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Field Guides Tour Report
Borneo I 2016
Mar 15, 2016 to Apr 1, 2016
Dave Stejskal (with Hazwan Suban & Paul Dimus)

I knew that Bornean Bristleheads occurred around Sukau, but had never seen one there -- until this year! It was a real treat to see them working along one side of the river, and flying across to the other side. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

It was pretty evident right away that Borneo was in the grips of an El Niño-induced drought. But, surprisingly, our tour wasn't really adversely affected by these local conditions. We had a super tour in spite of the drought! We did get a few minor rain showers, but nothing that really slowed us down; I think we may have lost out on a night drive at Borneo Rainforest Lodge, but that was about it. And the lack of rain did keep the leeches in check, for the most part. Overall, it was pretty darned delightful!

We started out in the Sepilok area with several of us staying at a new lodge (My Nature Resort) for a couple of nights before the start of the tour. We had some good luck with the birds there, seeing a few things that we actually missed on the main tour, and I'd be happy to head back there with groups in the future. A half-day at nearby Sepilok Nature Resort and the Rainforest Discovery Center provided a terrific intro to what was to come on the tour.

Our first major venue was the lovely Sukau Rainforest Lodge on the banks of the rich Kinabatangan River. About 90% of our time was spent in boats, and it proved to be a fantastic way to see the many birds and mammals that this diverse area offers. We got our first Orangutan of the tour here, as well as daily encounters with the strange Proboscis Monkey at the river's edge. Our luckiest bird encounter was undoubtedly the flock of Bornean Bristleheads that flew from one side of the Menenggul River to the other, giving all present a great view of this charismatic and sought-after species. We only managed one Endangered Storm's Stork during our stay, but everyone seemed happy with that one bird. And nearby Gomantong Caves proved to be a real gold mine for us; not only did we have great encounters with all of the expected species of swiftlets on their distinctive nests, but the forest birding along the road and trails there was truly stupendous!

Our next stop was the famous Danum Valley and the Borneo Rainforest Lodge. What an incredible treat to be in such a rich area and enjoy such luxurious accommodations and fantastic food and service! It's one of my all-time favorite venues of any tour that I've done over the years. But I'd probably come even if the rooms were basic and the food was mediocre, because the birding here is so terrific! Under Paul's excellent guidance, we were able to track down some great ones, including Crested Fireback, three endemic pittas, Cinnamon-rumped Trogon, Bornean Bristlehead (again!), Orangutan, and so many others. I'd love to spend a couple of weeks there some time, but I know that'll never happen. Four full days just seems so short on the day that you have to leave!

We finished the trip up in the cool highlands of Crocker Range National Park and Kinabalu National Park. What a wonderful difference in temperatures to wind up this fabulous trip! The numbers of tourists in the park has yet to rebound to levels like those seen before last year's tragic earthquake, but we didn't mind the diminished activity on our full days of birding here. Every day we were there held numerous surprises for us, like our cooperative trio of Whitehead's Broadbills, a gorgeous adult male Whitehead's Trogon, incredible Rafflesia keithii in full bloom near Poring Hot Springs, a female Fruit-hunter sitting on a nest and being fed infrequently by her mate, a 'frozen' Crimson-headed Partridge right next to the trail, calling Bornean Collared Owlet at a curve in the road, and a rare decent look at the poorly-known Waterfall Swift at the mountain overlook. And that's just the start! It was a super conclusion to our time together.

Thanks to our drivers and our local guides -- Hazwan Suban and Paul Dimus -- for their good companionship and excellent guidance during our stay. It would have been a very different experience without them! And a big thank you to all of you who joined me in Borneo this year. I really enjoyed our group and the good chemistry that we developed -- you were all wonderful companions, and I hope we have the opportunity to travel together again soon!

-- Dave

One of the following keys may be shown in brackets for individual species as appropriate: * = heard only, I = introduced, E = endemic, N = nesting, a = austral migrant, b = boreal migrant

A Crimson-headed Partridge froze beside a trail in Kinabalu NP, giving us great views. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Phasianidae (Pheasants, Grouse, and Allies)
RED-BREASTED PARTRIDGE (Arborophila hyperythra) [E*]
CHESTNUT-NECKLACED PARTRIDGE (Arborophila charltonii) – We got this one very close, but only a few folks glimpsed it.
GREAT ARGUS (Argusianus argus) [*]
CRIMSON-HEADED PARTRIDGE (Haematortyx sanguiniceps) – Hazwan spotted this one frozen right next to the trail at Kinabalu NP for our only look of the tour. A tough one to actually see! [E]
CRESTED FIREBACK (BORNEAN) (Lophura ignita nobilis) – Back at their usual spot at Borneo Rainforest Lodge (BRL). Great views of this endemic and distinctive race.
Ciconiidae (Storks)
STORM'S STORK (Ciconia stormi) – Just by the skin of our teeth! Considering all of the boat time that we had at Sukau, I think we should all breathe a heavy sigh of relief that we got the look that we did at sunset that day!
LESSER ADJUTANT (Leptoptilos javanicus) – A couple of birds in flight at Sukau.
Anhingidae (Anhingas)
ORIENTAL DARTER (Anhinga melanogaster)
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
CINNAMON BITTERN (Ixobrychus cinnamomeus) – Seen by Hazwan and Chuck in the flooded fields as we headed back to Kota Kinabalu (KK) from Kinabalu NP.
GRAY HERON (Ardea cinerea) – A single flyby for a couple of us at Sukau. [b]
PURPLE HERON (Ardea purpurea)
GREAT EGRET (AUSTRALASIAN) (Ardea alba modesta) [b]
INTERMEDIATE EGRET (Mesophoyx intermedia) [b]
LITTLE EGRET (Egretta garzetta)
CATTLE EGRET (EASTERN) (Bubulcus ibis coromandus) [b]
JAVAN POND-HERON (Ardeola speciosa) – Since the couple of birds that we saw on that last day were in basic plumage, they can't be identified to species. So, read this entry as pond-heron, sp.
STRIATED HERON (Butorides striata)
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax)
Pandionidae (Osprey)
OSPREY (Pandion haliaetus) [b]
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
ORIENTAL HONEY-BUZZARD (Pernis ptilorhynchus) – A confusing species, often looking very similar - or nearly identical to - other raptor species, including the Blyth's Hawk-Eagle that we saw above the road in the Crocker Range (examination of my photos show clearly that the bird we saw there was a honey-buzzard, not a hawk-eagle!).
JERDON'S BAZA (Aviceda jerdoni) – Great views of one bird in particular perched above the side channel off of the Kinabatangan R. near Sukau.
CRESTED SERPENT-EAGLE (Spilornis cheela) – Several fine looks, but none finer than the bird along the boardwalk at Gomantong Caves.
BAT HAWK (Macheiramphus alcinus) – We stayed long enough to watch a couple of these local raptors take a Wrinkle-lipped Bat or two as the bats emerged late in the afternoon at Gomantong Caves.
CHANGEABLE HAWK-EAGLE (Nisaetus limnaeetus) – Seen only on our first morning at the Rainforest Discovery Center (RDC) near Sepilok.
WALLACE'S HAWK-EAGLE (Nisaetus nanus) – Most of our birds were brown immature birds that superficially resembled Jerdon's Bazas.
RUFOUS-BELLIED EAGLE (Lophotriorchis kienerii) – Decent views in flight of a couple of birds at Sukau.
BLACK EAGLE (Ictinaetus malaiensis) – Borneo's a very good place to see this distinctive eagle.
CRESTED GOSHAWK (Accipiter trivirgatus) – Nicely in the scope from the canopy walkway at BRL.
BRAHMINY KITE (Haliastur indus)
WHITE-BELLIED SEA-EAGLE (Haliaeetus leucogaster) – A few away from the immediate coast along the Kinabatangan R.

