Jan 30, 2016

Birding in Fiji

Fiji, compared to other South Pacific nations such as New Guinea, lacks a diversity of avian life but there are enough interesting and sometimes spectacular looking birds to attract visitors from throughout the world.

In all, there are about 80 species of terrestrial and freshwater birds of which about 10 have been introduced.


They are distributed throughout the islands but those interested in sampling an array bird should consider visiting three islands: Viti Levu (which has 56 of the 81 known species found in the group), Kadavu, and the Garden Island of Taveuni.


In general, the larger islands tend to be more ecologically intact and the bigger birds—notably the parrots and pigeons—are easily seen.


Full story here: http://fijiguide.com/page/bird-watching

Jan 29, 2016

Pacific Birds - is the website of Dick Watling, Pacific naturalist, author and environment consultant

Pacific Birds is the website of Dick Watling, Pacific naturalist, author and environment consultant.
Pacific Birds provides details on and ordering information for Dick Watling’s and other publications on the birds and wildlife of Fiji and neighbouring countries of Samoa,American SamoaTonga, Niue, Tokelau, Tuvalu, and Wallis & Futuna.
Pacific Birds provides the latest checklists for Pacific Island countries.
Pacific Birds provides links to other Pacific bird websites, conservation groups and consultancy services.




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Pacific Birds - Dick Watling's Website

Jan 4, 2016

Sculptures of life-sized species - NatureFiji-MareqetiViti


ANNE O'Brien presented NatureFiji-MareqetiViti with several life-sized models of Fijis endangered species made from 100 per cent recycled materials before her departure to Scotland.
Ms OBrien, who was attached with Nature Fiji since August last year, is part of an animal sanctuary in Britain called Anniemals.
She creates realistic, life-sized sculptures and puppets of creatures using recycled fabrics from various sources. She sculptured 20 life-sized models of Fijian birds, bats, sharks, turtles and insects using masi (tapa), blankets and old clothes.
This is a unique combination, models of Fijian animals made out of 100 per cent recycled Fijian materials, said NatureFiji-MareqetiVitis conservation co-ordinator Nunia Thomas.
These models are a special gift and we are very grateful to Anne for volunteering to do this for us.
She has done her research, and we are very impressed with what she has created.
Ms OBrien offered to create the models for NatureFiji-MareqetiViti in early 2012 when she heard that they were receiving requests from schools and the general public for demonstrations with children but were unable to do so because there were no readily available models of Fijian species in Fiji.
It is very difficult to find authentic Fijian toys and animal models in Fijis shops even in tourist shops.
Most of the animal models we find are foreign animals that have the words Bula Fiji on them.
This is a sad reality considering the fact that we get many tourists who are interested in Fijis wildlife.
Our main objective from the very start has always been to engage Fijis children in active conservation action.
These models are our stepping stone towards that dream, said Ms Thomas.

Sculptures of life-sized species

Dec 28, 2015

PACIFIC BIRDS Habitat Joint Venture

Great site for migratory birds on the other side of Pacific!

PACIFIC BIRDS HABITAT JOINT VENTURE (Pacific Birds) is an international partnership between the U.S. and Canada committed to conserving crucial habitats for migratory birds.

We have been advancing avian habitat conservation since our origins in 1991.



Pacific Birds is making renewed efforts to meet the enormous conservation challenges we all face.

We are also working with partners to create new opportunities to achieve conservation on a flyway scale, from Northern California to Hawaii to Alaska.

Please dive in and learn more about our efforts, our partners and most importantly, the birds.

We are a partnership driven organization that thrives on engagement, input and collaboration.

We would like to know what you need to be more successful, to be more regionally focused, and to communicate and connect more.

Pacific Birds Habitat Joint Venture was formerly called Pacific Coast Joint Venture.


PACIFIC BIRDS Habitat Joint Venture | Creating the ideal environment for bird habitat conservation.

