Friday, December 18, 2020

Asian Waterbird Census 2021

[ Video Credit: East Asian-Australasian Flyway Network ] 

The Asian Waterbird Census (AWC) is part of the global International Waterbird Census (IWC). This citizen-science programme is supporting conservation and management of wetlands and waterbirds worldwide. 

The recommended dates for the AWC are 2 – 18 January 2021, covering two weeks and three weekends, when we should encourage you to count waterbirds. These dates are for guidance only and counts from from any date in December 2020 or January and February 2021 are very welcome.

Your information helps to promote the designation and management of internationally important sites such as nationally protected areas, Ramsar SitesWestern/Central Asian Site Network for Siberian Cranes and Other WaterbirdsEast Asian – Australasian Flyway Network Sites and Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs). As well this helps in identifying and protecting new sites of importance for waterbirds. The result of the census and information are also used to promote national waterbird and wetland conservation and international cooperation along the Central Asian Flyway and East Asian – Australasian Flyway. 

Guidance and Reporting

If you have participated in a previous count for a particular site, kindly cover the same site this year and report on it using the latest 2021 count and wetland assessment submission forms. We encourage you to cover as many sites as possible and encourage more participation. Submission of forms to the appropriate coordinator should be done by end February 2021 at the latest.

Important Note on Covid-19 Pandemic:

While participating in AWC, please ensure that you adhere to COVID-19 guidelines provided by national government and state/provincial authorities. The AWC coordinators are requested to inform the participants about the state/province specific restrictions/guidelines to be followed during the census. Participants are requested to maintain a distance of at least 2 meters/six feet from other participants. Each participant must carry their personal sanitizer and wear a face mask to ensure safety of the group. Participants may carry their own birding equipment such as binoculars, cameras and AWC Count and Wetland Assessment forms, so as to reduce contact between people to a minimum.

[Source: Wetlands International website]

For more information about the Asian Waterbird Census 2021 in Malaysia and to obtain the relevant submission and assessment forms, please contact the Malaysian Nature Society's National Coordinator Ng Wai Pak and Yeap Chin Aik at

Friday, March 6, 2020

Awana Biopark Birdwatching Trip Report

This is the first birding trip of the year 2020 organized by Wild Bird Club Malaysia (WBCM). Awana Biopark was chosen as a venue due to its popularity for its sub-montane bird species.

On 23rd February 2020, 7.00am, all the birders gathered at Ratha Baru Restaurant for a quick breakfast. All then proceed to drove to the venue and immediately briefing was done by Mr Tang Tuck Hong, the organizer of this trip, followed by a group photo session. We split into two groups; first group led by our president Mr Andy Lee, head to the pump house road, while the second group led by Mr. Tang head to the trail in the Biopark. I was with the second group.

It was very windy and we are in total difficulty to get a glimpse of any bird at the trail. Yet we could hear the call of trogons (which was the Orange Breasted Trogon) all the way. Our friend Jeremy tried to get off the trail, ventured in the woods and manage to see an Orange Breasted Trogon. We then decided to go out from that spot since we ultimately can't see anything.

Once out from the trail, we spotted Orange Bellied Flowerpecker busy foraging on a mistletoe patch high up on a tree. Nearby, we saw two Black Naped Oriole and some Oriental Magpie Robins flying low around the shrubs. At the road side near the Biopark entrance, we saw a pair of Orange Bellied Leafbird feeding at mistletoes, joined by Black Throated Sunbird.

Then came a small flock of Bar Winged Flycatcher Shrikes foraging for insects on a nearby tree. It was slightly drizzling that moment. We could hear the call of the Great Hornbill as well.

Bar Winged Flycatcher Shrike

Suddenly Mr Andy came and told us that he spotted the Great Hornbill. He managed to record it. Everyone was trying their best to get a glimpse of the hornbill. It was far away plus concealed by another tree. Suddenly a Blyth's Hawk Eagle flew up from a lower terrain, and all the birders' eyes were on it. It glided nearby for few seconds before it vanished.

Blyth’s Hawk Eagle

My group then head towards the pump house road. Quite a number of birds were bagged here. Grey Chinned Minivets were everywhere and they were much closer to us. It was a bird wave, joined by Velvet Fronted Nuthatch, Mountain Bulbul, Fire Tufted Barbet, Verditer Flycatcher and Red Bearded Bee-eater. Some even saw White Bellied Epornis and some flycatchers. An Orange Breasted Trogon flew pass us into the woods as well. Unfortunately we could not trace it further.

