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Peter Ericsson | profile | all galleries >> Tripreports! >> Kaengkrachan 10-12/Jan 2018 tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Kaengkrachan 10-12/Jan 2018


A successful trip is not necessarily a trip with a long list but more then anything a trip where the participants walk away happy and filled with good memories!

My 3 days with Matthew and Emma was just such a trip. Working hard in London and parts of England they came to Thailand for a mixed vacation spent between beaches, friends, culture and some birding.

Matthew has birded since a child and Emma quickly following suit in the passion. Both professionals around the 40 year bracket.

Day 1.

Early pick up in Bangkok and a rather direct drive to Kaengkrachan National Park.
The weather having been very unpredictable this year gave us rain/drizzle and hazy skies all day. However the lower levels of the park were very birdy in spite of poor visibility. We simply parked ourselves at a couple of spots and let the birds come to us. Thankfully there was a fruiting fig tree and it served as a magnet for many fruit eating birds with a pair of Great Hornbills leading the way.

I really like it when birders take time to enjoy what they see and so it was with Matthew and Emma.
I was able to point out birds I heard which I think is very important to experience the birds well without feeling the pressure of immediately needing to see the very selfsame birds.

After a sumptuous lunch inside the park we went out of the park. It rained too much.
Instead we visited Baan Song Nok, a beautifully laid out garden with a feeding station. In spite of the rain birds came around and we had a lovely afternoon even having a couple of cold beers from the well stocked fridge while watching Gold-fronted Leafbirds feeding on ripe bananas.

Towards the late afternoon things started picking up in the hide and there was a minor explosion of Siberian Blue Robins coming in for a late afternoon bath. Suddenly, best of all, a surprise visit of a Slaty-legged Crake crowned the visit.

Day 2.

This morning a hired 4WD waited for us at Baan Maka Nature Lodge to bring us up the higher mountain of the park.

The drive is rather long but the scenery is fantastic and just realizing the magnitude of pristine forest is an experience in itself.
We did come across a Fae Deer which is a darker version of Red Muntjack and not seen much.

At the top the visibility was limited but once the early morning visitors to this area left (one way traffic) around 9 am, we felt we had the place to ourselves.

A Grey Peacock Pheasant called nearby and though this elusive creature is fairly common it is darn difficult to see. This one did give us about 5 seconds of full views before it scurried off along the forest floor. A special moment!

For me the sounds of nature are as important as the views and this morning it seemed everything wanted to let the world know of their presence. Great Barbets, Blyth’s Shrike Babbler, Imperial Mountain Pigeons, Ashy Bulbuls, Leafbirds and White-handed Gibbons etc.

After another delicious lunch we headed back down the road a bit where the road is more closed in.
It can be slow going but thankfully we had a flock of many small birds for atleast 20 minutes giving us a chance to get to know what was in it.


It was decided to go back in to the lower levels of the park and so we did till about 10:30. This time we added some nice ones at the fruiting tree: Grey-sided Thrush, Gold-crested Myna, Wedge-tailed Pigeon mingling well with Asian Fairy Bluebird, Bulbuls, Barbets and Thick-billed Green Pigeons.

And, yes, plenty of Pied Hornbills with the Great ones. On the way out a group of Stump-tailed Macaques added to the mammal list. Very different from Dusky Langurs they are.

A change of dining for lunch as we had a sumptuous meal by the Kaengkrachan dam. Steamed fish in soya sauce, Tom Yum Gong and Morning Glory in oyster sauce filled our bellies well.

Then off for a shorter visit to the shorebird area. Mathew and Emma wanted to experience the forest more then anything but we thought a visit to the salt pans would be interesting.

The pans are different day by day and this day they were just fabulous. Loads of birds everywhere.
In quick succession we spotted Asian Dowitcher and Nordmann’s Greenshanks along with another 20 species of waders.

It was getting late and not much time to look for Spoon-billed Sandpiper. As we got to Paktaley the large flock in the pan was disturbed and nothing was within proper sight. We waited a bit not nothing of note came by. Alas, the crowning on the cake seemed lost. Then after holding on another 10 minutes a few birds started to come back. One of them being a Spoonie! Yeah!

So at 5 pm we drove by some wetlands to stretch our birdlist a bit before heading back to Bangkok.
A long list never was the priority but as you progress and discover new things the list does grow and so we ended up with a good number of birds seen but more then anything experienced with both passion and emotion.

A good trip!


