by Nick Upton
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Thailand Tour, 10-24th January 2007
  Bird Watching Trips:
if you need help organizing a bird watching trip to Thailand, take a look at the suggested itineraries for ideas on creating a tailor-made trip and contact me for advice: Thailand bird tours.
Our Thailand tour was the concluding part of what many are coming to regard as the ultimate Indochina Combo. Starting in December with our tour to Vietnam it continued on to an extension in the mountains of the north for Christmas. Our time in Vietnam was followed by our immensely successful Cambodia tour which many of the Thailand participants could not resist. And so to our finale in Thailand. And what a finale! Thailand just gets better and better. It was a happy, easy tour with tons of birds and mammals, fabulous and fascinating landscapes, a delightfully charming people, some great antiquities and arguably some of the most delicious food you will ever encounter on tour – especially those sumptuous meals in the field.

Including birds heard only we garnered a total of 416 species of birds in just 15 days in the field and a very impressive list of 28 species of mammals. But that wasn’t the half of it. Highlights were numerous but for me it was quite simply the joy of being in the field, being on tour with a harmonious, fun group and working with our incomparable drivers, chef and of course my wonderful friend Mike.

I doubt any of those participants that afternoon in Kaeng Krachan will ever forget the seemingly nonchalant female Leopard that sauntered down the track in front of their jeep! And it was a first for Dion too. An unforgettable spot-lighting trip in Khao Yai which included a herd of tear-inducing Asian Elephants with their adorable calf; a Binturong, lolling in the forest-canopy and a supporting cast of Leopard Cat, three species of civet and two species of giant flying squirrels. Add to that a pack of Dhole (Asian Wild Dogs) that strolled across the road in front of us and you have quite a list of exceptional mammal experiences.

The birds weren’t too shabby either, yours truly finally caught up with White-rumped Falcon. A pair of this striking but rather dapper looking raptor put on a wonderful show one morning at Doi Inthanon. Elsewhere we oohed and aahed to a wonderful variety of ‘Real Birds’ including point-blank views of Spot-breasted Parrotbills, Spot-necked Babblers, a group of eight White-hooded Babblers, and stunning views of both Pygmy and Limestone Wren-babblers, Others of perhaps a more classical beauty included a very confiding male Green Peafowl, resplendent in all his finery; Blue Pitta; hordes of Great, Brown, Wreathed and Oriental Pied Hornbills; to everyone’s astonishment at least one Coral-billed Ground-Cuckoo seen by the entire group; a small flock of the increasingly rarely seen Pin-tailed Parrotfinch; an amazing total of 19 species of Asia’s glorious woodpeckers including a displaying trio of Great Slaty Woodpeckers as we made our way home one late afternoon. As if all this wasn’t enough not one but five, yes five Spoon-billed Sandpipers permitted us to wear out our Leica telescopes as we drank in every essence of this blue-ribbon shorebird. And let’s not forget the numerous Broad-billed Sandpipers, Long-toed Stints and single but so distinctive Nordmann’s Greenshank so brilliantly found by Mr. Tee. And then just to remind us that nature really is the boss a 12 foot King Cobra wandered across in front of our jeep on our very last morning in the field. Fabulous stuff and we cannot wait to get back.

Thailand has long been known as a great destination for first-time birders in Asia and it unfailingly lives up to high expectations! Notwithstanding, first time visitors and experienced Asian birders alike enjoy Thailand for its great national parks and superb birding opportunities, along with its fine cuisine, friendly people and fascinating culture and history. In a nutshell, a birding trip to Thailand is a win-win situation. Our Highlights tour this year was typically exciting with stays in four of Thailand’s, in fact this region’s, premier nature reserves – Khao Yai, Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Kang and Kaeng Krachan.

We spent the first day pottering northwards through the Chao Praya valley stopping at Wat Phai Lom with it immense breeding colony of Asian Open-billed Storks en route to the ancient capital of Ayuthya. In surrounding fields we enjoyed fine looks at a flock of 70+ very handsome Grey-headed Lapwings in addition to a plethora of other birds including four species of kingfisher. Ayuthya treated us to the first of many sumptuous lunches and some very attractive antiquites before we moved on to Wat Phra Phutthabat Noi and the home of the rather localised Limestone Wren-Babbler. Thanks to Nick Upton for very clear and precise directions to this very attractive site and be asured it’s a keeper for future tours.

As always at Khao Yai we had some wonderful experiences, particularly a night’s spotlighting which turned up an incredible list of mammals and birds (see above). Khao Yai is well known for its abundance and diversity of birdlife, it holds a fabulous representation of the Indochinese avifauna and we sampled an array of small mixed-flock species as well as many elusive ground-dwellers, not to mention raptors, hornbills and nightbirds.

We concentrated on two very important birding sites in the north - Thailand’s highest mountain, Doi Inthanon and the picturesque Doi Ang Khang right on the Burmese border. An early morning visit to Hua Kong Khai, one of the Queen’s projects just north of Chiang Mai, was rewarded with stunning Green Peafowls in the morning mist on the lakeside not to mention great ‘scope views of Black Baza and Brown-rumped Minivets.

One of the most exciting aspects of Doi Inthanon National Park is that the central road provides a transect through the lowland dry dipterocarp forests, to moist evergreen forest and ultimately to montane evergreen forest. This allows us to sample a wonderful variety of the wildlife of northern South East Asia. Essentially we started at the top and worked our way down over three days. On the boardwalk on the Doi Inthanon summit, affectionately known as The Bog, we soon encountered an incredibly cryptic Eurasian Woodcock, a foraging Rufous-throated Partridge, a pair of White-browed Shortwings and a male Snowy-browed Flycatcher were a very special treat this year. As the sun emerged the mixed flocks took advantage of the warming rays and we thrilled to the non-stop activity of Chestnut-tailed Minlas, Mrs. Gould’s Sunbirds, Rufous-winged Fulvettas, Yellow-bellied Fantails, Blyth’s Leaf Warblers and Dark-backed Sibias. Moving down the mountain we found barbets, forktails, babblers and bulbuls in profusion especially in the vicinity of the jeep track. However, an unusually confiding Siberian Blue Robin at Mr. Deng’s was a nice surprise.

Up in the far north-west at Doi Ang Khang, the birding is always super exciting! This year we found flowering trees just full of birds feeding on the nectar and insects – White-headed Bulbul, Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush, Orange-bellied Leafbird, Silver-eared Mesia and Streaked Spiderhunter were all in evidence. Small areas of grassland at the higher altitudes were especially productive with some very exciting birds seen exceptionally well – Spot-breasted Parrotbill, White-browed Laughingthrush, Crested and Little Buntings to name but a few. Another undoubted highlight must be mentioned – those incredible Red-faced Liocichlas and male Bay Woodpecker that put on such a wonderful show for us.

An exploratory morning along the border road to Doi Lang left us wanting more but in the time we had we all got to see the globally threatened Jerdon’s Bushchat – thanks to Daphne and Romney. A flowering tree added a group of five Grey-headed Parakeets and we nearly, very nearly nailed an initially responsive Red-billed Scimitar-Babbler – that’s birding!

Our day was spent in the Gulf of Siam at Khok Kham and Laem Pak Bia, south of Bangkok, in search of migratory shorebird was a resounding success. We encountered so many wonderful shorebirds and the opportunity to study them at length. Tucked away among them were some very special treats in the form of five Spoon-billed Sandpipers, just one Nordmann’s Greenshank, Great Knot, Long-toed Stints, Broad-billed Sandpipers and a single Ruff. Add to this a nice mix of savanna palm woodland, farmland and freshwater marshes with two species of jacanas, bitterns and Greater Spotted Eagles and it was a real birdy day. What a treat!

Kaeng Krachan is unarguably one of the most exciting reserves in South East Asia. This huge area of evergreen forest on the southern Burmese border simply abounds with all sorts of exciting wildlife. The mixture of birds from the Sundaic region (Malaysia and Indonesia) and continental Thai-Burma region is one of the most exciting aspects of this superb reserve and leaves you always wanting to go back for another day or three. ‘Real Birds’ (Babblers) abound as do woodpeckers, if you are lucky pheasants partridges, adorable Dusky Leaf Monkeys, trumpeting elephants, Leopards in the daytime, Black-thighed Falconets and, and, and ….. Yes the place never runs out of things to see and wonderful experiences.

