4 May 2020

Bird watching trip report


Introduction

I usually don't use any guides in the Bangkok area. But I decided to go on a Bird watching West of Bangkok tour with Wild Bird Eco Tour. And I booked a Bird watching East of Bangkok tour as well. And the eBird hotspot Soi Sukhumvit 119 fish ponds is one of our stops.

To skip the information and to go straight to the TRIP REPORT click HERE


Guide

I usually don't use any bird watching Guide in / around Bangkok. But could be a good idea to have a Guide to help me identify all the birds I see. As it is now my eBird checklists are not very impressive as I can only ID half of the birds I see.

Well, I decided that it could be a good idea, and going bird watching on the 1st of May 2020 I decided to use a Guide. It was a good experience, I spotted new birds and I discovered new birding areas. So going to look for birds East of Bangkok and I decided to use Wild Bird Eco Tour again.

Wild Bird Eco Tour


Land transportation

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
About 50 km from the Sukhumvit / Asoke intersection in DOWN TOWN Bangkok

You will need a car and if you don't have your own a taxi is a very convenient way of travelling. Depending on the early morning traffic it will take 90 minutes to reach the area. You rent the taxi for a full day and it will set you back with about 2000-3000 Baht (May 2020) depending on distances etc. And of course, depending on your negotiation skills.

To make sure that the driver understand you can show the below Thai Script:

• Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 เทศบาลบางปู 119

Or show the driver a map. Click HERE for a map


Scan for map

Sukhumvit Road goes all the way to Cambodia. And when you follow the road along Gulf of Thailand from Bangko you drive along a canal north of the road from Bang Pu towards east. When you reach Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 turn north and cross the canal to get to the area.

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Comming over the bridge from Sukhumvit in the south


Equipment

Canon 5D Mk. III + Canon 5D Mk. IV
Canon EF 28-300/3,5-5,6 L IS USM
Canon EF 70-200/2,8L IS II USM
Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens
Canon Speedlite 600EXII-RT flash
Canon PowerShot G7X Mark II
Panasonic HC-W585 video camera

Sound recorder
ZOOM H5 Handy Recorder

Binocular
Steiner Skyhawk 8x32 (Since May 2020)


Weather / climate

Weather, I don´t know if Bangkok is the hottest capital in the world. But this is what they say and I have no reason to doubt this information because it is darn hot.

Bangkok, Thailand - Climate & Temperature
Pictures from www.climatemps.com

Bangkok, Thailand - Climate & Temperature - Click picture for full size
Pictures from www.climatemps.com



References/Resources

Thai National Parks - About the National Parks in Thailand A very good web page - Do you know that there are still wild tigers, elephants, leopards, tapirs, gaurs, bears and many monkey species in many tropical rainforests across Thailand? Do you also know that around 10% of all marine species in the world can be found in Thailand? And the fact that Thailand is the best bird-watching destination in mainland Asia?

National parks are protected areas of land because they have unspoilt landscapes and a diverse number of native plants and animals. There are 127 national parks in Thailand, of them 22 marine national parks. These parks offers a diverse range of flora and fauna, home to important population of endangered species.
So now it will be easy to find out if there are any National Park close to you.

Bird Conservation Society of Thailand (BCST) - The Bird Conservation Society of Thailand (BCST) is one of the oldest Bird Conservation Society of Thailand (BCST)organisations conserving birds and nature in Thailand and is the country partner of BirdLife International. BCST's role to the local community is to spread awareness about urban birds and reconnect people back to nature.

The Logo
Dated back to 1986 when BCST was then a loosely-formed “Bangkok Birdwatching Club”, the Oriental Magpie Robin (Copsychus saularis), or “Nok Gang Ken Baan” in Thai, has been chosen to represent the organisation.

There are two sites covering Thailand and I have used them many times. These two web pages are actually everything you need for your birding adventures in Thailand. All the information you need about all the birding spots. Click on the map and then select your spot and you will have maps and everything you need to know about the areas. They have put a lot of jobs in to their web pages, North Thailand Birding and thaibirding.com A must to visit before you go bird watching in Thailand.

www.norththailandbirding.com - A one stop only for all your birding in Thailand

thaibirding.com - Nick Upton's one stop only for all your birding in Thailand.

