Tuesday, March 20, 2012
After a busy week of grand kids, nephews and trying to keep everyone happy, we arrived yesterday evening at Malee Nature Lovers Bungalows at Chiang Dao, though still smoky it was not as bad as the previous visit and the nights were thankfully still cool. I was up and out late this morning, so enjoyed a leisurely breakfast in the garden, I was impressed by the number of species I saw or heard just from the garden. A nearby tamarind tree saw a procession of birds in and out, including Thick-billed, Yellow-browed and Two-barred Warbler, Blue-winged Leafbird, Taiga Flycatcher, Oriental White-eye and both Olive-backed and Purple Sunbirds. As always there were plenty of bulbuls around with Sooty-headed, Streak-eared, Stripe-throated, Red-whiskered, Black-headed, Black-crested and Grey-eyed all being noted. At least one Violet Cuckoo flew over and Banded Bay, Plaintive and Drongo Cuckoo could all be heard. Though no barbets were seen Blue-eared, Blue-throated and Great were all very vocal as was an Oriental Pied Hornbill. At least four Shikra were up over the garden displaying, three Oriental Honey Buzzards headed north and an unfamiliar call was eventually traced to a pair of Black Baza in display. Also over the garden were many noisy Crested Treeswifts, several Brown-backed Needletails and half a dozen Striated Swallows. Also seen or heard were White-throated Kingfisher, Greater Coucal, Asian Barred Owlet, Spotted Dove, Crested Serpent Eagle, Asian Fairy Bluebird, Ashy and Bronzed Drongo, Black-hooded Oriole, Common Iora, Oriental Magpie Robin, Common Tailorbird, Puff-throated Babbler, Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker, Little and Streaked Spiderhunter and Scaly-breasted Munia. A reasonable list for two hours of just sitting around in the garden.