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isanbirder

Birdwatching In Isan

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I've just stumbled upon this Isaan birding thread and have just finished reading all 5 pages worth and am wondering if this is still active as I too am in Isaan and a novice birder. Would like to find out and share sightings with more knowledgeable like minded folks here.

It depends where you are, Jack. There aren't very many of us! I'm in Buriram, and there is one guy in Udon. Our colleague from Surin has just relocated.. PM me if you're anywhere near either of us. Anyway, I'm always happy to answer queries.

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Does somebody have a record of Yellow(?) Bittern's "WOOP WOOP WOOP"? I can't find any on the Internet.

I'm living on Samui, but hope Isan have them too.

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I live in Bangkok (collared doves. pigeons and Sparrows) outside the city I lived in Surin and then Pak Chong for a few years and clocked up a number of species. Khao Yai was a huge breakthrough. To watch the hornbills (black, pied, great) was awesome. Has anybody observed hornbills outside of the national parks in Isaan?

I'm guessing the rural Thais have hunted the hornbills for its meat outside the parks. Once saw a Thai man in a village in Surin walking along the path with a black-shouldered kite he had caught in a trap.

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Does somebody have a record of Yellow(?) Bittern's "WOOP WOOP WOOP"? I can't find any on the Internet.

I'm living on Samui, but hope Isan have them too.

It doesn't sound like a Yellow Bittern to me! The call is transcribed by Robson as 'kak'kak'kak' in flight.

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I live in Bangkok (collared doves. pigeons and Sparrows) outside the city I lived in Surin and then Pak Chong for a few years and clocked up a number of species. Khao Yai was a huge breakthrough. To watch the hornbills (black, pied, great) was awesome. Has anybody observed hornbills outside of the national parks in Isaan?

I'm guessing the rural Thais have hunted the hornbills for its meat outside the parks. Once saw a Thai man in a village in Surin walking along the path with a black-shouldered kite he had caught in a trap.

You won't usually find any of the hornbills outside the larger forested areas, specifically Khao Yai and the Western forest complex. there may still be a few along the Cambodian border, but I don't know where. I have seen Pied in Khao Sam Roi Yot, near Hua Hin, but that was a surprise! It's more a question of suitable habitat than hunting (though a Karen friend in Omkoi (Chiangmai) whom I asked about Hornbills, said, "The Karen have eaten them all!").

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There was a very healthy population of pied oriental hornbills on koh Phayam last year when I visited. They were fairly used to humans and anyone with a half decent lens on their camera could get some great shots.

I would really reccommend the island to any bird watchers, it's a great place with some truly amazing birdlife such as flocks of vernal hanging parrots, Asian fairy bluebirds and loads of raptors to name but a few. I'm only a beginner but I was really blown away, can't wait to go back there again!

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I stayed last week in goldenland resort in Khorat, it's a mid range resort with decent facilities but the best part about it is that it's set on 300 acres of land with some small forested areas, a few lakes and some unkempt grassland so all in all a decent spot for some birding. I was up early everyday and had a great time. I'm pretty sure I saw a Siberian ruby throat and just wanted to know if anyone else has seen these in the area at all, it was just a fleeting sighting and then he was gone before I could get a positive ID but I can distinctly remember a very bright red throat patch with some lighter spots above the eyes on a small brown bird. If anyone had any feedback or ideas of what it could have been it would be greatly appreciated! It looked to be looking for food on the floor below a flowering tree between some fallen flowers and leaves when we spotted each other if that helps at all?

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I stayed last week in goldenland resort in Khorat, it's a mid range resort with decent facilities but the best part about it is that it's set on 300 acres of land with some small forested areas, a few lakes and some unkempt grassland so all in all a decent spot for some birding. I was up early everyday and had a great time. I'm pretty sure I saw a Siberian ruby throat and just wanted to know if anyone else has seen these in the area at all, it was just a fleeting sighting and then he was gone before I could get a positive ID but I can distinctly remember a very bright red throat patch with some lighter spots above the eyes on a small brown bird. If anyone had any feedback or ideas of what it could have been it would be greatly appreciated! It looked to be looking for food on the floor below a flowering tree between some fallen flowers and leaves when we spotted each other if that helps at all?

I have seen Siberian Rubythroat in Surin. An acquaintance of mine recently saw one in Pak Chong. "Very common winter vistor" throughout much of the country, according to Lekagul/Round. So no reason you shouldn't have seen one there. Should have fairly prominent while supercilium, though. Only other species I can think of with a red throat and of similar size would be Taiga Flycatcher, which would not have as prominenet a supercilium and Round also notes "Frequently drops to the ground to feed."

