Birding Factoids

590 species
in 57  families

No endemics
13 endangered species
54 speciality species
3-4 week trip expectation -
about 300 species



Checklist of Bhutan BirdsTours and GuidesEco-LodgesSpeciality BirdsPrint and Other ResourcesMap and General Information
Check out Hideo Tani's Birds of Bhutan --- and
See more of Christian Artuso's images of South-East Asian Birds
Bhutan Specialities
Blythe's Trangopan - Photo copyright Dan Cowell
Photo copyright Dan Cowell
Red-headed Bullfinch - Photo copyright Sumit Sen
Photo copyright Sumit Sen
Plum-headed Parakeet - Photo copyright Ronald Saldino
Photo copyright Ronald Saldino
Pale-billed Flowerpecker - Photo copyright Sumit Sen
Photo copyright Sumit Sen

    ....Birdwatching in the Kingdom of Bhutan - by Jigme Tsering. The bird

      habitats of Bhutan can be roughly divided into forest, scrub, wetlands, alpine habitats,agricultural land & around human habitation. Unlike other Himalayan countries, Bhutan still retains much of its forest intact. The country's forests are rich , diverse & beautiful, forming some of the best remaining representatives of forest habitats in the Himalayas. 
    ....The road between Ura and Limithang in eastern Bhutan: by K. David
      Bishop, from OBC Bulletin 29, May 1999. Despite Bhutan's small size, over 600 species have been recorded from the Kingdom, including nearly 70 which have been added during the last ten years. And what fun it has been to be one of the few to visit the country and document some of these additions. 
    ....Trip Report - Bhutan: 13 April - 1 May 2001, by John Penhallurick.
      It was an early spring. This meant we missed some wintering birds, and it was noticeable with some species that we saw only females. The males had presumably gone up earlier to the breeding territories. On the other hand, we also benefited from finding some early summer breeding migrants.
    ....Trip Report: Western Bhutan, March 13-18, 2000. By Tom and 
      Margot Southerland. The Kingdom of Bhutan, a predominately Buddhist country in the Himalayas situated between India and China (Tibet), is the size of the combined US states of Vermont and New Hampshire. The Bhutanese have long called their country "Druk Yul" (translated as "Land of the Thunder Dragon"). To us and members of our group, our visit was a delightful step back in time to a place where there are no TV channels (but yes to video rentals), few telephones, no cell phones, no stoplights and the people are helpful, friendly and wave back to visitors. In western Bhutan there is only one paved road, and because there are so many curves in this hilly and mountainous area, considerable time is spent reaching a specific birding area. The bird list for Bhutan is over 650 species. Thus, it is of no surprise
      that so many bird tour operators spend almost three weeks in Bhutan to include the subtropical broad-leaved forests of lower
      elevations, a drive of over six hours from our area. Our week-long trip just covered Western Bhutan. 
    ....Trip Report: Bhutan, January 8-27, 1995 - by Niels Poul Dreyer. 
      Bhutan, shielded from the outside world until the 1960s, has retained all the charm of the old world. Bhutan's forests cover is about 65 per cent of the country's area of 46,000 sq. km. The range after range of untouched forests projects Bhutan as the last hope for many Himalayan birds such as Blyth and Satyr Tragopan, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Ward's Trogon and Blyth Kingfisher. Bhutan is also one of the last strongholds for Snow Leopard, Tiger and the Red Panda. 

    Factoids taken from Where to watch birds in Asia  - by Nigel Wheatley

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Tours and Guides

>>>>>> A Birding Pal is not a paid guide, but someone who likes to help out of town visitors. You can become a Birding Pal today! Help someone to enjoy your local birding spots and find a pal to help you when you travel. Click here for Bhutan Birding Pals, or join to be a Birding Pal!
Velvet-fronted Nuthatch - Photo copyright Anke Poggel
Photo copyright Anke Poggel