Blue-eared Kingfishers were a common sight along the Menenggul River. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

LESSER FISH-EAGLE (Ichthyophaga humilis) – Good comparisons between this one and the following species at Sukau this year.
GRAY-HEADED FISH-EAGLE (Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus)
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
WHITE-BREASTED WATERHEN (Amaurornis phoenicurus)
BLACK-BACKED SWAMPHEN (Porphyrio indicus indicus) – Purple Swamphen is now split up into several species across the Palearctic. this one occurs throughout S.E. Asia and the Greater Sundas and Sulawesi.
EURASIAN MOORHEN (Gallinula chloropus) – Now split from our familiar Common Gallinule in the Americas.
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
COMMON SANDPIPER (Actitis hypoleucos) [b]
WOOD SANDPIPER (Tringa glareola) – Several in the flooded paddies on our way back to KK. [b]
Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
WHISKERED TERN (Chlidonias hybrida) – Migrants on the Kinabatangan R. near Sukau. [b]
Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)
ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) [I]
SPOTTED DOVE (Streptopelia chinensis)
LITTLE CUCKOO-DOVE (Macropygia ruficeps) – We didn't start seeing this one until we got to the highlands at the end of the tour.
EMERALD DOVE (Chalcophaps indica) – Sally spotted our most memorable one from the boat while we drifted down the Menenggul R. near Sukau.
ZEBRA DOVE (Geopelia striata) [I]
LITTLE GREEN-PIGEON (Treron olax) – Fantastic looks at this small green-pigeon near Sukau.

We had some memorable views of Buffy Fish-Owls around Sukau. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

PINK-NECKED PIGEON (Treron vernans) – We had our best looks at this one at the park in KK on our final afternoon.
CINNAMON-HEADED PIGEON (Treron fulvicollis) – This scarce and local species was more common than usual at Sukau.
GREEN IMPERIAL-PIGEON (Ducula aenea) – Nicely at the park in KK on our final afternoon.
MOUNTAIN IMPERIAL-PIGEON (Ducula badia) – A few only at Kinabalu NP.
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)
CHESTNUT-WINGED CUCKOO (Clamator coromandus) – Some of us got a quick glimpse of this scarce wintering bird along the banks of the Menenggul R. near Sukau one morning. [b]
LARGE HAWK-CUCKOO (DARK) (Hierococcyx sparverioides bocki) [*]
MOUSTACHED HAWK-CUCKOO (Hierococcyx vagans) – It proved to be nearly impossible to get a look at this excited bird after it landed along the road into Gomantong Caves, but we all did get decent looks in flight.
MALAYSIAN HAWK-CUCKOO (Hierococcyx fugax) – Glimpsed by some at BRL before it vanished into the dense forest there.
INDIAN CUCKOO (Cuculus micropterus) [*]
SUNDA CUCKOO (Cuculus lepidus) – We worked hard to see this one, but it paid off with nice scope looks at this one at Kinabalu!
BANDED BAY CUCKOO (Cacomantis sonneratii) [*]
PLAINTIVE CUCKOO (Cacomantis merulinus) – Heard daily in the lowlands.
LITTLE BRONZE-CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx minutillus) – We saw a couple of silent birds along the roadside at BRL, where it's undoubtedly regular at this season (if it is indeed this species - it may be that these birds are migrant Shining Bronze-Cuckoo from Australia).
VIOLET CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx xanthorhynchus) – Most of ours were males flying high above the canopy in the lowlands, so looks weren't ideal.
SQUARE-TAILED DRONGO-CUCKOO (Surniculus lugubris) – Very common by voice in the lowlands, and we even managed some decent views of it. The old 'Drongo Cuckoo' has been split into several species recently.
ASIAN KOEL (Eudynamys scolopaceus) [b*]
BLACK-BELLIED MALKOHA (Phaenicophaeus diardi) – A single bird on the Menenggul R. on Day 2 was all that we could find this year.
RAFFLES'S MALKOHA (Phaenicophaeus chlorophaeus) – Our most frequently encountered malkoha on this tour. It's also the most vocal and the most conspicuous of the several species of malkohas possible here.
RED-BILLED MALKOHA (Phaenicophaeus javanicus) – We found a wonderfully responsive pair along the Menenggul on our second visit to this productive tributary.
CHESTNUT-BREASTED MALKOHA (Phaenicophaeus curvirostris) – The only malkoha here without any white in the tail.
GREATER COUCAL (Centropus sinensis)
LESSER COUCAL (Centropus bengalensis) – One perched up in the paddies on our final day as we drove back to KK.
Tytonidae (Barn-Owls)
ORIENTAL BAY-OWL (Phodilus badius) – If only this bird had stayed on its perch for a second or two more...
Strigidae (Owls)
MOUNTAIN SCOPS-OWL (Otus spilocephalus) – Those of us who ventured out onto the road pre-dawn one day at Kinabalu NP were rewarded with fabulous looks of this difficult-to-see species.
BUFFY FISH-OWL (Ketupa ketupu) – A couple of memorable views at Sukau this year.
COLLARED OWLET (Glaucidium brodiei borneense) – Given the marked difference in the vocalizations between this endemic form and the mainland form, I can't imagine that this bird will not be split off sometime soon as yet another Bornean endemic. Great looks in the scope!
BROWN WOOD-OWL (Strix leptogrammica) [*]

Clipper Butterflies were common in the lowlands. Photo by participant Chuck Holliday.

Podargidae (Frogmouths)
LARGE FROGMOUTH (Batrachostomus auritus) – So close! [*]
Apodidae (Swifts)
SILVER-RUMPED NEEDLETAIL (Rhaphidura leucopygialis) – The wing shape and that bright white rump make this one unmistakable!
WATERFALL SWIFT (Hydrochous gigas) – After researching some images online after I got home, I'm now convinced that we did indeed have this scarce and little-known species from the viewing platform at Kinabalu NP. The books are very misleading, depicting this one as being very similar in shape and structure to the various Aerodramus/Collocalia swiftlets that we saw so frequently on the tour. It's not like those at all, being much more similar in shape to House Swift than to those swiftlets.
GLOSSY SWIFTLET (Collocalia esculenta) – Our most common and frequently encountered swiftlet.
BORNEAN SWIFTLET (Collocalia dodgei) – We saw this recently split Bornean endemic nesting at two different venues. [E]
MOSSY-NEST SWIFTLET (Aerodramus salangana) – This and the next two species were all seen well as they sat on their distinctive nests inside Gomantong Cave.
BLACK-NEST SWIFTLET (Aerodramus maximus)
WHITE-NEST SWIFTLET (Aerodramus fuciphagus) – Also known as Edible-nest Swiftlet and the object of the nest harvest at Gomantong.
Hemiprocnidae (Treeswifts)
GRAY-RUMPED TREESWIFT (Hemiprocne longipennis) – Often seen soaring overhead with other swifts. It was easy to see that this one was larger with longer, narrower wings and a longer pointed tail.
WHISKERED TREESWIFT (Hemiprocne comata) – In the scope across the river at BRL. I'm very surprised that we didn't see more!
Trogonidae (Trogons)
RED-NAPED TROGON (Harpactes kasumba) – A couple of looks, but best on the Menenggul R.
DIARD'S TROGON (Harpactes diardii) – This and the Scarlet-rumped Trogon were our two most common trogon species on this tour. We had a couple of stunning views of this gaudy beast.

