End of forest, heavily
disturbed and going
into Mahogany forest.
agriculture as well as
Biodiversity Conservation Lessons Learned Technical Series
I = InCIDEnTAL OBSERvATIOn,
* InDICATES EnDEMIC SPECIES,
# InDICATES InTRODUCED SPECIES.
Pacific Black Duck
Many-coloured Fruit Dove
Crimson-capped Fruit Dove
Further surveys of the Red-
nADALA nATURE CLUB, vITI LEvU
vILIKESA T MASIBALAvU
Observing birds and learning bird handling and identification skills, Nadala Nature Club, Monasavu
(Photos: NFMV/Vilikesa Masibalavu)
LAnDOWnER COnSULTATIOn AnD PREPARATORy WORK
9–13 November, 2010
Preparatory work for more Red-throated Lorikeet (RTL) survey was done at Nadala village from
Meeting and introducing the CEPF funded Red-throated Lorikeet work to the Nadala community.
Meeting with the Tomaniivi Nature Club and discussing future survey work.
Developing local expertise in birds and bird survey methodology.
Identify suitable areas for further survey work.
There was no sighting of the Red-throated Lorikeet made and no calls heard during the 5-day
survey in Nadarivatu and Monasavu. Four members of the Nadala Nature Club were trained during
the trip on birds and bird survey techniques. These four people will be used as leaders for more
coordinated survey during the year. A total of eight sites were identified around Nadarivatu and
Monasavu for further RTL survey work.
The Red-throated Lorikeet is a critically endangered bird, endemic to the Fiji Islands (2008 ICUN).
It has previously been recorded in Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni, and Ovalau in old-growth native
rainforest habitat (Clunie 1999). The last sighting of this bird was in 1993 and since then every
attempts have failed to find a single bird.
The survey was organized by NatureFiji – MareqetiViti where Vilikesa Masibalavu was hired to carry
out the preparatory work. The community members include the Turaga ni Koro of Nadala village
and three youth from the Tomaniivi Nature Club.
Bird survey and training was done with the team on Wednesday 10th and Thursday 11th November
and Friday morning. On Friday afternoon and Saturday, I was doing birding alone down at
Monasavu and Lutu, Wainimala because the team members belong to the SDA church.
The team started birding at Nakutu before we climb up the forest opposite Nakutu which also has
their village water dam. The afternoon was spent at Vatumoli, Nadrau which also is the same site
where a German birder, Mr Jorg Kretzma claim to have seen RTL in two of his visits to Fiji. This was
confirmed by one of the local who was Mr Jorg’s local guide when he saw the RTL. On Thursday,
the team walked down the trail to the waterfall and on the way back followed the old forest track
that crosses from Nadala to Lewa. Our afternoon birding was done at the Ratu Sukuna pool at
Nadarivatu where some Vuga trees were found still blooming. Viewpoint observation was done on
two of the Vuga trees and we continued on Friday morning.
The Monasavu to Lutu birding on Friday and Saturday was mainly incidental observations along
most time was spent.
First the local guides were trained on the proper use and storage of binoculars and telescope. With
survey techniques, two most commonly used survey methods were used:
1. Observation at viewpoint
2. Opportunistic observation
All bird species seen or heard were recorded for both methods at certain time interval.
SELECTED SURvEy SITES
The sites selected were based on the following criteria:
1. Presence of flowering trees especially Vuga (Metrocideros collina) and Drala (Erythrina
3. RTL reported sites
3. Forest track from Nadala to Lewa
4. Southridge Radio Station Road and Nadarivatu Nature Reserve
Mt. Tomanivii and Surrounding Habitat
1. Track up to Tomaniivi Nature Reserve
2. Track up to Wabu Nature Reserve
1. Continue training the four local guides before engaging them on their own.
2. Concentrate on only 2 sites for doing training with the guides; i.e. Vatumoli, (Nadrau)
3. Survey equipments are needed – Binoculars, Telescope
15 – 18 December, 2010
Depart Suva to Nadala
Present sevusevu and meeting with Tomaniivi Nature Club members
Birding at Nakutu and Vatumoli, Nadrau
on two sites at Nadarivatu namely Naqaranibuluti and Nadarivatu Nature Reserve. There was no
sighting of the bird after 24 observer hours where more than half of the time was spent on a single
flowering ‘Vuga tree’ (Metrocederous collina) at Naqaranibuluti.
