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Got the Blues...... January 3, 2016

As my last trip to Pak Phli failed to turn up any Bluethroats, one more trip was in order before going back to work on Monday.  I actually planned for Wednesday, but Tuesday night was too long so didn’t make it….. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday… same same… Saturday morning I woke up at 4:30, gotta go gotta go…..  I arrived at just after 7 am. As I drove along the approach road, the first bird sighted was a Black-capped Kingfisher. A striking bird and one of my favourite kingfishers. As usual, hundreds of Black Kites lined the road roosting in the Eucalyptus trees.

Long-Tailed Shrike at Pak Phli
Long-Tailed Shrike

I drove down past the second bridge towards where I had seen the Bluethroats before, a single Long-tailed Shrike posed nicely, soaking up the morning sun. I chose my spot and went about setting up the hide.. Well, I hadn’t even taken the rest of the gear out when the first female Bluethroat flew down, right in front of me, almost with a look on her face of “Ok, so I’m here, where are my worms!!!”

Bluethroat at Pak Phli
Rosy Pipit at Pak-Phli
Rosy Pipit

Bluethroats, Stonechats, Plain Prinias and Rosy Pipits showed really well and it was interesting to note the pecking order… It seemed the Stonechats would warn off the Bluethroats, the Bluethroats chased away the Rosy Pipits and when a Prinia arrived, all dashed for cover….A brief visit by a Chestnut-eared Bunting was the first lifer of 2016 for me, and it also put on a great display of mobbing a Bluethroat..

Chestnut-eared Bunting at Pak Phli
Chestnut-eared Bunting
Chestnut-eared Bunting at Pak Phli
Chestnut-eared Bunting
Red Avadavat at Pak Phli
Red Avadavat

With the sun getting higher now and the birds becoming less frequent, I decided to have a drive around the perimeter road before heading back. The first bird I came across was the Plain-backed sparrow, with such a striking mix of colours to its plumage, why on earth is it called “Plain”????  

Plain-Backed Sparrow at Pak Phli
Plain-Backed Sparrow

A Striated Grassbird was delightfully emptying its lungs a little further along the road, and then a Purple Heron just about rounded off my morning. Pak Phli is a wonderful place for birding at the moment, and being only a couple of hours from Bangkok it’s well worth a vist… If anyone would like to take a trip to Pak-Phli, please leave a message in the comments box....

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