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Thailands National Parks The Parks of Thailand, Post your stories and pictures here.

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Old 31-07-2015, 01:06 PM   #1 (permalink)
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My national park visits.

I started off posting these on the travel forum but have since found this one so will continue here.

Chaloem Ratanakosin National Park.

This small national park of 59 square kilometers it is officially in Kanchanaburi province and is best accessed from Kanchanaburi if you are coming from BKK or south.
At the major intersection north of Knachanaburi go straight ahead on to road 3199 then take a right turn onto road 3086 then a left turn (sign posted) on to road 3480 which leads to the park. From the north take the Utai Thani road 333 and follow it down to the turn off to 3086 then on to 3048. From anywhere else you will have to work it out yourself same as I did.

This park is best known for its caves the first of which winds its way up a stream and is quite popular and interesting with bats and a unique frog which barks like a dog. This cave is the only access to the part of the forest that is mostly visited and a good track of around 2 km goes from there up to a large cave at the top of the hill, the last part of this track consists of steep stairways which are a serious challenge for the unfit. There are a couple of waterfalls up this track and places where people swim.

It would seem that it can be quite daunting for some up that track as last time we were there we came across a group of young people with worried looks on their faces gazing at their phones muttering that there was no Facebook access.

There is a dirt road to another waterfall they call the ‘slider waterfall’ (one guess) which can be driven up in a reasonable sized car or pickup. There is also another road to a waterfall in the heart of the park that has always been closed off when we have been there, a situation which makes me want to go see what’s up there.


Interesting bird life both round the camping ground, up the track through the cave and the road to the slider waterfall, also monkeys to be seen at times.

There is a good camping ground with good toilets and several good houses for rent all with mains power.

The park staff are very keen not to lose anyone and keep a check on who goes up and comes down the track into the cave which is only opened at 8am and closed at 4.30pm. Staff patrol the track in the afternoon to make sure everyone is out by closing time, they also have staff stationed at the slider waterfall.

More Info at: National Park of Thailand, Online Reservation National Park of Thailand, Forest Park of Thailand, Thailand National Park, Thailand Forest Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department, Royal Forest Department

A couple of the birds :

Blue-whistling Thrush



Chinese Sparrowhawk



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Old 11-08-2015, 10:37 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Phu Toei National Park
This rarely visited park isin the Dan Chang district of Suphan Buri province and is really in 4 parts. A populated valley runs up the middle of the park with a road on the west side running for about 25km up to a very isolated Karan village, this road is not for the faint hearted and is really 4WD, there are waterfalls up this road.
The HQ and most visited part of the park is east side of the valley where there is good camping and some accommodation with mains power. From there a road, also really 4WD although a large car or pickup with good ground clearance can handle it as long as it is dry, goes over the hill to another camping area on the east side of the park which has no mains power but has good road access from road 3008. On top of the hill on the road over from the HQ to the east side is the site of the Lauda Air Disaster ASN Aircraft accident Boeing 767-3Z9ER OE-LAV Phu Toey.






All that is left of the 767 that crashed here and the small shrine to remember those who perished.





The road up the valley crosses the park into Uthai Thani province cutting off a northern park, we haven’t visited the part of the park to the north of this road so don’t know what it is like.
We have camped at Phu Toei on several occasions starting at the east side where we camped across the road from the toilets. There is interesting bird life not far from the camping ground and a lookout on top of the hill.
We have driven over the hill and stayed at the HQ area and also camped 2km back up the road from the HQ down by a stream in the forest. There is a better place to camp on this stream 1.5km up from the HQ. From there is an old road leading up through the forest that connects at the top of the hill to the road running past the plane crash site. Good birdlife in that area and wild pigs but didn’t see any other animals.
On one trip we drove up to the Karan Village which is a tortuous drive mostly in first gear up the hill and stopped at one waterfall :









As with most of the parks we have visited there has been a lot of work done there

in the past however it has been let down by lack of maintenance, possibly through lack of funding but no doubt better management would help. However the staff are friendly and helpful and charges are minimal. In fact on my first visit I wasn’t charged at all.


No food available in the park but shops are not far down the road and on one visit the local mobile grocery came round and we stocked up from them.



Not far from BKK and well worth a visit.
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Old 12-08-2015, 02:19 PM   #3 (permalink)
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nice one birding. i enjoy going to the national parks, and next year i'm going to make more of an effort, get off my arse and back on my cycle and go exploring again..
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Old 05-10-2015, 02:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Another visit to the May Wong River

This part of the Mae Wong NP is mostly visited by locals who take their kids there to swim in the river although it really deserves more attention from those interested in birds as the bird life there is different from the top part of the park.

