Bird watching in Sa Kaeo

Bird lovers should head to Phra Pong reservoir in Wattana Nakhon district of Sa Kaeo now that it is season for ai-ngua watching as the Oriental darter, also called nok ngoo (snake bird), returns to the reservoir and its neighbourhood for nesting.
About 90 centimetres (two feet) in body length, the whitish gray water bird has a remarkably long neck. During foraging, only its head and long neck are visible over water, giving it the appearance of a snake. Considered an endangered species, its number has diminished due to habitat loss as a result of deforestation. The bird's sightings have been reported in the central region, namely Nakhon Nayok, Sa Kaeo, Pathum Thani, Lop Buri, Chaiyaphum and also in the southern provinces of Surat Thani and Chumphon.
In Sa Kaeo, every year flocks of up to 50 birds are sighted. This Saturday (May 26) is start of the bird watching season. There will be other fun activities including a bird watching tour, mountain biking and cross-country racing. On Sunday there will be a walking tour to observe the birds.
To get to Phra Pong reservoir, take Highway 304 (Bangkok-Chachoengsao-Phanom Sarakham district) and turn into Route 359 or Highway 305 (Rangsit-Nakhon Nayok) or Highway 33 (Saraburi-Nakhon Nayok-Prachin Buri-Sa Kaeo). At Wattana Nakhon intersection, turn left and drive on to the reservoir. For more details, call the Tourism Authority of Thailand's Central Region VIII office at 037-312-282, 037-312-284 or visit

Bangkok Post