Saturday, March 28, 2009

Birding at Kota Kinabalu National Park - Mesilau

30th - 31st of March
On 30th we head to Mesilau a more pristine part of the park. It is only about 35 mins drive from the main park. The road leads to Mesilau have to bypass the kundasang market, thn it will lead to the Gold Course. This is where once upon the time the unique forest of 5,000 feet known as Pinosuk Plateu. In the 80s this unique forest make way for the agricultural station and golf course.

Map from Kinabalu National Park - main park
This is Bishop Hostel where we spend 1 night. We like this place more. The only set back is local restaurant is too far, nevertheless Sutera habour Lodges accommodation are equip with a more proper kitchen compare at the main park. Here we share our dormitories unit with a group of young energetic youth who fly in from KL just us to scale up Mount Kinabalu. We encourage them to slowly look at the unique vegetation as they scale up rather then to speed up to Laban Rata. The cost to Kinabalu National Park is scaling up from day to day. It could be their 1st and last chance to do so. It is indeed a very costly for us Malaysian as the park accommodations are cater not for the means of Malaysian’s pocket.
Sutera Sanctuary Lodges who manage the park accommodations continue to upgrade it's facilities from time to time.
The Interpretative Centre near the hostel is worth to walk in to find out about the rich biodiversity of Kinabalu National Park and other parks manage by Sabah park. There are lesser visitors at Mesilau compares to the main park. We opt not to try the summit trail but just concentrate birding around the accommodations, interpretative center and the restaurant.
A flock of Grey Throated Babbler, unlike in West Malaysia they would only allow me a small glimplse.
Sunda Whistling Thrush is a friendly bird. Notice this individual was tagged.

A flock of Velvet Fronted Nuthatch circling a tree trunk in a upside down motion. Only Nuthatch due to it's structure of it's claws able to walk downward.
It took me a while to proper ID this plain looking warbler.

Aaarh.. finally I managed to see it with my own eyes the beauty of Bornean Treepie. A paserine bird belonging to the crow family. There are endemic to borneo.

This is the nest of the Flavescent Bulbul look like.
Even though have a common name with the Thailand's Flavescent Bulbul but there are some slight difference.

Others that caught my attention.
Rubus Faxinifolius, This can be found at 1,500-2,500 asl in mount KK .

This is my first encounter with this moth.

I exchange communications with the park staff discover that the park accommodations are administer by the Sutera Habour Lodge, the park guides and the interest of the park is still governed by Sabah Park. This department do welcome us especially we Malaysian to help up in birds, insects, flora and fauna listing as well as research of the park. If any of you are interested do write to
Penolong Pengarah
Peti Surat 10626
88806 Kota Kinabalu,
Sabah Malaysia

Here are Mesilau, we have
Sunda Whistling Thrush, Short Tailed Magpie, Velvet Fronted Nuthatch, Chestnut Crested Yuhina, Sunda Laughing Thrush, Sunda Bush Warbler, Mountain Tailorbird, Mugimaki Flycatcher, White Throated Fantail, Black Capped White eye, Ashy Drongo, Cuckooshrike spp. Black Sided Flowerpecker, Bornean Treepie, Grey Throated Babbler, Flavescent Bulbul.

I end my Kota Kinabalu field trip with a heavy heart cause I yet to managed to sight any whiteheads. I will set this as my wish list for my future visit to the park. The wonderful company from Lean, Koon Yoke, Kim Tow, Mam set a sweet memories for my birding vacation at Kota Kinabalu National Park.


yen said...

I visit your bog every now and then though you rarely update it. A good point of refernce for trip planning with so much details in it.

Wong Chor Mun said...

Hi Yen,
Yar I hardly update my blog..
:-) only to date I come to realisation that a my lengthy stories I pen down in my blog just in case I forgotten all of these details seems to be useful for frens I go birding with and frens that I yet to met up..
:-) I too sometimes drop into your blog to read what is your recent sightings..

Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

Ursula said...

Thank you so much for all this information on the Birds found in Kinabalu National Park.
I am planing a trip to Malaysia the beginning of April 2010, and am surging for the best Birding places.
We will be in KL for a few days and after would like to find a nice Beach where I can leave my friends and go birding. I do not like organized group birding.

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