We camped in the camping ground by the rental houses where there is a beach on the river and a toilet and shower which has only got Thai style Toilets, There are western toilets in the community building overlooking the river, also power points for charging batteries and plugging in the laptop. There are also power points outside the rental houses.

They told us there had been no rain there for several months but we must have brought it with us for the night we arrived it rained and for the next 4 nights. The forest was extremely dry and the first 3 nights rain just soaked in but heavier rain on the fourth night started to run off although it made no difference to the river level which was low.





Mae Wong River looking downstream from below the conservation area.

People were working in the conservation area 5 KM up the river, they had planted out all the saplings and grasses that were growing there on our last visit and were preparing the beds for cuttings, seedlings and transplants. Local people were employed in this work and they were heading up the road just before 6 each morning.





Part of the conservation area.

The area up the river was farmed and logged before the Park came into existence and there are still areas where there are few trees so it is good to see work being done to reforest these areas.

I spent most of my time wandering around off the river road with the camera with one trip up past the conservation area. With all the workers traveling up and down the road and some people camped in the buildings in the conservation area the animals that I saw so many tracks of on the last visit look to have moved away from the disturbance. This doesn’t seem to have worried the birds for there were plenty there to see and hear including 2 woodpeckers I hadn’t seen before the Great Slaty Woodpecker and a Rufus Woodpecker.




A White-bellied Woodpecker These are noisy birds, their banging on a tree can be heard well before they are seen and sounds like a demented chippie (carpenter).

We were told there are a family of otters living in the river by the camping area and we both saw one of them them swimming in the river but I was unable to get a photo, next trip.

I do like this part of the Mae Wong NP and will be going back but probably not till next year as there are other places on the ‘to go’ list. One of the staff told me he would take me to a remote part of the park next time we go and I look forward to that.





The camera batteries are charged and the tent is in the vehicle so we are off again in a couple of days to visit some friends then spend a few days at Thap Lan National Park on the way back, someplace I havent been before.

Last edited by birding : 05-10-2015 at 02:18 PM.
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Old 20-10-2015, 09:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thap Lan National Park through the back door.

Most who visit Thap Lan do so at the main HQ area off road 304 but as we like to get away from the hoards of chattering humans and explore where few others go we decided to try to find our way to a complex shown on Google Earth at GPS coordinates 14.371929, 102.286313.


The name of this is only written in Thai and click gives another Thai script which roughly translates to ‘Ranger Station No3’. We were going there from Buri Ram where we had been visiting friends and by some miss-communication we ended up at Lam Bpli Mat Dam ranger station No2 where we stayed for the first night.


We were to find that there are ranger stations along the whole northern edge of the park but unfortunately most of them are understaffed with sometimes only one or two people stationed at each which means they can’t do much more than check who goes in and out through their particular station. This means the whole length of the park border is quite porous with illegal loggers and poachers who know the area having easy access.


Fortunately the army have patrols stationed at the larger ranger stations which are acting as forest rangers and are responding to reports of poaching or illegal logging. We were to see the results of some of the seized logs and vehicles when we eventually got to ranger station No3.



A selection of the vehicles seized from illegal loggers.




Some others.



One of the home made trollies used to cart logs out of the forest.




A couple more and some of the seized logs.




A pile of trolly wheels that gives some idea how many they have caught in the act.




From Lam Bpli Mat we used GPS to get to Ranger Station No3 which is called Kong Nam Mun a name which does not appear on any of the web sites on the park. We camped there for four nights (no charge) and got to know a very helpful young forest ranger named Guy who spoke English and took us to several other ranger stations as well as up the old road through the park.


This station is situated on the northern end of an old road through the middle of the park which is now closed to the public. We were able to drive 21km up this road before we came to a muddy patch which looked too much for our old 2WD wagon. The first part of the road which is better than some of the public roads to other places we were taken is through second growth forest then into virgin forest. We didn’t have to travel far up the road to see elephant droppings but they were all old so no problem with encounters of the elephant kind. We also saw footprints of deer, cattle species of some kind and one of the smaller cats.


We were told that camera traps in the area have identified 8 different tigers and photographed bears. These traps are checked every month so there is an ongoing record of what is in the area in being built up.


There is a 2.5km walking track 13.5km up the old road and I walked it with Guy one misty morning, quite a bit of sign of wild pig and cattle along the track but no sightings. The mist and thick jungle made it difficult to see or get photos of any of the birdlife which we could hear but not see. An interesting walk well worth the effort.


