Sunday, July 31, 2011

MNS Miri Branch New Committee for 2011-2012

MNS Miri concluded their Branch AGM held at Baraya Laut Resort, Kpg Baraya, Miri, Sarawak 30th July 2011 with the election of fresh faces for branch Committee. The AGM went smoothly with twenty-two stalwart members attending the event.

The new committee,
Chairperson : Peter Pillai
Vice-Chairperson : Musa Musbah
Secretary : Joyce Sivalingam
Treasurer : Amer Matridi Mansor
Committee : Miriam Chacko, Marlene Lim (Co-opted)
Immediate-past Chairperson : Anura Dason

Those in attendance were later treated to an early dinner consisting of kelupis and satay ordered specially for the occasion. Dinner was then followed by a short firefly cruise along Sg Raan for members and their family.

Special mention goes to Committee members from 2010-2011 who made this event all possible.

Here's to another productive year for MNS Miri!

MNS Miri

Monday, July 11, 2011

Garden birdwatching at Miri Marriott Resort and Spa

A male Oriental Magpie Robin, he's already exercising his little lungs by 6:30AM.

Oriental Magpie Robin in the parking lot.

It's the weekend, we decided to allot some time for a relax and leisurely birdwatching while being pampered by the facilities offered by a premier resort in Miri, the Marriott Resort and Spa located not 15mins from the city center just a hillock away from our home.

While the children while away their time splashing the pool, there's plenty of time to checkout the common garden birds in the compound. Though most of the area seemed dominated by casuarinas and plams, there are pockets of flowering trees especially around the parking lot. The garden chalets are surrounded by palms, some fruiting and mature causarinas. The garden is compact with neatly placed plants.

The most common birds here has to be the Oriental Magpie Robin, the early risers if not the earliest. There were several pairs around our rooms on the upper floors. The advantage of the upper floors is that you'd be watching the birds at eye-level. From our room we could hear nesting munias and even saw a pair of endemic Dusky Munia busy transporting dried grass from the garden to build a nest somewhere between the fronds of plam trees several rooms away from ours. We also saw a nesting Yellow-vented Bulbul from our verandah.

Common Iora.

Olive-backed Sunbird, male.

Yellow-vented Bulbul, several nesting in the resort compound.

Black-headed Munia, flitting about in the grass amongst the casuarinas. These also nest in the resort compound.

Pied Fantail startled by the camera flash.

Zebra Dove, the ones in the compound seemed familar with people and were not at all skittish, foraging in a group along walking paths.

A pesky squirrel that stopped by our verandah on the way to his second breakfast.

Other garden birds we saw while at the resort:
White-breasted Woodswallow (nesting), Collared Kingfisher, Little Green Pigeon, Pink-necked Pigeon, Asian Glossy Starling, Dusky Munia, and Sunda/Pygmy Woodpecker.

Miri Marriott Resort and Spa is located 15mins from Miri town. Shuttle service to town is available at regular intervals provided free by the resort. Excursions to nearby national parks, Lambir Hills NP and Niah Caves NP, for more serious birdwatching can be easily arranged. You feel more adventurous, grab a taxi to the town's central bus station and hop on a bus to take you to Lambir Hills which is only 30minutes from Miri. There's the Mandara Spa, the perfect place to unwind sore muscles at the end of a hard day's birdwatching.

Nazeri Abghani/Miri.