BIRDING AROUND THE WORLD

Subtitle

Fiji & Samoa 2-18 August 2007

I visited Fiji with Nick Preston and Lori Szucs, followed by independent Samoa with Nick. The birding was excellent – we saw all the hoped for land-birds except Long-legged Warbler on Fiji, giving 28 ticks for me on Fiji and 12 on Samoa.

We had 13 days on Fiji, more than enough time, and 4 full days on Samoa which was enough for the main island but another 2 or 3 days would have been needed to explore Savaii for the White-eye (said to be easy after a good climb) and the elusive Tooth-billed Pigeon. We did try to leave Fiji early for more time on Samoa but would have had to buy a new ticket at considerable cost as our flights, booked well in advance, were relatively cheap.

Transport

Nick and I flew Brisbane or Sydney – Nadi – Apia – Nadi – Brisbane on Pacific Air booked through WildWings. Lori flew with Pacific Blue which was cheaper if you are unable to book well in advance. Internal flights on Fiji were booked by Lori on a Fiji Airways pass through Aerius Travel [email protected] in Sydney.

We mainly took taxis which were quite cheap if meters were used but drivers rarely agreed to this so rates may have to be negotiated first. Ishmael, tel 9297374, was good on Taveuni and Ritesh 9273815 at Apia.

We hired a car at Apia for 2 days, though Cloud 9, at a cost of £31 a day.

 

Recommended Accommodation

Nadi Hotel – F$48 twin bed room; Raintree Lodge near Suva – F$25 per person in 4 bed dorm; Garden Island Resort, Taveuni; Biana Guest House, Vunisea, Kadavu – F$70 a day full board; Cloud 9 Lodge near Apia – £22 twin bed room (£15 for a chalet) with free lift into town in morning, returning in evening http://www.samoa-hotels.ws/Cloud_9_Eco-lodge_Hotel

 

Weather

Mainly warm and dry throughout but rain all day on our first day on Taveuni, with low cloud on the mountain the following morning; some rain one afternoon and the following morning at Suva, and on one day at Apia.

 

COMMENTS ON SITES

I will just give our experience of the important sites as there are a few good reports on the net, notably

FIJI BIRDING January-February 2006: Jeff Skevington and Michael Mathieson

Fiji 26th August - 9th September 2000: Tony Clarke
A Birders Guide to the Fijian Islands: Dave Sargeant

Pacific Birding - New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Samoa & the Cook Islands - 8th October - 2nd November 2006:  Dave Sargeant

Samoa, Fiji, New Caledonia And Vanuatu - 7th October - 24th October 2005: Graham Talbot

and Dick Watling’s A Guide to the Birds of Fiji and Western Polynesia, the best field guide.

 

FIJI

Viti Levu: The easiest key sites are near Suva. Day trip to Waivudawa, preferably organised through BirdLife, the best guide being Vili Masibalavu (manager for BirdLife’s Fiji programme) [email protected] who knows the Long-legged Warbler site and is good in the field for all the birds (but was unavailable when we there). It may be possible to get a 4x4 up the mountain, which saves an 8km walk, but it has to cross a tidal creek so is tide-dependent – our driver wrote his engine off by getting stuck in the creek! If you have to go by your own steam, take a taxi to Veisari just beyond Lami Town, turning right at the big obvious Fiji Bitter beer sign. Take the second dirt road on the left, walk across the log bridge over the creek, and continue through the grassland bearing right up the hill and into the forest. Continue till you cross a stream in a dip after about 8 km – here and in the stream valley a few 100m beyond (right at the T junction, downhill for c.200m, left for a few metres to the bridge, scramble into the stream on the left and walk up it) is where the L-l Warbler and Pink-billed Parrotfinch occur – the 2 most difficult birds on Fiji, excluding the very rare Red-throated Lorikeet and possibly extinct rail. All the gettable Fiji land specialities occur here including the Friendly Ground-dove, if you are lucky. The other good area for the warbler and parrotfinch is Monsuva Dam in the centre of the island – a 4x4 and guide are needed here; the warbler is said to be easy to hear but difficult to see.   

