Out in the north western Pacific Ocean are a smattering of tiny islands, barely specs in the vast blue expanse somewhat between the Philippines, Japan and Hawaii. Known as Micronesia, these otherwise insignificant islands briefly became household names during the Second World War as the United States and Japan wrestled for their control. Administered by the United States for many years afterwards, most are now independent territories reliant on the tourism trade for survival. As the understanding of genetics has improved, so has the species count, with a staggering 50+ endemics to be found in the region. This number can certainly be expected to rise, as can the number of birders visiting the region.
Our comprehensive tour takes in the islands of Palau, Yap, Saipan, Rota, Chuuk (or Truk) and Pohnpei. Kingfisher aficionados can expect to add a host of island specific species such as Rusty-capped, White-headed, Rota and Pohnpei (unfortunately Guam Kingfisher survives in captivity only). Amongst the more interesting endemics we shall be search for are Micronesian and Mariana Megapodes, Palau Owl, Palau Fantail, White-breasted and Caroline Islands Ground Doves, Palau and Mariana Fruit Doves, Micronesian Imperial Pigeon, Giant and Teardrop White-eyes, Morningbird, Palau Nightjar, Nightingale Reed Warbler, Mariana Crow, Guam Rail, Truk Monarch, Pohnpei Lorikeet and Hunstein’s Mannakin.
Blog - Micronesia – Palau Birding Recce