Clouded Monitor

Its not a bird, but this Clouded Monitor which I’ve taken in Kaeng Krachan National Park in 2011 is just too pretty not to share! I remembered how excited my guide was when he saw this lizard and how long it took for me to realize that there’s a lizard on the tree trunk! Great memories! 😛

clouded monitor- taken in Thailand

clouded monitor- taken in Thailand

 

Kaeng Krachan National Park- The bird that stayed in the hole

When I first organised the trip to Kaeng Krachan National Park, my target was to get the banded kingfisher, which to my dismay, fledged shortly before our arrival (Grrr…). But our disappointment was shortlived as our 5 day trip was filled with loads of fun and laughter!
Below is one unforgettable memory!

The bird that stayed in the hole…like forever

With hides set, our long wait began. Our cameras were all pointing at a particular bamboo- a bamboo with a tiny hole….but no bird in it. After waiting for sometime, a tiny little orange colored bird flew into the hole, and out popped it’s head!

White browed piculet

But the bird stayed in that hole….with no intention to leave at all! We were about to Zzzz when our guide walked towards the bamboo area. “Perhaps the bird would fly out of the hole when he gets close”, Bonnie and I whispered to each other. We bet our chances and it flew out alright, but we were too slow to fire any shots (grrr…). It was another long Zzz wait before it finally perched outside the hole for 2 seconds before returning to the hole again! FINALLY. White browed piculet! 😛

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white browed piculet!

P.S. Kaeng Krachan National Park is just a 2 hour drive from Bangkok. We stayed at Samarn bird camp which is just next to the park entrance. Samarn’s wife is a great cook by the way! 😛

samarn camp- Photo by Bonnie Chan

Uncle Sin’s “Pond”

Location: Kaeng Krachan National Park, Thailand

Guide: Tomorrow we will visit Uncle Sin’s pond. You can do half or full day there.
Me: What kind of birds can we get there?
Guide: Mainly forest birds…
I am baffled…did he just say forest birds? Surely this can’t be right! My basic understanding of a pond – fish pond, would be frequented by ducks, kingfishers or even terns! I am convinced there is some mis-communication between us. 🙂

“Where’s the pond?” I ask, when we arrive at location. Our guide beckons us to follow him. We trek deep in to the forest and arrive at a small open ground. No sight of pond, but only to see hides and trees enclave around the area. As we settle in to our individual hides, we are told to wait for Uncle Sin.
“Okay, this is totally weird…I simply don’t have a clue of what’s going on here”. I glanced at my friends and they look equally puzzled . Soon Uncle Sin arrives, carrying with him a huge container. He walks to the depression in the ground, opens his container and pours water in to the hole and leaves! By this time we all burst into fits of laughter! The mystery is solved, the so-called “pond” is actually a water hole!
We are highly entertained by a variety of  water forest birds…where most of them come for a bath! The mouse deer (mouse+deer=mouse deer) is another highlight at the pond!
Below are some of the birds taken at the famous “pond”. 😉 😉

Note to Self- Start my own “pond” when I retire.   😎

red legged crake in bath!

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brown cheeked fulvetta

Tinkle Blue flycatcher-male and female

red jungle fowls- male and female

red jungle fowls- male and female

Silver Pheasants- male and female

Silver Pheasants- male and female

mouse deer (mouse+deer=mouse deer, simple logic)

Here’s a photo of the hides at the “pond”… 😛

Hides at the Pond area – Photo by Bonnie Chan

List of birds at the “pond” : Silver pheasants, Red jungle fowls, Lesser and Greater necklaced laughing thrush, Tinkle blue flycatcher, Brown cheeked fulvetta, Racket tailed treepie, Red legged crake, Black naped monarch, white rump sharma, Streaked eared bubul, etc.