Endemic Birds of Borneo

Endemic Birds of Borneo

Endemic Birds of Borneo is something that has caught my attention after visiting Sabah and Sarawak over the years where professional birders have thought me a fair bit about this unique hobby. Generally, this is a 'Birder' or Birdwatcher's topic but in the recent years of travel, I have taken up Birdwatching as a new hobby, not that I am a hardcore birder but at some of the places I visit, there are notable birds to be observed or spotted. 

Birdwatching or birding is actually a form of wildlife observation in which the observation of birds as a recreational activity. Usually, it is done with the naked eye, through a visual enhancement device like binoculars and telescopes and more recently via photography. 

Birdwatching in the rainforest of Borneo
Birdwatching in the rainforest of Borneo
For the avid birders out there, Borneo provides you one of the best places in the region to do Birdwatching. There are many rainforest lodges and resorts available here while the number of nature or birding guides are quite a handful too. Therefore, this list is to highlight some of the endemic birds in Borneo which are slowly getting smaller in numbers. Thanks to the many state wildlife parks, there have been specially gazetted areas which are highly protected where much of the rainforest here has been eaten away slowly by development and deforestation. Plantations are the biggest culprits too. 

Birdwatching was introduced in the last 5 years where the Borneo Bird Club was set up by local birders in Sabah. Since then, the club worked hand in hand with the state tourism board to create the Borneo Bird Festival which is now in its 5th year. While catering to the many birders in the region and as far as Europe, the club then moved to have the first Borneo Bird Race which covered two countries - Sabah and Brunei in 2013. 

White-Crowned Shama
White-crowned Shama
This year, the bird race has included Sarawak, the largest state of Malaysia to be in the Borneo Bird Race therefore it will be three locations to spot the beautiful birds of Borneo and for anyone joining this race, chances are you will be spotting a number of the endemic birds of Borneo too. 

Again, if you are an avid birder, this is one of the best chances to spot these birds as the 10-day bird race will cover most of the popular places for birding in Borneo.



List of Endemic Birds of Borneo

No.
Common Name
Scientific Name
1
Black-browed Babbler
Trichastoma perspicillatum
2
Black-headed Pitta
Pitta ussheri
3
Black-throated Wren-babbler
Napothera atrigularis
4
Blue-banded Pitta
Pitta arquata
5
Blue-headed Pitta
Pitta baudii
6
Bornean Banded Kingfisher
Lacedo melanops
7
Bornean Banded Pitta
Pitta schwaneri
8
Bornean Barbet
Megalaima eximia
9
Bornean Black Magpie
Platysmurus aterrimus
10
Bornean Black Oriole
Oriolus hosii
11
Bornean Blue Flycatcher
Cyornis superbus
12
Bornean Bristelhead
Pityriasis gymnocephala
13
Bornean Brown Barbet
Calorhamphus fulginosus
14
Bornean Bulbul
Pycnonotus montis
15
Bornean Crested Fireback
Lophura ignita
16
Bornean Crestless Fireback
Lophura pyronota
17
Bornean Falconet
Microhierax latifrons
18
Bornean Flowerpecker
Dicaeum monticolum
19
Bornean Forktail
Enicurus borneensis
20
Bornean Frogmouth
Batrachostomus mixtus
21
Bornean Green Magpie
Cissa jefferyi
22
Bornean Ground-Cuckoo
Carpococcyx radiatus
23
Bornean Ibon
Oculocincla squamifrons
24
Bornean Laughing-thrush
Melanocichla calva
25
Bornean Leafbird
Chloropsis kinabaluensis
26
Bornean Necklaced Patridge
Arborophila graydoni
27
Bornean Peacock-pheasant
Polyplectron schleiermacheri
28
Bornean Serpent Eagle
Spilornis kinabaluensis
29
Bornean Spiderhunter
Arachnothera everetti
30
Bornean Stubtail
Urosphena whiteheadi
31
Bornean Swiftlet
Collocalia dodgei
32
Bornean Treepie
Dendrocitta cinerascens
33
Bornean Whistler
Pachycephala hypoxantha
34
Bornean Whistling Thrush
Myophonus borneensis
35
Bornean Wren-babbler
Ptilocichla leucogrammica
36
Bulwers Pheasant
Lophura bulweri
37
Chestnut-crested Yuhina
Yuhina everetti
38
Chestnut-hooded Laughing-trush
Garrulax treacheri
39
Crimson-headed Partridge
Haematortyx sanguiniceps
40
Dulit Frogmouth
Batrachostomus harterti
41
Dulit Patridge
Rhizothera dulitensis
42
Dusky Munia
Lonchura fuscans
43
Everetts Thrush
Zoothera everetti
44
Eyebrowed Jungle Flycatcher
Rhinomyias gularis
45
Friendly Bush Warbler
Bradypterus accentor
46
Fruithunter
Chlamydochaera jefferyi
47
Golden-naped Barbet
Megalaima pulcherrima
48
Hose's Broadbill
Calyptomena hosii
49
Maratua Bulbul
Pycnonotus hodiernus
50
Maratua Shama
Copsychus barbouri
51
Mountain Barbet
Megalaima monticola
52
Mountain Black-eye
Chlorocharis emiliae
53
Mountain Wren-babbler
Napothera crassa
54
Pale-faced Bulbul
Pycnonotus leucops
55
Red-breasted Hill Partridge
Arborophila hyperythra
56
White-crowned Shama
Copsychus stricklandii
57
Whiteheads Broadbill
Calyptomena Whiteheadi
58
Whiteheads Spiderhunter
Arachnothera juliae
59
Whiteheads Trogon
Harpactes whiteheadi
60
Yellow-rumped Flowerpecker
Prionochilus xanthopygius

Source: Phillipps’ Field Guide to the Birds of Borneo, Sabah, Sarawak, Brunei and Kalimantan (Third Edition Fully Revised) by Quentin Phillipps and Karen Phillipps, published by John Beaufoy Publishing.

The Borneo Bird Race 2014
The Borneo Bird Race 2014
This article was done in order to create awareness for these beautiful birds in conjunction to the Borneo Bird Race. For those who love the outdoors or Ecotourism, if you ever go for a nature trip, do check with the guides or tour company about birdwatching. It is also highly recommended that you start educating the younger generation about the outdoors and also hobbies like this, especially if you have children. 

Gone are the days where families participate in natural outdoor activities like these where it is very educational, compared to spending countless hours on gadgets, phones or visiting the malls. You know I am right when you read this as I see society in the city is just getting bad to worst but we can make the difference. 

For more information on the endemic birds of Borneo, you can also visit the Borneo Bird Club website and also the Borneo Bird Race website

Borneo Bird Race 2014

Borneo Bird Race 2014 Dates
Venue: Sarawak, Sabah and Brunei Seri Begawan
Date: 23rd September to 3rd October 2014
Website: Borneo Bird Race 2014

This year, I will be attending the Borneo Bird Race 2014 not as a participant but more as an observer and reporter. It has been quite a long time since I went on a pure birding trip and with the bird race happening from September to October, I think it is a great time to pick up where I left off. If anyone reading this is also attending this race, please feel free to let me know here, otherwise, I will see you at the Borneo Bird Race 2014. 

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