Phil has been interested in birds since the demise of the steam trains when he was about 11. Born in Southampton, England he first came to Australia in 1977, but got side-tracked, and spent the next twenty years living and birding in Nigeria, Zambia, the Falkland Islands and Papua New Guinea.
He is a well-known tour leader, working for Field Guides Inc. and Sicklebill Safaris, and is one of Australia’s foremost birders. He is also one of the most experienced New Guinea guides with many tours led there ever since 1998.
His has recently published Birds of New Guinea, the Bismarck Archipelago and Bougainville by Lynx Edicions, and is now working on a monograph on Birds of Paradise and Bowerbirds for Helm. He has also written species and family accounts for three volumes of the Handbook of the Birds of the World, and is involved as an advisor with the IOC and their World Checklist and Recommended English Names of Birds projects.
Special interests include field identification, vocalisations, taxonomy and bird distributions. He has been guiding occasionally since his African days, and became full time in 1998 when he side-stepped the joys of being an international school principal which he found was seriously impeding his birding. He now leads several tours a year in the Pacific Region, Asia and Africa.