Birdwatching has been growing globally, and Brunei, with its legendary jungles and wildlife, has become a popular destination for avid birdwatchers.
It was highlighted during a talk on birdwatching, organised by Royal Brunei Airlines (RB) and Brunei Tourism yesterday at RB Campus, to promote birdwatching tour programmes in the country.
According to RB, while birdwatching has been gaining popularity in the Sultanate over the years, the lack of comprehensive guides presents an opportunity for growth and development.
The talk featured an avid birdwatcher from Australia, Richard Arnold, who has had extensive experience sighting birds in Brunei. Having observed over 170 bird species across the country, he said among his treasured sightings is the red-bearded bee-eater (Nyctyornis amictus).
He said there are over 10,000 bird species worldwide, and 700 of which are found on Borneo Island, Arnold said, adding that 60 species are exclusive to the island, 10 of which can be spotted in Brunei.
With 70 per cent of the Sultanate covered in pristine rainforests, he believes it makes Brunei an ideal place for avid birdwatchers.
RB Chief Executive Officer said, “We are extremely grateful to Arnold for taking the time to share his experiences and expertise with us. This event reflects RB and Brunei Tourism’s commitment to promoting eco-tourism and efforts in the country.
“By showcasing Brunei’s rich biodiversity, the collaboration seeks to draw attention to the country’s unique offerings and contribute to its growing reputation as a key destination for nature enthusiasts.”
Meanwhile, Acting Director of Tourism Development Salinah binti Haji Mohd Salleh calls on avid birdwatchers to consider becoming licensed tour guides as “there is high potential for this niche segment”. – James Kon