We had great looks at a male Whitehead's Trogon on two different days, thanks to some info from a fellow birder. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

WHITEHEAD'S TROGON (Harpactes whiteheadi) – YESSS!!! Thanks to Adrian, another guide who works for Hazwan's company, we had great views of an adult male on our first morning at Kinabalu NP. Then we found it AGAIN near the same spot a couple of days late, getting Suann caught up on this fabulous endemic trogon! [E]
CINNAMON-RUMPED TROGON (Harpactes orrhophaeus) – In my experience, this is certainly one of the most difficult of the Asian trogons to see - and we nailed it!
SCARLET-RUMPED TROGON (Harpactes duvaucelii) – Several good looks at this trogon that sounds so much like one of the New World antbirds.
Bucerotidae (Hornbills)
WHITE-CROWNED HORNBILL (Berenicornis comatus) – That first distant bird along the Kinabatangan was pretty nice, but it sure was a long way away. Not like the birds that we saw close at hand the following day near Sukau!
HELMETED HORNBILL (Buceros vigil) – Again – so close! [*]
RHINOCEROS HORNBILL (Buceros rhinoceros) – We had several fine views of this big hornbill, but none finer than the close pair next to the Kinabatangan one afternoon near Sukau.
BUSHY-CRESTED HORNBILL (Anorrhinus galeritus) – Our looks were mostly of birds in flight at the start of the tour.
BLACK HORNBILL (Anthracoceros malayanus) – Not as numerous as some past trips here, but still seen well a number of times.
ORIENTAL PIED-HORNBILL (Anthracoceros albirostris) – Certainly one of the most common hornbills in the hot lowlands.
WREATHED HORNBILL (Rhyticeros undulatus) – We didn't run into this big hornbill until we got to the mountains at the end of the tour, where I rarely see it.
WRINKLED HORNBILL (Rhabdotorrhinus corrugatus) – We normally see a pair or two of these hornbills every trip, but that FLOCK that we saw on our first afternoon near Sukau was unbelievable!
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
COMMON KINGFISHER (Alcedo atthis) – A wintering individual at the same spot along the Kinabatangan two days in a row. [b]
BLUE-EARED KINGFISHER (Alcedo meninting) – A common sight along the Menenggul R. near Sukau.
RUFOUS-BACKED DWARF-KINGFISHER (Ceyx rufidorsa) – Excellent views of this rather shy species along the Menenggul.
BANDED KINGFISHER (Lacedo pulchella melanops) – We finally tracked down this fancy forest kingfisher at Poring Hot Springs. This endemic race has a black face, unlike the rufous-faced birds elsewhere.
STORK-BILLED KINGFISHER (Pelargopsis capensis) – Frequently flushing in front of our boat along the Menenggul.
RUDDY KINGFISHER (Halcyon coromanda) – This shy kingfisher posed nicely for us along the Menenggul one morning.
COLLARED KINGFISHER (Todiramphus chloris) – Quite numerous along the roadside in the oil palm plantations.
Meropidae (Bee-eaters)
BLUE-THROATED BEE-EATER (Merops viridis) – Conveniently nesting in the clearing next to the river at BRL.
Coraciidae (Rollers)
DOLLARBIRD (Eurystomus orientalis) – A common sight along the Menenggul R.
Megalaimidae (Asian Barbets)
BROWN BARBET (Calorhamphus fuliginosus) – Now split from the birds in Sumatra and on the Malay Peninsula. Another Bornean endemic! [E]
BLUE-EARED BARBET (Psilopogon duvaucelii duvaucelii) – We were almost never out of earshot of this one in the hot lowlands. [N]
RED-THROATED BARBET (Psilopogon mystacophanos) – Pat spotted this fancy barbet for us along the 'pitta trail' at BRL. This species has a much longer bill than any other barbet on this tour - size for size.
GOLDEN-NAPED BARBET (Psilopogon pulcherrimus) – After a couple of days of only hearing this endemic, we found several very close birds at the Kinabalu viewpoint for excellent looks. [E]
YELLOW-CROWNED BARBET (Psilopogon henricii) [*]
MOUNTAIN BARBET (Psilopogon monticola) – A couple of silent birds in the Crocker Range were seen rather well by the group. [E]

The giant Rafflesia keithii flower is the world's second-largest bloom -- and may soon take top honors, as the current record holder is (sadly) going extinct. Photo by participant Chuck Holliday.

GOLD-FACED BARBET (Psilopogon chrysopsis) – Another recent split resulting in yet another Bornean endemic species, we had great looks of this big barbet at an active nest hole at BRL. [EN]
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
RUFOUS PICULET (Sasia abnormis) – This tiny woodpecker gave us a little trouble, but we all eventually got great views.
WHITE-BELLIED WOODPECKER (Dryocopus javensis) – Seen exceptionally well at RDC on our first morning together.
BANDED WOODPECKER (Picus miniaceus) [*]
CRIMSON-WINGED WOODPECKER (Picus puniceus) – We stumbled upon this one as we searched for our first Spotted Fantail at BRL. One of the many stunning S.E. Asian woodpeckers seen on this tour.
CHECKER-THROATED WOODPECKER (Picus mentalis) – These handsome birds were with a mixed flock high on the road at Kinabalu NP.
RUFOUS WOODPECKER (Micropternus brachyurus) – I think it's pretty clear that this Asian woodpecker is NOT a Celeus!
BUFF-RUMPED WOODPECKER (Meiglyptes tristis) – Probably the most common small woodpecker in the hot lowlands throughout the island.
BUFF-NECKED WOODPECKER (Meiglyptes tukki) – We had only one sighting this year, but it was a good one on that first afternoon at Sukau.
MAROON WOODPECKER (Blythipicus rubiginosus) – Usually one of the more difficult woodpeckers to see well on this tour, it lived up to its reputation on a couple of occasions early in the tour.
GRAY-AND-BUFF WOODPECKER (Hemicircus concretus) – Nice looks at this very strange-looking woodpecker along the Menenggul R. near Sukau.
GREAT SLATY WOODPECKER (Mulleripicus pulverulentus) – A couple of quick flybys only at BRL.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
WHITE-FRONTED FALCONET (Microhierax latifrons) – Nicely at both Sepilok and at Sukau. The retiring habits of this tiny falcon make it, at times, difficult to spot. [E]
PEREGRINE FALCON (Falco peregrinus) [b]