Pipeline Road is a 2km walk from Raintree Lodge. Turn left along the main road; after 10 min take the first tarred road on the left to Colo-I-Suva village then left after 100m to the big water tank over the brow of the hill. Turn left here on to the pipeline road. It passes through good primary forest but had recently been widened to motorway dimensions and was very busy during the week with the laying of a new water-pipeline. There is a track on the left down to the river after c.1km just before the dam, a quieter area with a cooperative male Golden Dove. After 3-4 km you reach a village and a left turn leads up the hill to the main road to Suva.

Colo-I-Suva is a forested park opposite Raintree Lodge. The main entrance is just down the road towards Suva. It passes through predominantly mahogany trees for some distance, then turn left and the forest improves, leading to an area of trails, one of which goes back to the Suva road just the other side of Raintree Lodge. Trees near the Lodge swimming pool are good for Shining-parrot and Many-coloured Fruit-Dove.

Nausori highlands near Nadi are only worth visiting if you have time to kill. We went in a minibus to the village but couldn’t get much further as the road was slippery due to recent rain – would have been OK in a 4x4. There are good patches of forest for some distance beyond the village. The highlight was a male Black-throated Shrikebill.

Taveuni: Des Voeux mountain is the main site holding all the endemics. It is close to Garden Island Resort but you need a decent vehicle to take you up to the locked gate and avoid a hell of a slog on foot for at least 5 km. We paid F$150 for a vehicle for the morning. Walk up past the gate to the first bend then work your way down the road for several km.

Bobby’s Nabogiono Farm, tel 8880246, mobile 9238612  www.taveuniconservation.com  [email protected]  some 20 km along the coast from Garden Island Resort is the best site for the doves. His Silktail site is in the forest above the Km13/5 sign. Bobby charges F$25 per person for entrance and guiding.

Kadavu:  hills above Vunisea – ask at Biana Guest House for precise directions – hold all the endemics, although the honeyeater is more easily seen in the bushes and palms along the coastal road.

SAMOA,

Upolu: the pipeline track at Vaisigano watershed a few km south of Apia – see DS report for directions -  holds all the endemics except the White-eye and possibly the Tooth-billed Pigeon. We took the track down the hill to the lower pipeline and turned left. We found the best area to be where the valley opened out to a flat area on the left, after going up hill for c.1km. Here we saw Mao, Red-headed Parrotfinch and Samoan Triller. Nearby Mt Vaea at Vailima is easier to find and has some good birds but is a poor second to Vaisigano.

Cloud 9 Lodge is a great place to stay. The view of the forest down to the coast from the veranda is magnificent, with fruit-doves, White Terns and Tropicbirds almost always present.

Nu’utile and Nu’uhia isles near Lalomanu at the southeast corner of Upolo are worth visiting. Scoping from the shore may be rewarding: Nick saw a dark storm-petrel which appeared to be a Polynesian, a very rare bird – one of the few occasions when I regretted not having my scope. We hired a small boat and spent 2 hours in fairly rough seas going round the islands (for c.£65). Brown and Red-footed Boobies, Brown and Black Noddies were numerous but the star birds were a pair of Blue Noddies, apparently nesting on Nuuhia. Friendly Ground-dove is said to be common on Nuutile but you could only land there in very calm conditions.

 

Savaii: the other major island can be reached by bus to Mulifanua and an hour’s ferry ride, running a few times a day. Samoan White-eye is common after a long trek up the mountain and this is probably the best site for Tooth-billed Pigeon. Access is not straightforward and at least 2 days is required for this activity.

We tried the ferry for seabirds as there had been reports of good sightings such as Grey-backed Tern but it was rather disappointing as all we identified were Red-footed Booby, Brown Noddy and Bridled Tern.

 

COMMENTS ON SPECIES

Most species are fairly easy to see but some can be tricky so here is my view on them.