Mar 2, 2013

Birding in Fiji

Fiji, compared to other South Pacific nations such as New Guinea, lacks a diversity of avian life but there are enough interesting and sometimes spectacular looking birds to attract visitors from throughout the world. In all, there are about 80 species of terrestrial and freshwater birds of which about 10 have been introduced. They are distributed throughout the islands but those interested in sampling an array bird should consider visiting three islands: Viti Levu (which has 56 of the 81 known species found in the group), Kadavu, and the Garden Island of Taveuni. In general, the larger islands tend to be more ecologically intact and the bigger birds—notably the parrots and pigeons—are easily seen.
Birding in Fiji:

'via Blog this'

Jan 3, 2013

Fiji Pelagic Trips - May - September 2012 — Fiji Bird Watching


Fiji Pelagic Trips – May – September 2012

While living in Fiji (May-September 2012), I did several “pelagic” trips.
These involved riding on scheduled ferry trips or on chartered fishing trips.
There is limited information (almost none) on pelagic birding in Fiji.
Thus, I have compiled the data I gathered to help someone trying to see pelagic species in Fiji.

Trips

June 25: Suva to Gau Ferry with Consort Shipping
June 30: Fishing trip south of Pacific Harbor with Freedive Fiji
July 23: Suva to Gau Ferry with Consort Shipping
August 13-14: Suva to Taveuni Ferry with Goundar Shipping
August 24: Kadavu to Suva Ferry with Goundar Shipping

Jun 28, 2012

UN award for local Sisi Initiative/Natewa Tunuloa Site Support Group

THE Sisi Initiative/Natewa Tunuloa Site Support Group is one of 25 recipients of the Equator Initiative Award at the United Nations (UN) Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
A voluntary group of local landowners from Fiji has been awarded a prestigious Equator Prize for 2012. A representative of the group, Silio Lalaqila, received the award at a special ceremony last night co-hosted by actor, Ed Norton and Brazilian actress and environmental advocate, Camilla Pitanga.
The ceremony was also attended by heads of states, U.N. representatives and a list of celebrities, and held at the U.N. Conference on Sustainable Development (also known as Rio+20) which currently underway in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The Sisi Initiative is a BirdLife Fiji project. the group is named after the Sisi bird — also known as the Silktail Lamprolia victoriae - which is found only in the Natewa Tunuloa Peninsula on Fiji’s second-largest island of Vanua Levu.
This peninsula is one of the 14 Important Bird Areas in Fiji identified by BirdLife International as globally vital for conserving biodiversity. However, the birds’ old-growth rainforest habitat is being encroached upon by forces such as illegal logging, forest fires, overgrazing, agricultural expansion and the spread of invasive species.
In response to these threats, the Sisi group has been working with communities to wisely use and manage their natural resources in order to conserve the endemic bird while at the same time improving their own way of life. Actively managing more than 6,000 hectares (almost 15,000 acres) of forest, six villages are turning to income-generating activities that are compatible with conservation, including beekeeping, jewelry-making and ecotourism.
Silio Lalaqila — a representative of Fiji’s Sisi Initiative — accepted the Equator Prize on behalf of the community group at a Rio+20 award ceremony. (© CI/Photo by Kim McCabe)
Receiving the award Wednesday, Silio was overwhelmed by emotions, having traveled from his day job as a farmer, across the globe to receive the award in front of many world leaders.
“I felt proud to be a Fijian receiving this award on behalf of all the communities in Fiji that are actively engaged in conserving their natural resources”, said Silio. “It was more special getting the award in front of my own Prime Minister, Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama”.
“I am so thankful to BirdLife International for all the help they gave us to manage and conserve our natural resources”, he added.
The Equator Initiative is a partnership that brings together the U.N., governments, civil society, businesses and grassroots organizations to build capacity and raise the profile of local efforts towards sustainable development.
“The Sisi project is an example of strong partnership with the local communities”, said Miliana Ravuso – Programme Coordinator form the BirdLife International Pacific Secretariat.
“Over time, and with much dialogue and awareness-raising conducted by BirdLife and other stakeholders, the communities have realised the importance of protecting the Silktail and its habitat, and recognized the potential for an ecotourism birding venture”.
“The communities understood the destructive impacts of unsustainable logging and land-management practices, and realized that they could better manage existing natural resources and still derive income from them through alternative livelihood projects,” said Milly.
The work of the Sisi Initiative has been kindly supported by the GEF Small Grants Programme (GEF SGP – implemented by UNDP), Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF), UK Darwin Initiative and Australian Government Regional Natural Heritage Programme.
“We are proud to support organisations such as the Sisi Initiative group, which empowers indigenous communities to protect, manage and steward the natural resources in their communities, said Patricia Zurita – Executive Director of CEPF.