A bold adult male Rufous-chested Flycatcher put on a show near the Gomantong Caves. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Psittaculidae (Old World Parrots)
LONG-TAILED PARAKEET (Psittacula longicauda) – Sukau is always a very good place to see this fancy parakeet.
BLUE-NAPED PARROT (Tanygnathus lucionensis) – An unexpected species for us in Kota Kinabalu on our final afternoon. The population here is introduced from the Philippines. [I]
BLUE-CROWNED HANGING-PARROT (Loriculus galgulus) – Like all hanging-parrots, you don't often see this one perched. It's often just a quick call and a tiny green bullet whizzing overhead.
Calyptomenidae (African and Green Broadbills)
WHITEHEAD'S BROADBILL (Calyptomena whiteheadi) – We really struck gold with this one at Kinabalu along the trail on our first full morning there. The largest of the Calyptomena broadbills. [E]
Eurylaimidae (Asian and Grauer's Broadbills)
BLACK-AND-RED BROADBILL (Cymbirhynchus macrorhynchos) – Routinely flushed from the banks of the small rivers at Sukau, with several active nests found. [N]
LONG-TAILED BROADBILL (Psarisomus dalhousiae) – We usually get this one in the Crocker Range (and we did this year, too), but I rarely ever see it in Kinabalu NP. [N]
BANDED BROADBILL (Eurylaimus javanicus) – Nicely at BRL again this year. This one shares a number of features with the much smaller Black-and-yellow Broadbill.
BLACK-AND-YELLOW BROADBILL (Eurylaimus ochromalus) – Easily our most common broadbill of the tour, but not found in the mountains. [N]
DUSKY BROADBILL (Corydon sumatranus) – We had super, close views of this big broadbill along the road to Gomantong Caves. [N]
Pittidae (Pittas)
BLACK-CROWNED PITTA (Erythropitta ussheri) – We all eventually got great views of this endemic pitta at BRL. It's rather confusing, but the Sumatran endemic Hydrornis (Pitta) schneideri used to be called Black-crowned Pitta until very recently. [E]
BORNEAN BANDED-PITTA (Hydrornis schwaneri) – Luckily for us, Paul knew of an active nest at BRL, and we all at least got to see this beauty in flight right in front of us! [EN]
BLUE-HEADED PITTA (Hydrornis baudii) – A few of these were seen at BRL, but none better than the male at the start of the Segama Trail. [E]
HOODED PITTA (Pitta sordida) – Our hard work paid off with good looks of this one singing from a tree along the Gomantong Caves road.
Acanthizidae (Thornbills and Allies)
GOLDEN-BELLIED GERYGONE (Gerygone sulphurea) – Nice views at BRL at one we rarely see on this tour.
Vangidae (Vangas, Helmetshrikes, and Allies)
LARGE WOODSHRIKE (Tephrodornis virgatus) – One encounter with this canopy species at BRL.
BAR-WINGED FLYCATCHER-SHRIKE (Hemipus picatus) – Replaces the next species in the highlands.
BLACK-WINGED FLYCATCHER-SHRIKE (Hemipus hirundinaceus) – If you know the calls of this one, you get an idea of just how common it is in the canopy of the humid lowlands.
RUFOUS-WINGED PHILENTOMA (Philentoma pyrhoptera) – The one bird that we all saw well was a 'blue morph' male at BRL, without any rufous on the wings or tail.
MAROON-BREASTED PHILENTOMA (Philentoma velata) – This one stuck to the subcanopy high above our heads at BRL.
Artamidae (Woodswallows)
Pityriaseidae (Bristlehead)
BORNEAN BRISTLEHEAD (Pityriasis gymnocephala) – YESSSS!!!! I knew that this charismatic Bornean endemic occurred at Sukau, but I'd never seen it there before - until this year! We had great looks as a group of these worked on the left side of the Menenggul R. and then flew across the river to the right side, giving all great views. We even got Chuck caught up on it when we encountered another group in the canopy at BRL several days later while we were enjoying our best views of Orangutan. What an afternoon that was! [E]

We saw the high-elevation Mountain Black-eye in the Crocker Range -- which was a good thing, since we couldn't use the summit trail on Mount Kinabalu. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Aegithinidae (Ioras)
COMMON IORA (Aegithina tiphia)
GREEN IORA (Aegithina viridissima) – This one replaces the Common Iora in good forest habitat.
Campephagidae (Cuckooshrikes)
FIERY MINIVET (Pericrocotus igneus) – Only a few of these in the humid lowlands.
GRAY-CHINNED MINIVET (Pericrocotus solaris) – The race here in the highlands of Borneo has a very dark head and throat, making it superficially very similar to the Scarlet Minivet, which doesn't seem to overlap with it in the highlands here.
BAR-BELLIED CUCKOOSHRIKE (Coracina striata) – A quick flyby on the Menenggul was only my third or fourth record of it in the area.
SUNDA CUCKOOSHRIKE (Coracina larvata) – We had an excellent study of a pair of these from the viewpoint in Kinabalu NP.
PIED TRILLER (Lalage nigra) – Nice views of this widespread species in the park in Kota Kinabalu on our final afternoon.
LESSER CUCKOOSHRIKE (Lalage fimbriata schierbrandi) – Most of the small arboreal cuckooshrikes were recently removed from the genus Coracina and placed in the triller genus, Lalage.
Pachycephalidae (Whistlers and Allies)
BORNEAN WHISTLER (Pachycephala hypoxantha) – Quite common in the highlands, but rather inconspicuous. [E]
Laniidae (Shrikes)
TIGER SHRIKE (Lanius tigrinus) – We happened upon one of these scarce spring migrants on the main road just outside the BRL property on our last morning there. [b]
LONG-TAILED SHRIKE (Lanius schach) – This species has invaded the disturbed habitats of eastern Sabah.
Vireonidae (Vireos, Shrike-Babblers, and Erpornis)
BLYTH'S SHRIKE-BABBLER (BLYTH'S) (Pteruthius aeralatus robinsoni) – Nicely on our final morning in Kinabalu NP.
WHITE-BELLIED ERPORNIS (Erpornis zantholeuca) – Formerly known as White-bellied Yuhina, but now placed with the vireos & shrike-babblers.