We also did a night trip up the road but failed to see much in the headlights other than rabbits, the rear end of what was probably a deer disappearing into the forest and the bright eyes of birds that I took to be nightjars that flew off before I could get any sort of ID.


Guy took us to 3 other ranger stations where we walked in the forest and I got some photos of birds, butterflies and wild flowers. There were people collecting mushrooms in one of these places and the lady boss was in for that as she loves her mushrooms. Allowing the locals access for gathering mushrooms and herbs keeps them onside and does no harm to the forest, better having them as friends than enemies.




Ranger station No 12.


The ranger station is fairly primitive with Thai style toilets, no accommodation or tents for hire or eating places although not far down the road there are plenty small roadside eateries. There are also problems with staff in these places for getting dedicated people who are willing to do the hard yards of forest protection in remote areas is no easy task. Even with the ones like young Guy who want to do the right thing by the forests there are problems with leadership from above as those on the ground can only do so much without strong direction from the leaders.



HQ building Ranger Station No 3 with army tent in the left background and seized logs on the right.


Well worth the visit from our point of view and we will keep in touch with Guy for he now has a Facebook page and we have his phone number. There are rarely any visitors to that part of the park and Guy would really like to see more so if anyone is interested let me know and I will put you in touch with him.


Will we be going back? Don’t know, as it is a long trip for us, took us 7 hours to get home through traffic but if we ever go to that part of the country again for any reason we will for sure be visiting.


And the birdlife, I ended up with 3 new species for me with some of the best right outside our tent in the trees above the toilets. There is also great potential farther up the road where we were hampered in what we could see by the mist.




A sub adult of the endangered Elongated Tortoise (Indotestudo elongata found at one of the ranger stations
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Old 13-11-2015, 07:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Huai Mae Dee

A part of Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary that is in trouble.


As part of our ‘Go to new places” strategy we picked the part of Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary called Huai Mae Dee as our next destination. After most of the way on good roads, although there are a couple of steep uphill corners around 12km north of Ban Rai that required the use of first gear. We got to the last 5km of dirt road before the HQ and camping area which in itself was OK but the bridges over several streams consisted of large logs laid side by side, a sight not for the faint hearted, but we have been in some pretty rough places so we carried on and negotiated them without trouble.






Log bridges on the way to Huia Mae Dee.



After reporting to the office we set up camp in a good size camping area that is serviced with Thai style toilets and showers.





Camp under the trees.


There is also a house for rent with 2 separate rooms with 2 beds each and 2 dormitory type buildings with mattresses on the floor. I discovered the house had a western toilet which was unlocked so I snuck in there to do my business, much more comfortable for a farang. Power is solar with lights in the toilets and plugs for charging batteries up near the HQ building.





House for the use of guests and visitors, my toilet the white door.




The 2 Dorm buildings with the bird perch tree in the background.



Next morning I headed for what is called a nature trail but ended up on a road that leads through the sanctuary into the interior, I was to find out that his was because the local villagers had been using the entrance to the nature trail as access to the road and had worn a track which bypassed the turn to the nature trail. I was passed by about a dozen locals walking up this road on their way to collect mushrooms. This is where the trouble comes in for as this is a wildlife sanctuary these people are not supposed to be there at all.





Off to collect mushrooms, baskets used in place of backpacks.



On talking with the staff it seems there is little or nothing they can do to stop the people from the nearest village from doing pretty much as they like and that includes poaching and selling the meat of endangered species. We were told this is because there are only 9 staff to look after 13,000 rai area of forest and they are continually threatened and intimidated by the villagers. Apparently the last time poachers were caught and taken to the police the villagers blocked the road by felling trees across it so no vehicle could get in or out. Why those who are working there are not given the support they need I don’t know, a job for the army.


This area is the last refuge of a herd of wild Water Buffalo, the only one left in Thailand that is said to number between 20 and 60, losing even one or two to poachers endangers the survival of the species so something needs to urgently be done. When I finally found the correct track to the much neglected nature trail I came across sign of a lone wild Water Buffalo, probably a lone young bull which had been evicted from the main herd for getting to friendly with the females the herd bull considered his own. I got very close to this animal one morning seeing where it had lain down, probably to sleep for the night and where it had been feeding and a large heap of fresh excrement. A few more meters through the thick forest I could smell the animal and as they are reputed to be unfriendly beasts resenting intrusion and prone to charge any human they see I backed off and headed back the way I had come.


Footnote for those worried about double standards: I am assured they charge farang the same as they charge Thai.