The Sisi Initiative is a UN Development Program (UNDP) Global Environment Facility (GEF) Small Grants Program (SGP) Fiji grantee.
SGP supports activities of non-government and community-based organisations in developing countries towards climate change abatement.
The SGP also supports the groups in the protection and conservation of the environment.
The Sisi Initiative through its partner Birdlife Fiji received the funding in 2011 for a reforestation program on the Natewa Tunuloa Peninsula.
Receiving the prize on behalf of the group was Sisi Initiative/project co-ordinator Sirilo Lalaqila.
A high powered Fiji government delegation was on hand to show support to Mr Lalaqila.
The Sisi Initiative is a BirdLife Fiji project. the group is named after the Sisi bird — also known as the Silktail Lamprolia victoriae — which is found only in the Natewa Tunuloa Peninsula on the island of Vanua Levu.

Sisi_Initiative
THE Sisi Initiative/Natewa Tunuloa Site Support Group
The Sisi Initiative, which manages natural resources around the periphery of the Natewa Tunuloa Important Bird Area (IBA), is being recognized for its work establishing a 6,000-hectare community-managed forest and developing alternative livelihood options for the area's indigenous landowners.  


The project was originally developed to respond to the problems of  illegal logging, forest fires, overgrazing, agricultural encroachment and invasive alien species around the IBA, which includes large tracts of old-growth rainforest that support globally threatened birds.


A focus of the project was developing a strong partnership with the communities. Over time and with much dialog and awareness-raising conducted by BirdLife and other stakeholders, the communities came to realize the importance of protecting an endemic bird, the silktail (Lamprolia victoriae) and its habitat, and recognized the potential for an ecotourism birding venture. The communities understood the destructive impacts of unsustainable logging and land-management practices, and realized that they could better manage existing natural resources and still derive income from them through alternative livelihood projects.


“This initiative is a learning model for community-based conservation and forest management across Fiji,” said Patricia Zurita, executive director of CEPF. “We are proud to support organizations such as the Sisi Initiative Site Support Group (SSG), which empowers indigenous communities to protect, manage and steward the natural resources in their communities.”

The 25 recipients of the Equator Prize 2012 will each receive $5,000 (USD), and representatives of winning communities will be presented their awards today at the Equator Prize Gala held in conjunction with the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), currently under way in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


In addition to grants provided by CEPF, the initiative also has received funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF)-Small Grants Programme for a two-year project that includes the establishment of two village nurseries and the development of an ecotourism package for the IBA.






iji's Sisi Initiative Site Support Group manages natural resources around the periphery of the Natewa Tunuloa Important Bird Area. The organization has established a 600-hectare community protected forest and developed alternative livelihood options for the area's indigenous landowners.


Developed in response to illegal logging, forest fires, overgrazing, agricultural encroachment and invasive alien species, the organization uses an innovative incentive scheme to protect the globally important bird and wildlife species in Natewa Tunuloa. 


Communities sign a Memorandum of Understanding in which they agree to protect the community forest and refuse logging concessions. In return, the initiative provides alternative livelihood training and projects in beekeeping, poultry, handicraft and jewelry-making, bakery and pastry-making, and sustainable agricultural. The group's model farm and tree nursery also help to reduce deforestation. 


The initiative has been used as a learning model for community-based conservation and forest management across Fiji.


Contacts:
Talemo Tukidia / Miliana Ravuso
Nadavaci Village, Natewa, Cakaudrove, Fiji
milly@birdlifepacific.org.fj


Partner: BirdLife International







UN award for local group