Despite it being mentioned as common in various publications, I have not been able to spot the Yellow-breasted Flowerpecker frequently. When I do, it is usually low down on a flowering plant. I really enjoy looking for its orange-red patch on the crown which I thought adds class to an already beautiful bird.
If you are looking for a face for Borneo birding, the Bornean Bristlehead must be it. This is the only member of the family Pityriaseidae and the genus Pityriasis. This uncommon bird of the lowland and peatswamp forest finds itself pasted on posters and publications. Not surprisingly then, it is on the wanted list of most visiting birders to Borneo. The lucky get to see it moving nosily through the forest canopy, usually in groups of 5 to 8 birds. What joy!
If you are at the British Bird Fair this weekend, look for this bird at Marquee No. 1.
Babblers are really difficult to digiscope and this White-chested Babbler Trichostoma rostratum is no different. However it is a noisy bird and easy to find especially along rivers and wet areas in lowland forest. At 15cm, it makes up its lack of size with its loud call. Birders who complain about unimaginative common names will probably let this one go.
Pittas are often considered as the jewels of the forest floor in the tropics. Borneo is lucky to have 4 endemic pittas including this Pitta usherri (also called Black-headed Pitta) which is only found in the northern portion of the island. Previously it was lumped together with the Garnet PItta which is found south of the Sabah border. These birds are ventriloquial, so don’t forget to look upwards where they sometimes are perched on branches.
The Fulvous-chested Jungle-flycatcher Rhinomyias olivacea is one of the rarer of the resident flycatchers in Borneo. It prefers the lower storey of primary as well as secondary lowland forest. I saw this particular individual in March this year when it was in the process of nest building. It does possess a really fine song.