The Pacific Swallow was common and widespread throughout. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Oriolidae (Old World Orioles)
DARK-THROATED ORIOLE (Oriolus xanthonotus) – The common forest oriole in the lowlands and seen quite well a few times.
BLACK-AND-CRIMSON ORIOLE (Oriolus cruentus) – This highland species is unlikely to be mistaken for anything else.
Dicruridae (Drongos)
ASHY DRONGO (BORNEAN) (Dicrurus leucophaeus stigmatops) – This sedentary endemic race looks quite a bit like some of the migrant races from China that winter in S.E. Asia.
BRONZED DRONGO (Dicrurus aeneus)
HAIR-CRESTED DRONGO (Dicrurus hottentottus borneensis) – Much shorter-billed and with very different habits than the migrant race that I know from Thailand. I think that there's more taxonomic work to be done on this one!
GREATER RACKET-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus paradiseus brachyphorus) – This endemic race has a much shorter crest than the birds I know on the mainland.
Rhipiduridae (Fantails)
SPOTTED FANTAIL (Rhipidura perlata) – Nice looks, eventually, of this one along the trails at BRL.
MALAYSIAN PIED-FANTAIL (Rhipidura javanica) – Now split from the birds in the Philippines. [N]
WHITE-THROATED FANTAIL (Rhipidura albicollis) – Throughout the highlands here and replacing both Malaysian Pied- and Spotted fantails in the mountains.
Monarchidae (Monarch Flycatchers)
BLACK-NAPED MONARCH (Hypothymis azurea)
BLYTH'S PARADISE-FLYCATCHER (Terpsiphone affinis) – All of the birds that we saw were clearly this newly-split species and not the migratory Amur PF.
Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)
BLACK MAGPIE (Platysmurus leucopterus aterrimus) – A form that is certainly worthy of a split. Besides the obvious plumage differences, I haven't detected any overlap in the vocalizations of this Bornean endemic form and the forms north and west of here.
BORNEAN GREEN-MAGPIE (Cissa jefferyi) – Certainly one of the most striking of the endemics in the highlands! [E]
BORNEAN TREEPIE (Dendrocitta cinerascens) – Rather numerous in the highlands and formerly lumped with Sumatran Treepie as Sunda Treepie. [E]
SLENDER-BILLED CROW (SLENDER-BILLED) (Corvus enca compilator) – Though it's a stretch to call that bill 'slender', it's certainly more slender than that of the Large-billed Crow, which is a rare possibility here.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)
BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica) [b]
PACIFIC SWALLOW (Hirundo tahitica) [N]
Stenostiridae (Fairy Flycatchers)
GRAY-HEADED CANARY-FLYCATCHER (Culicicapa ceylonensis) – BRL was the only place where we recorded this widespread species.
Sittidae (Nuthatches)
VELVET-FRONTED NUTHATCH (Sitta frontalis) – Seemingly in all habitats.
Pycnonotidae (Bulbuls)
PUFF-BACKED BULBUL (Pycnonotus eutilotus) – Rick may have been the only one to see this one at BRL.
BLACK-HEADED BULBUL (Pycnonotus atriceps)
STRAW-HEADED BULBUL (Pycnonotus zeylanicus) [*]
BORNEAN BULBUL (Pycnonotus montis) – A rather recent split from Black-crested Bulbul and only found in Borneo in the foothill zone. Easily seen in the Crocker Range. [E]

We saw a couple of Flavescent Bulbuls (aka Pale-faced Bulbuls) well up near the Timpohon Gate in Kinabalu NP. Photo by participant Chuck Holliday.

SCALY-BREASTED BULBUL (Pycnonotus squamatus) – We found a number of these beautiful bulbuls near the parking lot at Poring Hot Springs.
FLAVESCENT BULBUL (Pycnonotus flavescens leucops) – Another form that ought to be split out from the mainland forms. We saw this one very well up near the Timpohon Gate in Kinabalu NP. Myers calls this one Pale-faced Bulbul.
YELLOW-VENTED BULBUL (Pycnonotus goiavier)
OLIVE-WINGED BULBUL (Pycnonotus plumosus) – Very much like a large Red-eyed Bulbul, but with those indistinct, thin white streaks in the ear coverts.
CREAM-VENTED BULBUL (Pycnonotus simplex) – The fact that this race here has red eyes makes finding it particularly challenging. Birds on the mainland have bright white eyes, unlike anything else here.
RED-EYED BULBUL (Pycnonotus brunneus) – The most common lowland forest bulbul.
SPECTACLED BULBUL (Pycnonotus erythropthalmos) – Similar to the above species, but with a distinctive voice.
HAIRY-BACKED BULBUL (Tricholestes criniger) – Very unlike any of the other lowland forest bulbuls on Borneo.
FINSCH'S BULBUL (Alophoixus finschii) [*]
OCHRACEOUS BULBUL (Alophoixus ochraceus) – Vocally and visually distinct from the mainland birds that I know well.
GRAY-CHEEKED BULBUL (Alophoixus bres) – Never common, but widespread in the humid lowland forests.
YELLOW-BELLIED BULBUL (Alophoixus phaeocephalus) – We finally got a great look at this one on the trails at BRL.
BUFF-VENTED BULBUL (Iole olivacea) – Great looks at this one feeding on insects attracted to the lights of the guard house at BRL.
ASHY BULBUL (CINEREOUS) (Hemixos flavala connectens) – Unsatisfying looks in the Crocker Range.
STREAKED BULBUL (Ixos malaccensis) – Surprisingly scarce this year on the tour.

The endemic Bornean Whistler is common, but inconspicuous, in the highlands. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Cettiidae (Bush-Warblers and Allies)
BORNEAN STUBTAIL (Urosphena whiteheadi) – We eventually found the right bird along the Silau-Silau Trail. Great looks! [E]
YELLOW-BELLIED WARBLER (Abroscopus superciliaris) – This bamboo specialist was quite responsive in the Crocker Range.
MOUNTAIN TAILORBIRD (Phyllergates cucullatus) – This one was shown to not be related at all to the other tailorbirds in the genus Orthotomus. The above Yellow-bellied Warbler is as close to this one now as anything.
SUNDA BUSH-WARBLER (Horornis vulcanius) – Very common, by voice, along the road edge in the highlands.
Phylloscopidae (Leaf Warblers)
MOUNTAIN WARBLER (MOUNTAIN) (Phylloscopus trivirgatus kinabaluensis) – One of the most common forest birds at Kinabalu NP and typically the only Phylloscopus that you see on this tour.
YELLOW-BREASTED WARBLER (Seicercus montis) – This delightful little warbler was plentiful along the trails and road edge at Kinabalu NP.
Locustellidae (Grassbirds and Allies)
STRIATED GRASSBIRD (Megalurus palustris) – A common sight along the road edge in the oil palm plantations.
Cisticolidae (Cisticolas and Allies)
DARK-NECKED TAILORBIRD (Orthotomus atrogularis) – This widespread species appeared to be the least conspicuous of our three Orthotomus tailorbirds.
ASHY TAILORBIRD (Orthotomus ruficeps) – I still find it a little strange to see this one away from mangroves - the preferred habitat in S.E. Asia.
RUFOUS-TAILED TAILORBIRD (Orthotomus sericeus) – Found everywhere except for the highlands.
YELLOW-BELLIED PRINIA (Prinia flaviventris) – A common roadside and edge species - and the only prinia on the island.
Zosteropidae (White-eyes, Yuhinas, and Allies)
CHESTNUT-CRESTED YUHINA (Yuhina everetti) – Seemingly everywhere we went at Kinabalu NP. [E]
PYGMY WHITE-EYE (Oculocincta squamifrons) – We got pretty excited when we found a couple of these tiny mites high overhead along the road at BRL. Little did we know that we'd see them much lower and so much better in the Crocker Range! [E]
MOUNTAIN BLACK-EYE (Chlorocharis emiliae) – Great views in the Crocker Range – and it's a good thing we saw them there since we weren't allowed to hike up the summit trail at Kinabalu NP! [E]
BLACK-CAPPED WHITE-EYE (Zosterops atricapilla) – Numerous with the mixed flocks in the canopy at Kinabalu NP.
EVERETT'S WHITE-EYE (Zosterops everetti) – It was a bit of a surprise to find a flock of these foraging next to the foot bridge at Poring Hot Springs, where I'd never seen it before!
Timaliidae (Tree-Babblers, Scimitar-Babblers, and Allies)
BOLD-STRIPED TIT-BABBLER (Mixornis bornensis) – Formerly called the Striped Tit-Babbler, but now split from the birds on the mainland.
FLUFFY-BACKED TIT-BABBLER (Macronus ptilosus) – Nicely along the Gomantong Caves entry road.
CHESTNUT-WINGED BABBLER (Cyanoderma erythropterum) – We detected this one daily in the humid lowlands.
RUFOUS-FRONTED BABBLER (Cyanoderma rufifrons) – Seen well from the canopy walkway at BRL. Seemingly local in Borneo.
CHESTNUT-BACKED SCIMITAR-BABBLER (Pomatorhinus montanus) – We all heard this one call, but Allan was the only one who saw it in Kinabalu NP.
BLACK-THROATED BABBLER (Stachyris nigricollis) – We had a couple of super views of this handsome babbler at Gomantong Caves.
CHESTNUT-RUMPED BABBLER (Stachyris maculata) – Not as conspicuous this year as in years past, especially at Gomantong.
GRAY-THROATED BABBLER (Stachyris nigriceps) – One of the few babblers that one sees in the highlands, and we saw a number of them.
GRAY-HEADED BABBLER (Stachyris poliocephala) – This one seems particularly shy and it's easily over-stimulated, so we should be happy that we saw it so well at BRL.