 

Friendly Ground-Dove  Gallicolumba stairi

Probably not uncommon in undisturbed forest but very shy due to trapping. Seen a few times by Bobby in the past at his farm but not by us despite considerable time looking. I was very lucky to see one flying near and low across the main track at Waivudawa.

 

Ptilinopsis doves

The males of all 3 species seem to call quite a lot especially in the morning but usually perch inside the tree canopy so can be difficult to see. They are responsive to play-back, and if you can spot them flying in, there is a good chance of seeing where they are perched. Orange Dove was easiest at Bobby’s farm, Taveuni, in good weather but not when it was raining. Golden Dove was readily seen at Waivudawa and Pipeline Road, but we only saw one Velvet/Whistling Dove in the hills of Kadavu. Perched females of all species were observed without difficulty, most often in fruiting trees.

The most interesting bird was a predominantly yellow male at Bobby’s farm – see first page. This had been present since Hurricane Amy some 6 years previously and called with a yapping bark unlike any other species. It had the appearance of an Orange Dove – Multicoloured Fruit-dove hybrid.

 

Samoan Triller Lalage sharpei

Appears scarce as we only saw it in one area at Vaisigano and DS missed it altogether. Could be overlooked unless the bright yellow-orange bill is clearly seen.

 

Black-throated (faced) Shrikebill  Clytorhynchus nigrogularis

Not uncommon by call on Kandava and Viti Levu but generally difficult to see as it keeps to the thickest vegetation. Will fly across tracks in response to play-back but you need to spot exactly where it goes to have any chance of seeing it.

 

Blue-crested Flycatcher (Broadbill) Myiagra azureocapilla

This beautiful bird is the only tricky “flycatcher” to see. Its trilling call is quite common, eg at Mt Des Voeux, Waivudawa, and in the Raintree Lodge area. It usually comes in to play-back, perches just inside the vegetation for a minute or two, then goes deeper in.

 

Silktail Lamprolia victoriae

Should be seen in the morning from the road up Mt Des Voeux, within a few 100m either side of the locked gate, with better views more likely on the two forest trails on the left when walking down from the gate – the entrance to the first is just below the gate but difficult to spot. Can be elusive though: I had a good view of one near the start of the lower trail, which promptly disappeared. We all spent time on the trail, without success. I came back and again could not find it, while Nick followed a little later and watched a pair feeding very low for some time! Bobby took us to forest near his farm and we were able to watch a pair feeding on or near to the ground, and nest-building. My photos were disappointing due to problems with the camera’s flash. I only once heard the male call, noisily for up to a minute while its mate was on the nest – it displayed with wings and tail spread out.

 

Mao Gymnomyza samoensis

We were told it called from the large palms at Cloud 9 late afternoon but had no joy during our first day there. After learning the calls at Vaisigano, I did hear it distantly at Cloud 9 the following morning and a pair came in to play-back, staying for at least 5 mins. There were several pairs along the pipeline track at Vaisigano, usually feeding in the canopy, but it could easily be missed without play-back. We saw one displaying, waving a large piece of leaf in its bill in front of its mate on two occasions.

 

Red-headed Parrotfinch Erythrura cyaneovirens

Much scarcer than the apparently similar Fiji Parrotfinch but present in vegetation and trees at Cloud 9 and Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Pink-billed Parrotfinch  Erythrura kleinschmidti

This mega-bird appears to be widespread in forest on Viti Levu but in very small numbers. I was sure I saw one in flight on the first walk up at Waivudawa but utv, then found one feeding low in trees on the bank of the LLW stream on the second visit. Phil Gregory saw his first at Colo-I-Suva this year and JS and MM (see their report) had flight views at Pipeline Road, Suva. No recordings are available so it’s a matter of effort and luck to see it.

 

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Many thanks for help from Robin Brace, Chris Campion, Guy Dutson, Dave Sargeant, Steve Smith, Graham Talbot, Richard Thomas, Dick Watling and Moala from BirdLife in Suva.

