Sunday, 15 January 2017

Madagascar 2: Andasibe-Mantadia

After finishing up with Operation Wallacea I had a couple of days in the incredible rainforests of western madagascar at Andasibe-Mantadia National Park.

The first afternoon I arrived I spent a few hours in the community reserve and went on a nightwalk down the main road. In the reserves guides are compulsory, I had a rather naff local guide who didn't really find me anything but it was great to be in the forest and I saw a handful of new species (Red-fronted Coua, Blue Coua, Madagascar Blue Pigeon, Spectacled Tetraka & Nelicourvi Weaver). On a nightwalk from the hotel down the main road I encountered several Eastern Avahi (Wooly-Lemurs) and a Goodman's Mouse Lemur.

Blue Coua
Madagascar Pygmy Kingfisher
Eastern Avahi
The next day I'd organised a great local bird guide and we went into Mantadia, the beautiful untouched (barre a few trails) primary rainforest. Here we found numerous new forest birds and 4 species of Lemur (Red-bellied, Bamboo, Indri & Black-and-white ruffed Lemur). Sadly despite our best efforts in the non-breeding season, we were unable to locate any ground-rollers.

The primary forest of Mantadia

Blue Vanga

Bamboo Lemur

Red-bellied Lemur

Black-and-white ruffed Lemur & Indri

My final day was spent in Andasibe, here I got amazing Indri experiences as these giant lemur bounded around the trees and howled just a few metres away. A family of Diademed Sifakas hung out eating leaves. Red-breasted Coua and Crossley's Vanga took some work while mixed flocks of Blue, Nuthatch,Ward's, Tylas, White-headed, Hook-billed, Chabert and Red-tailed Vangas were encountered throughout the day.

Velvet Asity

Diademed Sifaka

Crested Ibis

Red-tailed Vanga (female)

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