Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Wilson's and Red Birds of Paradise in Waigeo

I have just completed a trip to Raja Ampat island with 4 European tourists. We went hiking in the forest to see Red Bird of Paradise (Paradisaea rubra) and Wilson's Bird of Paradise (Dyphyllodes respublica).
To watch the paradise birds, we had to wake up at 04.30 and went hiking for around one hour to the dancing site of the birds. Male birds began to call their female birds when the sun rose in the east. We watched them from 06.00 to around 09.00. After that we returned to the guesthouse where we stayed. The bungalows were constructed on the water allowing us to see fish that were swimming over coral reef.
Red Bird of Paradise
During the 3 days/ 2 nights trip, we were able to watch them and other tropical birds such as Spice Imperial Pigeon, Hooded Butcherbird, Torresian Crow, Olive-backed Sunbird, Eclectus Parrot, Pacific Swallow, Helmetted Friarbird, Brahminy Kite, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Lesser Frigatebird, White-bellied Sea Eagle and etc.
Wilson's Bird of Paradise (Cicinnurus respublica)
Wilson's Bird of Paradise
In addition to birds, we also explore karst islets in Kabui bay using a long wooden boat. There is a viewpoint among the karst which tourists can visit to see the beautiful scenery of Waigeo, Gam and its karst formations.
The coral reef of Raja Ampat is very beautiful. It is the habitat of hundreds of species of fish, and other marine animals. I enjoyed snorkeling and recreational freediving there. Because I brought Nikon W300, I was able to take some pictures of the coral reef.
The guesthouse where we stayed was located at the beach - above the water. It was a nice site to watch dolphins. This beautiful fish often pass by the guesthouse in a group of two to ten dolphins. 
coral reef in south waigeo island
Coral Reef in southern part of Waigeo island
Wawiyai viewpoint in Kabui bay
Raja Ampat karst islets
Birdwatching near Sorong
Two of the tour participants from Australia had one extra day in Sorong. I guided them to a forest near the city to lowland birds such as Spangled Drongo, Yellow-faced Myna, Blyth's Hornbill, Dollarbird, Orange-bellied Fruit Dove, Rainbow Bee-eater, and a lot more.
If you are interested in taking a tour in Raja Ampat that combines sightseeing, hiking, birdwatching, snorkeling and karst climbing, please, contact me by email to: or by text to my whatsapp: +6281332245180.

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Moorish Idol Fish T-shirt from Redbubble
Moorish Idol fish t-shirt

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Birding and Snorkeling Site in Waigeo of Raja Ampat

There is a good site for birding and snorkeling in Waigeo island of Raja Ampat. Its name is Warduwer located in the south of the island. There are big trees at the beach that attract a lot of birds to visit for resting or eating their fruits. I like to visit this beach when I guide tourists. Birding at this beach is very easy. I highly recommend that birdwatchers bring 10×42 binoculars, an if possible, a spotting scope to enhance their birdwatching experience. Professional photographers bring D-SLR camera with 600 mm telephoto lens. Today, bridge camera iIn the mornings and in the afternoons, blyth's hornbill, eclectus parrots, spangled drongo, pied imperial pigeon, sulphur crested cockatoo, palm cockatoo, coconut lorikeet (also called rainbow lorikeet), and beach kingfisher, Eastern Osprey, Brahminy Kite, are often seen in the surrounding trees. Visitors who come to this beach can also see crested tern, plover, and lesser frigate bird, white bellied sea eagle and etc. The following collage picture is my promotional material that I make for travelers who plan to visit Raja Ampat. 
birds and coral reef in Raja Ampat
Raja Ampat beauty - birds and coral reef
After watching birds, tourists can enjoy snorkeling at the same beach to see a lof of kinds of fish, sea star and christmas tree worm in the pristine coral reef of the beach. Grouper, sweetlips, pink anemonefish, striped surgeonfish, black bar damsel, three spots dascyllus, parrotfish, and wrasse are some of the fish that can be seen at the coral reef of this beach. For taking pictures of the marine life, a good underwater camera should be used. I recommend Nikon W300 or Olympus Tough TG-5.
Soon a beach resort will be constructed here. The bungalows are being prepared. The resort will be completed in middle of this year ready to receive tourists who want to stay for a few days, a few weeks or more.
I offer tour for tourist who likes to enjoy snorkeling and birding in Raja Ampat. If you plan to take a holiday in Raja Ampat and want me to be your guide, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by e-mail to: or by whatsapp to: +6281332245180.
Also see:
Snorkeling Video in Raja Ampat

