Tuesday, 27 February 2018

27th February 2018 Gunung Kerinci, Sumatra

Out before 5am to the Kerinci trail where a good selection of nightbirds were heard vocalising but unfortunately nothing responded to playback by showing itself. We walked to the hide where the juvenile Schneider's Pitta was still performing. We soon continued the climb and were rewarded by seeing a male Sumatran Blue Robin at Air Minum. Continuing onwards Dwi kept whistling imitating Red-billed Partridge and one eventually called back. We hid behind a large tree and Dwi expertly whistled a party of 3 into view - brilliant! As we neared Camp Cochoa a Sumatran Cochoa was heard calling from a tall tree. It continued to call and we continually scanned the treetop but failed to see it until we saw it suddenly drop out of the 'backdoor' of the treetop and loop away from us up the slope... frustratingly an untickable view. It recommenced vocalising so we quickly made our way up to Camp Cochoa and were sure we had it pinned down to the top of another tall tree. It continued to call for some time, but again, we couldn't see it. This time neither of us saw it leave, but it fell silent, and our motivation to keep looking for it faded not knowing if it was still present. Tsuri arrived with our lunch and he made it just before it started to rain. It was soon torrential rain and I was regretting having left my coat at the hide! A few soaked-through hikers arrived. The trail soon better resembled a waterfall than a trail! After an hour it began to brighten and it eventually stopped raining. A pair of Rusty-breasted Wren-babblers commenced duetting and we were soon watching them doing so - a good lift to our spirits. After views directly against the light of what was probably a Sumatran Rufous-vented Niltava we decided to continue uphill for a while, but the trail soon became very steep and it was proving very muddy and slippery after the rain, so we returned back down. Not far below Camp Cochoa and the Sumatran Cochoa was again vocalising! Hopeful that it might be success in the last chance saloon, that unfortunately didn't prove the case, despite Tsuri and Dwi heading off in different directions in the hope that we could somehow surround it. It again fell silent and what would prove my last chance was gone. Thereafter it proved an uneventful descent, we said our farewells to the Pitta and left the forest at sunset. During the evening we said our farewells to our team who had looked after us so well, it would have been nice to have spent another couple of days on the mountain especially as we had thoroughly enjoyed our time, but our flights to Sarawak were booked... 

Sumatran Green Pigeon h
Sumatran Frogmouth h
Black-winged Kite 2
Mountain Scops Owl h
Schneider's Pitta 1 juvenile
Sunda Minivet 6
Long-tailed Shrike 4
Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher 6
Golden Babbler 2
Grey-throated Babbler 2
Sunda Warbler 4
Mountain Leaftoiler (Tailorbird) 2
Pygmy Cupwing h
Blue Nuthatch 4
Siberian Thrush 1 female
Lesser Shortwing 1
Sumatran White-browed Shortwing h
Shiny Whistling-Thrush 3
Sumatran Brown-winged Whistling-Thrush 2
Mugimaki Flycatcher 2
Snowy-browed Flycatcher 1 female

First-winter female Siberian Thrush at Gunung Kerinci

Sunda Warbler at Gunung Kerinci

Male Sumatran Blue Robin at Gunung Kerinci

Red-billed Partridge at Gunung Kerinci

Duetting Rusty-breasted Wren-babblers at Gunung Kerinci

Camp Cochoa

the trail leading down from Camp Cochoa after rain

Lesser Shortwing at Gunung Kerinci

trail down towards base camp

Sumatran Surili at Gunung Kerinci

Black-winged Kite at Gunung Kerinci

Forest edge at Gunung Kerinci

Our team... Andy, Tsuri and Dwi at the forest edge, Kerinci

Sunset at Gunung Kerinci