When: August 2016 Weather: Hot 30C
Nikon P900, Leica Q
After a meeting at the Datai in Langkawi, it was time to see if its location in a tropical rain forest was really that…was nature that accessible there? We often journey far and wide looking for that special eco location or nature haven….
30 minutes from the airport in Langkawi, the Datai is stuck in a secluded north western corner of the island in the middle of a rainforest fringed by the sea. Then omens were good. Things looked promising when checking in…we nearly stepped on one of the numerous frogs in and around a spectacular water lily pond in the lobby….
The resident nature guide in the resort Mr Irshard is an incredible resource knowledgeable, erudite and helpful, pointing out where to look for birds etc…
Almost as soon as we checked in to room 314, I heard some commotion outside my balcony…..
It’s well worth joining one of the free nature walks given by Mr Irshard once in the morning and once in the evening. I birded from 7-8am (Only gets light at 7am) joined him for his tour, had breakfast and then birded on the main road outside the resort….
I first exited the resort and turned right up the road reaching a private property but it was quiet….on getting back to the main gate, I spotted….
Irshard had told me about the possible presence of the blue winged pitta along the road near the car park about 2-300m left of the main gate so off I went after breakfast to see I could get any joy….I also wanted to get better pix of an Asian Fairy bluebird….
It looked a bit quiet at first so I amused myself by shooting some butterflies….
and just when I thought it was not very exciting, I caught a glimpse of a blackish bird flying around…and it finally settled long enough for me to shoot it, albeit in bad light….
And then I saw a flash of blue, green red and yellow behind a tree….flying off and hopping around in deep cover..maybe the pitta??? Having not been able to find it again, I set off further down the road and amazingly round the corner…..
If you are a nature lover and new to tropical birding, you could just come to the Datai, expensive though it is and not leave it at all and still be thrilled by the sheer proximity of the birdlife, not to mention the butterflies, frogs, mammals etc. I can imagine that if you are into clubbing and partying and shopping that this would not be ideal but hey, why come to the Datai then?