Javan Sunbird

Trip Reports

2 Days Birding in Yogyakarta (Jogja)

2 Days Birding in Yogyakarta (Jogja)

Zulqarnain A.

22 August 2023

For two days on August 19-20, 2023, together with two of our clients from France, Sam and Victoria, we spent the day bird watching around Yogyakarta or simply called Jogja. We managed to get 37 species during two memorable days in Jogja. The bird list adding in last section of this report.

First Day on the Southern Slopes of Mount Merapi

Sam and Victoria were picked up at the hotel in the city of Jogja. Exactly at 05.00 am we departed from the hotel to the first location on Turgo hill.

After traveling for about 60 minutes, we headed to the house of our local guide, Mr. Musdi. While waiting for Sam and Victoria to finish their breakfast, talked with Mr. Musdi to determine the route.

At 06.30 am we started our journey along the foothills of Turgo, which is also the boundary between Mount Merapi National Park and Turgo village. Located at an altitude of between 900-1000 meters above sea level, this area is home to several species of birds typical of the highland in Java.

Sooty-headed Bulbul and Yellow-vented Bulbul open the list of bird species today. The weather on this day was quite cloudy, but the birds were still busy. Despite the noise, we could not see all the birds.

Javan Munia
One of the common bird in Java, Javan Munia. Photographed by Sam

The track we traveled on was not entirely flat. Sometimes uphill and downhill, but for those who are used to outdoor activities, this track falls into the easy category. Along the way we also met some villagers who were looking for grass to feed their livestock animals. Sam and Victoria didn’t manage to get many photos.

We could not enjoy the view of Mount Merapi due to the cloudy weather. But despite the unfavorable weather, until 9.30am we managed to see 15 species.

Small Minivet
Small Minivet from Turgo Hill. Photographed by Sam

The Pink headed fruit dove was the closest thing they saw, but unfortunately the pigeon seemed to greet them without expecting a greeting from Sam and Victoria. Yes, this bird flew right behind them while they were looking down.

Moving on to the second location, Tlogo Muncar Park. This location is a mass tourism destination within the National Park area.

Arriving at the parking lot around 10:15 am, we were greeted by a Javan Hawk-Eagle soaring on the hill next to the parking lot. It was quite high but still well recognizable.

After that, we entered the Tlogo Muncar park. There were not many birds that we could observe for about 40 minutes in this park, but with 2 Javan endemic species, the Javan Hawk-Eagle and Javan whistling thrush, it was enough to conclude. Just before we headed to the parking lot we were intercepted by a full gang of Long-tailed Macaque members. A bit of patience waiting for them to pass by.

Today’s birdwatching was rounded off with lunch at an all-mushroom restaurant, Jejamuran Resto. Sam and Victoria really enjoyed themselves and were satisfied with the stomach-friendly menu. Sam especially seemed to like the drink made from ginger and lemongrass.

Chestnut-breasted Malkoha
Chestnut-breasted Malkoha from Jatimulyo. Photographed by Sam

Second Day at Bird Friendly Village, Jatimulyo

Unfortunately, Victoria did not participate in the birdwatching today, due to other commitments. Starting like yesterday, I picked Sam up at the hotel at 05.00 am.

The journey to Jatimulyo took about 75 minutes, 15 minutes faster than we expected as there were no traffic jams. A good sign, we had not yet gotten out of the car when we entered the village and were greeted by 2 Javan Kingfishers hanging out on the power lines.

There are no state-owned forests or other conservation areas in the village. All land is agroforestry managed and privately owned. However, the village has a village regulation that protects nature and wildlife within the village.

Orange-bellied Flowerpecker
Adult male Orange-bellied Flowerpecker perch on banana. Photographed by Sam

This time we were accompanied by Mas Kasidi as our local guide. Mas Kasidi is quite familiar with the birds in his village.

The hilly area of this village is located at an altitude of 600-700 meters above sea level, so it does not have typical Javanese mountain or highland species.

However, this village has many non-highland Javanese endemic species. Traveling along a 3 km route for approximately 3.5 hours and with favorable weather, quite a number of species can be found.

Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher
Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher taken from hide/blind in Jatimulyo. Photographed ny Sam

The rufous-backed or oriental dwarf-kingfisher was the most satisfying species to observe.

For this type of kingfisher, a bird hide is provided by a group called KTH Wanapaksi. A group that is the driving force behind community-based conservation in this village.

It is so easy to see wild birds roaming in this village, with a local group as the driving force and local rules made by the village government, it is fitting that this village is called a bird-friendly village.

Javan Sunbird
One of the endemic birds we managed to photograph, Javan Sunbird. Photographed by Sam

We close today’s observation by eating a village-style lunch. The menu is very healthy because it is full of vegetables and of course they will not get this menu other than here.

Again, Sam really enjoyed his lunch and the spicy village chili sauce was perfect for Sam’s spicy taste. It was a very satisfying experience for Sam to go birdwatching here, but not for Victoria.

Here are the bird list that we managed to get during 2 days birding around Jogja.

Photograph Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher
Happy faces from Juki especially Sam after photographed Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher in Jatimulyo.

Leave us your Feedback

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Contact Form Demo

Plan to go birding in Indonesia?

We have several tour packages and are open to customizing them based on your needs!

Read Other Trip Report

Half-Day Birding in Jakarta