We struck gold with THREE Whitehead's Broadbills on our very first day in Kinabalu NP. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Pellorneidae (Ground Babblers and Allies)
MOUSTACHED BABBLER (Malacopteron magnirostre) – This and the next three species area all essentially look-alike species - with some remarkably similar vocalizations. I always do a little happy dance when we finally nail down the last one!
SOOTY-CAPPED BABBLER (Malacopteron affine) – Best from the canopy walkway at BRL.
SCALY-CROWNED BABBLER (Malacopteron cinereum) – Very similar in plumage to the next species, so those pink legs (vs. gray on Rufous-crowned) really help if you can see them well.
RUFOUS-CROWNED BABBLER (Malacopteron magnum) – The largest of the four Malacopterons.
BLACK-CAPPED BABBLER (Pellorneum capistratum) – Sukau is typically the best place for this largely terrestrial species.
TEMMINCK'S BABBLER (Pellorneum pyrrogenys) – This highland species is often a real challenge to try to see, but we lucked out with a bird foraging in the open across the creek at Kinabalu NP.
SHORT-TAILED BABBLER (Pellorneum malaccense) – This one behaved very well for our group along the Nature Trail boardwalk at BRL.
WHITE-CHESTED BABBLER (Pellorneum rostratum) – Very common in the riverine habitats of the Sukau area.
FERRUGINOUS BABBLER (Pellorneum bicolor) – We found a couple of very cooperative birds at Gomantong and at BRL. Those bright rusty upperparts are unlike any of the other similar babblers that we encountered.
HORSFIELD'S BABBLER (Turdinus sepiarius) – Easily seen this year at BRL.
MOUNTAIN WREN-BABBLER (Turdinus crassus) – This endemic held out until the very end, but we ended up with super views of a small group of these understory specialists. [E]
Leiothrichidae (Laughingthrushes and Allies)
BROWN FULVETTA (Alcippe brunneicauda) – Though it's not much to look at, we did see it well from the canopy walkway at BRL.
SUNDA LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Garrulax palliatus) – We had a nice daily show of these each morning as they gleaned the insects that were drawn to the lights overnight near our rooms. Great views!
BARE-HEADED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Garrulax calvus) – Easily the least common of the laughingthrushes on this tour. We had some good looks of it near the overlook in Kinabalu NP one afternoon. A relatively recent split from Black Laughingthrush on the mainland. [E]

The canopy walkway at Borneo Rainforest Lodge is quite an impressive structure -- with multiple levels on some of the towers. Photo by participant Chuck Holliday.

CHESTNUT-HOODED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Ianthocincla treacheri treacheri) – Large and conspicuous. A relatively recent split from the Chestnut-capped Laughingthrush on the mainland. [E]
Irenidae (Fairy-bluebirds)
ASIAN FAIRY-BLUEBIRD (Irena puella) – Surprisingly few this year (we would have seen more if there had been a good fruiting fig somewhere).
Muscicapidae (Old World Flycatchers)
DARK-SIDED FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa sibirica) – A few of these migrants at BRL. Also called the Siberian Flycatcher. [b]
ASIAN BROWN FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa latirostris) – The bird at Sukau appeared to be this migrant species, and not the resident Brown-streaked Flycatcher. [b]
GRAY-STREAKED FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa griseisticta) – One of these scarce migrants early on at the RDC canopy walkway. It's much more common as a wintering bird just to the north in the Philippines. [b]
ORIENTAL MAGPIE-ROBIN (Copsychus saularis) – These black-bellied birds on Borneo are quite different than what I'm used to seeing on the mainland.
RUFOUS-TAILED SHAMA (Copsychus pyrropygus) – Tricky this year, even though we heard a few at BRL.
WHITE-RUMPED SHAMA (WHITE-CROWNED) (Copsychus malabaricus stricklandii) – This form is quite different from the other races without the white crown, but there's apparently extensive hybridization between this form and the dark crowned birds in Sarawak and Kalimantan.
PALE BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Cyornis unicolor) – There always seems to be a territorial male somewhere along the boardwalk at BRL.
LONG-BILLED BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Cyornis caerulatus) – We finally tracked this one down along the trails at BRL, giving all a good look at that black chin.
MALAYSIAN BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Cyornis turcosus) – Quite numerous in the Sukau area, especially along the Menenggul R. [N]
BORNEAN BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Cyornis superbus) – Plentiful at BRL - we had super views along the trails there. [E]
GRAY-CHESTED JUNGLE-FLYCATCHER (Cyornis umbratilis) – All of these jungle-flycatchers used to be in the genus Rhinomyias, until it was discovered that most are actually Cyornis (the blue-flycatcher genus). The others are now in the genus Vauriella - and Rhinomyias is gone!
BLUE-AND-WHITE FLYCATCHER (Cyanoptila cyanomelana) – We had several of these at Poring Hot Springs, though I can't swear that one or more weren't the recently split and very similar Zappey's Flycatcher. [b]
INDIGO FLYCATCHER (Eumyias indigo) – We had a number of fine views of this highland species; a close relative of the widespread Verditer Flycatcher.
VERDITER FLYCATCHER (Eumyias thalassinus) – Quite a color!
EYEBROWED JUNGLE-FLYCATCHER (Vauriella gularis) – The Silau-Silau Trail is an excellent place to see this retiring endemic flycatcher. [E]
WHITE-BROWED SHORTWING (Brachypteryx montana erythrogyna) – This is another species that probably needs some taxonomic revision. Good looks along the Kinabalu NP trails.
BORNEAN WHISTLING-THRUSH (Myophonus borneensis) – We usually found this one feeding around the base of the cabins at Kinabalu NP. [E]
WHITE-CROWNED FORKTAIL (BORNEAN) (Enicurus leschenaulti borneensis) – We found at least a couple of pairs of this endemic race along the Silau-Silau R., giving all good looks. This one's almost sure to be split from the lowland White-crowned Forktail.
NARCISSUS FLYCATCHER (Ficedula narcissina) – The adult male that we found bathing along the roadside at Gomantong Caves was a very nice surprise! [b]
MUGIMAKI FLYCATCHER (Ficedula mugimaki) – A common wintering bird in the highland forests here. [b]
SNOWY-BROWED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula hyperythra sumatrana) – Different in size and structure compared to the Himalayan forms of this widespread flycatcher.
PYGMY BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Ficedula hodgsoni) [*]
LITTLE PIED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula westermanni) – This one is remarkably consistent visually and vocally throughout its range.