The nature trail goes to a stream crossing on an easy to follow track that branches off to the right of the well- worn track to the road just past a bamboo bridge, but from there on it disappears so I made no effort to hunt around for it instead one day heading up the stream on the far side and the next down. As my main interest in in birds followed by animals, butterflies and wild flowers going out of my way to look for long lost tracks is not something I need to do.


So Birds, I recorded almost 40 species with 4 new to me with probably the best place right at our camp site where there is a dead tree behind the buildings which is a popular perch in the early mornings and evenings. There was a flock of about 20 Pied Hornbills that flew past each morning heading into the rising sun three of them were good enough to stop for a rest and a photo on the dead tree on a couple of mornings.




Butterflies are everywhere and I took some photos of flowers, the only things that don’t fly away.
There is sign of few animals, no doubt a consequence of the intrusion by locals. Don’t get me wrong I have nothing against locals being allowed to gather mushrooms, bamboo shoots or herbs in buffer zones of national parks or even peripheral areas of a wildlife sanctuary. However the locals here, and there would have been between 50 and a 100 of them went in and out of the forest on one day we were there starting before daylight and still going after dark. But in this place they were penetrating 6 to 10 km into the forest and the animals had pretty much cleared out of the area.


While National Parks are areas for human recreation as well as the conservation of forests and animals Wildlife Sanctuaries are supposed to be for the conservation, research and protection of the forests, animals, birds and other natural occupants not for people. Strictly speaking I shouldn’t even be there but then I like to think I might be able to make a contribution to the knowledge of the place by recording what I see.



Footnote /2: 5 nights camped there and again no charge, but we did invite the boss man and one of the rangers for a meal one evening and gave our left over food to a family that worked there.


We are off again Tuesday for another week in a place we havent been before, doing what I want to do in this wonderful country.
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Old 11-01-2016, 11:55 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Pang Sida National Park

General
Not such an easy place to find as most other parks as it is not well signposted, probably the best way is to turn off highway 33 at Sa Kaew and follow the road for 22 KM to the park entrance.




For the first time I was charged the Farang price of 200B, Thai price 20B, we were told this is charged regardless of whether you are a resident in Thailand or not. I don’t mind really for in some places we have not been charged at all so things balance out and this is a one off charge and if you are staying more than one day you can come and go as you wish. And hay, in this case there does seem to be a lot of work going on ranger wise with a group of illegal loggers caught while we were there and regular patrols and groups of rangers camped out in remote parts of the forest as well as ranger training. Don’t mind paying if the protection work is being put in.

There are plenty of small places to eat close to the park entrance and small shops with most everything you have forgotten or need, a fuel station is also a couple of KM down the road. A pleasant enough place especially up the top camping ground although it can get crowded on weekends or holidays, will be better once they get the power back on.

The road up to the top has some quite deep rain ruts in places and care is needed in any vehicle, not advisable to try it in a small low car.

There is a sign at the second checkpoint saying that no tracks may be walked without a ranger and penalties apply (whatever they may be) if you do so, be warned.

Birds: We stayed 3 nights at the top camping ground and another 3 at the HQ. I only recorded (photos) 18 species but 3 were new to me so with them and seeing 2 Guar it made it a worthwhile trip.

Butterflies: Are what this park is known for, it is said that over 200 species have been identified from the park and they are everywhere, in the forest, on the road and in the camping areas. I took photos of several species I have never seen before and have yet to identify.

Headquarters
Headquarters and the first checkpoint are located 22km north of Sa Kaew, the checkpoint is marked as km-zero which is the reference point to other attractions on the main road to north. There is a visitor center, a smaller restaurant, basic facilities and a camping ground in HQ area. There are tents and accessories available for rent as well as few bungalows.

HQ camping ground is quite large and serviced by 3 toilet blocks which are good with both Thai and western style toilets there is also disabled toilets with wheelchair access.



Lighting at night with plugs for charging, this is turned off in the daytime, the lights were turned on the first night we stayed there but were not on the second two nights. Batteries can be charged at the adjacent convention center where I also plugged in my laptop.

There is a HQ internet connection but I did not ask if it can be used, phone coverage is good. Ants are also a problem here and frogs in the toilet, check before you sit.




Pang Sida Waterfall
This 10m high waterfall is easily accessible by a short track off the main road 1.7km north of headquarters. It has water all year round but as any waterfall in the country best to visit during the rainy season.
This waterfall is a popular place and full of chattering Thai slopping around in the water and eating and drinking, more so on weekends.

