Thursday, October 31, 2013

Mr Blue Sky

The Temple Steps Chiang Dao
At last the cloud has lifted the sky is blue and the sun is out for the first time in ten days, it could be the last of the rain for the next five months as hopefully the dry season begins. Making the most of the good weather I headed to the temple at dawn, lots of birds around, including several big feeding flocks. Lots of additions to the list which included two superb Red-headed Trogons and three Sultan Tit. Also new for the list were 2 Bay Woodpecker, 2 Brown-rumped Minivet, 4 White-throated Fantail, 2 Great Iora, Thick-billed Warbler, 4 Buff-breasted Babbler, 4 Rufous-fronted Babbler, 2 Grey-throated Babbler, 2 White-bellied Erponis and 2 Ruby-cheeked Sunbird.

A very distant Maroon Oriole
Also present were several calling Green-legged Partridge, 2 Orange-breasted Trogon, 4 Blue-bearded Bee-eater, 2 Banded Bay Cuckoo, Violet Cuckoo, 5 Collared Owlet, 4 Mountain Imperial Pigeon, 10 Thick-billed Green Pigeon, 2 Grey-backed Shrike, Lesser Racket-tailed Drongo, Maroon Oriole, 14 Bar-winged Flycatcher Shrike, 3 Asian Paradise Flycatcher, 20 Large Woodshrike, 12 Oriental White-eye, 4 Grey-crowned Warbler, 3 Marten's Warbler, 6 Puff-throated Babbler, 30 Striated Yuhina, 15 Brown-cheeked Fulvetta, 2 Purple-naped Sunbird and 2 Black-throated Sunbird.

A record shot of one of this mornings Sultan Tits
Lots of bulbuls around including a flock of 28 Black Bulbul which contained six white-headed birds, probably of the race stresemanni, with the white not extending onto the breast. A few raptors south this morning with 8 Black Baza, 3 Grey-faced Buzzard and an adult male Pied Harrier.

Odd records in the last few days included 2 Dollarbirds ( a species I have seen only once before at Chiang Dao) and the first Marten's Warbler at the temple on the 29th, a flock of 18 Large Woodshrike in the garden and 3 Kestrels overhead 30th. Spot-bellied Eagle Owl calling most nights from tall trees around the garden most nights and last night a Collared Scops Owl showed well in trees around the swimming pool.

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