> I also bought a copy of 'Birds of Fiji and Western Polynesia' by Dick
> Watling, directly from Dick through his website:
Highly recommended. There's also a cute little pocket guide called "Birds
of the Fiji Bush" that really does fit in your pocket.
Some years back we stayed at Octopus Resort which may be where you're going
or at least close to it. At the time, the snorkeling was first-rate. They
had set up a reserve area in cooperation with the local owners/village
which was helping the coral and fish stocks - and gave money directly to
the village. The night snorkeling was memorable. These are small islands
and the variety of birds you should expect is fairly small...but a
Peregrine did pass through.
If you get over to the Suva side of Viti Levu, the best birding we found in
Fiji was in and near Colo-I-Suva park. We stayed at the Rainforest Lodge
and while nice, you've got no protection from noise. You can get right into
the park on your own and the grounds of the hotel had a good mix of birds.
In the area we saw birds including Musk Parrot, various
fantails/flycatchers, Giant Forest Honeyeater, and the transplendent Golden
If you've birding the tropical Pacific before, Fiji should impress you. If
you've birded mostly in continental areas, it might not. The birds of Fiji
are closely related to the families here (although they've got genera we
don't) so you should feel quite at home with identifications. I recommend
Colo-I-Suva or any forest track that you can get guided to. I haven't been
to any but it sounds like the recommendations you've ready gotten are well
worth pursuing. The smaller the island you're on, the fewer bird species
you should expect. The more developed the area, the fewer birds too, of
course. With that said, the common birds are pretty first rate.
Parrot-finches! Lorries! Can't complain.
Have a fantastic trip!
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