Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Orioles and a no show Pitta

 Black-hooded Oriole

I spent Friday morning from first light birding around the temple at Chiang Dao, many birds were in song, one of the commonest species was Paradise Flycatchers with at least nine seen and further ten or more heard. There were plenty of Orioles around with at least nine Black-hooded, three Black-naped and a single Maroon.

Maroon Oriole

A Grey-backed Shrike was at it's usual hangout in the car park and many cuckoo's were calling with DrongoBanded BayPlaintive, Indian, Violet and Large Hawk all heard. A dozen Striated Yuhinas were also present as well as a good selection of bulbuls and a few Asian Fairy Bluebirds. A small party of birds was present in the gully at the start of the steps, which included a White-throated Fantail, Buff-breasted Babbler and two Black-throated Laughingthrush. The daily pair of Streaked Wren Babblers were still present on limestone higher up the steps and two Bay Woodpeckers called noisily but failed to show. I dropped down into the gully and walked several hundred meters along it, after a few minutes a Rusty-naped Pitta called several times but after half an hour of sitting around waiting failed to show. Whilst hanging around a White-crowned Forktail flew past and a steady trickle of birds flew into drink in a tiny puddle with Siberian Blue Robin, Striped Tit Babbler and Brown-cheeked Fulvetta all noted. Returning to the temple steps I nearly stepped on the crazy Silver Pheasant which took a dislike to my tripod and spent the next ten minutes pecking the hell out of it. Back along the temple steps a Speckled Piculet was present and a Collared Owlet called from the jungle nearby. Returning to the Bungalows two Puff-throated Babblers fed along the drives verge and a pair of Striated Swallows rested on the restaurants roof.

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