Sunday, November 9, 2014

Pak Thale/Leam Pak Bia early November 2014

Long-toed Stint
I have just spent Nov 8th and 9th birding the coast near Petchaburi with friends Fred and Marian Rowe, as usual the birding at Pak Thale and Leam Pak Bia was excellent with many thousands of waders and terns now present in the area for the winter. We visited the salt pans at Pak Thale a couple of times at high tide, soon finding two Spoon-billed Sandpiper, one feeding with a handful of Red-necked Stint and one roosting with stints on a dry salt pan. Large numbers of Eurasian Curlew were present in the area, but too distant and the light to poor to pick out any eastern birds, but a dozen Red-necked Phalarope were closer, with another found feeding with Marsh Sandpiper right by the roadside. 

Marsh Sandpiper
Wood Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper and Long-toed Stint
Huge numbers of waders were roosting on the last few salt pans before the sea, at Pak Thale including 24 Asiatic Dowitcher, 3 Red Knot and several hundred Great Knot, Black-tailed Godwit and Whimbrel. A coffee break overlooking nearby mud flats, added several Terek Sandpiper and at least 200 Broad-billed Sandpiper to the trip list.     

Spotted Redshank
An additional stop at salt pans nearer Leam Pak Bia, found a flock of 42 Nordmann's Greenshank, at least 24 Pied Avocet, 8 Ruff, many thousands of terns which included huge numbers of Common, Whiskered and Little and smaller numbers of Gull-billed, Caspian and White-winged Black.  A group of four Pintail among the terns looked out of place.  
Little Ringed Plover
We made several visits to the research project at Leam Pak Bia, including one till dusk, three Spot-billed Pelican were present on the pools and at dusk many Night Heron appeared from out of the mangroves, with thousands of Black Drongo and mynas heading into them to roost. Good numbers of White-shouldered Starling were recorded heading in with at least 500 logged by dusk, many of which paused in nearby trees giving good views and allowing us to pick out several Chestnut-tailed Starling and a surprise Purple-backed Starling

Night Heron
At a freshwater area slightly inland  24 Grey-headed Lapwing were present, along with a dozen Temminck's Stint, several Red-throated and Richard's Pipit and singing Oriental Skylark.

Other species recorded over the two days included many Black-capped Kingfisher, Sanderling, Curlew Sandpiper, Pacific Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, hundreds of Brown-headed Gull, Osprey, 2 Peregrine, Kestrel, Oriental Darter, 4 Ashy Minivet, Oriental Reed Warbler and Eastern Yellow Wagtail.

Saturday evening several thousand Fruit Bats were seen leaving the mangroves.

Many thanks to Fred and Marian Rowe for supplying photos.

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