The Temminck's Sunbird was a regular sighting in the highlands, but our first was in the lowlands -- at BRL! Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

RUFOUS-CHESTED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula dumetoria) – We found a particularly bold adult male at Gomantong Caves, giving us all superb looks.
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
FRUIT-HUNTER (Chlamydochaera jefferyi) – Up until a couple of years ago, the nest of this one was unknown, so I feel pretty lucky that I've now seen two nests in the park! One of the more exciting finds of this tour, no doubt. [EN]
Sturnidae (Starlings)
ASIAN GLOSSY STARLING (Aplonis panayensis) – Those streaky immatures always confuse folks.
COMMON HILL MYNA (Gracula religiosa) – We had one particularly memorable view of a pair along the Kinabatangan R. near Sukau one afternoon.
JAVAN MYNA (Acridotheres javanicus) – The common introduced myna here, often being seen along the roadside. [I]
Chloropseidae (Leafbirds)
GREATER GREEN LEAFBIRD (Chloropsis sonnerati) – I think our best looks were on the first day of the tour.
LESSER GREEN LEAFBIRD (Chloropsis cyanopogon) – Most of the leafbirds that we saw in the lowlands were this small species.
BORNEAN LEAFBIRD (Chloropsis kinabaluensis) – Now split from the widespread Blue-winged Leafbird, this one is a highland specialist restricted mostly to Sabah (like many of Borneo's endemics). [E]
Dicaeidae (Flowerpeckers)
YELLOW-BREASTED FLOWERPECKER (Prionochilus maculatus) – This one was seen mostly in the ornamental melastomes around the rooms at BRL.
YELLOW-RUMPED FLOWERPECKER (Prionochilus xanthopygius) – This pretty little endemic is really quite similar to the Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker, but lacks the white malar and adds a yellow rump patch. [E]
ORANGE-BELLIED FLOWERPECKER (Dicaeum trigonostigma) – Surprisingly scarce this year, the only group sighting that I recall was in the parking lot at Poring Hot Springs.

We found a Lesser Coucal perched up in one of the paddies we passed on our way back to Kota Kinabalu at the end of the tour. Photo by participant Chuck Holliday.

BLACK-SIDED FLOWERPECKER (Dicaeum monticolum) – Did we ever see an adult male?! Common in the highlands and obviously very closely related to Fire-breasted Flowerpecker (especially the apo race on Mindanao). [E]
SCARLET-BACKED FLOWERPECKER (Dicaeum cruentatum) – Only a couple of these widespread flowerpeckers on the tour.
Nectariniidae (Sunbirds and Spiderhunters)
RUBY-CHEEKED SUNBIRD (Chalcoparia singalensis) – One of our more frequently encountered sunbirds in the lowlands. Very warbler-like in its appearance and behavior.
PLAIN SUNBIRD (Anthreptes simplex) – Few this year, but we did have a nice adult male with that iridescent frontlet.
PLAIN-THROATED SUNBIRD (Anthreptes malacensis) – Often difficult to separate from the next species, but more often found in disturbed habitats than the next.
RED-THROATED SUNBIRD (Anthreptes rhodolaemus) – Both sexes have duller yellow bellies than Plain-throated and prefer good forest as well.
VAN HASSELT'S SUNBIRD (Leptocoma brasiliana) – Formerly known as Purple-throated Sunbird before the Philippine birds were split off.
OLIVE-BACKED SUNBIRD (Cinnyris jugularis)
TEMMINCK'S SUNBIRD (Aethopyga temminckii) – Sally spotted our first in an unexpected lowland locale - BRL!
CRIMSON SUNBIRD (Aethopyga siparaja) – Not infrequent in the lowlands.
LITTLE SPIDERHUNTER (Arachnothera longirostra) – Encountered daily in the lowlands. The song of this one here is a little different than the song of the mainland birds.
PURPLE-NAPED SPIDERHUNTER (Arachnothera hypogrammicum) – Formerly known as Purple-naped Sunbird and in the genus Hypogramma until it was merged with the spiderhunters and the genus Arachnothera.
SPECTACLED SPIDERHUNTER (Arachnothera flavigaster) – Certainly one of the largest of the spiderhunters.
BORNEAN SPIDERHUNTER (Arachnothera everetti) – This one was lumped for a while with Streaky-breasted Spiderhunter, but properly split out as a Bornean endemic since then. [E]
Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)
EASTERN YELLOW WAGTAIL (EASTERN) (Motacilla tschutschensis tschutschensis) – Several of these wintering birds in the paddies on our final day of the tour. [b]
PADDYFIELD PIPIT (Anthus rufulus malayensis) – Reliably seen at the Lahad Datu airport. Formerly called the Oriental Pipit.
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
EURASIAN TREE SPARROW (Passer montanus) [I]
Ploceidae (Weavers and Allies)
BAYA WEAVER (Ploceus philippinus) – Several of these introduced birds were found in the paddies on our final day. [I]
Estrildidae (Waxbills and Allies)
DUSKY MUNIA (Lonchura fuscans) – Especially common in the paddies, but quite widespread in small numbers otherwise. [E]
SCALY-BREASTED MUNIA (Lonchura punctulata) – Several in the paddies on the final day. A.k.a. - Nutmeg Mannikin.
WHITE-BELLIED MUNIA (Lonchura leucogastra) – Easily the least common of the munias on this tour.
CHESTNUT MUNIA (Lonchura atricapilla) – Loads of these in the paddies on our final day.

COLUGO (Cynocephalus variegatus) – Thanks to one of the other guides at BRL, we enjoyed a roosting individual right outside of our cabins one afternoon! These primitive mammals are thought to be fairly close to primates, but are obviously not as close as the alternate name - Flying Lemur - implies.

