1 May 2020

Bird watching trip report


Introduction

Wat Suan Yai, eBird hot spot Wat Suan Yai (Suan Yai Temple) just on the border between Bangkok and Nonthaburi and I call it bird watching in Bangkok. I was told that is the only place to see the Alexandrine Parakeet. We were finished with the “West of Bangkok tour” with my Guide from Wild Bird Eco Tour and we stopped here as last stop on our way back home.

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. I contacted Wild Bird Eco Tour for a trip to Laem Phak Bia/ Pak Thale in Petchaburi.

And Wild Bird Eco Tour will pick me up at 05:30 for the trip to Phetchaburi.

And we will check out a few other eBird hotspots West of Bangkok when we are ready at Laem Phak Bia/ Pak Thale.

Wild Bird Eco Tour


Land transportation

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
About 23 km from the Sukhumvit / Asoke intersection in DOWN TOWN Bangkok


Taxi is a very convenient way of travelling. Depending on the early morning traffic it will take about 30-45 minutes to get to Wat Suan Yai. Taxi is about 150 - 200 Baht (May 2020) + toll. To make sure that the driver understand you can show the below Thai Script:
• Wat Suan Yai วัดสวนใหญ่

Or show the driver a map. Click HERE for a map to Wat Suan Yai


Scan for map to Wat Suan Yai


You can take the highway all the way from Sukhumvit and drive past Suan Rot Fai and cross the Chao Phraya River on Rama VI Bridge. After crossing the bridge you drive for about 8km before you get off.

Leaving Bang Kruai Sai Noi Road towards the north on Bangkruai Sainoi Soi 20 and drive 100 meters or so and you are at the temple at the dead end of the soi. Soi is alley in Thai.

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
You are at the right soi

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
There are plenty parking


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.


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

Wat Suan Yai


eBird hot spot Wat Suan Yai (Suan Yai Temple) and this is the place to go to if you want to see the Alexandrine Parakeet. There are plenty Red-breasted Parakeet as well. But there is a much better place in Bangkok for the Red-breasted Parakeet. If you want great pictures of the Red-breasted Parakeet you should visit the eBird hotspot Chaloem Kanchanaphisek Park & Wat Chaloem Phra Kiat Worawiharn

Here at Wat Suan Yai the parakeets are sitting quite high up in the trees. But you get to see them. There is a canal north of the temple with a small walk bridge across. On the other side of the canal you have walk track going through a green area and here is plenty birds to see.

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
The parakeets are found high up in the trees

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
On the walk bridge north of the temple, the parakeet trees on the left hand side

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
Canal north of the temple from the walk bridge

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
Canal north of the temple from the walk bridge

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
Green area with walk path north of the temple

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
Green area with walk path north of the temple

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
Temple from north of the walk bridge

The parakeets are found high up in the trees in the NE corner of the temple area so it is not easy to get any good pictures of the birds. But if you come in the afternoon the light comes in from the right directions for pictures.

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


1st of May 2020 and we were on the way back to Bangkok after a full day birding in Phetchaburi. We will make a last stop at Wat Suan Yai in Bangkok, a quick stop to have a look for the Alexandrine Parakeet. And it will be quick as we were tired after a full day birding.

We were a little early as the birds will arrive at 5 o'clock. Yes, we didn't found any parakeets and one man told us that they would come at 5 o'clock. Yeah-yeah, blah-blah

I'll be darned! We were just north of the walk bridge taking pictures of a Yellow-bellied Prinia and to explore this green area when we heard the first parakeet flying in to the temple area from the north. So they come home to the tree at the temple 5 o'clock in the afternoon.

So if you want to see the parakeets you should be here early morning or after 5 o'clock in the afternoon.

Yellow-bellied Prinia, Prinia flaviventris, นกกระจิบหญ้าท้องเหลือง

Yellow-bellied Prinia, Prinia flaviventris, นกกระจิบหญ้าท้องเหลือง
Yellow-bellied Prinia / นกกระจิบหญ้าท้องเหลือง

Yellow-bellied Prinia, Prinia flaviventris, นกกระจิบหญ้าท้องเหลือง
Yellow-bellied Prinia / นกกระจิบหญ้าท้องเหลือง

Asian Openbill Stork, Anastomus oscitans, นกปากห่าง

Oriental Magpie Robin, Copsychus saularis, นกกางเขนบ้าน

Alexandrine Parakeet, Psittacula eupatria, นกแก้วโม่ง

Birding/ Bird watching at Wat Suan Yai, Bangkok, Thailand
Today´s track at Wat Suan Yai


eBird

eBird Report


Wat Suan Yai (Suan Yai Temple), Nonthaburi, TH May 1, 2020 16:29 - 17:01
Protocol: Traveling
0,38 kilometer(s)
Checklist Comments: Bird watching with my Guide from Wild Bird Eco Tour
7species

Feral Pigeon X
Asian Openbill 6
Alexandrine Parakeet 2
Red-breasted Parakeet 5
Yellow-bellied Prinia 1
Common Myna 1
Oriental Magpie-Robin 4

View this checklist online at https://ebird.org/checklist/S68172437

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

This was the last stop at the “Birding West of Bangkok” day trip, 12 hours and I was tired when I got back home. I booked a “Birding Eest of Bangkok” tour with my Guide for Monday. We will start at Lat Krabang early in the morning and click HERE to find out more about our trip to Lat Krabang.



Bird watching trip report



       
                  


                                       

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