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Sunday, 12 October 2014

Bye Bye Brunei

Instead a long rambling post I think it is better to end my blogging from Brunei in style end share some of my favorite pics of 2014, for various reasons. In no particular order:
A band-bellied crake. The rarity of the bird makes up for any aesthetic value that this picture lacks.
Not an earth-shattering picture of a Brahminy kite. This is the most commonly seen raptor around Brunei, but in 4 years time I've never  had the good fortune to get an up-close picture opportunity.
Panaga wouldn't be the same without the ever-present collared kingfisher, its laughter being on of the most recognizable sounds in the gardens.
This common palm civet that I saw on KB road was missing 1 eye, which made it rather tough-looking.
Crimson-winged woodpeckers. One of the resident woodpeckers that can be heard and seen in the Panaga gardens.
A good number of sand plovers were present from August onwards. This is a greater sandplover.
I have a soft spot for broadbills and was very happy to come across this obliging juvenile in the Borneo highlands. 
Several grey nightjars were wintering along the KB road. This individual was found for a few months habitually on the same spot.
August and September were again good for terns. Small numbers of gull-billed terns were seen occasionally along the coast.
A harlequin tree frog. A nice pic, nothing special, but a great reminder of the Gould's frogmouth and eagle-owl we missed on that night. 
A stunning huntsman spider at Teraja. From web-reference this one is possible called Heteropoda davidbowie, or the "david bowie huntsman spider".
Not a native species to Borneo, but there are good numbers of these Java sparrows around Wasan and at Jerudong park.
Kuala Belait road, early in the morning, with a mongoose and a macaque. This road has been my local patch for the last couple of years and a final post wouldn't be complete without a including a reference.
A leopard cat. There are far better pictures of this elegant little feline, but none that were taken on the Kuala Belait road like this one.
A lesser sandplover mid morning at the Seria beach. 
I did come across a Malaysian brown snake in 2012, and had another great encounter this year. The blue tones seem a bit strong in this picture - am not entirely certain why. 
The Mantanani scops owl. I was very lucky to have a close encounter with this owl on Mantanani island.
This oriental plover was one of two birds that graced the grassy pitch in front of the Panaga clinic with its presence.
A very confiding pacific reef egret in Kota Kinabalu.
This barn swallow perched nicely when I took a visitor out earlier in the year.
Finally, a picture of a snake in my garden! Usually they are gone as soon as I run out with my camera. This time I already had a camera in hand, though admittedly not the right lens or body…. 
Sold! But not to this plaintive cuckoo, Borneo highlands in February. 
A sanderling, an uncommon wader that typically can be seen along the coast during late summer/early autumn migration.
A silver gull that was eying me suspiciously in Australia during a family holiday earlier in the year.  In 5 years Borneo I cannot claim to have seen a single gull...
A slow loris. I have seen these cute animals on various occasions in Brunei, unfortunately even a caged one on the Jerudong market. I like it a whole lot better to see them like this, free in the wild.
A swamp toad, one of the type-species of the Lower Belait peat swamps.
My visit to the Borneo highlands was very rewarding. This temminck's sunbird came very close to my lens.
A wedge-tailed eagle that I saw in Australia in May. One of the things that I have always found intriguing in Brunei was the low density of raptors and I am still not certain why this is - I doubt it has anything to do with bad luck.

That's it. I will still compile a few annotated documents about birding in Brunei, which I will post on this blog at a later time. For now it is really goodbye to Brunei, it has been a memorable adventure.


Folkert, 12/10/2014


  1. Thanks for all the informative and entertaining posts !

    Good Luck to you wherever you go next….

  2. Thanks a lot John, I am heading to the US of A. Loads of movers in the house today. Still hanging on to my PC to the very last minute!