Bird watching tour “Bird watching East of Bangkok” with Wild Bird Eco Tour. We make a stop here at the eBird hotspot: Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity with my Guide passing the the mouth of Bang Pakong River on our way back home in Bangkok.
The area have a variety of habitats like mangroves, mudflats and Salt Pans in the area around the mouth of Bang Pakong River. And are a few eBird hotspots in the area:
• Salt pans west of Bang Pakong River
• Wat Bon fish sanctuary
• Koh Nok
• Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity
• Khlong Tamru Salt Pans
We will only visit the eBird hotspot: Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity today on our way back home.
To skip the information and to go straight to the TRIP REPORT click HERE
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.
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 45 minutes to 1 hour + to reach the area. You rent the taxi for a full day and it will set you back with about 1500 - 2000 Baht. To make sure that the driver understand you can show the below Thai Script:
• Bang Pramong บางปะกง
• Mouth of River Bang Pramong ปากแม่น้ำบางปะกง
Or show the driver a map. Click HERE for a map if you want to start West of the river
Scan for map
Or show the driver a map. Click HERE for a map if you want to start East of the river
Scan for map
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
ZOOM H5 Handy Recorder
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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. 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.
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
Mouth of the Bang Pakong River
About 65 km from the Sukhumvit / Asoke intersection in DOWN TOWN Bangkok
The Bang Pakong (Thai: แม่น้ำบางปะกง, RTGS: Maenam Bang Pakong, pronounced [mɛ̂ː.náːm bāːŋ pā.kōŋ]) is a river in east Thailand. The river originates at the confluence of the Phra Prong River and the Hanuman River near Kabin Buri, Prachinburi Province. It empties after 231 kilometres into the Gulf of Thailand at the north-eastern tip of the Bay of Bangkok. The watershed of the Bang Pakong is about 17,000 square kilometres (6,600 sq mi). The river powers a power station near its mouth, near Highway 7.
To protect the Irrawaddy dolphins, fishermen on the Bang Pakong River have been persuaded by authorities to stop shrimping and 30 to 40 fishing boats have been modified so they can offer dolphin sightseeing tours.
Dvaravati settlements include Muang Phra Rot, Dong Si Maha Pht, Dong Lakhon, and Ban Khu Muang. Dvaravati coins have been found at U-Tapao
Another salt pan and ponds area with waders. Drive along the salt pans in the area keeping eyes out for birds. We could not explore the area because of rain. So before you come here make sure it has not been raining. I will have to come back to explore the area.
It had been raining and the dirt track had turned in to mud
We made it about halfway down to the river side. We drove along dirt tracks and we crossed a wooden bridge. BE SURE TO MAKE SURE THERE HAVE BEEN NO RAIN!!!! This bridge, no problem to cross the bridge but after 200 meters we had to turn around and to go back.
One of the salt workers told us that we could not continue du the that the track had turned in to mud.
My friend got out and he walked to check the track. The worker WARNED us about the BRIDGE.
Coming up on the dirt track going south towards the Wat Bon fish sanctuary
Ponds in the area + of course, garbage
It is a very step wood bridge so NO CHANCE to see any oncoming traffic, no problem when the bridge and your tyres are clean and dry. Then you can get on the bridge slow. We turned around and we were almost failing to get over the bridge again. The tyres was only spinning on the wood bridge.
We tried a few times and I got out of the car. I got to the top of the bridge and my friend put the car in reveres and he took speed while I was looking out for cars coming from the other side. So if you are alone, bear this in mind.
Mangrove area at the river side. At low water there is mudflats and a board walk to take you out over the mud flats. Follow the road and the Mangrove Education Center is at the end of the road and there are plenty parking space.
You have to cross a small bridge before the parking lot. If you turn left just before the Mangrove Education Center there is also an area to park your car. From here is also a walking track out to the board walk out over the mud flats.
It is a good road to the Mangrove Education Center
and plenty birds to be seen on the way
Driving along wetlands to the Mangrove Education Center
Big parking at the Mangrove Education Center
The Mangrove Education Center looks to have been abandoned for several years. Full of garbage and the boardwalk was in dire need for maintenance and repair. My friend climbed out to the board walk using the wood and bamboo someone had put over the collapsed concrete bridge. I never tried to get out on the board walk. There is a walk track from the parking along the canal. But the walk track comes to an end after about 100 metres.
Walk path from the parking
Cross the bridge to the walk path to the board walk
Another salt pan and seafood pond area. And there is a lot of birds around and there was a wetland area where at least 100 Egrets and 100 Painted storks had a rest. The storks covered the sky when I was approaching. The sound when they took off all at the same time, impressive.
You will see the same birds here as on the other salt pan / pond areas. Egrets, Heron, cormorants and waders.
Driving along the pans and ponds
Driving along the pans and ponds
Driving along the pans and ponds
Driving along the pans and ponds
Driving along the pans and ponds
At the firs T junction after the housing area and we choose to take left. We drove until we reached the end of the dirt track at the mangroves. The road came to an end at a small hut and it looked to be seafood farms in this area. Could really not see any tracks going out in the mangroves.
Back at the T junction and we took the other way and we were soon coming to an end. There is a very small dirt track at the T junction and we followed this track with the car. On the left hand side we had wetlands. The track is maybe 200 meter long and you come to an end.
The smal dirt track
The dirt track comes to an end
The dirt track comes to an end
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.
Chonburi 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.
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.
4th of May 2020 and we made a stop at the eBird hotspot: Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity at the mouth of Bang Pakong River. I said NEVER AGAIN when we were here last week. But it is a nice ride down to the what’s looks to be the abandoned Education Center. Last week it really looked abandoned, but today we ran in to a team repairing the road at the bridge at the Education Center.
So maybe they are going to repair the centre, I hope they clean up and repair the boardwalks, but we will see. The road to and from the Mangrove Education Center is the interesting area and you can see a lot of birds in the ponds along the road. I managed to get a picture of the Chestnut Munia. I have seen the birds many times, but as we all know the Munia is a very scared bird.
We spotted a lot of birds along the road so it was not a waste of time to visit the Mangrove Education Center. And I discovered that they were rebuilding the road down at the Mangrove Education Center so it might be worth a visit in the future. Who knows? Maybe they will refresh the whole area.
Today´s track at Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity
Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity, Chon Buri, TH Apr 24, 2020 11:27 - 12:28
Checklist Comments: Bird watching with my Guide from Wild Bird Eco Tour
Feral Pigeon X
Red Collared Dove 4
Zebra Dove 1
Greater Coucal 1
Black-winged Stilt X
Lesser Sand Plover X
Painted Stork 3
Little Cormorant 3
Great White Egret 2
Little Egret X
Javan Pond Heron X
Brahminy Kite 1
Collared Kingfisher 1
Zitting Cisticola 1
Common Myna 2
Great Myna X
Asian Golden Weaver 10
Chestnut Munia 25
This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (https://ebird.org/home)
I was happy with the visit by the time we left the eBird hotspot: Khlong Tamru Mangrove Education Center & vicinity behind as the visit had been giving more than I had expected. Especially the Chestnut Munia. Next eBird hotspot: to visit will be the Soi Sukhumvit 119 fish ponds and you just need to click HERE to find out what we see.