Birds of Tonga

Only 80 or so birds live in the tiny Polynesian island country of Tonga. Most of these can also be found in other countries, but two endemic birds – the Tongan Whistler and the Tongan Megapode – are only found here. Other notable avian species include the Brown Noddy, the Collared Kingfisher, the Red-vented Bulbul, the Pacific Swallow, and the Wattled Honeyeater.

Birds of Tonga

List of Common Birds Found in Tonga

Native Birds

  • Australasian Swamphen
  • Australian Swiftlet
  • Bar-tailed Godwit
  • Black Noddy
  • Black-backed Swamphen
  • Blue-crowned Lorikeet
  • Blue-gray Noddy
  • Bristle-thighed Curlew
  • Brown Noddy
  • Buff-banded Rail
  • Collared Kingfisher
  • Common Myna
  • Crimson-crowned Fruit Dove
  • Friendly Ground Dove
  • Gray-backed Storm Petrel
  • Gray-backed Tern
  • Gray Noddy
  • Many-colored Fruit Dove
  • Maroon Shining Parrot
  • Pacific Black Duck
  • Pacific Golden Plover
  • Pacific Imperial Pigeon
  • Pacific Long Tailed Cuckoo
  • Pacific Swallow
  • Polynesian Ground Dove
  • Polynesian Starling
  • Polynesian Storm Petrel
  • Polynesian Triller
  • Red Junglefowl
  • Ruddy Turnstone
  • Sanderling
  • Singing Starling
  • Sooty Tern
  • Spotless Crake
  • Tongan Megapode
  • Tongan Whistler
  • Wandering Tattler
  • Wattled Honeyeater
  • White-tailed Tropicbird
  • White-rumped Swiftlet
  • White Tern

Non-native Birds

Tonga offers several excellent birdwatching sites for enthusiasts to explore its diverse avian fauna. Some of the best birding spots in Tonga include Eua Island, Vava’u Group of Islands, Ha’apai Group of Islands, Tofua Island, Tongatapu Island, Foa Island, and Nuku’alofa Royal Botanical Gardens. The peak birding season in Tonga typically occurs during the austral spring and summer months, from September to February. This period aligns with the breeding and nesting season for many resident and migratory bird species in the country. Several migratory bird species visit Tonga during this period, having traveled from their breeding grounds in the northern hemisphere to spend the warmer months in the Pacific region. With abundant food and suitable weather conditions, bird activity tends to be higher during the peak season, making it easier to spot various species. Also, Tonga experiences warmer and more pleasant weather during the austral spring and summer, making birdwatching outings more enjoyable.

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