Machiel Valkenburg

More Information

Recent Posts


Machiel Valkenburg was born in 1982 in a southern province in the Netherlands where, encouraged by his parents, he began birding at an early age. During his teens he studied landscape ecology and began performing bird surveys with the Dutch Centre for Field Ornithology. During this period he started traveling outside of Holland, first to Greece, Hungary, Romania, Scotland, and Morocco. Later, his birding travels took him extensively outside of Europe into Western Africa and further east to Russia and Kazakhstan. The nature and birds of Central Asia fascinated him so much that he stayed, resulting in the founding of his own bird tour company, Rubythroat Birding Tours. He lived in Kazakhstan for over 10 years, but moved back to Europe several years ago with his wife, Bonny. They now reside in Valencia on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. From Central Asia he ventured further, with Southeast Asia and India becoming favorite destinations. Machiel has developed an expertise in the natural history of Asia. Along with birds, a good part of his attention is also given to butterflies, dragonflies, and mammals. Machiel speaks four languages, has good people and logistical skills, and is a natural-born bird guide. He loves to explore new destinations and show birds to his fellow birders. He has a keen eye and an excellent ear for bird sounds. Machiel is noted for his calm and respectful social approach, providing a good atmosphere during time in the field.