Orangutan is always high on the wish list of folks visiting Borneo. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

LARGE FLYING FOX (Pteropus vampyrus) – Good numbers of these were spotted during our night forays at Sukau.
WRINKLE-LIPPED FREE-TAILED BAT (Chaerephon plicatus) – 10,000's of these were seen emerging from the caves at Gomantong on our visit late in the afternoon.
MOUNTAIN TREESHREW (Tupaia montana) – A few of these endemic treeshrews were spotted in the highlands at the end of the tour. [E]
SLENDER TREESHREW (Tupaia gracilis) – Nicely on the Gomantong Caves road one morning. [E]
SLOW LORIS (Nycticebus cougang) – It was a ways off, but those glowing eyes were hard to miss, and some of us even saw the body pretty well a it worked low int he trees.
CRAB-EATING MACAQUE (Macaca fascigularis) – A.k.a – Long-tailed Macaque.
PIGTAIL MACAQUE (Macaca nemestrina) – Greatly outnumbered by the above species.
SILVERED LEAF MONKEY (Presbytis cristata) – We found very few of these langurs on this year's tour, but we saw it quite well from the boat at Sukau.
RED LEAF MONKEY (Presbytis rubicunda) – Only on Day 1 at Gomantong Caves. Also call the Maroon Langur. [E]
PROBOSCIS MONKEY (Nasalis larvatus) – We enjoyed multiple fantastic studies of this unique endemic monkey at Sukau on a daily basis. [E]
GRAY GIBBON (Hylobates muelleri) [E*]
ORANGUTAN (Pongo pygmaeus) – We watched a little drama unfold at BRL as one younger and larger male encroached on the territory of an older male just off the main road. It was quite a sight and was certainly our best Orangutan experience of the tour! [E]
PALE GIANT SQUIRREL (Ratufa affinis) – Huge!
PREVOST'S SQUIRREL (Callosciurus prevostii) – The common squirrel of the lowland forests. Unmistakable with its black upperparts and rusty underparts.

We had superb views of Little Green Pigeons at Sukau. Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

KINABALU SQUIRREL (Callosciurus baluensis) – Nicely on the Mempening Trail at Kinabalu NP. [E]
PLANTAIN SQUIRREL (Callosciurus notatus) – Fairly frequent in the lowland forest edge.
EAR-SPOT SQUIRREL (Callosciurus adamsi) – This was the small squirrel the the black stripe on the side that we saw along the roadside in the Crocker Range. [E]
BORNEAN BLACK-BANDED SQUIRREL (Callosciurus orestes) – A few up high in Kinabalu NP. [E]
HORSE-TAILED SQUIRREL (Sundasciurus hippurus) – At least one of these along the Segama Trail at BRL.
JENTINK'S SQUIRREL (Sundasciurus jentincki) – The most common highland squirrel species that we encountered at Kinabalu NP. [E]
BORNEAN MOUNTAIN GROUND-SQUIRREL (Dremomys everetti) – Most of our looks at this one were pretty brief. Dark brown and unmarked - with a short snout. [E]
PLAIN PYGMY SQUIRREL (Exilisciurus exilis) – Right up there for cutest mammal of the trip! [E]
WHITEHEAD'S PYGMY SQUIRREL (Exilisciurus whiteheadi) – Fabulous looks at this endemic squirrel right next to the Mempening Trail at Kinabalu NP. [E]
THOMAS'S FLYING SQUIRREL (Aeromys thomasi) – We had a very poor showing of flying-squirrels at BRL this year, so I figure it must be due to the drought there. This endemic, however, was seen well in the spotlight. [E]
MALAY CIVET (Viverra tangalunga) – We had a couple of wonderful looks at this handsome species on our night drives at BRL.
SMALL-TOOTHED PALM CIVET (Arctogalidia trivirgata) – This arboreal species was seen on both of our night drive outings at BRL.
FLAT-HEADED CAT (Felis planiceps) – Really and exciting find, but a shame that it was so brief! Also called the Fishing Cat. Very short-tailed for a cat.
BORNEAN PYGMY ELEPHANT (Elephas maximus borneensis) – Both exhilarating and agonizing at the same time, some of us saw a sizable herd of these small elephants cross the road in front of our vehicles on the way to the Lahad Datu airport from BRL - but the crossing didn't last long enough.
BEARDED PIG (Sus barbatus) – A brief encounter with this one as we drove to BRL from Lahad Datu.
LESSER MOUSE DEER (Tragulus javanicus) – Our one big surprise find on the boardwalk behind the rooms at Sukau.
SALTWATER CROCODILE (Crocodylus porosus) – We saw just a couple of these at Sukau, but they weren't very large at all.
FLYING LIZARD SP. (Draco sp.) – There was likely more than one species involved on the tour and most, if not all, saw one or more 'fly' from tree trunk to tree trunk.
SMITH'S GIANT GECKO (Gekko smithii ) – The loud forest gecko that we heard in the lowlands and saw well in the dining area at Sukau.
COMMON SUN SKINK (Eutropis multifasciata) – This was the common striped lizard that we saw in the forest floor leaf litter throughout the lowlands on the tour.
WATER MONITOR (Varanus salvator) – Some that we saw were pretty big, but they didn't approach the giants that I often see on the Thailand tour.
WAGLER'S PIT VIPER (Tropidolaemus subannulatus) – A sobering find near the restaurant at BRL. Luckily, the staff had alerted everyone of its presence.

While Wrinkled Hornbill isn't rare on this tour, we usually only see a pair or two -- not a FLOCK, like we did this year! Photo by guide Dave Stejskal.

Other Creatures of Interest
RAFFLESIA (PORING) (Rafflesia keithii) – We struck while the iron was hot and went off to view this intriguing plant near Poring Hot Springs at our earliest opportunity, since the giant flowers can wilt and die within just a few days of opening. Ours was only two days old and was in excellent condition. A very strange genus of plants that parasitize Tetrastigma vines exclusively and have no visible part of the Rafflesia plant other than the huge flower. [E]
PITCHER PLANT (MESILAU) (Nepenthes fusca) – I'm pretty confident that the few pitcher plants that we saw along the road at Gunung Alab in the Crocker Range were this species. [E]
BROWN LEECH (Haemadipsa zyelanica) – I think everyone experienced one of these at some point during the trip. I don't recall seeing any of the larger striped Tiger Leeches, but they may have been in short supply due to the ongoing drought.
BORNEAN PILL MILLIPEDE (Glomeris connexa) – Mostly seen after they curled up into tight little balls, resembling pill bugs.
GIANT FOREST ANT (Camponotus gigas) – The Paraponera-sized ants along the trails at BRL.
CHAN'S MEGASTICK (Phobaeticus chani) – We found this one on our last late afternoon stroll down the Kinabalu NP road. Very impressive!
COMMON BIRDWING (Tioides helena (Papilionidae)) – This was the birdwing with the bright yellow rear wings that we saw in the lowlands.
RAJAH BROOKE'S BIRDWING (Trogonoptera brookiana (Papilionidae)) – This is the larger, scarcer birdwing with the emerald green and black wings.
COMMON TREE NYMPH (WOOD NYMPH) (Idea stolli (Nymphalidae)) – This was the big butterfly that we saw so often in the lowlands that looked like a piece of spotted gray tissue floating through the air.
ATLAS MOTH (Attacus atlas (Saturniidae)) – We saw an intact individual at the guard house lights just outside the BRL property. Second only to the Hercules Moth in size.


Totals for the tour: 292 bird taxa and 31 mammal taxa