 

ITINERARY

2 Aug: Fly to Nadi, Viti Levu, Fiji, taxi to Nausori highlands; night at Nadi Backpackers.

3 Aug: Fly to Taveuni, taxi to Bobby’s farm; night at Garden Island Resort.

4 Aug: Des Voeux mountain all day.

5 Aug: Bobby’s farm and nearby forest a.m., Garden Island Resort p.m.

6 Aug: Fly to Vunisea, Kadavu via Suva, hills above Vunisea p.m.; night at Biana Guest House.

7 Aug: hills above Vunisea.

8 Aug: around Vunisea a.m., fly to Suva; Raintree Lodge.

9 Aug: Waivudawa all day; night at Raintree Lodge.

10 Aug: Pipeline Road a.m., Suva and Colo-I-Suva p.m.

11 Aug: Waivudawa all day.

12 Aug: Colo-I-Suva a.m., Suva Point p.m.

13 Aug: Pipeline Road a.m., bus to Nadi p.m.; night at Nadi Hotel.

14 Aug: (a) Mamanuca Island cruise on Seaspray. Fly to Apia, Samoa, 22.10-00.45, crossing date-line. 

(b)Taxi to Cloud 9 Lodge, Apia, day around Cloud 9.

15 Aug: hire car to Lalomanu, boat around Nuutile and Nuuhia isles a.m., Vaisigano pipeline, Apia p.m.; night at Cloud 9.

16 Aug: Cloud 9 and Mt Vaea, Vailima a.m., Vaisigano pipeline p.m.; night at Apia Harbourside Lodgings.

17 Aug: bus to Mulifanua, ferry to Savaii and back a.m., Vaisigano pipeline p.m.

18 Aug: early flight to Nadi and on to Brisbane (19th).

 

SPECIES LIST

 

White-tailed Tropicbird Phaethon lepturus

Up to 20 at Cloud 9 and about 5 daily at Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Red-footed Booby       Sula sula

20 at Nuutile and Nuuhia isles and from the Savaii ferry, Samoa.

 

Brown  Booby            Sula leucogaster

A few off Garden Island Resort, Taveuni, 2 at Suva Point and 1 on the island cruise on 14th, Fiji. Numerous around Nuutile and Nuuhia isles and 1 near Savaii, Samoa.

 

Great Frigatebird       Fregatta minor

1 off Garden Island Resort, Taveuni (LS).

 

Lesser Frigatebird       Fregatta ariel

6 at Suva Point, 3 on the island Cruise and 1 or 2 on 4 other days on Fiji. 2 at Apia, Samoa on 15th.

 

White-faced Heron     Egretta noveahollandiae

15 at Suva Point and up to 3 on 4 other days on Fiji.

 

Pacific (Eastern) Reef-Heron  Egretta sacra

Up to 7 daily near Garden Island Resort, Taveuni on 6th, 2 Vunisea, Kadavu and on the island cruise near Nadi, and 10+ at Suva Point. 3 from the Savaii ferry, Samoa.

 

Striated (Mangrove) Heron  Butorides striatus

1 in mangroves near Vunisea airport, Kadavu.

 

Pacific Black Duck      Anas superciliosa

1 off Garden Island Resort, Taveuni; 3 in mangroves near Vunisea airport, Kadavu, 2 near Suva on 10th and near Nadi on 12th. 6 from the Savaii ferry, Samoa.

 

Swamp (Pacific) Harrier Circus approximans

Scattered singles most days on Fiji with 2 soaring and calling near the start of Waivudawa on 9th.

 

Fiji Goshawk             Accipiter rufitorques

Up to 3 almost daily on Fiji including a pair mating near Garden Island Resort, Taveuni early on 6th

 

Peregrine Falcon         Falco peregrinus

Singles at Nausori highlands and at Waivudawa on both visits.

 

Red Junglefowl          Gallus gallus

1 of this introduced species at Bobby’s farm, Taveuni.