Use both www.thaibirding.com and www.norththailandbirding.com and you have a winner. Some of the maps on www.norththailandbirding.com are way better than Nick Upton´s, while some of Nick's maps are much more detailed. So I have found that if I use both the web pages for information, well, nothing else needed.

PBase/Peter Ericson - Peter Ericson, a guy I thought was from USA because of his family name. I met him at Lat Krabang Paddies in May 2020 and turned out that he was Swedish. Anyway, I have used his excellent page PBase since 2016 as help to ID birds by the help from his beautiful bird pictures.

Here you can also find information about birding tours.

He is also having a Blog - Thaibirds and more with interesting information.

Bangkok City Birding - A lot of interesting birding stories and information on this bird watching blog by David Gandy. Bangkok-based patch-worker in Suan Rot Fai, a large park close to the city's famous weekend market. He have recorded 150 species on his patch since 2008. As one of the only big green spaces in the city, “SRF” acts as a real magnet for migrants during spring and autumn, and holds a healthy selection of "sibes" during the winter months.


The East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership - The East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership is a network of partners within the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF). The East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership (EAAFP) aims to protect migratory waterbirds, their habitat and the livelihoods of people dependent upon them.

The Flyway is one of 9 major migratory routes recognised globally. Partners include National Governments, Inter-Governmental Organisations, International Non-governmental Organisations, and International Private Enterprise, which agree to endorse the text and support the objectives and actions under this Partnership.

Thailand have three Flyway Network Sites - www.eaaflyway.net/thailand to find more information.
Pak Thale – Laem Phak Bia Flyway Site
Khok Kham Flyway Site
Krabi Estuary and Bay

www.tideschart.com GET THE LATEST TIDES IN THAILAND AND AROUND THE WORLD - A must to check out times for HIGH and LOW water when going to look for waders / shorebirds.

ebird - Find birding hotspots with bird checklists from all over the world

Avibase - is an extensive database information system about all birds of the world, containing over 25 million records about 10,000 species and 22,000 subspecies of birds, including distribution information for 12,000 regions, taxonomy, synonyms in several languages


www.oiseaux.net This web page is also excellent for identifying birds. There is information and range maps for many many birds from all over the world. This page is almost guaranteed to give you any answer you have about any bird in the world.

Cloudbirders - Read birding trip reports from all over the world

Fatbirder - Linking birders worldwide... Wildlife Travellers see their sister site: WAND


Fatbirder is a fantastic web page with information from, I think every country in the world. My first stop when I plan for my bird watching trips. There is information about locations and guides, well, pretty much everything you need to know. Sometimes this is the only place I need to visit to plan my trip.

BirdingPal - find a birding Guide around the world

BirdingPal


And the web page you cannot live without. I have been around the world looking for birds. I usually have a Guide, but sometimes it is not possible to find a Guide. So, well, I have lost count on how many times I have had help to ID birds at BirdForum. Joining this forum have been very very good for my bird watching experience.

www.birdforum.net

ClimaTemps.com is the place to learn about the worlds climates with more than 4000 locations documented. Each aspect of the climate is represented using colour enhanced tables and professional graphs so that data can easily be compared by switching between locations in different tabs in your browser.

“A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand and South East Asia by Craig Robson”


A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand and South East Asia by Craig Robson

A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand and South East Asia by Craig Robson. New edition updated with 76 species since previous edition “A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand and South East Asia by Craig” Nick Upton at www.thaibirding.com wrote “This quite excellent book is packed full of quality illustrations and written information on 1251 species recorded in Southeast Asia”

I bought this book for bird watching in Thailand, but it goes for all over SE Asia

I have been very happy with the “A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand and South East Asia by Craig Robson” But I had a fire in my condo 2019 and I needed to buy a new book. I was looking for the “A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand and South East Asia by Craig Robson” as I liked the book. But this book is not available anymore so I had to buy the “A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand” by Craig Robson.

