Monday 26 May 2014

Kinabalu National Park, Sabah - May 2014 (Part 4)

14th May: We got up the same time again and left on the car by 5:30am. Again, the drive up produced no Everett's Thrush, however a stop at the view point had us listening to a Sunda Cuckoo far away. The "usuals" were there in the form of Sunda and Chestnut-hooded Laughingthrush, as well as the Whistling Thrush. A new bird to us was the Eye-browed Jungle-Flycatcher, another mountain endemic to our list! A bird wave soon arrived, with Mountain Leaf Warblers, Black-capped White-eyes, Yellow-breasted Warblers, Grey-chinned Minivets, Bornean Whistlers and a single female Blyth's Shrike-babbler. We waited for the partridges, hoping our luck from the previous morning will continue, but nothing. They kept at a distance and didn't come closer. Not far off a fruiting tree with a dozen of Little Cuckoo-dove, but they were at quite a distance, however were close enough that we checked that there were no Ruddy Cuckoo-dove amongst them.

Eye-browed Jungle-Flycatcher

Blyth's Shrike-babbler

Little Cuckoo-dove

Little else were seen around Timpohon Gate, so we drove down to Mempening Trail once more, we plan to walk from Mempening trail all the way to Bukit Burung trail and back up the Silau-Silau trail onto the Power Station Road, weather was very good with the sun coming out, we took that as a good sign. And once again 20 meters in, the Fruithunter was there again, this time a little further away, but again collecting moss as nesting materials. It gave us a much longer time to appreciate it's features then disappeared once again into the jungle.


We took this as a good omen and pressed on, however activities stopped completely and we saw nothing for the next hour or so. It was until we went passed Bukit Burung shelter that activities started to pick up once more. There we encountered a flock of Bornean Green Magpies, with it came a flock of Bornean Treepies and a pair of Checker-throated Woodpecker. Further on, a Black-and-Crimson Oriole joined in, foraging with the group. As we went passed the Bukit Buring shelter walking on a ridge, we heard the call of a Whitehead's Broadbill, it wasn't far off so we immediately scanned the trees for any movement, but nothing moved. There we could see the Power Station Road, and actually it wasn't too far off where we saw the Broadbill on the first day, so we thought it could be the same individual or pair, but we will never know for sure.

Bornean Green Magpie

Checker-throated Woodpecker

Black-and-Crimson Oriole

As we got to Silau-Silau trail, things quietened down a little, but was still nice as a very bold Eye-browed Jungle-Flycatcher made an appearance to forage along a flock of Grey-throated Babblers. Further up ahead a beautiful male Snowy-browed Flycatcher gave us a good look before flying off. We kept our eyes out for the Whitehead's Trogon as we've heard this is the trail you will most likely see them, but saw nothing. As we hit the Power Station Road, we connected with another flock of Green Magpies and Checker-throated Woodpeckers; this time with three. Walking all the way back up to our car we drove down to Liwagu Restaurant for lunch.

Eye-browed Jungle-Flycatcher

Grey-throated Babbler

Snowy-browed Flycatcher male

Rain was a big issue that afternoon, it was very heavy at times and surely we couldn't walk the trails in this condition. So, we decided to wait out at the garden outside the restaurant hoping something will appear. There we found a smart looking male Little Pied Flycatcher, singing away on it's perch. It later decided to come check us out and flew right up in front of us on a low branch, either it was just bold or it was claiming it's territory against us. We saw little else though, except for a little more cooperative Temminck's Sunbird, another common mountain endemic. They are actually very common and can be heard and seen everywhere, however none decide to come down to feed at the flowers while we were there, so I have to live with having just a distance photograph of them. However they are still a delightful bird to see, a dazzling Ferrari red. With the heavy showers continuing, we decided to call it a day early. The rain continued on all night.

Little Pied Flycatcher

Temminck's Sunbird

To be continued...

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