Two nights scheduled at the magnificent Borneo Rainforest Lodge, situated in a large stand of primary dipterocarp forest in Dannum Valley.
The famous Dannum Valley Field Centre is still available to birders and visitors and represents a slightly cheaper option but if it’s jungle comfort with a hint of luxury coupled with great food, quality service, birding trails and expert guides you’re after, then this is the place. Hang the expense, it is worth it.
Guides accompany you on the many trails and most will know where to find the birds, animals, butterflies, or whatever you want to see and some things you don't want to see. Still needing to see Bornean Ground Cuckoo and Giant Pitta we also added Blue-banded and Blue-headed pitta, the Bornean sub-species of Banded Pitta, Borneo Bristlehead and a few others to the want list for our excellent guide, Wang Kong, to digest over lunch.
In the first kilometre from the lodge, on our first afternoon walk, Borneo Bristlehead was found in the clearing just before the canopy walkway. Initially two birds were around the treetops but scope views soon settled the nerves and over the next two days up to four birds were seen here. Not bad getting the endemic and sole family representative out of the way in the first fifteen minutes here!
Soon we were distracted by Bornean Ground Cuckoo with two birds calling from along the Ginger Trail. Stealth and patience resulted in glimpsed views of a calling ground cuckoo, with characteristic ‘tail bobbing’ before he disappeared over the edge and down to the river; his performance being interrupted by brilliant views of a Blue-headed Pitta calling from the middle of the trail! Amazing what you can see when you are looking for something else!
Sadly two days is not enough at Dannum Valley but I’ll be back. A country with amazing people, birds, mammals, sights and sounds is too hard to resist.
Sabah Tourism Board www.sabahtourism.com will recommend bird guides if you want to hire one for the whole trip or better still Borneo Nature Tours who own the Borneo Rainforest Lodge can organise the whole trip: www.borneonaturetours.com.