Red Bearded Bee-eater
Grey Chinned Minivets

Velvet Fronted Nuthatch

Verditer Flycatcher

We then walked back to spot that we gathered in the morning and had some coffee and bites, provided by Mr. Kok Hen. Mr. Tang called everyone for finalising the bird list. . A total of 45 species spotted today at Awana Biopark.

Wrapping up the Bird List

Group photo session again.

Mr. Eddie giving some information to our birders

After the group photo session, Mr Eddie, who manages the Biopark gave us some interesting info on the wildlife around here and the effort taken for its conservation. 

He is expecting we could provide him some information on the birds we had spotted around the Biopark to aid their conservation activities. We then dispersed around noon, yet some of us went to the Ulu Kali birding spot to have a look what is going on there. Myself, only manage to see the Siberian Thrushes and Black Throated Sunbird. The male Siberian Thrushes are now with much matured plumage compared to my previous visit on January.

Siberian Thrush (male)

We left after few minutes since the place was covered with thick mist. Another joyful birding day with team WBCM. The link for the bird checklist of this trip is as per below:

Picture Credits:
Charith Fernando
Saravanan Palanisamy

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Seremban Birds Expedition 2019 Joint Collaboration with NEST

Seremban new location for birdwatching (Source: Kosmo)

Volunteers for Seremban Birds expedition from Wild Bird Club Malaysia were

1. Andy Lee - team leader 
2. Aun Tiah, group leader
3. Dato Lee, group leader
4. Kok Hen, group leader
5. Mr Hiew
6. Mrs Hiew
7. Alan koh
8. Ricky yeo
9. Yap Sue chew
10. Chen Seow Kean

Friday, March 8, 2019

Chiang Rai Harrier trip

Just a week after the AGM 2019, a group of 9 WBCM members made a trip to Chiang Rai, Thailand from 12th to 19th January 2019. Main purpose of this trip was to visit the site of Harriers’ roosting site.

This Harrier Haven was situated at Chan Chawa, Mae Chan District, Chiang Rai. We spent 2 evenings at this site.

The owner of the site had built 2 hides, one big and one small.  We occupied the whole big hide before sunset, waiting patiently for huge number of various species of Harriers to glide in for the night. When they arrived, the magnificent view was beyond described. The excitement of the birders then may be comparable with the moment of OHB’s appearance in Tanjong Tuan, except that in Tanjong Tuan, everyone was shouting with joy, some may be running about in order to get a better view, but over the Harrier Haven, there was perfect silent. Only noise could be heard were the clicking sound made by the shutters of the cameras.

Chiang Rai indeed was a good place for birdwatching. Besides the Harrier Haven, we had good time doing birdwatching at Tham Luang Caves, Golden Triangle Park, Doi Tung Mae Fa Luang, Doi Mae Salong, Nong Tao, Nam Kham Nature Reserve, Nong Nam Luang, Nong Bong Khai Non-Hunting Area, Lai Puchana Chai, Wat Pa Mak No & vicinity, and of course, around the Hotel where we stayed.

Full Checklists in eBird entered by Tang Tuck Hong for this trip, together with more pictures can be viewed through the links below:-

Text and Photos by Lee Keen Seong

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

WBCM Birding Trip to Perak

This Trip was held from 5th to 6th Jan 2019 in conjunction with Wild Bird Club Malaysia’s Annual General Meeting 2019.

Birdwatching session was from 8.30am to 12pm at Bidor on the 5th and from 6.30am to 11.00am at Malim Nawar on the 6th. We birded around the ex-mining ponds and the surrounding areas outside the Bidor FRIM Research Station. In Malim Nawar, birding activities were carried out at the aquaculture ponds and their surrounding areas near the MBI sand mines. We were blessed with Sunny weather on both days. There was a total of 31 members who joined this birdwatching trip to Perak. WBCM’s Dinner for Members was at a restaurant in Tapah, Perak, well-known for their smoked chicken dish (see picture below).

Ong Kang Woei presented on Population Density of Malaysian Plover at the East Coast of Johor. His presentation brings back memories of WBCM Trip to Southern Peninsular Malaysia State of Johor in 2017 which you can read about HERE.

Tan Gim Cheong, our member from Singapore gave a talk on Raptors. We were quizzed on raptor identification after his talk, which certainly helped to reinforce what we learned from his earlier slides.

59 species of birds were seen in Bidor and 69 species in Malim Nawar. A total of 90 different species of birds were seen/heard throughout the 2 days trip.

Large-tailed Nightjar (Photo Credit: Ang Teck Hin)
Black Baza (Photo Credit: Ang Teck Hin)
Green-billed Malkoha (Photo Credit: Yap Sue Chew)
Yellow-bellied Prinia (Photo Credit: Yap Sue Chew)
Chestnut-Headed Bee-Eater (Photo Credit: Yap Sue Chew)
Bank Swallow (Photo Credit: Ang Teck Hin)
Tufted Duck (Photo Credit: Ang Teck Hin)
BIDOR, FRIM EBIRD checklist is available HERE.