 

Buff-banded Rail        Gallirallus philippensis

1 at Bobby’s farm, Taveuni (NP) was the only record on Fiji but amazingly common throughout Samoa with 32 counted on 15th.

 

Purple Swamphen        Porphyrio porphyrio samoensis

Up to 5 daily at Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Pacific Golden-Plover   Pluvialis fulva

16 Suva Point on 12th. 2 east of Apia on 15th and 5 at Apia on 16th.

 

Bar-tailed Godwit       Limosa lapponica

12 at Suva Point on 12th.

 

Wandering Tattler      Hetroscelus incana

14 at Suva Point on 12th, 2 on the Mamanuca Islands on 14th. 10 on Nuutile and Nuuhia isles, 1 at Apia.

 

Ruddy Turnstone        Arenaria intepres

3 at Suva Point on 12th. 3 on Nuutile and Nuuhia isles and 6 at Apia.

 

Great Crested Tern     Sterna bergii

Scattered records on Fiji coasts with a max of 8 at Kadavu, 30 at Suva and 15 on the cruise.

 

Bridled Tern             Sterna anaethetus

Only seen from the Savaii ferry on Samoa where at least 15 brown and white terns were all considered to be this sp., unfortunately.

 

Black Noddy             Anous minutus

10 around Nuutile and Nuuhia isles and a few from the Savaii ferry on Samoa.

 

Brown Noddy            Anous stolidus

Up to 8 daily flying high over Cloud 9 and Vaisigano, numerous around Nuutile and Nuuhia isles and 40-50 from the Savaii ferry, Samoa.

 

Blue Noddy              Procelsterna cerulea

2 together on Nuuhia isle, probably nesting, made the turbulent boat-trip worthwhile.

 

White Tern              Gygis alba

25 visible in flight from Cloud 9 on 14th with up to 6 daily elsewhere.

 

Metallic (White-throated) Pigeon  Columba vitiensis

Probably quite common but rarely seen, with singles at Nausori highlands, Bobby’s Farm and Pipeline Road, Suva, and 2-3 at Waivudawa, Fiji. 1-2 daily at Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Spotted Dove            Streptopelia chinensis

Fairly common in open habitat on Fiji.

 

Friendly Ground-Dove  Gallicolumba stairi

1 flew low across the track and into the forest at Waivudawa on 11th (JH). Bobby flushed 1 at his Silktail site but we did not see it – I recorded a dove calling there which may have been this sp.

 

Many-coloured Fruit-Dove  Ptilinopsis perousii

Small numbers seen throughout with a max of 10 at Bobby’s Farm on Taveuni and 25 at Cloud 9.

 

Crimson-crowned Fruit-Dove  Ptilinopsis porphyraceus

Up to 10 daily on Samoa and commonly heard. Restricted to small islands on Fiji (Watling 2004) but Bobby said it occurred on his farm, along with Pacific Pigeon, from time to time.

 

Orange Dove             Ptilinopsis victor

Only 1 was seen on our first visit to Bobby’s farm, Taveuni, in the rain, but 2 males and females were seen on Mt Des Voeux the following day, and 9 at Bobby’s on our second visit.

 

Golden Dove             Ptilinopsis luteovirens

3 or 4 males and 2-4 females daily at Waivudawa and Pipeline Road, with smaller numbers at Colo-I-Suva.

 

Velvet (Whistling) Dove Ptilinopsis layardi

Only a single female was seen on our first afternoon in the hills of Kadavu but at least 1 male and 4 females were observed at leisure the following morning.

 

Pacific Imperial-Pigeon Ducula pacifica pacifica

4 at Cloud 9 and 2 at Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Peale's (Barking) Imperial-Pigeon Ducula latrans

Common throughout Fiji woodland with up to 20 seen almost daily.

 

Collared Lory            Phigys solitarius

Common throughout Fiji with up to 10+ seen almost daily, often in flowering trees.