Acknowledgments: Special thanks from both of us to you all for your great company and companionship on this tour. Of course, the enjoyment of our tour was greatly enhanced by the presence of our friend Mike. His cheerfulness, charm and professionalism are always very much appreciated. Our drivers proved to be indispensable and full of fun. Sarkhol and Lam’s culinary skills ensured that we enjoyed many scrumptious meals in the field amidst beautiful surrounds. Mr. Tee at Khok Kam was very helpful - he’s doing a great job for visitors and for conservation at this excellent and important site.

It was a great pleasure travelling and birding with you all and we look forward to sharing with you more of Asia’s secrets on another of VENT’s tours.
 Daily Itinerary
10 January : Drive to Wat Phai Lom and onto the ancient capital of Ayuthya for lunch. Afternoon drive to Wat Phra Phutthabat Noi for the very local Limestone Wren Babbler and onto our accommodations at Khai Yai N. P.
11 January : All day birding in Khao Yai N. P. incl. a late afternoon visit to the Wrinkled-lipped Bat cave.
12 January : All day birding in Kao Yai N. P. (incl. a midday break) and a notably productive night safari.
13 January : Morning birding our way out of Khao Yai N. P. then drive to Bangkok for a sumptuous lunch before flying north to Chiang Mai.
14 January : Early morning drive the Royal Agricultural Project at Huai Hong Krai then return to Chiang Mai for lunch before driving southwards to Doi Inthanon. Birding near our lodge during the late afternoon.
15 January : Birding all day at the summit sphagnum bog, Doi Inthanon N. P. and other high elevation areas; afternoon we birded our way down the mountain stopping at attractive waterfalls and Mr Deng’s café.
16 January : Birded all morning in the area of the ‘Jeep Track’ at Km 33; PM explored and area of dry dipterocarp forest on the lower slopes of Doi Inthanon N. P.
17 January : Birded the jeep track and new area of dry dipterocarp forest before driving north to Chiang Mai for lunch and then north via Chiang Dao to our lovely resort at Doi Ang Kang.
18 January : Birded all day (incl. midday break) Doi Ang Kang.
19 January : Birded all mrning before driving eastwards down into the lowlands and then north to Tha Ton. PM birded an area of scrubby farmland.
20 January : Birded all morning on the road to Doi Lang; PM drove to Chiang Mai in time for some shopping and then flew south to Bangkok.
21 January : Birded all day in the coastal wetlands and salt-pans of the Gulf of Siam before driving on to our accommodations at Kaeng Krachan N. P.
22 January : Birded all day Kaeng Krachan N. P.
23 January : Birded all day Kaeng Krachan N. P.
24 January : Birded all morning Kaeng Krachan N. P. After lunch drove back to Bangkok in time for our fairwell dinner.
David Bishop & Dion Hobcroft
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 Species Seen

1) Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis - 2 Huai Hong Krai.

2) Little Cormorant Phalacrocorax niger - Several between Bangkok and Ayuthya; Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport; fairly common in the Gulf of Siam.

3) Little Egret Egretta garzetta - Widespread and common.

4) Grey Heron Ardea cinerea - Low numbers between Bangkok and Ayuthya and in the Gulf of Siam.

5) Great Egret Casmeroides alba - Several between Bangkok and Ayuthya; Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport; common in the Gulf of Siam.

6) Intermediate Egret Mesophoyx intermedia -Several between Bangkok and Ayuthya.

7) Eastern Cattle Egret Bulbulcus ibis - Several between Bangkok and Ayuthya; Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport; very common in the Gulf of Siam.
NOTE: Consistent differences between B. ibis and B. coromandus in breeding plumage, proportions and vocalisations indicate they are better treated as two species. Rasmussen & Anderton. 2005 ‘Birds of South Asia The Ripley Guide’. Birds in north America are referable to Western or Common Cattle Egret B. ibis.

8) Chinese Pond-Heron Ardeola bacchus - Common throughout the north and in and around Kaeng Krachan.

9) Javan Pond-Heron Ardeola speciosa - Common between Bangkok and Ayuthya; Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport; fairly common in the Gulf of Siam.
NOTE: The situation with Ardeola pond-herons in Thailand can be very confusing at this time of year as the birds are indistinguishable in non-breeding plumage. When the birds are seen in breeding plumage it appears that Javan Pond-Heron is restricted mainly to the area around Bangkok. It would seem reasonable to assume that most of the birds we saw in the Gulf of Siam were Javan, whilst those seen elsewhere in the country were Chinese. That said it is hard to know what the birds’ movements might be outside the breeding season.

Note from Nick Upton: Actually it is not safe to assume that most of the birds around Bangkok are Javan Pond Herons. The numbers of pond herons around Bangkok are 4 or 5 times higher in the dry season than the wet and presumably most of these birds are wintering Chinese Pond Herons. The tips in Robson on identifying winter plumage pond herons by the wingtips are almost certainly not valid and most resident ornithologists agree that seperation of these two species in winter is not possible. Both species begin to come into breeding plumage around mid February, with Javan attaining breeding plumage a little earlier than Chinese. Only a few individuals have any traces of breeding plumage by mid September.

10) Striated Heron Butorides striata - One, Khai Yai; one Doi Inthanon; several Gulf of Siam; one Kaeng Krachan.
NOTE: The A.O.U. now treats North America populations of the Buteroides superspecies as a separate species: Green-backed Heron B. virescens. B. striatus continues, for the time being, to apply to the rest of this widespread superspecies.

11) Yellow Bittern Ixobrychus sinensis - Two on an attractive, small freshwater marsh near Wat Khao Takrao.

12) Asian Openbill Anastomus oscitans - Very common north of Bangkok, we saw many en route to Khao Yai with possibly as many as 1,000 feeding in the rice-fields surrounding Wat Phai Lom in addition to many actively nesting at the famous rookery. Subsequently several seen between Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport.

13) Painted Stork - A flock of nine in flight plus 2-3 others ca. 12 km west of the new Bangkok airport.

14) Lesser Whistling-Duck Dendrocygna javanica - A huge flock of 200+ constantly in flight over our heads at Hai Hong Krai (HHK).

15) Jerdon’s Baza Aviceda jerdoni - Superb views of one bird in flight and then ‘scope views as it perched right in front of us, Khao Yai.

16) Black Baza Aviceda leuphotes - Super ‘scope views of one at HHK and another more distantly; one or two at Kaeng Krachan.

17) Oriental Honey-Buzzard Pernis ptilorhynchus - One at HHK; two Doi Ang Kang; one dark morph Kaeng Krachan.

18) Black-winged Kite Elanus caeruleus - One Doi Ang Kang; two between Doi Ang Kang and Tha Ton; one near Chiang Mai.

19) Black Kite Milvus migrans - Two singles between Ayuthya and Khao Yai; two singles Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport.

20) Brahminy Kite Haliastur indus - Low numbers in the coastal belt bordering the Gulf of Siam.

21) Crested Serpent-Eagle Spilornis cheela - One of the more common birds of prey in Thailand, we saw or heard this attractive bird at a number of sites on the tour.

22) Eastern Marsh-Harrier Circus spilonotus - One near Ayuthya; five near Tha Ton.

23) Pied Harrier Circus melanoleucos - Good looks at a male and a female in flight near Tha Ton.

24) Crested Goshawk Accipiter trivirgatus - One, Doi Ang Kang; one at our accommodations near Kaeng Krachan and two individuals at Kaeng Krachan.

25) Shikra Accipiter badius - One dived at a group of mynas just as we were driving out of Khao Yai; one Khao Yai.

26) Chinese Sparrowhawk Accipiter soloensis - One in Khao Yai was a rare winter resident.

27) Japanese Sparrowhawk Accipiter gularis - Good looks at one bird mobbing two Oriental Honey-Buzzards on Doi Lang.

28) Besra Accipiter virgatus - Superb views of an adult female perched on a snag over the canopy at Khao Yai; one Kaeng Krachan.

29) Eurasian Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus - Singles seen on two days Doi Ang Kang.

30) Rufous-winged Buzzard Butastur liventer - Great views of one near our accommodations at Doi Inthanon and three shortly after dawn in the dry Dipterocarp woodland.

31) Grey-faced Buzzard Butastur indicus - Excellent looks at one in flight on Doi Lang.

32) Eurasian Buzzard Buteo buteo - Several sightings in the Doi Ang Khang area.

33) Greater Spotted Eagle Aquila clanga - One rather distant bird seen near Wat Khao Takrao and two seen much closer near Phetchaburi. Globally threatened.

34) Booted Eagle Hieraaetus pennatus - One seen by Ingrid between Khao Yai and Suvarnabumi airport; a rare winter migrant in Thailand.

