Bird Watching In Langkawi : An Essential Guide

More than 750 bird species can be found under Malaysia’s chattering jungle canopies – that’s a whole lot of feathers for a relatively small nation and if you are interested in bird watching, then Langkawi can offer you something very special too.

There are over 230 species of birds in Langkawi which includes residents and migratory birds. About 30% are migratory birds that come usually from countries like China, Siberia, Manchuria etc during October to April.

Whether you’re an avid birder or a newbie who doesn’t know a heron from a hornbill, the wild plumages, delicate calls and orchestrated movements of Malaysia’s birds are sure to delight.


Some of the highlights of birds found in Langkawi includes:


1) Three species of hornbills. This includes the awesome looking Great Hornbill which can be up to 1.3 meters long (i.e. about 4 feet) from tip of the beak to tail end.

2) Eight species of King fishers. This includes the brown winged Kingfisher which has a strikingly dark brown wing against golden orange body and red beak.

3) Twenty types of birds of prey that includes many different eagles like Brahminy Kites (brown eagles) and white bellied eagles.

4) Four species of woodpeckers. This includes the largest species known to exist in the world called the Great Slaty Woodpecker.

5) Five species of Sunbirds that includes the Crimson Sunbird with bright crimson colored breast.

6) Four types of munias. You can even spot the white headed munia.

7) There are various other species including herons, sandpipers, egrets, crakes, snipes, plovers and so on.


8) Langkawi is in the route of bird migration from south Thailand. Some migratory birds that stop over at Langkawi includes Brown Shriek and Chinese Ponds Heron.

Suggested time to observe them is either early in the morning or early evening when they are most active and in Langkawi, we can say that there’s :


Rainforest Birds

Tropical rainforests are home to many kinds of birds, including parrots, hornbills, toucans and raptors like eagles, hawks and vultures. Some migratory birds live in rainforests during the winter and return to cooler regions during the spring and summer.


Mangrove Birds

Mangrove forests colonise coastlines and river estuaries. Located between land and sea or river, they are an important barrier against erosion and slat intrusion. The vegetation is specially adapted to living in harsh conditions. Trees are characterized by adapatations including pneumatophores or breathing roots and thick waxy leaves to prevent moisture loss.


Paddy Field Birds

The paddy fields in Langkawi provide a nice habitat for these birds. There are plenty of water, insects and aquatic creatures for food. Most of the birds are migratory in nature.

Traveler, Graphic Designer, Football Freak, Love to Dive, Cycling around Town and Video/Photographer. He based in Kuala Lumpur and his second home is in Langkawi. He love to hear ya travel story.