To search for the Red-throated Lorikeet.
The survey was conducted by Vilikesa Masibalavu. None of the team members at Nadala village was
available because there were two deaths in the village on the same week.
LOCATIOn, DATE AnD METHOD
The survey was conducted in two areas of Nadarivatu from the 21-24th December 2010. A total
of 24 ‘observer hours’ of bird quantitative surveys was achieved, together with some additional
hours of obtaining incidental records. The Naqaranibuluti Forest had a flowering Vuga tree where
a total 15.5 observer hours was spent mainly in the morning. The afternoon was spent searching at
Nadarivatu Nature Reserve with a total of 8.5 observer hours.
Quantitative fieldwork involved recording each bird seen or heard in measured time periods in the
mornings and late afternoons. Special effort was made to observe the target species of the Red-
throated Lorikeet by listening for their distinctive calls at viewpoints.
which included 17 of the 21 forest bird species that are classified as endemic or regionally endemic
in Fiji. The most commonly recorded species were Collared Lory (88 recorded), Wattled Honeyeater
(73 recorded), Orange-breasted Myzomella (61 recorded) and Barking pigeon (56 recorded).
There were no sightings of the threatened Fijian birds; Black-faced Shrikebill, Pink-billed parrotfinch
and Friendly-ground Dove.
Continue search in other areas as identified in Trip I report.
Include students and local volunteers.
SUMMARy OF BIRD OBSERvATIOn
Eastern Reef Heron
Friendly Ground Dove
Masked Shining Parrot
Giant Forest Honeyeater
SUMMARy OF ACTIvITy AnD MILEAGE
Depart Suva for birding at Naqaranibuluti
Meeting with Rupeni Vauvau at Nadala village.
identified as a potential area for sighting RTL due to its remoteness, presence of flowering trees and
high topographical feature. There were no sightings of the target bird Red-throated Lorikeet after
17.5 observer hours including 6:0 hours mist netting.
A total of seven new Long-legged Warbler territory were found as they responded to playback.
These sites were mainly along the road from the main dam site to Waiboa Dam.
To search for the Red-throated Lorikeet.
The survey was conducted by Vilikesa Masibalavu and a field guide Kaliova N Vasu.
LOCATIOn, DATE AnD METHOD
The survey was done within the Monasavu dam area from Saturday 11 to Monday 13 June, 2011.
The tracks at Monasavu are ideally located for survey work giving very good views of hillside
and valley habitats. The primary habitat type at Monasavu varies with elevation and aspect, from
upland rainforest through cloud forest.
A total of 23.5 observer hours of quantitative bird surveys was achieved which included:
Standardized transect -observation during timed transects along road and then expressed as
encounter rates (13 hours). (See Appendix I) Observation at timed periods at an observation
post in this case a flowering Vuga tree (Metrosideros collina) (4.5 Hours) Mist netting (6 hours)
Birding was done along four roads:
Road to Telecom repeater.
Second road on the right from the dam to Waitubasavu outflow
Along the main road from the dam
Along road down to Waiboa dam
There were no sightings of the Red-throated Lorikeet.
Flowering trees were rare in the area at this time which causes us to do standardized transect walk.
A Vuga tree was sighted on Sunday pm where there were only a few flowers present. It was not
attracting a lot of birds except a few honeyeaters and myzomella. Interestingly, a male Black-faced
Shrikebill was sighted on the tree obviously not attracted to the flowers but the tree could be well
within its territory. The whole Monday morning was spent observing this flowering vuga tree.
Wattled honeyeater and Barking pigeon were the most common bird sighted. Collared lory,
of flowering trees.
New Long-legged Warbler sites were discovered within the dam area. A total of seven new sites
were found (See map Appendix III). These were confirmed as the birds responded to playback.
1. Survey area
Continue searching at Nadarivatu and Monasavu.
2. Survey method
Continue using stop and scan searches from good vantage points over flowering trees that hold
numbers of other nectivorous species.
APPENDIx I: BIRDS AND OTHER VERTEBRATE SPECIES RECORDED AT
MONASAVU 11–13 JUNE, 2011
(Names and taxonomic order of birds follow the checklist in Watling (2001) Birds of Fiji and Western
Barking Pigeon Soqe
Fairly common 10
Fairly common 11
Endangered Not recorded