Black-Browed Babbler, Thought To Be Extinct, Spotted In Borneo After 170 Years!

A species of bird thought to be extinct, the black-browed babbler, was recently spotted at a rainforest in Borneo after 170 years!

black-browed babbler, thought to be extinct, spotted in borneo after 170 years!
Described as “one of the great enigmas of Indonesian ornithology”, this bird was last recorded between 1843 and 1848, when a scientist collected the first and only museum specimen.
Then in October last year, two Indonesians, Muhammad Suranto and Muhammad Rizky Fauzan, saw a bird they did not recognise in Indonesia’s South Kalimantan province, decided to photograph it and send the pictures out to birdwatching groups.
And to their surprise, the discovery shocked experts when it was confirmed as a black-browed babbler.
“It feels surreal to know that we have found a species of bird presumed by experts to be extinct. We didn’t expect it to be that special at all – we thought it was just another bird that we simply have never seen before,” Rizky told The Guardian.
Ornithologist Panji Gusti Akbar told The New York Times, he felt "excitement, disbelief, and a lot of happiness." 
“We suspect that this bird might actually have been around this area for quite a long time. It’s just that there is nobody coming to see them… nobody who knows how to identify birds,” he said.

Meanwhile, Yong Ding Li, a conservationist with BirdLife International, said it "took me a while to come to grips with this thing. I had a tear in my eye."
It’s understood that the bird was released back into the wild, and once COVID-19 travel restrictions are lifted, several experts plan on traveling to Borneo so they can learn more about the elusive black-browed babbler.
“We're now seeing this bird alive for the first time in all of its natural glory. Borneo is an island of surprises, and there's a lot to still be discovered and learned,” Yong added.
Just so you know, Indonesia is a hotspot for bird diversity, with more than 1,700 species across the archipelago, and ten new species and subspecies discovered last year on the islands of Taliabu, Peleng and Batudaka.
How cool is this!
While you’re here, check out our article on another endangered species in the area, the black shrew, which may also yet be extinct.

by Kyle Roshen Jacob