1. Green-legged Partridge
2. Ferrugionus Partridge – heard
3. Red Junglefowl
4. Grey Peacock Pheasant
5. Lesser Whistling Duck
6. Little Grebe
7. Painted Stork
8. Asian Openbill
9. Yellow Bittern
10. Chinese Pond Heron
11. Javan Pond Heron
12. Eastern Cattle Egret
13. Purple Heron
14. Great Egret
15. Intermediate Egret
16. Little Egret
17. Chinese Egret
18. Little Cormorant
19. Black Baza
20. Oriental Honey Buzzard
21. Brahminy Kite
22. Crested Serpent Eagle - heard
23. Crested Goshawk
24. Slaty-legged Crake
25. White-breasted Waterhen
26. Watercock
27. Common Moorhen
28. Black-winged Stilt
29. Red-wattled Lapwing
30. Pacific Golden Plover
31. Grey Plover
32. Kentish Plover
33. Lesser Sand Plover
34. Greater Sand Plover
35. Bronze-winged Jacana
36. Asian Dowitcher
37. Black-tailed Godwit
38. Eurasian Curlew
39. Common Redshank
40. Marsh Sandpiper
41. Common Greenshank
42. Nordmann’s Greenshank
43. Wood Sandpiper
44. Common Sandpiper
45. Great Knot
46. Sanderling
47. Red-necked Stint
48. Temminck’s Stint
49. Long-toed Stint
50. Curlew Sandpiper
51. Spoon-billed Sandpiper
52. Broad-billed Sandpiper
53. Ruff
54. Brown-headed Gull
55. Gull-billed Tern
56. Caspian Tern
57. Little Tern
58. Common Tern
59. Whiskered Tern
60. Rock Dove
61. Spotted Dove
62. Little Cuckoo-Dove
63. Common Emerald Dove
64. Zebra Dove
65. Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon
66. Thick-billed Green Pigeon
67. Mountain Imperial Pigeon
68. Vernal Hanging Parrot
69. Greater Coucal
70. Green-billed Malkoha
71. Asian Koel – heard
72. Banded Bay Cuckoo – heard
73. Collared Scops Owl – heard
74. Asian barred Owlet – heard
75. Germain’s Swiftlet
76. Asian Palm Siwft
77. Orange-breasted Trogon
78. Indian Roller
79. White-throated Kingfisher
80. Black-capped Kingfisher
81. Common Kingfisher
82. Collared Kingfisher
83. Blue-bearded Bee-eater
84. Green Bee-eater
85. Blue-tailed Bee-eater
86. Chestnut-headed Bee-eater
87. Tickell’s Brown Hornbill – heard
88. Oriental Pied Hornbill
89. Great Hornbill
90. Great Barbet
91. Lineated Barbet – heard
92. Green-eared Barbet
93. Blue-throated Barbet
94. Blue-eared Barbet
95. Coppersmith Barbet
96. White-browed Piculet
97. Heart-spotted Woodpecker
98. Greater Yellownape – heard
99. Common Flameback
100. Greater Flameback
101. Bay Woodpecker
102. Black-red Broadbill
103. Banded Broadbill
104. Rusty-naped Pitta – heard
105. Ashy Woodswallow
106. Common Iora
107. Black-winged Cuckooshrike
108. Rosy Minivet
109. Swinhoe’s Minivet
110. Brown Shrike
111. Slender-billed Oriole
112. Black-naped Oriole
113. Black-hooded Oriole
114. Black Drongo
115. Ashy Drongo
116. Lesser Racket-tailed Drongo
117. Greater Racket-tailed Drongo
118. Pied Fantail
119. Black-naped Monarch
120. Eastern Jungle Crow
121. Sultan Tit
122. Black-headed Bulbul
123. Black-crested Bulbul
124. Sooty-headed Bulbul
125. Stripe-throated Bulbul
126. Flavescent Bulbul
127. Streak-eared Bulbul
128. Ochraceous Bulbul
129. Olive Bulbul (Baker’s)
130. Mountain Bulbul
131. Ashy Bulbul
132. Barn Swallow
133. Dusky Warbler – heard
134. Yellow-browed Warbler
135. Two-barred Warbler
136. Pale-legged Leaf Warbler – heard
137. Sakhalin Leaf Warbler – heard
138. Sulphur-breasted Warbler
139. Marten’s Warbler – heard
140. Alstrom’s Warbler
141. Black-browed Reed Warbler - heard
142. Zitting Cisticola
143. Grey-breasted Prinia
144. Plain Prinia
145. Common Tailorbird
146. Dark-necked Tailorbird
147. White-browed Scimitar Babbler
148. Rufous-fronted Babbler – heard
149. Golden Babbler
150. Pin-striped Tit-babbler
151. Chestnut-capped Babbler
152. Brown-cheeked Fulvetta – heard
153. Abbott’s Babbler
154. Puff-throated Babbler
155. Lesser Necklaced Laughingthrush
156. Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush
157. Everett’s White-eye
158. Asian Fairy-bluebird
159. Velvet-fronted Nuthatch
160. Golden-crested Myna
161. Common Hill Myna
162. Great Myna
163. Common Myna
164. Pied Myna
165. Blue Whistling Thrush
166. Grey-sided Thrush
167. Eyebrowed Thrush
168. Siberian Blue Robin
169. White-rumped Shama
170. Oriental Magpie Robin
171. Stejneger’s Stonechat
172. Asian Brown Flycatcher
173. Taiga flycatcher
174. Verditer Flycatcher
175. Hill Blue Flycatcher
176. Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher
177. Chinese Blue Flycatcher
178. Blue-winged Leafbird
179. Golden-fronted Leafbird
180. Fire-breasted Flowerpecker
181. Olive-backed Sunbird
182. Black-throated Sunbird
183. Streaked Spiderhunter
184. Eurasian Tree Sparrow
185. Paddyfield Pipit

Emma and Mathew
Emma and Mathew
Sultan's Tit
Sultan's Tit
Sultan's Tit
Sultan's Tit
Great Hornbill
Great Hornbill
Hill Blue Flycatcher, female
Hill Blue Flycatcher, female
White-browed Piculet
White-browed Piculet
Orange-breasted Trogon
Orange-breasted Trogon
Gold-crested Myna
Gold-crested Myna
Grey-sided Thrush
Grey-sided Thrush
Chinese Egret
Chinese Egret
Collared Kingfisher
Collared Kingfisher