35) Rufous-bellied Eagle Hieraaetus kienerii - Seen once at Kaeng Krachan shortly after dawn, an adult carrying food.

36) Changeable Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus cirrhatus - Singles daily at Kaeng Krachan.

37) Mountain Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus nipalensis - One over Doi Ang Kang; one perched alongside the road at Doi Lang and singles at Kaeng Krachan.

38) White-rumped Falcon Polihirax insignis - Undoubtedly one of the highlights of the entire tour (especially for your truly!). A pair of these very distinctive and gorgeous little raptors put on a great show on our last morning at Doi Inthanon National Park.

39) Collared Falconet Microhierax caerulescens - One seen all too briefly in the dry forest at Doi Inthanon.

40) Black-thighed Falconet Microhierax fringillarius - Sensational views of an adult male on our first morning at Kaeng Krachan. WOW!

41) Oriental Hobby Falco severus - Brief views of one bird as it flew over our heads shortly after dawn, Khao Yai; at least one subsequently seen by Alex and David.

42) Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus - One attacking bats at the bat cave, Khao Yai.

43) Rufous-throated Partridge Arborophila rufogularis - Exceptional prolonged views of a very nicely marked male feeding and possibly 1-2 other individuals, Doi Inthanon.

44) Bar-backed Partridge Arborophila brunneopectus - One flushed from in front of the front vehicle at Kaeng Krachan gave unusually good views.

45) Scaly-breasted Partridge Arborophila chloropus - One seen briefly just inside the forest edge along the main road in Khao Yai; heard at Kaeng Krachan.

46) Mountain Bamboo Partridge Bambusicola fytchii - Two seen well in flight at Doi Ang Khang.

47) Red Junglefowl Gallus gallus - This underrated bird is really quite spectacular; quite common in Khao Yai; scarce at Doi Inthanon; common at Kaeng Krachan incl. a covey one morning of some 14 birds.

48) Grey Peacock-Pheasant Polyplectron bicalcaratum - Clearly very common at Kaeng Krachan as it is heard so frequently. Seeing the bird is an entirely different matter. Fortunately Mr. Tee’s sharp eyes picked up a lovely male as he stalked through the forest permitting some of us at least to see this wonderful bird.

49) Green Peafowl Pavo muticus - A truly fantastic show of two gorgeous males roosting, flying and foraging at Hua Kong Khai. This highly charismatic and glamorous species is declining throughout its range and can now only realistically be seen by birders at a site in Vietnam, Java and here.

50) White-breasted Waterhen Amaurornis phoenicurus - One of the most widespread and common Rallids in Thailand.

51) Ruddy-breasted Crake Porzana fusca - Several heard and seen on our first morning en route to Wat Phai Lom.

52) Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus - Small numbers on freshwater marshes.

53) Pheasant-tailed Jacana Hydrophasianus chirurgus - Three in non-breeding plumage (but very dapper nonetheless) on a small freshwater marsh near Wat Khao Takrao.

54) Bronze-winged Jacana Metopidius indicus - Three near Wat Phia Lom; two on a small freshwater marsh near Wat Khao Takrao.

55) Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus - A flock of ca. 100 counted in rice paddies north of Bangkok; common in the Gulf of Siam.

56) Pacific Golden Plover Pluvialis fulva - Small numbers at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

57) Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola - Approximately 200 at Lam Pak Bia.

58) Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus - Several at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

59) Lesser Sand Plover Charadrius mongolus - Several at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

60) Greater Sand Plover Charadrius leschenaultii - Several at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

61) Grey-headed Lapwing Vanellus cinereus - Six near Wat Phai Lom and an impressive flock of 70+ between Ayuthya and Wat Wat Phra Phutthabat Noi.

62) Red-wattled Lapwing Vanellus indicus - Common around Bangkok; Chiang Mai; Gulf of Siam and Kaeng Krachan.

63) Eurasian Woodcock Scolopax rusticola - An amazing bird found and studied at length in the bog on the Ang Ka trail at Doi Inthanon.

64) Pintail Snipe Gallinago stenura - Two seen well in fallow rice-fields near our accommodations at Doi Inthanon.

65) Black-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica - Approximately 150 at Lam Pak Bia.

66) Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica - One at Lam Pak Bia.

67) Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus - A flock of ca. 100 between Ayuthya and Wat Wat Phra Phutthabat Noi; common in the Gulf of Siam.

68) Marsh Sandpiper Tringa stagnatilis - A flock of ca. 100 between Ayuthya and Wat Wat Phra Phutthabat Noi; common in the Gulf of Siam.

69) Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia - Small numbers in the Gulf of Siam.

70) Nordmann's Greenshank Tringa guttifer - Fabulous study of just one bird near Lam Pak Bia. This is a globally threatened species and a great prize! It is thought this species only has a population of no more than a few hundred individuals.

71) Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola - A total of ten in the Gulf of Siam.

72) Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos - Low numbers between Bangkok and Wat Phai Lom; Chiang Mai and the Gulf of Siam.

73) Great Knot Calidris tenuirostris - Two at Lam Pak Bia.

74) Red Knot Calidris canutus - One at Lam Pak Bia.

75) Sanderling Calidris alba - Great views of one at Lam Pak Bia.

76) Rufous-necked Stint Calidris ruficollis - Common throughout the Gulf of Siam.

77) Long-toed Stint Calidris subminuta - Super views of this very nice wader at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia where it was moderately common.

78) Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea - Common at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

79) Spoon-billed Sandpiper Eurynorhynchus pygmeus - Fantastic views of FIVE birds foraging in mud fields at Lam Pak Bia. This species is now regarded as globally endangered with a population of just 300-400 breeding pairs. It is not clear what the causes of its decline are but clearly it is a case of see this charismatic bird now or sadly perhaps never. The coast of Thailand is undoubtedly THE best place to now see this species away from its breeding grounds.

80) Broad-billed Sandpiper Limicola falcinellus - At leat ten counted in the Gulf of Siam.

81) Ruff Philomachus pugnax - Uncommon in Thailand, we saw just one individual at Lam Pak Bia.

82) Brown-headed Gull Larus brunnicephalus - 1-2 thousand at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

83) Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica - Several at Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

84) Caspian Tern Sterna caspia - Four at Lam Pak Bia.

85) Common Tern Sterna hirundo - Several in the Gulf of Siam.

86) Little Tern Sterna albifrons - Several in the Gulf of Siam.

87) Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus - Very common in the Gulf of Siam.

88) Rock Dove Columba livia

89) Oriental Turtle-Dove Streptopelia orientalis - A group of five seen in scrubby fields near Tha Ton and 20+ seen nicely on Doi Lang.

90) Spotted Dove Streptopelia chinensis - Widespread and common.

91) Red Collared Dove Streptopelia tranquebarica - Notably common between Bangkok and Ayuthya and in open country near Kaeng Krachan.

92) Barred Cuckoo-Dove Macropygia unchall - Several heard and one seen at Khao Yai.

93) Little Cuckoo-Dove Macropygia ruficeps - Two seen in flight at Kaeng Krachan.

94) Emerald Dove Chalcophaps indica - One or two seen daily at Kaeng Krachan.

95) Zebra Dove Geopelia striata - Moderately common between Bangkok and Ayuthya and in open country near Kaeng Krachan.

96) Thick-billed Pigeon Treron curvirostra - Excellent ‘scope studie of this handsome species at several sites in Khao Yai especially at the fruting fig tree; also Kaeng Krachan.

97) Mountain Imperial-Pigeon Ducula badia - Several excellent close studies views of 1-2 birds at Khao Yai; Doi Ang Kang; Doi Lang and Kaeng Krachan.

98) Vernal Hanging-Parrot Loriculus vernalis - The infernal parrot! A bullet with wings. This year we managed some really outstanding ‘scope views of this little gem especially at Khao Yai and found it nesting at Kaeng Krachan.

99) Grey-headed Parakeet Psittacula finschii - A total of five provided good ‘scope views as they fed at a flowering tree on Doi Lang. Sadly this is now a very uncommon species in Thailand.

100) Red-breasted Parakeet Psittacula alexandri - Although the numbers have been greatly reduced in recent years it was wonderful to have such fine looks at this beautiful bird on our first morning in the field, just outside Bangkok.

101) Large Hawk-Cuckoo Hierococcyx sparverioides - Seen just once in dryish woodland on the upper slopes of Kaeng Krachan.

102) Hodgson’s Hawk-Cuckoo Hierococcyx fugax.

