok which is now defunct that was  a few years back.

Met my good friend Danny in Nuang  who also bird alone like me. He says he had waited 10 years to shoot this elusive bird. Well that the thrill of birding that worth waiting for. The ficus nearby is riping which the hornbill do feed on them.

Monday, 28 November 2016

WATERBIRD 53/60 - Malayan Night Heron

I have  been looking for this lifer in Sg Perdik since 2 years back when it was sighted  there. The  bird has been a frequent  visitor to Penang Botanical Garden. I did not manage to get some free time to fly out there then.  Once I heard of the news of the latest sighting in November 2016 at my doorstep of Hulu Langat  a 40 minutes ride from KL I did not hesitate to try my luck to see this rarity. This one I saw is a Juvenile. The immature is greyish-brown above with black and white spots; underparts are buff with brown spots and bars. An Adult mature Malayan Night-Heron is  about 47 cm in length.  The crown is black, with black crest extending to the nape.  The upperparts are dark reddish-brown with fine streaks.  The eye ring is light blue.  Wings are black, fading outward to reddish-brown.  Primary feather tips are white.  The face is reddish-brown; the chin and upper breast are paler.  The yellowish-brown breast has a central row of black streaks.   During migration you seldom hear their usual call which sound like  "oo  oo" ?

The Malayan Night Heron is a  species inhabit wooded streams, marshes, swamps, ponds and lakes in subtropical and tropical jungle forest. They are partially migrant from India or North-east Asian countries. In Peninsula Malaysia it can be sighted in jungle fringes over shaded grassland near shaded marshes, streams. They are nocturnal bird. It is solitary forager that feeds by walking slowly at the edges of water, fields and other feeding areas. Most observations are of its feeding in the open, but it is likely it feeds primarily unobserved under cover. In feeding on earthworms, it probes them from the soil.   

Malayan Night-Heron is a shy, rare bird.   If in alarm state i t defends itself with raised crest, open wings, and stabbing at the opponent. During the day, it roosts well hidden in reed, bamboo, and other dense vegetation. The diet is little studied. It eats terrestrial food, particularly earthworms and beetles but also mollusks, lizards, frogs, rarely small fish. 

The winter visitor tends to stays awhile at a place if food is abundance. With the rainy season here in Selangor I am sure there are plenty of grub of frogs crickets and grasshopper and earthwork here so I believe it will stay put for some time unless it is too disturbed. 

In some places Malayan Night-Heron is also known as Tiger Bittern. I really wonder why they are called Malayan Night Heron whilst they are not resident here. pondering...........

Monday, 14 November 2016

SWIFTLET 5/7 - House Swiftlet

 Calling Sifu Tou...............

A pair of swiftlets in my residence carpark in Kl. It used to be a clayish mud nest but this time round it is made from straws and feathers. The whitish rump is the give away of a Germain's Swiftlet as compared to the Edible-nest Swiftlet.

They will only rest after dusk and afternoon if not they will be sallying around for insects.

SWIFTLET 4/7 - White-bellied Swiftlet

 It is also called the Glossy Swiftlets which I posted already. This colony is in Colmar Resort Bukit Tinggi in the carpark ramp. They make a mess of the place and the shit is piling. No maintenance cleaning le. 

Thier nest is not edible so do not harvest them Saw some visitors trying to do just that .

SWIFTLET 3/7 - Mossy Nest Swiftlet

Found in caves of Borneo. Living amongst the bats in Deer cave Mulu. A very tiny bird. Looking at its nest built on the limestone ridges of the cave wall.

SWIFTLET 1/7 - Asian Palm Swiftlet

 The Asian Palm Swift is a small swift. It is very similar to the African Palm Swift, and was formerly considered to be the same species. It is a common resident breeder in tropical Asia from India to the Philippines. This is a bird of open country and cultivation, which is strongly associated with Oil Palms. No wonder in Malaysia there are aplenty.

This 13cm long species is mainly pale brown in colour. It has long swept-back wings that resemble a crescent or a boomerang. The body is slender, and the tail is long and deeply forke, although it is usually held closed. The call is a loud shrill scream. Sexes are similar, and young birds differ mainly their shorter tails. Asian Palm Swift has very short legs which it uses only for clinging to vertical surfaces, since swifts never settle voluntarily on the ground. The down and feather nest is glued to the underside of a palm leaf with saliva, which is also used to secure the usually two or three eggs.

These swifts spend most of their lives in the air, living on the insects they catch in their beaks. Asian Palm Swifts often feed near the ground, and they drink on the wing.

SWIFTLET 2/7 - Edible-Nest Swiftlet

 Argh the Edible Nest Swiflet. This is actually in Puri Hotel in Melaka heritage row. You can see the translucent nesting made from the birds saliva savored by Asians.

The Hotel leave them be and place galvanised pan below to prevent a mess on their floor and picture frame. You can just walk in to see them the next time you are at Jonker Street area.