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Thanks ajarnnorth it defo wasn't a taiga fly catcher as I'm quite familiar with these having seen them a number of times in Suan Lot Fly near where I live in Bangkok on previous occasions although this was another of the birds that was in the resort during my stay. I'm pretty sure it was a ruby throat all things considered and now I've done enough research that if I see one again I'll know for sure.

One other thing, I saw quite a few sooty headed bulbuls in the resort but they all had yellow vents, my book says the male should have a red vent so I was wondering if this is something common to the area, i mean with the males having more orangy coloured vents than red or perhaps coincidentally I only spotted female birds which would seem strange due to the numbers I saw?

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Thanks ajarnnorth it defo wasn't a taiga fly catcher as I'm quite familiar with these having seen them a number of times in Suan Lot Fly near where I live in Bangkok on previous occasions although this was another of the birds that was in the resort during my stay. I'm pretty sure it was a ruby throat all things considered and now I've done enough research that if I see one again I'll know for sure.

One other thing, I saw quite a few sooty headed bulbuls in the resort but they all had yellow vents, my book says the male should have a red vent so I was wondering if this is something common to the area, i mean with the males having more orangy coloured vents than red or perhaps coincidentally I only spotted female birds which would seem strange due to the numbers I saw?

It's my understanding that it's not to do with male vs. female, but either two races or regional differences in one. Robson has some notes about this and Philip Round's "Birds of the Bangkok Area" has extensive notes on same.

I lived in Surin for years and now live in Chonburi. "Birds of the Bangkok Area" is a great book. It is very large so not at all a field guide, but whether you live in the BKK area or anywhere else in Thailand, there is information in there that you just will not find in other field guides. I saw one recently at Kinokunia Book Store in Siam Paragon.

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Cheers ajarnnorth that clears it up for me, looking back it was my mistake and not the books, thanks for the help!

Thanks for the book recommendation too I'll be sure to check it out. I love the kinokunia shops especially the one in paragon and have lost many an hour in there!

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Does somebody have a record of Yellow(?) Bittern's "WOOP WOOP WOOP"? I can't find any on the Internet.

I'm living on Samui, but hope Isan have them too.

It doesn't sound like a Yellow Bittern to me! The call is transcribed by Robson as 'kak'kak'kak' in flight.

I think he means what I've been told is the "Leo Leo" bird (in lower Issan)?

I've got one outside my window in the mango or coconut tree, besides the daytime, he/she starts going about 1:30 in the morning

And I love it, its very nice - Lay-o Lay-o, Layyy-oo, lay-oooo.

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Does somebody have a record of Yellow(?) Bittern's "WOOP WOOP WOOP"? I can't find any on the Internet.

I'm living on Samui, but hope Isan have them too.

It doesn't sound like a Yellow Bittern to me! The call is transcribed by Robson as 'kak'kak'kak' in flight.

I think he means what I've been told is the "Leo Leo" bird (in lower Issan)?

I've got one outside my window in the mango or coconut tree, besides the daytime, he/she starts going about 1:30 in the morning

And I love it, its very nice - Lay-o Lay-o, Layyy-oo, lay-oooo.

"The Birds of the Bangkok Area" (Philip Round) has notes on the Yellow Bittern's flight call vs. territorial call. Male's territorial call "is a soft crrew crrew also described as a series of low pitches ou notes." I used to hear this often when i lived in a wetlands area in Surin.

Coucals also make a kind of whooping sound that might match, Greater and Lesser.

55Jay, sounds like you are describing an Asian Koel.

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Saw a guy selling a pair of trapped Lineated Barbets and four white rumped Shamas in a market in Khorat yesterday, such a shame. Is there any government bodies or organizations who would do anything about stuff like this? Is it even illegal to trap and sell birds over here? They were sort of kept low in cages on the floor somewhat tucked away which made me wonder if this was done to make them look less conspicuous.

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Saw a guy selling a pair of trapped Lineated Barbets and four white rumped Shamas in a market in Khorat yesterday, such a shame. Is there any government bodies or organizations who would do anything about stuff like this? Is it even illegal to trap and sell birds over here? They were sort of kept low in cages on the floor somewhat tucked away which made me wonder if this was done to make them look less conspicuous.

Theoretically it is illegal, but I think it highly unlikely that any authorities would do anything about it, if it is only on a small scale.

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