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Raja Ampat Reef

Raja Ampat islands have been famous internationally because their marine biodiversity is the highest in the world. From my personal observations when I run snorkeling tours in the archipelago with foreign tourists, I could say that high density of fish and other marine animals can be seen in coral reef area whose sea current is strong. Such reefs are located in Yenbuba strait, Cape Kri, and in a small island near the entrance site of Kabui bay.
Beautiful Raja Ampat
When I organize the snorkeling tour, I also bring visitors to beaches that are calm but also have got high marine life such as South-West Mansuar, Cape Kri, Five Rocks, and Isanak beach in Waigeo island. Uninhabited islands often have got more coral reef in pristine condition.
Here, we could see tropical fish and other marine creatures including lobster, burrowing clam, sea star, sea urchin, christmas tree worm, and etc. Bigger fish such as trevally, parrotfish, black tip reef shark can be seen in drop off areas.
Swimming, snorkeling and freediving at this steep reef slope or wall may look  scarry but for experienced snorkelers and freedivers, this area is the place where more fish and better reef can be seen easily.
Coral reef is similar to tropical rainforest. It is the natural habitat of a lot of species of marine creatures from tiny pygmy seahorse to giant trevally. It is the source of food for a lot of people and it is an important natural resource for researches in marine science. Because of this important status, we need to preserve it forever.
Visitors who enjoy snorkeling and freediving over the coral reef must not stand on the corals.
I usually combine this coral reef snorkeling trip with hiking, birding and rainforest tour. My email is: You could also contact me by whatsapp message to my number: +6281332245180.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Wonderful Raja Ampat

Raja Ampat is a wonderful archipelago in West Papua province of the Republic of Indonesia. It has been famous for its marine life. Its forest is the natural habitat of hundreds of bird species such as parrots, kingfishers, fruit doves and pigeons, and birds of paradise. I organize tours to this regency for visitors who want to see tropical islands that are surrounded by white sandy beaches and coral reef, tropical fish as well as explore rainforest to watch its beautiful paradise birds.
Hiking and Birding, swimming and snorkeling in Raja Ampat
Wonderful Raja Ampat
The usual duration of the tour is 3 days to 1 week covering big and small islands in the archipelago.
For those who like sightseeing, they could go by a speedboat or motorized wooden boat to see the karst in Wayag, Wawiyai of Kabui bay, as well as Fish Lagoon in eastern region of Waigeo.
Every time I guide tourists around Raja Ampat, I always do snorkeling and some freediving to see the wealth of its marine life. There are a lot of species of fish, corals and other marine animals. Fish such as pink anemonefish, sweetlips, wrasse, butterflyfish, moorish idol, and dolphins can easily be seen at depths of around 2 to 5 meters or more below sea level. To identify their species names, I use a field guide book Reef Fish Identification - Tropical Pacific written by Gerald Allen, Roger Steene, Paul Humann, and Ned Deloach.
My camera Fujifilm XQ2 greatly helps me in taking underwater pictures of the coral reef environment. I sometimes use Nikon W300. To take pictures of the fish, most often, I have to freedive and position my body to be on the same level or a little lower than the fish. I also do my best not to make any movements in the water. When I am still, fish will not feel intimidated with my presence. They will swim closer to me. As a result, I make closer photographs of fish and other marine animals.
Birding is also my favorite activity when I walk in the forest. I bring a pair of Visionking 10×42 mm binoculars and a camera with telephoto lens. Waigeo island is the island that I highly recommend for birdwatchers.
Birdwatching could be done in almost all islands of Raja Ampat. In the coastal area, Radjah Shelduck, Beach Stone Curlew, Willie Wagtail, Beach Kingfisher and Spice Imperial Pigeon are the ones that visitors can watch. When they walk deeper into the forest, they will be able to watch Wilson's Bird of Paradise, Red Bird of Paradise, Eclectus Parrot and Western-crowned Pigeon.
Please, contact me by whatsapp to: +6281332245180 or email: for booking your tour.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Birdwatching Trip to Raja Ampat

I organize birdwatching tour to Raja Ampat for tourists who are interested in seeing Red Bird of Paradise, Wilson's Bird of Paradise, Eclectus Parrot, Spice Imperial Pigeon, and a lot of birds that live in coastal and rainforest areas of the regency.
There are several sites in Waigeo and Gam which tourists can visit to watch Red Bird of Paradise (Paradisaea rubra). The bird is usually active in the mornings and in late afternoons around 15.00 to 17.00. They usually dance in the branches of tall trees. When conducting courtship dance, most often the male one poses his body in upside-down position and flaps his wings to attract female birds.
Red Bird of Paradise (Paradisaea rubra)
Male Red Bird of Paradise (click this link to see artwork)
The duration of the tour is as short as 3 days/ 2 nights to as along as 1 week. Waigeo is the main island that we will explore. I highly recommend that visitors bring their own binoculars to enhance their birding experience. Swarovski, Leica, Nikon, Vortex are some of the best birding optics that are available on the market. A spotting scope with tripod is also recommended.
birdwatching in Raja Ampat
Birdwatching Trip to Raja Ampat
The trip to Raja Ampat can be combined with a trip to mainland West Papua where visitors can watch such birds as Lesser Bird of Paradise, King Bird of Paradise and Magnificent Riflebird as well as Western Parotia, Black Sicklebill and Magnificent Bird of Paradise.
We will use field guide book Birds of New Guinea (written by Thane K. Pratt and Bruce Beehler) as our main reference when identifying birds.
In addition to watching birds, during the trip in Raja Ampat, we could combine it with snorkeling activity in coral reef area to see such fish as Striped Surgeonfish, Moorish Idol, and Anemonefish. 
If you are interested in taking the tour, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: or by whatsapp to my cell phone: +6281332245180.