Saturday, December 7, 2013

Red Avadavat

This morning I decided to wander around fields, scrub and secondary growth around Chiang Dao in search of Freckled-breasted Woodpecker which has yet to be recorded in the area, no woodpeckers but plenty of other birds. One large overgrown field was very productive, where best bird was a Red Avadavat a new Chiang Dao species for me. With the grass being very wet following heavy overnight dew a number of normally skulking species showed well as they dried themselves in the sun, at least 8 Siberian Rubythroats being either heard or seen, along with 6 Thick-billed Warbler, 5 Radde's Warbler, 2 Yellow-bellied Prinia and several hundred Scaly-breasted and White-rumped Munia. A small group of half a dozen Yellow-eyed Babblers also showed well, but two Chestnut-capped Babblers took an age to get decent views of. A single male Chestnut Bunting showed briefly, but frustratingly several other unidentified buntings dropped into long grass and were not seen again. All morning the loud raucous calls of several Chinese Francolin could be heard but typically none were seen, a Barred Buttonquail showed better as it ran down a track in front of me.

Racket-tailed Treepie
by Fred Rowe
In scrub two pairs of Racket-tailed Treepies, 30 Chestnut-tailed Starling, a Violet Cuckoo and a Rufous-winged Buzzard were noted. A patch of forest and bamboo supported a low number of species, but in high densities, with at least 17 Grey-crowned Warbler, 11 Radde's Warbler, 9 Rufous-fronted Babbler and 5 White-rumped Shama. Also in the area were three Red-billed Blue Magpie, female Siberian Blue Robin, 2 Golden-fronted Leafbird and a Verditer Flycatcher.

Other species recorded during the morning included Linneated Barbet, Green Bee-eater, Plaintive Cuckoo, Indian Roller, Long-tailed Shrike, Black-hooded Oriole, Pied Bushchats, Eastern Stonechat and Olive-backed Pipit.

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