Searching for rarities at Phutthamonthon can be likened to finding a needle in 10 haystacks, whilst they were on my radar, I decided to not distraught over them. Having failed many times to find the Malayan Night Heron I didn’t have any hope anyway. The Indian Pond Heron was another possibility but today wasn’t the day.
Upon arrival I was quick to come across 3 juvenile Collared Scops-Owls. It was amazing to get such great views and seeing them make a short flight to the adjacent bamboo. This year I had encounter some at Rotfai Park but it had been a year or more for seeing the juveniles clearly. I guess the juveniles are typically easier to see, as they learn the ropes of being a nocturnal Owl.
Seeing the Spotted Owlets practically every visit, Asian Barred Owlet frequently and Oriental Scops-Owls regularly in the wintering months. This was my first time seeing Collared Scops-Owls at Phutthamonthon. They are a widespread species, but being camouflaged and nocturnal, encounters will always be special.
After getting a short video clip I left them, very happy with the sighting. It was raining in Bangkok, over here in Nakhon Pathom there was a cool breeze blowing with the occasional large cloud blocking the sun. Next I came across one of my favourite species, they had chicks with them.
When I arrived in the vicinity, the chicks fled with the adults to cover. I sat quietly waiting for them to feel safe again. I was then allowed the wonderful views of their family walking across the floating vegetation.
This has been the start of my first year birding, so the spring migration, nesting and chicks have been very exciting. Having only seen the White-breasted Waterhen chicks earlier this month.
Continuing, I found a large roost of Black-crowned Night-Herons. One was flying with nesting material and upon closer inspection they were nesting. There was also a Little Egret occupying a nest alongside the Night-Herons.
I wasn’t going to venture deeper into the park but the weather was initially inviting. Although it turned into another sweltering 37c torture fest synonymous with heat stroke. Early on in the long trek (The park used to be a car-birding experience but since covid they somehow twisted that into an excuse to stop cars entering) I saw a juvenile Purple Heron – which is an uncommon species at the park.
There wasn’t much out of the ordinary but the day was already made by the Collared Scops-Owl sighting. For the most part, it was your regular trip to this park – filled with noisy Red-wattled Lapwings and background of barking dogs (And 5km+ of walking).
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