Wreathed Hornbill - Photo copyright Pat Goltz

Photo copyright Pat Goltz
    **..Bhutan: Land of the Dragon with Victor Emanuel Nature Tours (VENT)
      Everything that Victor Emanuel Nature Tours had hoped for came to fruition in the 1998 tour of Bhutan. It continued the revelation that Bhutan is truly paradise on earth. Untouched, primeval forests do extend as far as the eye can see. The birding is fantastic beyond anyone's dreams. The culture and people are one of the most fascinating and least disturbed on our planet. The final frontier is the Himalayas–the world's highest mountains, pristine and majestic with satin skies pierced by rugged, snow-encrusted crags, its slopes blanketed in untold birders' dreams. This is THE tour you have been waiting for. Imagine birding among woodlands clothed in rhododendron and magnolia; rose-tinged mist with the haunt of cosmic Satyr Tragopans; innumerable glowing sunbirds, dapper grosbeaks, and subtle rosefinches.
      VENT offers nearly 140 tours to over 100 land-based destinations each year and is the largest tour company in the world specializing in birding and natural history.


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Endemics and Specialities

in Bhutan

Information on endemics and specialities is derived from Sibley & Monroe checklists and bird distribution lists in Thayer's Birder's Diary - Version 2.05, supplemented by material found in Where to watch birds in Asia  - by Nigel Wheatley. Asian speciality birds, while not endemic, are those that can only be found in three or less countries of Asia. Information on endangered birds is derived from the IUCN Red List, Birdlife International.  The endemic, endangered and speciality birds may be uncommon, extremely rare vagrants, may be extirpated in the country now or may only be present in migration. However, documented sightings of each species noted below have been made in Bhutan. 

Endemics in Bhutan
Endangered Birds in Bhutan
(endemics are printed in bold italic)

Breeding Birds

Non-Breeding Birds

___ Beautiful Nuthatch
___ Blythe's Kingfisher
___ Blyth's Trangopan
___ Chestnut-breasted Partridge
___ Dark-rumped Swift
___ Pallas's Fish-Eagle
___ Rufous-necked Hornbill
___ Rufous-throated Wren-Babbler
___ Ward's Trogon 
___ White-bellied Heron
___ Wood Snipe
___ Black-necked Crane
___ Ferruginous Pochard

Other Speciality and Near-endemic Birds in Bhutan
(adapted from Where to watch birds in Asia  - by Nigel Wheatley.)

___ Bar-winged Wren-Babbler
___ Beautiful Rosefinch
___ Black-browed Parrotbill
___ Blanford's Rosefinch
___ Blue-fronted Robin
___ Brown Parrotbill
___ Collared Treepie
___ Crested Kingfisher
___ Crimson-browed Finch
___ Cutia
___ Fire-capped Tit
___ Fire-tailed Myzornis
___ Fire-tailed Sunbird
___ Fulvous Parrotbill
___ Gold-naped Finch
___ Gould's Sunird
___ Great Parrotbill
___ Green Cochoa
___ Grey-crowned Prinia
___ Grey-headed Bullfinch
___ Grey-sided Laughingthrush
___ Hoary-throated Barwing
___ Ibisbill
___ Long-billed Plover
___ Ludlow's Fulvetta
___ Maroon-backed Accentor
___ Nepal Fulvetta
___ Pied Thrush
___ Red-faced Liocichla
___ Red-headed Bullfinch
___ Red-tailed Minla
___ Robin Accentor
___ Ruddy Kingfisher
___ Rufous-breasted Bush-robin
___ Rufous-necked Laughingthrush
___ Rufous-throated Fulvetta
___ Rufous-vented Laughingthrush
___ Rufous-vented Yuhina
___ Rusty-fronted Barwing
___ Sapphite Flycatcher
___ Satyr Trangopan
___ Scarlet Finch
___ Silver-eared Mesia
___ Slender-billed Scimitar-Babbler
___ Smoky Warbler
___ Spotted Wren-Babbler
___ Striated Laughingthrush
___ Sultan Tit
___ Tibetan Lark
___ Tibetan Serin
___ White-naped Yuhina
___ Yellow-rumped Honeyguide
___ Yellow-throated Fulvetta
___ Yellow-vented Warbler

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Print and Other Resources on Birds

and Birding in India

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