103) Banded Bay Cuckoo Cacomantis sonneratii - Good views of one adult in Khao Yai; several heard and 1-2 seen in Kaeng Krachan.

104) Plaintive Cuckoo Cacomantis merulinus - Thanks to some good spotting by Dion we all enjoyed fine ’scope views of this handsome species in lightly wooded farmland near Wat Phai Lom; also heard at Doi Inthanon and seen in Kaeng Krachan.

105) Asian Emerald Cuckoo Chrysococcyx maculates - Fabulous ‘scope views of a gorgeous male in Doi Inthanon.

106) Violet Cuckoo Chrysococcyx xanthorhynchus - One male seen in flight and a female ‘scoped at Kaeng Krachan.

107) Asian Drongo-Cuckoo Surniculus lugubris - Heard at Khao Yai and three seen in one day at Kaeng Krachan.

108) Asian Koel Eudynamys scolopacea - Heard regularly and widely but only seen in the scrubby woodland en route to Wat Phai Lom.

109) Green-billed Malkoha Phaenicophaeus tristis - Notably widespread and relatively conspicuous.

110) Raffles's Malkoha Phaenicophaeus chlorophaeus - One female seen nicely at Kaeng Krachan – a very handsome bird.

111) Chestnut-breasted Malkoha Phaenicophaeus curvirostris - One seen by a fortunate few with a mixed species flock at Kaeng Krachan.

112)Coral-billed Ground Cuckoo Carpococcyx renauldi - Undoubtedly one of the highlights of the tour, everyone got to see at least one bird as it visited the kitchens at the back of the camp ground at Khao Yai.

113) Greater Coucal Centropus sinensis - Recorded almost daily.

114) Lesser Coucal Centropus bengalensis - One seen well at Khao Yai and two at HHK.

115) Collared Scops Owl Otus lempji - Good looks at one in woodland at Huai Hong Krai.

116) Collared Owlet Glaucidium brodiei - Heard at most forested site and one was ‘scoped and seen superbly, Khao Yai.

117) Asian Barred Owlet Glaucidium cuculoides - Very common especially in the north; excellent looks at this attractive bird at Huai Hong Krai and at Doi Ang Kang.

118) Spotted Owlet Athene brama - One resident bird at our accommodations at Doi Inthanon was heard and briefly seen. Interesting that they are so tough to get to grips with in Thailand an yet so easy in India.

119) Brown Hawk-Owl Ninox scutulata - Good views of this very handsome owl at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan (thanks to some great spotting by Laura).

120) Great Eared Nightjar Eurostopodus macrotis - Two seen nicely in flight at Kaeng Krachan.

121) Large-tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus macrurus - Amazing close looks at large numbers of this species on the entrance road at Kaeng Krachan.

122) Himalayan Swiftlet Aerodramus brevirostris - Twenty at Doi Inthanon.

123) Brown-backed Needletail Hirundapus giganteus - Some fantastic close looks at Kaeng Krachan, as they sped past us at eye level.

124) Asian Palm-Swift Cypsiurus balasiensis - Seen almost daily.

125) Fork-tailed Swift Apus pacificus - Two seen well on Doi Inthanon and several seen on Doi Ang Khang and Doi Lang.

126) House Swift Apus nipalensis - Two over Doi Ang Khang.

127) Grey-rumped Treeswift Hemiprocne longipennis - Low numbers at Kaeng Krachan.

128) Orange-breasted Trogon Harpactes oreskios - Excellent looks at this very attractive species at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan where it appears to be relatively common.

129) Red-headed Trogon Harpactes erythrocephalus - A couple of males and females were seen in Khao Yai and heard in Kaeng Krachan.

130) Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis - Rather uncommon this year with just one HHK; one en route to Doi Ang Khang and two on a small freshwater marsh near Wat Khao Takrao.

131) Banded Kingfisher Lacedo pulchella - Everyone enjoyed truly sensational views of at least one very confiding male that just sat out for us at Khao Yai and subsequently great looks at a female at Kaeng Krachan.

132) Stork-billed Kingfisher Halcyon capensis - One in swampy forest near Wat Phai Lom.

133) White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis - Widespread and generally common, especially in open countryside in the lowlands.

134) Black-capped Kingfisher Halcyon pileata - Great looks at several of these handome birds in the coastal lowlands.

135) Collared Kingfisher Todiramphus chloris - Several seen nicely in an around Khok Kam and Lam Pak Bia.

136) Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis - Great ‘scope study of a pair en route to Kaeng Krachan. This is an infrequently seen species in Thailand.

137) Blue-bearded Bee-eater Nyctyornis athertoni - This fantastic bird was seen well several times at Khao Yai, Huai Hong Krai and especially Kaeng Krachan where it appeared to be nesting.

138) Green Bee-eater Merops orientalis - Moderately common in open country.

139) Blue-tailed Bee-eater Merops philippinus - Twenty or more between Bangkok and Wat Phai Lom.

140) Chestnut-headed Bee-eater Merops leschenaulti - Six at Khai Yai and then found to be notably common in the hills of Kaeng Krachan with as many as 80+ roosting at one site.

141) Indian Roller Coracias benghalensis - Seen almost daily in modest numbers in open country.

142) Dollarbird Eurystomus orientalis - One at Khao Yai and low numbers at Kaeng Krachan.

143) Oriental Pied-Hornbill Anthracoceros albirostris - The most common of the hornbills, we saw this species in good numbers at Khao Yai, especially at the fruiting fig tree and at Kaeng Krachan.

144) Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis - This undoubtedly is one of the most spectacular and charismatic birds of Asia! We saw at least 6-8 at Khao Yai and 4-6 daily at Kaeng Krachan including some remarkably close and prolonged studies.

145) Brown Hornbill Anorrhinus austeni - We got really lucky this year with this scarce and shy species with a group of 4-5 feeding a fruiting fig tree at Khao Yai.
NOTE: Split by some authors in two species with brown hornbills from western Thailand westwards being treated as a separate taxon A. tickelli.

146) Wreathed Hornbill Aceros undulatus - Just two seen briefly at Khao Yai but 1-2 seen well and daily at Kaeng Krachan.

147) Great Barbet Megalaima virens - This year we enjoyed fabulous looks at this spectacular bird that very cooperatively sat out on a dead stag at Doi Ang Khang on a couple of occasions and was heard frequently and seen once at at Kaeng Krachan.

148) Green-eared Barbet Megalaima faiostricta - Numerous excellent ‘scope views of this species at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan where one bird was observed digging a nest hole.

149) Red-throated Barbet Megalaima mystacophanos - Superb views of this handsome species on our last morning at Kaeng Krachan.

150) Golden-throated Barbet Megalaima franklinii - Heard frequently in the north, we had some excellent looks at this species on Doi Ang Khang and Doi Inthanon.

151) Blue-throated Barbet Megalaima asiatica - Probably the most common and confiding of the barbets, especially in the north. Seen and ‘scoped at Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang and Kaeng Krachan.

152) Moustached Barbet Megalaima incognita - Very common in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan where we had some great looks.

153) Blue-eared Barbet Megalaima australis - Seen notably frequently this year with several good looks in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

154) Coppersmith Barbet Megalaima haemacephala - This is the barbet of open areas and gardens, and we saw and heard it many times at Huai Hong Krai, Doi Inthanon, and Kaeng Krachan.

155) Eurasian Wryneck Jynx torquilla - Great looks at a wintering bird in scrub near Tha Ton.

156) Speckled Piculet Picumnus innominatus - At least one seen with a mixed species flock at Doi Ang Khang and another seen all too briefly at Kaeng Krachan.

157) White-browed Piculet Sasia ochracea - Great looks at two birds with a small mixed species flock at Kaeng Krachan thanks to some good spotting by Anne.

158) Grey-capped Woodpecker Dendrocopos canicapillus - Heard at Khao Yai and one seen in Doi Inthanon.

159) Stripe-breasted Woodpecker Dendrocopos atratus - Fine ‘scope views in pine forest on Doi Ang Khang and on Doi Lang.

160) Rufous Woodpecker Celeus brachyurus Great ‘scope study of an adult male in Khao Yai.

161) Greater Yellownape Picus flavinucha - A few seen and heard in Kaeng Krachan.

162) Streak-breasted Woodpecker Picus viridianus - One at Kaeng Krachan.

163) Black-headed Woodpecker Picus erythropygius - This fabulous bird is very scarce and shy at Doi Inthanon, found only in the dry dipterocarp forest in the lower reaches of the park and was only seen by the sharp eyes of David.

