Nature & General Taiwan Tours

Taiwan has fantastic biodiversity. No matter if your interests lie with birds, butterflies, flora - or a bit of anything natural, we can put together a great trip to suit you.

The Birds: Taiwan is rich in endemics and is a key stopover on the East Asian north-south flyway. Our birding tours are fully customizable and flexible.

  • General Birding: We visit some of the most pleasant habitats on the island on the lookout for some of the over 500 recorded species (about 300 regularly occurring), as well as enjoying the best of Formosa's scenery, butterflies, and culture.
  • Endemic hunting: With good planning it is just about possible to knock off all the endemic and many subspecies in a few days.
  • Extensions: We lead extension trips to Lanyu (Orchid) Island for the Elegant Scops Owl, Matsu for the Chinese Crested Tern, Kinmen and Penghu for excellent migration species, Kenting especially at raptor migration time.
  • Tainan day trips: We are based in the historic southern Taiwanese city of Tainan, and always eager to show the highlights in our backyard. Black-faced Spoonbills, Pheasant-tailed Jacana and the habitats of the nearby Tsengwen/Ciku/Aogo area.
The Endemics:

Taiwan Blue Magpie Urocissa caerulea (aka Formosan Magpie)

Taiwan Partridge Arborophila crudigularis (aka Taiwan Hill Partridge, Formosan Hill Partridge, Swinhoe's Partridge)

Swinhoe's Pheasant Lophura swinhoii (aka Taiwan Blue Pheasant, Formosan Blue Pheasant, Formosan Pheasant)

Mikado Pheasant Syrmaticus mikado (aka Taiwan Long-tailed Pheasant)

Yellow Tit Parus holsti (Taiwan Tit, Taiwan Yellow Tit, Formosan Forty Tit)

Styan's Bulbul Pycnonotus taivanus (Taiwan Bulbul)

Taiwan Bush Warbler Bradypterus alishanensis

White-whiskered Laughingthrush Garrulax morrisonianus (Taiwan Laughingthrush)

Steere's Liocichla Liocichla steerii

Taiwan Barwing Actinodura morrisoniana (Formosan Barwing)

White-eared Sibia Heterophasia auricularis (Taiwan Sibia)

Taiwan Yuhina Yuhina brunneiceps (Formosan Yuhina)

Flamecrest Regulus goodfellowi (Taiwan Firecrest)

Taiwan Whistling Thrush Myophonus insularis (Formosan Whistling Thrush)

Collared Bush Robin Tarsiger johnstoniae (Taiwan Bush Robin, Sombre Bush Robin, Johnston's Robin)

On Lanyu (Orchid Island):

Lanyu Scops Owl Otus elegans botelensis [from Elegant Scops Owl (Ryukyu Scops Owl)]

An additional nine species (in addition to the 15+1 established endemics above) are treated as endemics by Mark Brazil's Birds of East Asia.

Taiwan Barbet Megalaima oorti nuchalis (Mueller's Barbet) [from Black-browed Barbet] (recognized by IOU)

Black-necklaced Scimitar Babbler Pomatorhinus erythrogenys erythrocnemis [from Spot-breasted Scimitar Babbler] (recognized by IOU)

Taiwan Scimitar Babbler Pomatorhinus ruficollis musicus [from Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler] (recognized by IOU)

Taiwan Wren-Babbler Pnoepyga formosana (Formosan Wren Babbler)[from Pygmy Wren Babbler] (recognized by IOU)

Rufous-crowned Laughingthrush Garrulax ruficeps (Rufous-capped LT) [from White-throated Laughingthrush] (recognized by IOU)
Rusty Laughingthrush Garrulax poecilorhynchus poecilorhynchus [from Rusty Laughingthrush (includes Buffy) from Grey-sided LT] (recognized by IOU and AOU)

Taiwan Hwamei Garrulax canorus taewanus (Taiwan Laughingthrush, Melodious Laughingthrush) [from Hwamei] (recognized by IOU)

Taiwan Fulvetta Alcippe formosana [from Streak-throated Fulvetta] (recognized by IOU)

Taiwan Shortwing Brachypteryx Montana goodfellowi [from White-browed Shortwing]

Some more Taiwan sub-species considered likely splits.

Taiwan Bamboo Partridge Bambusicola thoracicus sonorivox [from Chinese Bamboo Partridge]

Taiwan Varied Tit Parus varius castaneovintris [from Varied Tit]

Taiwan Bush Warbler Cettia fortipes robustipes [from Russet Bush Warbler] (Alishan Bush Warbler, Brownish-flanked Bush Warbler)

Strong-footed Bush Warbler [from Brownish-flanked Bush Warbler (Brown-flanked Bush Warbler)]

Taiwan Yellow-bellied Bush Warbler [from Yellowish-bellied Bush Warbler (Yellow-bellied Bush Warbler)]

Taiwan Parrotbill Paradozornis gularis morrisoniana [from Golden Parrotbill]

Taiwan Thrush Turdus poliocephalus niveiceps[from Island Thrush]

Taiwan Niltava Niltava vivida vivida [from Vivid Niltava]

Owston's Bullfinch  Pyrrhula erythaca owstoni (Taiwan Bullfinch) [from Grey-headed (Beavan's) Bullfinch]

Other highlight species:

Fairy Pitta Pitta nympha

Slaty-legged Crake Rallina eurizonoides formosana (Banded-crake)

Chinese Egret Egretta eulophotes

Black-faced Spoonbill Platalea minor

Saunders's Gull Larus saundersi

Malayan Night Heron Gorsachius melanolophus

Pheasant-tailed Jacana Hydrophasianus chirurgus

On Matzu:

Chinese crested Tern Sterna bernsteini also Thalasseus bernsteini

On Lanyu (Orchid Island): 

Whistling Green Pigeon Treron formosae,

Brown-eared Bulbul Hypsipetes amaurotis naganichii

Japanese Paradise-flycatcher Terpsiphone atrocaudata