Tag Archives: Ambua Lodge

Blue Bird-of-paradise near Ambua Lodge/ Papua-New Guinea

BlauparadiesvogelAt 5:00 a.m. the night in the Ambua Lodge, a luxurious mountain hotel, is over. Today a trip around Ambua Lodge in the Southern Highlands is announced. After breakfast we start driving. It is still quite dark, but it does not rain. The target species of our morning observations are the Blue Bird-of-paradise (Paradisornis rudolphi) and the Superb Bird-of-paradise (Lophorina superba).

Our guide, Benson, drives us to hurry. After a short drive, stop on the edge of a small settlement and in a rush, Benson leads us on narrow paths over a steep slove and a valley up again on a hill. Here is an invisible border. We cannot go any further. The village beyond the border does not give permission to enter their gardens and fields. We are now on a small agricultural plateau at about 1,900 m (asl). The distance offers a beautiful, mist-covered view on old primeval trees. This is the place to see the Birds-of-paradise. On small birds Benson calls Brown Quail (Synoicus ypsilophorus) and Iceland Leaf-Warbler (Phylloscopus poliocephalus), which is also called New Guinea Leaf warbler probably belong in the area to the subspecies giulianettii. Our second guide, Peter, takes me aside after a short time. He has a very special job for my camera, which he wanted to show me. So we walk through allotments, intensively farmed, narrow sunken paths, past pigsties until we come to a collection of huts, where also some fruity trees exist. Here the photographer can get started. A female Blue Bird-of-Paradise quickly appears. Even the male of the Blue Bird-of-Paradise does not take a long time before coming in. The male Blue Bird-of- Continue reading Blue Bird-of-paradise near Ambua Lodge/ Papua-New Guinea

Lawes’s Parotia in Ambua Lodge/ Papua-New Guinea

Blaunacken-ParadiesvogelAt 5:00 a.m. the night in the mountain hotel is over. 5:30 a.m. breakfast is announced. Afterwards we are guided straight to a fruiting tree to observe Birds-of-paradise at the bungalow no. 7. The inconspicuous green and black berry tufts lure Birds-of-paradise again and again. Here you might find the Lawes Parotia (Parotia lawesii). We are rewarded very fast. A female feeds intensively in the low canopy of the fruiting tree.

The species belonging to the genus Parotia is probably one of the most sophisticated dancers among birds and even among the Birds-of-paradise. The males of these petite birds compete on the ground and cultivate “their” place with great effort. The males are considered polygynous, i.e. they are having two or more mates, either simultaneously or successively. Parotias have promiscuous males that entertain terrestrial courts seasonally. The male cleans his arena of leaves and twigs and decorates it with snakeskin, mammal dung, chalk, fur, feathers and bones. Any leaf that falls on the empty arena is removed immediately, so nothing disturbs the upcoming performance. Sometimes the decoration of neighboring courts is stolen. When females arrive and sit down on a branch above the arena, the male begins its unique ballerina dance. With splayed feathers, which actually remind of a skirt, he trip on the floor back and forth. He shakes his head and moves his six wire-like feathers of the head, which he has now pointed forward. Then the Continue reading Lawes’s Parotia in Ambua Lodge/ Papua-New Guinea

Blauparadiesvogel im Bergland des Tari

BlauparadiesvogelHeute ist ein Ausflug im Umfeld der Ambua Lodge in den Southern Highlands angesagt. Nach dem Frühstück fahren wir los. Es ist noch ziemlich dunkel, aber kein Regen. Die Zielarten unserer vormittäglichen Beobachtungen sollen der Blauparadiesvogel (Paradisornis rudolphi) und der Kragenparadiesvogel (Lophorina superba) sein.

Unser Guide, Benson, treibt uns zur Eile. Nach kurzer Fahrt, Stopp am Rande einer kleinen Siedlung und im Eilmarsch führt uns Benson auf schmalen Pfaden über Berg und Tal bis unterhalb einer Anhöhe. Hier ist eine unsichtbare Grenze, wir dürfen nicht mehr weiter. Das Dorf jenseits der Grenze gibt keine Genehmigung zum Betreten ihrer Fluren, Gärten und Äcker. Als wir nach abenteuerlicher Kletterei, erst steil auf glitschig-lehmigen Trail den Berg zu einem Bach hinunter, dann das gleiche wieder hinauf auf einem kleinen landwirtschaftlich genutzten Plateau auf ca. 1.900 m NN ankommen, bietet sich in der Ferne ein schöner, nebelverhangener Blick auf alte Urwaltbäume. Hier sollen also die Paradiesvögel vorkommen. An Kleinvögeln nennt Benson noch die Tasmanienwachtel (Synoicus ypsilophorus) und den Insellaubsänger (Phylloscopus poliocephalus), der auch New Guinea Leaf-warbler genannt wird, und in dem Gebiet wohl der Unterart giulianettii angehören dürfte. Unser zweiter Guide, Peter, nimmt mich nach kurzer Zeit zur Seite. Er hätte da für meine Kamera noch eine ganz Continue reading Blauparadiesvogel im Bergland des Tari

Black Sittella in Papua New Guinea

In the Central Highlands of PNG I found this nice Black Sittella (Daphoenositta miranda) . This species belongs in the Neosittidae family. It is found in several mountainous areas in New Guinea. There is not much known about this close relative of the more common Varied Sittella. Even Wikipedia does not show much more. For more details of Black Sittella (Daphoenositta miranda) – HBW 12, p. 641 or look at their website The subspecies kuboriensis occurs in the Central Highlands (Kubor Range and Mt Giluwe), in EC New Guinea. This nice male individuum Continue reading Black Sittella in Papua New Guinea