New Britain is the largest island of the Bismarck Archipelago and supports many seldom seen endemics for which we will be searching. Situated between the Bismarck and Solomon Seas, this narrow mountainous island is over six hundred kilometers long, but only eighty kilometers at its widest. The rich, exploited volcanic soils of the eastern portion of the island present a striking contrast to the western portion, where Western influences began mostly in the Second World War.
We begin our exploration of the area by embarking on an afternoon boat trip into Kimbe Bay and the open ocean, stopping off at some small islands in search of species such as Spot-breasted Cuckoo-Dove, Floury Imperial Pigeon, Beach Kingfisher, Island Monarch, Golden Whistler, (Bismarck) Black and Scarlet-bibbed (Sclater’s) Myzomelas and the beautiful Nicobar Pigeon. Over the next two days, we will then bird various sites around West New Britain including Pokili Wildlife Management Area, Garu Ridge and the Kulu River. These are key areas for many of the birds that are either endemic to New Britain or the Bismarck Archipelago. A healthy proportion of these birds are sought-after species with extremely limited ranges. We will also visit a vast colony of Melanesian Megapodes that number thousands of individuals, and we should see good numbers of these awkward birds as they flush from the ground and clamber in the trees around us.
This short yet exciting extension to our Papua New Guinea birding adventures offers several rare and endemic bird species to be found nowhere else on our planet.
Blue-eyed Cockatoo, Nicobar Pigeon, Black Honey Buzzard, New Britain Sparrowhawk, Melanesian Megapode, Knob-billed Fruit Dove, Finsch’s Imperial Pigeon, Song Parrot, Violaceous & White-necked Coucal, New Britain Boobook, Black-capped Paradise Kingfisher, Beach & White-mantled Kingfisher, Sclater’s Myzomela, White-backed Woodswallow, Black-tailed Monarch, Long-tailed Myna, Red-banded Flowerpecker & Buff-bellied Mannikin
lowland rainforest, grasslands, islets
hot and humid with tropical showers
coral reef snorkeling