Photographic Guide to the Birds of Raja Ampat by Edhi Yansyah and Riyanti Windesi
A love of nature, especially the above water wildlife of Raja Ampat, and a desire to build awareness among local people, motivated Edhi Yansyah and Riyanti Windesi to self-publish an astounding photographic compilation of the region’s birdlife, the first of its kind! More than 115 birds, all photographed within Raja Ampat, are described with full color images and bilingual Bahasa Indonesia and English text. Edhi credits Dwi Suryana with the bird descriptions, which also cites the species’ specific status on the IUCN Red List and CITES.
Edhi describes himself as an amateur photographer, while Riyanti is a physician based in Sorong, but their book demonstrates a conservationist approach. By sharing their images, they hope to “get vital information to people and help build awareness in order to protect birds and their habitat.” Riyanti further believes that “when people know more about the beauty of birds in their habitat then they will appreciate nature more, and hopefully become more involved in conservation of this beautiful area.”
Preserving topside biodiversity in Raja Ampat is somewhat dependent on being able to monitor it in its natural habitat. While Riyanti continues her medical practice in Sorong, Edhi has been busy building a homestay on Misool for nature lovers. He is developing a series of jungle treks where guests can observe many of the 215 bird species within Raja, as well as at least three species of cuscus and one species of tree kangaroo. With their beautiful book, Edhi and Riyanti have opened our eyes to Raja’s rich bird life. In the near future, based at Edhi’s Misool homestay, Lalelkai Nature Lodge, intrepid bird enthusiasts can more easily immerse themselves in Raja’s extraordinary topside ecosystem.
Unfortunately at the present time, the book is only available in Indonesia. In the future Edhi hopes to collaborate with Misool Eco Resort to bring avid bird enthusiasts to Lalelkai to witness Misool and Raja Ampat’s amazing terrestrial life. It is projects like these that help empower and employee locals in sustainable conservation initiatives.