Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Mud Bath

For the first time since arriving back in Thailand I managed to get around some of the local patch at Suphanburi, torrential overnight rain had left all of the tracks, paths and bunds a muddy mess and I ended up spending much of the morning trying to stay on my feet, failing only once. The six months away has seen a lot of changes to the patch, most noteworthy of these has been the construction of a new luxury housing estate which has wrecked one corner of the site. Other new developments has been the removal of further scrub and draining of one of the fish ponds for rice production. Some of the best areas for migrants still remain, but with continuing development all around the outskirts of Suphanburi the site probably does not have many years left.

I decided not to take the camera out due to fear of more heavy rain, predictably I enjoyed amazing views of several species, best of these was juvenile Baillon's Crake feeding out in the open just a few feet in front of me and an adult Black Bittern which sat motionless in full view. It was good to see a decent selection of migrants best was an immature Tiger Shrike and two Yellow-rumped Flycatchers. Other migrants included 6 Taiga Flycatchers, 3 Yellow-browed Warblers, two Black-naped Orioles and single Greater-racket Tailed Drongo, Two-barred Warbler, Eastern Crowned Warbler and Black-naped Monarch. Most winter migrants appeared not to have arrived in any great numbers yet, with low counts of Brown Shrike, Dusky Warbler, Black-browed Reed Warbler and Eastern Stonechat. Resident species noted included two Watercock, 4 Yellow and 3 Cinnamon Bittern, 3 Stork-billed and 2 Black-caped Kingfisher, 50 Oriental Pratincole, 9 Whiskered Tern, Baya and Asian Golden Weaver, Plain-backed Sparrow and Paddyfield Pipits.

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