 

Blue-crowned Lorikeet  Vini australis

10 at Cloud 9 and up to 7 at Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Crimson (Kadavu) Shining-Parrot Prosopeia spendens

8-10 around Vunisea daily, with 20+ on the afternoon of 7th, mainly feeding on hedgerow seeds near the start of the hill track.

 

Red Shining-Parrot      Prosopeia tabuensis

4-6+ daily at Bobby’s and Mt Des Voeux, Taveuni.

 

Masked Shining-Parrot  Prosopeia personata

5-15 daily near Suva, especially at Raintree Lodge and Pipeline Road, and 2 at Nausori highlands.

 

Fan-tailed Cuckoo       Cacomantis flabelliformis

Heard at Bobby’s on Taveuni and cuckoo-like calls at Waivudawa on 9th were probably this sp.

 

Barn Owl                 Tyto alba

Singles at the base of Des Voeux mt, the start of Waivudawa, Fiji and near Cloud 9, Samoa.

 

White-rumped Swiftlet Aerodramus spodiopygius

Fairly common throughout.

 

(White-) Collared Kingfisher  Todirhamphus chloris

Up to 7 T.c.vitiensis daily on Viti Levu and Taveuni, but only 2 single eximia on Kadavu.

 

Flat-billed Kingfisher   Todirhamphus recurvirostris

3 - 5 daily on Samoa.

 

Pacific Swallow          Hirundo tahitica

Fairly common throughout.

 

Polynesian Triller        Lalage maculosa

Common throughout, even seen at Savaii wharf.

 

Samoan Triller           Lalage sharpei

Only seen at Vaisigano where 2 or 3 had a liking for “the Mao area” on all 3 visits.

 

Red-vented Bulbul       Pycnonotus cafer

Numerous throughout.

 

Island Thrush           Turdus poliocephalus

20 on Mt Des Voeux, Taveuni, and 1 or 2 seen daily in forest around Suva, quite skulking.

 

Fiji Bush-Warbler       Cettia ruficapilla

Up to 5 seen in woodland throughout Fiji, frequently heard.

 

Streaked Fantail        Rhipidura spilodera

12 on Mt Des Voeux, Taveuni and at Waivudawa, with 4-6 at Pipeline Road and Colo-I-Suva.

 

Kadavu Fantail           Rhipidura personata

10 in the hills above Vunisea, Kadavu.

 

Samoan Fantail          Rhipidura nebulosa

6 at Cloud 9 and Vaisima, and up to 10 daily at Vaisigano.

 

Slaty Monarch (Flycatcher)  Mayrornis lessoni

A few daily in forest on Fiji with a max of 8 in the hills above Vunisea.

 

Fiji (Lesser) Shrikebill  Clytorhynchus vitiensis

Up to 4 almost daily in forest on Fiji.

 

Black-throated (faced) Shrikebill  Clytorhynchus nigrogularis

1 male at Nausori highlands and Pipeline Road, 1 at Waivudawa on 9th and 3 males on 11th, and 3 near Vunisea, Kadavu on 7th. Very responsive to play-back but difficult to see.

 

Vanikoro Flycatcher (Broadbill)  Myiagra vanikorensis

Up to 10 daily throughout Fiji, sometimes seen in roadside scrub or on tele wires.

 

Samoan (Broadbill) Flycatcher  Myiagra albiventris

3 at Cloud 9, up to 6 at Vaisigano and at least 1 at Vailima.

 

Blue-crested Flycatcher (Broadbill) Myiagra azureocapilla

6 at Mt Des Voeux, 3+ Waivudawa, 1 or 2 at Pipeline Road and Colo-I-Suva and heard elsewhere. Shy but responsive to play-back.

 

Silktail                   Lamprolia victoriae

2 singles from the road at Mt Des Voeux and a pair feeding on the forest trail; a pair feeding and nest-building near Bobby’s farm on 5th. A splendid bird – hard to believe it’s a monarch!