What a disappointment this was, using the pictures in the book didn't helped to ID any birds.

“Birds of Thailand” by Uthai Treesuconand Wich'yanan Limparungpatthanakij


I met Peter Ericson, a famous bird watcher and he recommended the “Birds of Thailand” by Uthai Treesuconand Wich'yanan Limparungpatthanakij. I bought the book as soon as the book stores opened after the Wuhan virus. And I am very happy with the book and I have managed to ID some birds using the book.

Birds of Thailand by Uthai Treesuconand Wich'yanan Limparungpatthanakij

This new field guide will help you identify all 1049 species to have been recorded in the country to date, including the 20 species endemic or near-endemic to Thailand.

-Taxonomy follows the HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World.

-Detailed texts covering status, habitat and behaviour, age, sex and geographical variation, voice, and confusion species.

-Almost 2200 illustrations covering all species and distinctive subspecies, birds in flight, males and females, juveniles and non-breeding plumages, where appropriate.

-QR code for each species, linking to the Internet Bird Collection gallery of photos, videos and sounds.

-More than 1025 full-colour range maps for all species other than vagrants.

-Well-marked subspecies groups receive full accounts, and the distributions of subspecies breeding in the region are clearly mapped.

-Local species name and local conservation status included.


I like the book, but I miss the picture index.


Places to visit

Sukhumvit Soi 119 fish ponds


We entered the Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 from Sukhumvit Road in the south. My Guide was shocked when we crossed the canal next to Sukhumvit Road. When we had passed the bridge Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 he saw that they were constructing a new road and the fish pound were gone. My Guide was really disappointed.

There were still some ponds behind the construction and we got out to the area on a very small dirt road. BUT AS THE AREA IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION I GUESS IT CHANGES ON A DAILY BASIS!!! (May 2020)

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Comming over the bridge from Sukhumvit in the south

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Drive along Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 (May 2020)
Fishponds used to be on the east side of the road

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Drive along Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 (May 2020)
Fishponds used to be on the east side of the road

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Drive along Thetsaban Bang Pu 119 (May 2020)
look out for dirt tracks on the east side of the road

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
We discover a small road in through the bushed

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Continue north for a couple of kilometre

Driving north for about 3 km and you have left the constructions south of you. Now you are in a gorgeous area, it is in the middle of the country side and just to drive around here can be rewarding, even if you don't look for birds.

I cannot give any directions as you can just make up the route while driving, explore different roads and dirt tracks. The area is full of birds associated with fresh water, fish ponds and farmland. So it is pretty much unnecessary to give any directions as you will see birds all over the area.

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
Same beautiful area where ever you go

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Thailand
We come close to the city


Bird checklist

I never use any bird lists, but since I try to make it in to Cloudbirders. A very helpful site when planning your birding trips. But they ask for a bird checklist, and if I use their service, of course I want to contribute as well. My two first bird watching trip reports was rejected by Cloudbirders.

So I started to take ideas from the reports I found on Cloudbirders. So I have started to use bird lists, eBird generate one for me and I can post it on Cloudbirders. I will post my birds on eBird and on my different “BIRDS THAT I HAVE OBSERVED” pages.

Full Thai list updated to the taxonomy, nomenclature and sequence of the IOU/IOC World Bird List. The complete checklist, including Thai names and synonyms, can be downloaded in Excel format - Thailand Bird Checklist. - Version 8.2 (2018) - found at www.norththailandbirding.com

Check lists can come in handy to find out the local name of the bird etc. And Avibase have a list with pictures and sounds, excellent!

So I will post bird checklists here and if my Guides provide me with checklists I will also post them here.

Cloudbirders


Avibase - Bird Checklists of the World

Bangkok bird checklist from Avibase, click HERE - eBird version 2019 taxonomy

Avibase is providing you with bird checklists from all over the world. And I´m impressed by their web page. Select country and area and you get the bird checklist. Like the PDF files I got from Avibase on the links above. You also get the checklist with pictures and sounds.