164) Grey-headed Woodpecker Picus canus - Good looks at two females at Kaeng Krachan.

165) Common Flameback Chrysocolaptes lucidus - One female seen well at Kaeng Krachan.

166) Greater Flameback Chrysocolaptes lucidus - This spectacular woodpecker was encountered a couple of times at Khao Yai and then commonly at Kaeng Krachan.

167) Bay Woodpecker Blythipicus pyrrhotis - Superb views of a very responsive male at Doi Ang Khang and Doi Lang and heard at Kaeng Krachan.

168) Buff-rumped Woodpecker Meiglyptes tristis One seen nicely by Jose!

169) Black-and-buff Woodpecker Meiglyptes jugularis - Good looks at one at Kaeng Krachan.

170) Heart-spotted Woodpecker Hemicircus canente - One with a mixerd species flock at Khao Yai.

171) Great Slaty Woodpecker Mulleripicus pulverulentus - Undoubtedly one of the highlights of a great tour, three birds calling and carrying on at dusk at Kaeng Krachan permitted us all superb views of this charismatic species.

172) Rusty-naped Pitta Pitta oatesi - One flushed by Dion along the jeep track.

173) Blue Pitta Pitta cyanea - Thanks to some great work by Dion several fortunate people managed good views of this very difficult gem.

174) Banded Broadbill Eurylaimus javanicus - One female seen at Kaeng Krachan.

175) Black-and-yellow Broadbill Eurylaimus ochromelas - Fabulous looks at a very responsive pair at Kaeng Krachan.

176) Silver-breasted Broadbill Serilophus lunatus - Good work by Romney and Ingrid produce this elusive species at Kaeng Krachan.

177) Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica - Recorded daily throughout.

178) Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica - Widespread and common with good numbers observed often over forest most days throughout the north and Kaeng Krachan.
NOTE: For a discussion of the taxonomic status of this taxon and Striated Swallow see Rasmussen & Anderton (2005).

179) Asian House Martin Delichon dasypus - A group of six at Doi Inthanon and several on two days at Doi Ang Khang.

180) White Wagtail Motacilla alba - One or two seen occasionally.

181) Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava - Low numbers in muddy rice-fields near Bangkok and in the Gulf of Siam.

182) Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea - Widespread with one or two seen at most sites.

183) Richard's Pipit Anthus richardi - Several on the lawns of one of Aythuthya’s temples; several in and around Tha Ton.

184) Paddyfield Pipit Anthus rufulus - Good looks at four at Khao Yai.

185) Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsoni - Moderately common at Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang and Doi Lang; also recorded at Kaeng Krachan.

186) Black-naped Oriole Oriolus chinensis - Quite common and seen most days at Khao Yai, Doi Ang Khang and Kaeng Krachan.

187) Maroon Oriole Oriolus traillii - Heard at Khao Yai (I wonder if in fact this was a Silver Oriole?) and several seen daily at Doi Inthanon.

188) Indochinese Cuckoo-shrike Coracina polioptera - Several seen at Kaeng Krachan.

189) Black-winged Cuckoo-shrike Coracina melaschistos - Only this species was seen at Khao Yai where it was common.

190) Rosy Minivet Pericrocotus roseus - A total of ten at Huai Hong Krai and five at Doi Ang Khang.

191) Brown-rumped (Swinhoe’s) Minivet Pericrocotus cantonensis - At least four at Huai Hong Krai; and ten at Kaeng Krachan.

192) Small Minivet Pericrocotus cinnamomeus - At least five in the scubby woodlands between Bangkok and Wat Phai Lom.

193) Grey-chinned Minivet Pericrocotus solaris - Several daily in Doi Inthanon.

194) Long-tailed Minivet Pericrocotus ethologus - Low numbers daily at Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

195) Short-billed Minivet Pericrocotus brevirostris - A total of four birds were recorded on Doi Inthanon.

196) Scarlet Minivet Pericrocotus flammeus - Widespread found at lower altitudes than the above species; seen in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

197) Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike Hemipus picatus - Widespread, though nowhere very common; recorded Khao Yai; Doi Inthanon and Kaeng Krachan.

198) Large Woodshrike Tephrodornis gularis - Two and the next one seen at Kaeng Krachan.

199) Striated Bulbul Pycnonotus striatus - A rather striking bulbul and usually scarce but this year we were treated to a flock of as many 30+ on Doi Ang Khang.

200) Black-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus atriceps - Widespread and common (notably common at Doi Inthanon), good numbers seen almost daily.

201) Black-crested Bulbul Pycnonotus melanicterus - Widespread and common and seen almost daily.

202) Red-whiskered Bulbul Pycnonotus jocosus - One or two seen daily at Khao Yai and moderately common in the north where seen daily.

203) Brown-breasted Bulbul Pycnonotus xanthorrhous - This bird is restricted to the far north-west corner of Thailand but we found it to be very common on Doi Ang Khang and Doi Lang this year.

204) Sooty-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus aurigaster - Very common and seen daily in the north.

205) Stripe-throated Bulbul Pycnonotus finlaysoni - Observed in low numbers at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

206) Flavescent Bulbul Pycnonotus flavescens - Common on all the mountains of the north and south.

207) Yellow-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus goiavier - Just two seen at the upper camp grounds of Kaeng Krachan. This species appears to have declined markedly around Bangkok and the Gulf of Siam.

208) Streak-eared Bulbul Pycnonotus blanfordi - Generally a common bird of gardens and rural areas in the south.

209) Puff-throated Bulbul Alophoixus pallidus - Common in Khao Yai and Doi Inthanon.

210) Ochraceous Bulbul Alophoixus ochraceus - Very common, vocal and pugnacious in Kaeng Krachan.

211) Grey-eyed Bulbul Iole propinqua - Common in Khao Yai and less common in Kaeng Krachan.

212) Buff-vented Bulbul Iole olivacea - Several in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

Note: PhD studies have shown that this species does not occur at either site - only various subspecies of Grey-eyed Bulbuls which may require splitting.

213) Ashy Bulbul Hemixos flavala - This handsome bulbul was seen in low numbers in Khao Yai, Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

214) Mountain Bulbul Hypsipetes mcclellandii - Common on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khan.

215) Black Bulbul Hypsipetes leucocephalus - Very few seen this year on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

216) White-headed Bulbul Hypsipetes thompsoni - This handsome species was another trip highlight, we had great views of at least six birds at two very different locations on Khao Yai, Doi Inthanon and Kaeng Krachan. feeding in flowering trees on two days.

217) Asian Fairy-bluebird Irena puella - Many were seen daily in the southern reserves we visited.

218) Greater Green Leafbird Chloropsis sonnerati - One or two of this essentially Sundaic species seen in Kaeng Krachan.

219) Blue-winged Leafbird Chloropsis cochinchinensis - This strikingly good-looking species was seen commonly in Khao Yai; Doi Inthanon and less commonly at Kaeng Krachan.

220) Golden-fronted Leafbird Chloropsis aurifrons - Low numbers seen at Khao Yai and then just one lovely male at a flowering tree at Kaeng Krachan.

221) Orange-bellied Leafbird Chloropsis hardwickii - Fabulous ‘scope looks at this very fancy bird on Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang and Doi Lang.

222) Common Iora Aegithina tiphia - Low numbers seen at scattered locations.

223) Great Iora Aegithina lafresnayei - A few were seen in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

224) Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush Monticola rufiventris - One male on Doi Inthanon; one male on Doi Ang Khang and one male at Kaeng Krachan.

225) Blue Rock Thrush Monticola solitarius - Several seen in Khao Yai; Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

226) Blue Whistling Thrush Myiophonus caeruleus - Common in Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang; less so at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

227) Orange-headed Thrush Zoothera citrina - Superb views of one in Khao Yai.

228) Scaly Thrush Zoothera dauma - One seen briefly on Doi Inthanon.

229) Dark-sided Thrush Zoothera marginata - A fabulous bird was watched at length as it foraged along the Jeep Track on Doi Inthanon. This is one of the few places in the world that this extremely skulking species can be reliably seen.

230) Eye-browed Thrush Turdus obscurus - One male at a flowering tree at Khao Yai; several at Doi Inthanon and one male at Doi Ang Khang.

231) White-browed Shortwing Brachypteryx montana - Sensational views of a very co-operative female and for some a male at the summit bog, Doi Inthanon.

232) Siberian Rubythroat Luscinia calliope - Fabulous looks at 1-2 glowing birds within scrubby farmland near Tha Ton.