 

Scarlet Robin            Petroica multicolor

3 at Nasauri highlands, 1 at Waivudawa and 4 at Colo-I-Suva, Fiji. Singles at Vaisigano and Vaisima, Samoa. These are called Pacific Robin, eg by HBW Vol 12, a split from the Australian forms.

 

Golden Whistler         Pachycephala pectoralis

6 at Mt Des Voeux, Taveuni; up to 3 at Vunisea, Kadavu; 2+ Waivudawa and 1 at Pipeline Road, Viti Levu. All 3 forms look and sound a little different.

 

Samoan Whistler        Pachycephala flavifrons

1 or2 at Cloud 9, 6 at Vailima and 8 - 15 at Vaisigano.

 

Layard's (Fiji) White-eye Zosterops explorator

Fairly common in woodland throughout Fiji, usually in the canopy.

 

Silver-eye               Zosterops lateralis

Fairly common throughout Fiji, often in bushes and lower than Layard’s.

 

Orange-breasted Myzomela  Myzomela jugularis

Fairly common in flowers throughout Fiji.

 

Cardinal Myzomela      Myzomela cardinalis

Common throughout Samoa.

 

Wattled Honeyeater     Foulehaio carunculata

Common throughout Fiji except Kadavu.

 

Kadavu Honeyeater      Xanthotis provocator

Scarce in forest near Vunisea but a few readily seen in coastal coconut palms or mangroves.

 

Giant (Forest) Honeyeater  Gymnomyza viridis

2 briefly at Nausori highlands, 6+ at Mt Des Voeux, and 10 at Waivudawa and Pipeline Road. The 2 forms viridis of Taveuni and brunneirostris of Viti Levu look and sound different. Although shy, they can be seen well with patience and will respond to play-back, albeit briefly.

 

Mao                      Gymnomyza samoensis

The first record was of 2 feeding quietly at Vaisigano, Samoa on 15th but when its voice had been learnt and recorded, another 2 pairs were found there and another bird heard, and a pair attracted in to Cloud 9 by play-back.

 

Fiji Woodswallow        Artamus mentalis

Up to 10 daily on Vitu Levi, 2 or 3 on Taveuni but only 1 on Kadavu.

 

Australian Magpie       Gymnorhina tibicen

A single bird on the runway at Taveuni airport.

 

Polynesian Starling      Aplonis tabuensis

Up to 6 daily in woodland on Fiji, though scarcer on Taveuni, and up to 10 daily on Samoa.

 

Samoan Starling         Aplonis atrifusca

Common in woodland around Apia.

 

Jungle Myna             Acridotheres fuscus

Common throughout the lowlands except on Kadavu where absent.

 

Common (Indian) Myna Acridotheres tristis

Abundant throughout the lowlands except on Kadavu where we did not note it.

 

Red Avadavat            Amandava amandava

Common around Nadi, probably over-looked elsewhere on Viti Levu.

 

Fiji Parrotfinch          Erythrura pealii

4 at Nadi airport, 2-6 daily around Suva with a max of 10 at Waivudawa on 9th, 6 Mt Des Voeux and 2+ Vunisea.

 

Red-headed Parrotfinch Erythrura cyaneovirens

2 at Cloud 9 and 1 or 2 daily at Vaisigano, Samoa.

 

Pink-billed Parrotfinch  Erythrura kleinschmidti

Only seen at Waivudawa with 1 in flight on 9th and 1 feeding in the stream valley on 11th.

 

Java Sparrow            Padda oryzivora

50 in grassland at Suva airport on 6th and 1 below Waivudawa on 11th.

 

EXISTENT ENDEMICS NOT SEEN

Red-throated Lorikeet     Charmosyna amabilis

Tooth-billed Pigeon                  Didunculus strigirostris

Ogea Monarch                 Mayrornis personatai

Long-legged Warbler       Trichocichla rufa

Samoan White-eye                   Zosterops samoensis

Rotuma Myzomela            Myzomela chermesina

 

 

 

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