The best part is that you get the local names of the birds and the online checklist gives the names in English plus the language you have selected. But it seems like the PDF cannot handle some alphabet.

For example the Japanese language so it is blank in the PDF checklist. But it worked excellent with Swedish. But you get them in the local language on the online version.


Bird list

I only list birds I have got on picture on my list of OBSERVED BIRDS. But since I started using eBird I have changed a bit. I list all the birds on the eBird checklist. See the DAY TO DAY report in the itinerary below.

And you can visit my list of “Birds I have seen in Thailand” ONLY BIRDS I HAVE ON PICTURE.


Trip Report


4th of May 2020 and we discover that the whole area had turned in to a construction site when we crossed the bridge over the canal. We drove north and we found a small road going through the construction site and we ended up at some fishing ponds east of the Thetsaban Bang Pu 119. After 100 meters we spotted two Greater Coucals making babies in one of the trees. Of course, I just had to think about my camera and the birds took off.

A little bit further up the road and we had two White-breasted Waterhens in a big fight in the middle of the road, but they took off as soon as I was out of the car with my video camera.

We came to the end of the road and we turned around driving back towards Thetsaban Bang Pu 119. We spotted one Freckle-breasted Woodpecker on the way back, but this one was hiding behind the trunk so I only got a picture of the head.

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Bangkok, Thailand - Freckle-breasted Woodpecker
Freckle-breasted Woodpecker

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Bangkok, Thailand - Grey Heron
Grey Heron

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Bangkok, Thailand
I meet a new friend

Zitting Cisticola, फिरफिरे, Cisticola juncidis, นกยอดข้าวหางแพนลาย
Zitting Cisticola / นกยอดข้าวหางแพนลาย

About 3 km north of Sukhumvit and we reach the country side and we passed a pond with many Terns, my Guide identified them as Little Terns, White-winged Black Tern and Whiskered Tern. The White-winged Black Tern was interesting to see using the Guide's binocular. Right there and then I decided to look for a binocular to buy. I have enough to carry around, but it can be good to have when birding using a car.

No need to carry around the binocular, just to keep them in the car if I get out to walk. Anyway, there is a lot of small birds in the bushes along the roads. 24 species on my check list, and two of them I had never seen before so I was happy when we gave up after an hour.

Birding/ Bird watching at Thetsaban Bang Pu 119, Bangkok, Thailand
Today´s track at 119 Sukhumvit


eBird

eBird Report


Soi Sukhumvit 119 fish ponds, Samut Prakan, TH May 4, 2020 15:20 - 16:29
Protocol: Traveling
11,98 kilometer(s)
Checklist Comments: Bird watching with my Guide from Wild Bird Eco Tour
24 species

Little Grebe 8
Zebra Dove X
Greater Coucal 2 Making babies in the tree
White-breasted Waterhen 4 Two birds fighting
Ruddy-breasted Crake 1
Black-winged Stilt X Many
Red-wattled Lapwing 2
Lesser Sand Plover 1
Oriental Pratincole 4
Little Tern 25
White-winged Black Tern 30
Whiskered Tern 20
Asian Openbill 60
Little Cormorant 2
Indian Cormorant 7
Yellow Bittern 1
Grey Heron 1
Little Egret 1
Freckle-breasted Woodpecker 1
Malaysian Pied-Fantail 1
Zitting Cisticola 1
Asian Pied Starling 1
Great Myna 1
Asian Golden Weaver 2

View this checklist online at https://ebird.org/checklist/S68368812

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (https://ebird.org/home)


Another 12 hour day bird watching tour with Wild Bird Eco Tour and our next trip will be when the National Parks open again. Passing the Benjakitti Park / สวนเบญจกิติ on the way home and I saw that the gates were open. I was at Suan Rot Fail at 6 o'clock last Saturday morning because there was a rumour that the parks would open Saturday. The park was closed and I had to go back home again. But now it looks like they have opened and I will go to look for birds at Suan Rot Fai.

But I will have to confirm before I go and you can click HERE to see if I find any birds.


Bird watching trip report



       
                  


                                       

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