233) Siberian Blue Robin Luscinia cyane - Sensational views of a non-breeding plumaged male at Mr Deng’s, Doi Inthanon.

234) Oriental Magpie-Robin Copsychus saularis - Widespread and seen almost daily.

235) White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus - Seen or heard daily at Khao Yai, Huai Hong Krai and Kaeng Krachan.

236) White-capped Water Redstart Chaimarriornis leucocephalus - What a gorgeous bird! We watched this one at our luncheon waterfall, Doi Inthanon at length while it foraged along the stream. Also seen in the grounds of the Ang Khang Resort.

237) Plumbeous Water Redstart Rhyacornis fuliginosus - One female seen very nicely at our luncheon waterfall, Doi Inthanon.

238) White-tailed Robin Myiomela leucura - Great looks at a male along the Jeep Track.

239) Slaty-backed Forktail Enicurus schistaceus - Brilliant, prolonged scope studies for us all as we watched two along the stream from our luncheon waterfall at Doi Inthanon.

240) Purple Cochoa Cochoa purpurea - The distinctive whistle of this rarely encountered species was heard by most but sadly the male only gave a brief appearance, Doi Inthanon.

241) Siberian Stonechat Saxicola maura - Widespread and common in open fields and grasslands.

242) Pied Bushchat Saxicola caprata - Widespread and common in open fields and grasslands.

243) Jerdon’s Bushchat Saxicola jerdoni - Thanks to a combination of some great work by Daphne and Romney we all enjoyed wonderful ‘scope views of this highly localised and globally threatened species in fields on Doi Lang. Thank you Nick Upton.

244) Grey Bushchat Saxicola ferrea - Common on Dois Inthanon, Ang Khang and Lang.

245) Slaty-bellied Tesia Tesia olivea - Excellent views of a surprisingly confiding individual on Doi Inthanon.

246) Oriental Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus orientalis - Heard and briefly seen the Wat Khao Takrow road en route to Lam Pak Bia.

247) Thick-billed Warbler Phragmaticola aedon - An exceptionally good trip for this often skulking species. Everyone enjoyed great views of this distinctive Acrocephalid; near Wat Phai Lom; Khao Yai and Doi Inthanon.
NOTE: Placed in Acrocephalus by some authors.

248) Mountain Tailorbird Orthotomus cuculatus - Good looks at several on Doi Inthanon.

249) Common Tailorbird Orthotomus sutorius - A common garden bird.

250) Dark-necked Tailorbird Orthotomus atrogularis - Very common in forested areas in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

251) Dusky Warbler Phylloscopus fuscatus - Good looks at two birds near Chiang Mai and common in scrubby farmland near Tha Ton.

252) Buff-throated Warbler Phylloscopus subaffinis - One or two at Doi Inthanon.

253) Yellow-streaked Warbler Phylloscopus armandi - Six in scrubby orchard field on Doi Ang Khang.

254) Radde's Warbler Phylloscopus schwarzi - Widepsread and moderately common in roadside scrub.

255) Buff-barred Warbler Phylloscopus pulcher - Two on the summit of Doi Inthanon.

256) Ashy-throated Warbler Phylloscopus maculipennis - Four on the summit of Doi Inthanon.

257) Pallas’s Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus proregulus - Nice looks at this striking leaf-warbler in a mixed species flock on Doi Ang Khang.

258) Yellow-browed Warbler Phylloscopus inornatus - Notably common this year, very common throughout.

259) Mandelli’s Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus mandelli - The birds identified as Hume’s Warbler were in fact Mandelli’s Warbler; Doi Ang Khang.
NOTE: We used to think the genus Phylloscopus was challenging. Thanks to the likes of Per Alstrom and others we now know that what we knew 10-15 years ago bore no semblance of real understanding of what is a fascinating complex that we are only now beginning to unravel. On their wintering grounds this genus can appear to be just the same old ‘LBJ’ whereas on the breeding grounds and once these birds are in fresh spring breeding attire and singing their distinctive territorial songs you would not think you were dealing with the same birds – yet another reason for you to join Dion and David on the VENT 2008 tour to China! The very latest volume of HBW together with Rasmussen & Anderton’s 2 vol. work on the birds of India goes a long way to setting out how this complex sorts out and does a pretty nice job of defining what species occurs where in the breeding season and during winter. Hume’s Warbler winters in peninsular India where Mandelli’s Warbler which is very similar to Hume’s winters in SE Asia alongside Yellow-browed (Inornate) Warbler. It is likely that several of the Yellow-broweds were in fact Mandelli’s so difficult are they to sort out on their winter grounds. However, the birds we saw at Doi Ang Khang you can be confident of.

Note: The taxon mandelli is a subspecies of Hume's Leaf Warbler.

260) Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides - Good looks at one or more on Doi Lang.

261) Two-barred Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus plumbeitarsus - Scattered ones and twos seen well throughout the tour.
NOTE: Sometimes treated as a subspecies of Greensi Warbler, however, there are several distinctive differences that the two taxa act as good species. See vol. 11 HBW.

262) Pale-legged Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus tenellipes - Heard and seen briefly on several occasions but only seen well at Kaeng Krachan.

263) Eastern Crowned Warbler Phylloscopus coronatus - Several at Kaeng Krachan.

264) Blyth's Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus reguloides - Heard or seen almost daily in the north, low numbers at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

265) White-tailed Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus davisoni - Common on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

266) Grey-crowned Warbler Seicercus tephrocephalus - Dion found two along the Jeep Track on Doi Inthanon on our last morning in that park.
NOTE: The Golden-spectacled Warbler Seicercus burkii was split into five species and then as result of additional research another species was located making a total of at least six species that form the ‘Golden-spectacled Warbler complex. As with Phylloscopus the members of this complex are much easier to recognise and clearly identify when they are on their breeding grounds and singing than they are on their wintering grounds.

267) Alstrom’s (Plain-tailed) Warbler Seicercus soror - Excellent views of at least one individual as it fed very confidingly on or near the ground (<1.5m up) among an uderstorey of bamboo within evergreen forest at Kaeng Krachan.

268) Bianchi’s Warbler Seicercus valentini - One on Doi Ang Khang.

269) Chestnut-crowned Warbler Seicercus castaniceps - Two seen well with a mixed species flock on Doi Inthanon.

270) Yellow-bellied Warbler Abroscopus superciliaris - Quite common in bamboo on the slopes of Kaeng Krachan.

271) Zitting Cisticola Cisticola juncidis - Several in the grasslands at Khao Yai.

272) Bright-headed Cisticola Cisticola exilis - Heard and seen briefly in scrubby farmland at Tha Ton.

273) Hill Prinia Prinia atrogularis - This attractive warbler was seen and heard on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

274) Rufescent Prinia Prinia rufescens - Common on Doi Ang Khang.

275) Yellow-bellied Prinia Prinia flaviventris - Common in open scrubby country near water.

276) Plain Prinia Prinia inornata - Several seen in scrubby open country.

277) Dark-sided (Siberian) Flycatcher Muscicapa sibirica - A winter migrant seen well a number of times in Kaeng Krachan.

278) Asian Brown Flycatcher Muscicapa dauurica - One or two daily at Khao Yai, Doi Inthanon and Kaeng Krachan.

279) Rufous-gorgeted Flycatcher Ficedula strophiata - One female at Doi Ang Khang.

280) Taiga Flycatcher Ficedula albicilla - Widespread and common but absent from Kaeng Krachan.
NOTE: it has been proposed that the eastern population of F. (parva) albicilla be elevated to specific status on the basis of differences in vocalisations and plumage. Either way, all the “Red-throated” Flycatchers we saw were of the albicilla race.

281) Snowy-browed Flycatcher Ficedula hyperythra - Superb views of a wonderfully confiding male along the Ang Kha trail on the Doi Inthanon summit.

282) Little Pied Flycatcher Ficedula westermanni - Several with mixed species flocks on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

283) Ultramarine Flycatcher Ficedula supercilaris - A couple of males seen on Doi Ang Khang.

284) Sapphire Flycatcher Ficedula sapphire - One of the better finds of our trip. A sub-adult male was seen very nicely on Doi Ang Khang.

285) Verditer Flycatcher Eumyias thalassina - Widespread and locally common.

286) Large Niltava Niltava grandis - Marvellous looks at a beautiful male and female along the Jeep Trail at Doi Inthanon.

287) Small Niltava Niltava macgregoriae - Super looks at a gorgeous male along the Jeep Track at Doi Inthanon.

288) Rufous-bellied Niltava Niltava sundara -Several males and females seen nicely in the hills of the north-west.

