Birding with Natalie Duckett April 24, 2016
We had a really pleasant trip to Kaeng Krachan with Natalie from the UK last week..
Day 1. We met up with Natalie at Cha-am on Wednesday morning and headed off to Kaeng Krachan NP. The first afternoon was spent at Samarn Birdcamp where the main target for the evening was the Slow Loris. A few hours in the hide turned up a good variety of birds including; Abbot’s, Puff-throated and Striped tit Babblers, Racket-tailed Treepies, Streak-eared, Black-crested, Black-headed, Sooty-headed and Stripe-throated Bulbuls, Common Tailorbird, Pied Fantail, Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher, Black-naped Monarch, Bronzed Drongo, White-rumped Shamas, Greater Necklaced Laughingthrushes and Large Scimitar Babblers. In the evening we had a walk out to see some Large-tailed Nightjars and then we spotted movement in a fruit tree in the far corner of the camp. After a bit of searching we managed to observe 3 different Slow Lorises. After watching them for 20 or so minutes, one decided to come out from the tree and make his way along the overhead power lines. Slow, they are definitely not !!
The next morning, at around 6am, we headed off into the park. We took it slow and stopped around the water holes and ponds in the hope of some early morning mammals. Sadly, not much was playing ball and just one Barking Deer was seen. The pond around Km 8 produced some great action with a host of birds including; Blue-winged Leafbirds, Yellow-rumped Flycatchers, Kalij Pheasant, Green-eared Barbets and a pair of Black-thighed Falconets. Further along the road a pair of Black and Red Broadbills were busy making their nest in the morning sun.
At Ban Krang campsite, we stopped for a spot of breakfast and were greeted by a pair of Velvet-fronted Nuthatches, we then birded around the campsite before heading off to the streams. At Stream 1 we saw a pair of Banded Kingfishers and heard Hooded and Blue-winged Pittas calling. Along the road we saw and heard Asian Fairy Bluebirds, White-fronted Scops Owls, Grey Peacock Pheasant, Black-capped Kingfisher, Orange-breasted Trogons, Forest Wagtails, Hooded and Blue-winged Pittas and a Black-backed Kingfisher zipped along the stream. A brief stint in a hide at Km 18 gave us some great view of a pair of bathing Green Magpies.
Later in the evening, we watched the Malayan and Brush-tailed Porcupines and caught a good view of a Binturong. Sadly that night no elephants or Civets were seen.
The next morning I awoke to the sighting of the Sun Bear strolling across the campsite. Unfortunately I was the only one to see it. We had planned to drive up to Panoun Thung, but were informed the road was closed due to a fallen tree, so we re-visited the streams again. Greater Flameback Woodpeckers and Silver-breasted Broadbills showed well and Sultan Tits, an Asian Barred Owlet and Blue-winged Pittas amongst others completed the morning. After lunch we had to unfortunately cut the trip a day short and head back to Bangkok.