Trip report: Malaysia: The Peninsula (June 2019) by Tropical Birding

Guided by Phil Chaon. This was a set-departure tour.

Perhaps the quintessential birding destination in South-east Asia, Peninsular Malaysia has something to offer for everyone. With a good variety of classic South-east Asian avifauna and a good slice of Sundaic and Peninsular endemics, there are new and exciting species for first timers and veterans alike. The itinerary offers a great balance of the mind-boggling diversity of the lowlands and the non-stop mixed flock action of the mountainous regions. The diverse array of habitats introduced us to over 200 species of birds in only a week and had the added bonus of some spectacular mammal sightings. Great food, great infrastructure and comfortable first-world lodging all add to the joy of this tour. In our whirlwind tour of the region began with lowland jewels like the glittering Malayan Peacock-pheasant, flame-crowned Malayan Banded-pitta, the full palate of comical broadbills and more species of kingfisher than are found in the entire western hemisphere! Moving into the mountains we spent time with the hulking Fire-tufted Barbet, ornate and mouse-like Pygmy Cupwings, the stunning Blue Nuthatch, and the rare Malaysian Honeyguide. Finally, we wrapped things up by cleaning up the local mangrove specialist birds in Kuala Selangor. From the tiny, brilliant Mangrove Blue- Flycatcher to the melodic songs of Golden-bellied Gerygone and Mangrove Whistler – the steamy forests on the doorstep of Kuala Lumpur provided a great end to a lovely tour. Great birds, easy travel and an exciting variety of habitats, it is no wonder Peninsular Malaysia is a must-bird destination.

FULL Malaysia June 2019 trip report (pdf format; 2.2 MB file).