289) Vivid Niltava Niltava vivida - Great looks at a stunning male on Doi Inthanon.

290) Hainan Blue-Flycatcher Cyornis hainanus - One female seen well in Khao Yai.

291) Pale Blue-Flycatcher Cyornis unicolor - Two seen at Khao Yai and one male seen nicely at Doi Inthanon.

292) Blue-throated Flycatcher Cyornis rubeculoides - One male provided a wonderful experience as he sat out in the morning light singing his heart out at Doi Inthanon.

293) Chinese Blue Flycatcher Cyornis glaucicomans - Several seen well at Kaeng Krachan.
NOTE: This is a difficult complex and in the process of being resolved. We treat this taxa as a separate species in order to facilitate this process. There may be more than two species involved: Blue-throated, Chinese Blue and ??? Watch this space.

Note by Nick Upton : The BCST recognise Chinese Blue Flycatcher as a seperate species which is usually easily identified from Blue-throated by the throat pattern.

294) Hill Blue-Flycatcher Cyornis banyumas - Widespread and moderately common. The best views were had at Doi Lang.

295) Tickell's Blue-Flycatcher Cyornis tickelliae - one seen at Kaeng Krachan; one seen in Khao Yai.

296) Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher Culicicapa ceylonensis - Common at all forested sites.

297) Yellow-bellied Fantail Rhipidura hypoxantha - One of the characterisitic components of mixed flocks at high altitudes on Doi Inthanon.

298) White-throated Fantail Rhipidura albicollis - Common on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

299) Pied Fantail Rhipidura javanica - Common in the scrubby woodland between Bangkok and Ayuthya.

300) Black-naped Monarch Hypothymis azurea - Widespreead and moderately common, recorded at most sites.

301) Asian Paradise Flycatcher Terpsiphone paradisi - One female at Khao Yai and another at Kaeng Krachan.

302) Puff-throated Babbler Pellorneum ruficeps - Great close looks at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

303) White-browed Scimitar-Babbler Pomatorhinus schisticeps - Heard at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan, and we all enjoyed superb views of at least two birds that put on a great show at Doi Ang Khang.

304) Limestone Wren-Babbler Napothera crispifrons - Thanks to some good information from we all enjoyed multiple wonderful views of a pair of birds foraging unconcernedly on the slopes of some gorgeous limestone karst at Wat Wat Phra Phutthabat Noi.

305) Eye-browed Wren-Babbler Napothera epilepidota - Heard and glimpsed on Doi Inthanon.

306) Pygmy Wren-Babbler Pnoepyga pusilla - Truly a miracle! Without resort to any play-back Dion and his troops were treated to a marvellous spectacle as this charming forest sprite (No! I don’t really adore these birds!) as this amazing bird wandered right along the bank at eye-level on Doi Inthanon.

307) Rufous-fronted Babbler Stachyris rufifrons - Commonly heard but less often seen, we had some good views of birds in Kaeng Krachan and heard them frequently on Doi Ang Khang.

308) Golden Babbler Stachyris chrysaea - Several seen on Doi Ang Khang and two with a mixed species flock at Kaeng Krachan.

309) Grey-throated Babbler Stachyris nigriceps - Remarkable views of this normally very skulking species at dawn with a very active but confiding mixed species flock on Doi Inthanon.

310) Spot-necked Babbler Stachyris striolata - A group of five put on a tremendous show on two days at Kaeng Krachan – now that’s a real bird!

311) Striped Tit-Babbler Macronous gularis - Common at all lowland forested sites.

312) Yellow-eyed Babbler Chrysomma sinense - Cracking looks at three in farmland within dry dipterocarp woodland on Doi Inthanon.

313) Silver-eared Mesia Leiothrix argentauris - This spectacular babbler was quite common on Doi Ang Khang.

314) White-browed Shrike-Babbler Pteruthius flaviscapis - Yet another fantastic babbler! This is a montane species that we saw or heard at Khao Yai, Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang, Doi Lang and Kaeng Krachan.

315) Chestnut-fronted Shrike-Babbler Pteruthius aenobarbus - Nice views of a male in a mixed flock on Doi Inthanon.

316) White-hooded Babbler Gampsorhychus rufulus - Exceptional views of a very confiding group of eight at Kaeng Krachan.
NOTE: Almost certainly a separate species from the population in India (see Collar 2006, Rasmussen & Anderton 2005).

317) Spectacled Barwing Actinodura ramsayi - This very fancy bird was seen well on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

318) Blue-winged Minla Minla cyanouroptera - A flock of ten on Doi Ang Khang.

319) Chestnut-tailed Minla Minla strigula - One of the most common birds at the Ang Kha summit bog on Doi Inthanon. We enjoyed some outstanding close-up views, too!

320) Rufous-winged Fulvetta Alcippe castaneceps - Common on Doi Inthanon.

321) Brown-cheeked Fulvetta Alcippe poioicephala - Common at Kaeng Krachan.

322) Grey-cheeked Fulvetta Alcippe morrisonia - Very common on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

323) Rufous-backed Sibia Heterophasia annectens - Although characteristically this is rather scarce species we enjoyed several charming encounters with this handsome species on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

324) Dark-backed Sibia Heterophasia melanoleuca - Very common in the mountains of the north.

325) Striated Yuhina Yuhina castaneiceps - A flock of 20 on Doi Ang Khang.

326) White-bellied Yuhina Yuhina zantholeuca - Very common in Khao Yai with much smaller numbers on Doi Ang Khang and Kaeng Krachan.

327) Spot-breasted Parrotbill Paradoxornis guttaticollis - Yet another tour highlight. A pair seen superbly in grasslands on Doi Ang Khang.

328) White-crested Laughingthrush Garrulax leucolophus - Simply amazing views of many of this very charismatic species in Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

329) Lesser Necklaced Laughingthrush Garrulax monileger - Quite elusive but two seen well in the end at Khao Yai.

330) Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush Garrulax pectoralis - One seen very nicely at Kaeng Krachan.

331) Black-throated Laughingthrush Garrulax chinensis - A rather frustrating bird this year with less than satisfactory views of birds at both Khao Khao Yai and Kaheng Krachan.

332) White-browed Laughingthrush Garrulax sannio - A flock of five on Doi Ang Khang.

333) Chestnut-crowned Laughingthrush Garrulax erythrocephalus - Quite common and confiding on the summit at Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

334) Red-faced Liocichla Liocichla phoenicea - Good looks at this fine laughingthrush at Doi Ang Khang thanks to some good spotting by Daphne.

335) Great Tit Parus major - One or two on Doi Ang Khang.

336) Yellow-cheeked Tit Parus spilonotus - One or two on Doi Inthanon and then an amazingly co-operative pair on Doi Lang. Right Ingrid!
NOTE: For a discussion of this complex see Rasmussen & Anderton (2005).

337) Yellow-browed Tit Sylviparus modestus - One at the summit bog on Doi Inthanon.

338) Sultan Tit Melanochlora sultanea - This strikingly charismatic bird was seen mny times at Kaeng Krachan.

339) Chestnut-vented Nuthatch Sitta nagaensis - Moderately common on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

340) Velvet-fronted Nuthatch Sitta frontalis - Seen nicely on Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang and Kaeng Krachan.

341) Brown-throated Treecreeper Certhia discolor - Great views of a pair of responsive birds along the Jeep Trail, Doi Inthanon.

342) Brown-throated Sunbird Anthreptes malacensis - Common between Bangkok and Ayuthya.

343) Ruby-cheeked Sunbird Anthreptes singalensis - One on Doi Ang Khang and then a group of four put on a wonderfully evocative show at Kaeng Krachan.

344) Olive-backed Sunbird Nectarinia jugularis - Widespread and locally common in semi-open habitat.

345) Purple Sunbird Nectarinia asiatica - Widespread and locally common in semi-open habitat.

346) Mrs. Gould's Sunbird Aethopyga gouldiae - Very common at the summit on Doi Inthanon.

347) Green-tailed Sunbird Aethopyga nipalensis - Common at the summit on Doi Ang Khang.

348) Black-throated Sunbird Aethopyga saturata - Common at Khao Yai, Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang and Kaeng Krachan.

349) Crimson Sunbird Aethopyga siparaja - Sensational views of one or two males at Kaeng Krachan.

350) Streaked Spiderhunter Arachnothera magna - This appealing bird was seen commonly at the lookout at Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang and Kaeng Krachan.