MALIM NAWAR EBIRD checklist is available HERE.

As January falls in the middle of the migratory season, a third of the bird species identified were
migrants. The highlights were a pair of Tufted Duck seen in Malim Nawar.

Text by Low Kok Hen and YL Yeo.

Pictures by Yap Sue Chew, Ang Teck Hin and Tang Tuck Hong.

Friday, August 24, 2018

eBird Malaysia Selected Checklists from Jan to April 2018

WHY enter your sightings in eBird Malaysia? Watch this 3-minute video below to learn more:-

679 species, 5139 Checklists were submitted for Malaysia from 1st Jan to 19th August 2018. Some of the sightings from Jan to April 2018, sourced from eBird Malaysia’s Checklists, are provided below. Credit goes to the respective contributors of the checklists, for notable species such as the Jambu Fruit Dove, Large Hawk Cuckoo, Oriental Plover, Pectoral Sandpiper, Red-Legged Crake, Mountain Scops Owl, Black Eagle, Brown Bullfinch and Cook’s Swift. For the full checklists submitted for Malaysia from 1st Jan 2018 onwards as well as for previous years, just click on The Illustrated Checklist of eBird Malaysia. That section of eBird Malaysia has species information together with photos and sounds from the Macauley Library which you can access HERE

Selected eBird Malaysia checklists from May to August 2018, followed by Sept to Nov 2018 will be shared shortly through this website.

Jambu Fruit Dove (Photo Credit: Andy Lee)
29th Jan 2018 submitted by Andy Lee

Listen to the audio recordings of Golden Babbler, Buff-breasted Babbler, Large Niltava from Todd A. Watkins’s checklist.

Cook’s Swift (L) Pectoral Sandpiper (R) (Photo Credit: Ang Teck Hin)

22nd Jan 2018 and 18th Feb 2018 submitted by Ang Teck Hin

Red-Legged Crake (Photo Credit: Khoo Swee Seng)
11th Feb 2018 submitted by Khoo Swee Seng

Black Eagle (Photo Credit: Ng Jia Jie)

10th Feb 2018 submitted by Yeo Yee Ling and Ng Jia Jie

Mountain Scops Owl (Photo Credit: Wilbur Goh)

8th Feb 2018 submitted by Wilbur Goh Soon Kit

Brown Bullfinch (Photo Credit: Alan Koh)

12th March 2018 submitted by Alan Koh

Oriental Plover (Photo Credit: Dake Bakewell)
19th April 2018 submitted by Dave Bakewell

Text by Yeo Yee Ling

Friday, July 6, 2018

Global Big Day in Malaysia 2018 Winner and Runner Up

Wild Bird Club Malaysia conducted the Lucky Draw for Global Big Day in Malaysia 2018 on 24th June 2018 together with Minox Malaysia, and the following winner and runner up, with their respective checklists are…..

First prize:
Hum Kim Choy (First prize: Minox BF Model 10 x 42 Binocular)

Second prize:
Azmil Pillantong (Second prize: Minox Macroscope)

Congratulations to both Hum Kim Choy and Azmil Pillantong!
Thanks to Malaysian eBird reviewers Dave Bakewell, Ng Jia Jie, Andy Lee and Mark Ng for going through the 149 checklists submitted by eBirders, for Malaysia.

Global Bird Day in Malaysia was held on 5th May 2018, in conjunction with Global Big Day, an initiative by Cornell Lab of Ornithology where a single day was dedicated to celebrate birds in every place on Earth. Read on about 2018 results in Asia, and Malaysia in particular HERE

Worldwide, Malaysia ranked 18th in terms of Species Leader, with 459 species recorded. The South American countries of Colombia, Peru and Ecuador held the 1st to 3rd spots respectively in terms of Species Leader, with their birders logging in more than 1,000 species. In Asia, Malaysia ranked just below India and China, by species:-

eBird Malaysia portal is a joint collaboration between Wild Bird Club Malaysia and Cornell Lab of Ornithology and was launched on 9th November 2016. You can read more about this collaboration HERE

Just click on GET STARTED in order to sign up for your free eBird account. Contribute your sightings and pictures of Birds in Malaysia when you go birdwatching, through eBird. Articles on interesting bird behavior and pictures can also be submitted for publication through eBird Malaysia portal.  Submission guidelines are available HERE

Text by Yeo Yee Ling

Pictures sourced from eBird Malaysia portal