Today, a massive storm hit Bangkok and surrounding areas. As I’m typing this, there’s still torrential rain pouring outside. Somehow, I managed to fit in an hour of birding at Phutthamonthon without much more than a drizzle. I was lucky as it wasn’t long before the torrential downpour resumed.
Due to the weather, I decided to observe a new part of the park. An area where about a hundred Oriental Pratincoles were hanging out. Due to the new habitat and this time of year, I managed to see a few new birds for the park list. The one I couldn’t photograph were the Pin-tailed Snipes.
I estimated 110 Pratincoles, which is a rather large gathering, all of them were soggy and due to this, a large number were sporting fancy hair-dos. Whilst trying to not flush the Snipes, I witnessed two fly-overs of Oriental Honey-buzzards. The second of which, I managed a nice photo.
Walking around the area there were a few Paddyfield Pipits that I was eagerly photographing trying to find a Richard’s Pipit. I’m still inexperienced and those are two species I’m learning to separate. What would help would be seeing the latter!
It was an enjoyable excursion to part of the park I never thought to explore. Just as I was about to enter the car, something caught my eye to the left, in the trees. It was the highlight of the trip. I could make it out as a Shrike. But it didn’t look like a Brown Shrike (Common winter visitor). I thought it could be my first Tiger Shrike or a Burmese Shrike.
I watched it catch prey, often from the ground. It also took caterpillars in the trees, probably, from what I’ve heard, how a Tiger Shrike feeds. Although the dark head had me thinking Burmese, which is the conclusion I reached!
In the end, it was quite an eventful visit and I was incredibly fortunate for the rain to cease for the duration of my birding. The rain is still chucking it down outside as I finish writing this post.
All images © 2022 Sam Hambly.
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