351) Thick-billed Flowerpecker Dicaeum agile - By balancing the tripid on two lesgs and pointing the ‘scope skywards we managed to get some pretty good looks at this rather elusive species, Kaeng Krachan.

352) Yellow-vented Flowerpecker Dicaeum chrysorrheum - One seen at Doi Inthanon in the grounds of our accommodations.

353) Plain Flowerpecker Dicaeum concolor - Notably abundant at Doi Ang Khang.

354) Fire-breasted Flowerpecker Dicaeum ignipectus - One male seen nicely at Doi Inthanon and several at Doi Ang Khang.

355) Buff-bellied Flowerpecker Dicaeum cambodianum - Common between Bangkok and Ayuthya and at Khao Yai.
NOTE: Previoulsy treated as a subspecies of Fire-breasted Flowerpecker it is now considered by many to be a discrete taxon that is quite vocally and morphologically distinct, lacking any red on the breast.

Note by Nick Upton : Although many consider this a seperate species the BCST has not yet recognised it. As I am largely a Thailand birder and respect the opinions of the frequently published ornithologists on this committee, I too do not treat it as a distinct species (neither do IOC).

356) Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker Dicaeum cruentatum - Common in lightly treed open country.

357) Chestnut-flanked White-eye Zosterops erythropleurus - Fairly common on Doi Ang Khang.

358) Oriental White-eye Zosterops palpebrosus - Common on Doi Inthanon.

359) Brown Shrike Lanius cristatus - Widespread in ones and twos on most days and 20+ counted on Doi Lang.

360) Long-tailed Shrike Lanius schach - Moderately common in the north between Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang, Tha Ton and Doi Lang.

361) Grey-backed Shrike Lanius tephronotus - Singles on three days at Doi Ang Khang.

362) Black Drongo Dicrurus macrocercus - Widepsread and common in open country.

363) Ashy Drongo Dicrurus leucophaeus - Wideespread but more common in forested areas throughout than Black Drongo, the pale, migrant leucogenis race was seen on a couple of occasions.

364) Bronzed Drongo Dicrurus aeneus - Mostly in low numbers in evergreen forest on Doi Ang Khang, Doi Lang and Kaeng Krachan.

365) Lesser Racket-tailed Drongo Dicrurus remifer - Several on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

366) Hair-crested Drongo Dicrurus hottentottus - Very common, arguably abundant at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan where they congregated at flowering Erythrina sp trees.

367) Greater Racket-tailed Drongo Dicrurus paradiseus - Seen regularly at lower elevations in a variety of habitats.

368) Ashy Woodswallow Artamus fuscus - Seen almost daily.

369) Eurasian Jay Garrulus glandarius - Five on Doi Inthanon and and ten at Huai Hong Krai.

370) Red-billed Blue Magpie Urocissa erythrorhyncha - Scattered individals heard but only one seen by Ingrid.

371) Green Magpie Cissa chinensis - Singles seen nicely at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

372) Rufous Treepie Dendrocitta vagabunda - Several in the dry woodland near our accommodations at Doi Inthanon.

373) Grey Treepie Dendrocitta formosae - Several seen on Doi Ang Khang, Doi Lang and Kaeng Krachan.

374) Racket-tailed Treepie Crypsirina temia - One at Doi Inthanon and then superb views in scrubby farmland at Tha Ton.

375) Eastern Jungle Crow Corvus japponenesis - Widespread and moderately common in open country.
NOTE: Split from macrorhynchus. For a revision of the Large-billed Crow complex see Rasmussen & Anderton (2005).

376) White-shouldered Starling Sturnia sinensis - A flock of six between Bangkok and Wat Phai Lom.

377) Chestnut-tailed Starling Sturnia malabarica - A flock of 20 near Chiang Mai en route to Doi Ang Khang.
NOTE: Also known as Grey-headed Starling.

378) Black-collared Starling Sturnus nigricollis - Several in lightly wooded farmland on the lower slopes of Doi Inthanon also Doi Ang Khang and Tha Ton.

379) Asian Pied Starling Sturnus contra - Several between Bangkok and Ayuthya and six in the Gulf of Siam.

380) Common Myna Acridotheres tristis - Widespread and common in open country.

381) White-vented Myna Acridotheres grandis - Widespread and common in open country.

382) Common Hill Myna Gracula religiosa - Very common at Khao Yai with lower numbers at Khaeng Krachan.

383) House Sparrow Passer domesticus - Thanks to some great work by Dion we all enjoyed exceptional views of this infrequently seen species at the petrol station just outside Chiang Dao!

384) Plain-backed Sparrow Passer flaveolus - Two at the HQ bridge in Khao Yai is an unusual record and then two for David at lam Pak Bia.

385) Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus - Common in urban areas.

386) Pin-tailed Parrotfinch Erythrura prasina - Undoubtedly one of the surprises and one of the many highlights of thie tour. A group of four feeding at flowering bamboo at the Khao Yai headquarters put on a fabulous show. The colours of those males wow!!!!

387) White-rumped Munia Lonchura striata - Twenty or ore feeding at the flowering bamboo at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.

388) Scaly-breasted Munia Lonchura punctulata - Flocks of 10-20 seen occasionally in open country such as rice-fields.

389) Common Rosefinch Carpodacus erythrinus - In good numbers on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.

390) Crested Bunting Melophus lathami - A total of five at Doi Ang Khang and one female on Doi Lang.

391) Little Bunting Emberiza pusilla - Good looks at several of this nicely marked bird on Doi Ang Khang.

392) Chestnut Bunting Emberiza rutila - Several on Doi Inthanon and Doi Ang Khang.


1) Black Giant Squirrel Ratufa bicolor - This spectacular creature was seen very well at Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.
2) Asian Red-cheeked Squirrel Dremomys rufigenis - Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.
3) Grey-bellied Squirrel Callosciurus caniceps - Khao Yai and Kaeng Krachan.
4) Pallas’s Squirrel Callosciurus erythraeus - Scattered sightings in the north.
5) Variable Squirrel Callosciurus finlaysoni - Notably common at Khao Yai.
6) Himalayan Striped Squirrel Tamiops macclellandi - Many sightings in the western reserves.
7) Cambodian Striped Squirrel Tamiops rudolphi - Quite common in Khao Yai.
8) Indochinese Ground Squirrel Menetes berdmorei - One at Khao Yai.
9) Red Giant Flying Squirrel Petaurista petaurista - Khao Yai.
10) Indian Giant Flying Squirrel Petaurista philippensis - Khao Yai.
11) Small Indian Civet Viverricula indica - Khao Yai.
12) Large Indian Civet Viverra zibetha - Khao Yai.
13) Common Palm Civet Paradoxurus hermaphroditus - Khao Yai.
14) Binturong Arctitis binturong - Remarkable views as we watched for 20 minutes at Khao Yai this fabulous and so infrequently seen Viverrid
15) Leopard Cat Felis bengalensis - Khao Yai.
16) Common Leopard Panthera pardus - Undoubtedly the highlight of the tour for the group who saw the female of this magnificent cat calmly walking along the track in front of their jeep. Finally Dion gets to grips with the big one!
17) Small Asian Mongoose Herpestes auropunctatus - Good looks at one in scrubby woodland near our accommodations at Doi Inthanon.
18) Asian Dhole Cuon alpinus - A wonderful treat to see a pack of seven of these magnificent animals lope across the road, then stop to watch us, in the mid-morning at Khao Yai.
19) Dusky Leaf Monkey Semnopithecus obscurus - A very lovely and very common primate in the Kaeng Krachan forests.
20) Long-tailed Macaque Macaca fascicularis - Khao Yai.
21) Northern Pig-tailed Macaque Macaca leonina - Many at Khao Yai.
22) White-handed Gibbon Hylobates lar - Fabulously vocal and visible with as many 12 seen over three days at Khao Yai and several seen at Kaeng Krachan.
23) Northern Treeshrew Tupaia belangeri - One seen at Doi Inthanon.
24) Common Barking Deer Muntiacus muntjak - Common in Khao Yai.
25) Sambar Cervus unicolor - Common in Khao Yai, one at Kaeng Krachan.
26) Asian Elephant Elaphus maximus - A family group of four plus one young calf at Khao Yai and then two or three feeding at a mineral lick at Kaeng Krachan. I never tire of watching this magnificent animal.
27) Lesser Mouse Deer Tragulus javanicus - One seen beautifully at Kaeng Krachan.
28) Wrinkle-lipped Bat Tadarida plicata - Oh, just a million or so exiting the bat cave in Khao Yai at dusk.

David Bishop can be contacted at
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