Namtok Pha Takien Waterfall
I was informed I could not go along this trail on my own and must have a ranger go with me as a guide. They would not even tell me where the start of the trail was so I did not get to walk this trail as I do not want or like to have rangers with me. Anyone wanting to walk this trail will have to ask at the visitor center to make an appointment to arrange a ranger as a guide.

Nature Trail and Butterfly Area
About 3.5 km from the entrance, at the second checkpoint, is the main butterfly puddling area, where a host of butterflies can be studied and photographed. From here the loop Nature Trail runs for 1.8 km through some excellent-looking evergreen forest.
I started to walk this nature trail one morning but as it had very obviously not been used for some time and was a rocky track through thick forest with little chance of seeing anything I gave it away after a hundred or so meters and headed back to the road and up to the viewpoint.

Butapot Nature Trail and the Gaur Grasslands

Starting at 6 km along the road is a wide track - not drivable as a locked gate crosses the track - signed as the Butapot Nature Trail.
I walked this trail (4WD) which is well signposted with good information in excellent English. I saw a group of Siamese Fireback on the track and a Guar on the grassland.






The track which continues from the observation tower branch leads through open grassland and is marked (Authorized entry only do not walk”). Heed that sign for you can only disturb anything that is on or about that grassland for as well as being a feeding area it is also a hunting area for tiger.

Huai Nam Yen Campsite

Named by the nearby waterfall, this camping ground is located 18.5km north of headquarters next to Huai Nam Yen Ranger Station.

A good place to camp with reasonable toilets also inhabited by frogs one western style (lift the seat to see the frogs) but Thai style bucket showers.

A tree branch has fallen on the visitor center building and broken part of the roof so it is no longer in use.




There are also two open sided buildings where tents can be pitched in bad weather.



Normally there is power by solar array but the night before we arrived there had been a violent electrical storm which had knocked out the power, this meant there was no place to charge camera batteries. Staff are friendly but no English, the small ants are not so friendly so if you camp there go prepared to deal with them, very few mossies but small flies and bees that sting can be a problem, there is the same problem with the ants at the camp ground at the HQ. No phones or internet.

Huai Nam Yen Waterfall
Accessible by nearly 2km long circular trail from Huai Nam Yen Camp Site. The trail is easy to hike and and takes one hour to complete.

One entrance to this trail is on the side of a stream crossing on the HQ side of the road from the campsite once the entrance is found it is an easy trail to follow down the side of the stream. At one place you must go down the stream bed then back on to the trail.
Once the waterfall is reached, about 3m high, cross the stream and find the entrance to the trail that leads back to the road. Not far up this track it is blocked by a fallen tree, from there go to your right to another small stream which you cross then find the entrance to the track on the other bank. From there it is an easy track up to the road.
There is a broken sign where this track joins the road which is very difficult to see. This is the best way to get to the waterfall if that is what you want to see. Only animal sign was old pig sign, plenty of bird calls but could not see them through the thick trees.

Thap Sung Waterfall
Accessible by a 2km long trail starting 21km north from headquartern and 2.4km north from 2nd campsite (Huai Nam Yen Campsite).
The trail continues another few km and splits to two directions leading to Tharn PlaPlueng Waterfall and Tham Khang Khao Waterfall. Unfortunately there are no clear signs to keep hikers on right track on these two trails and hiker find it difficult to indistinguishable it from animal tracks.

This trail is a 4WD track but driving it should not be attempted as there are fallen trees across the track in places and nowhere to turn round, it is easy to walk with no steep bits..
When I walked this track on 19/11/15 there were 2 camera traps on the track, quite a lot of bird activity (calls) but very difficult to see anything. There were fresh Gaur tracks in places and a tiger pug mark close to the road.



Once a stream is reached the waterfall is presumably downstream from there as there is noise of falling water, I did not go to look.

On the far side of this stream there is an old road leading downstream (and possibly continuing up), (presumably logging) I followed it a short way through some bamboo forest before turning and heading back.

There is sign of people camping close to the water, probably illegal loggers or poachers so extreme caution is advised as the loggers and poachers are known to shoot at anyone who disturbs them. This was one of the reasons given why a ranger should accompany anyone walking any of the trails.


Viewpoint
The viewpoint at 25 km provides excellent views over the surrounding hills.
I went to this viewpoint on the first evening we were there, which is as far as you can drive and there was a Guar feeding on the other side of the fence from the parking area. It was obscured by vegetation and I only saw it as I started to turn the car, at that point I was within 10m of it and it took no notice of the car and carried on feeding. I got out with the camera and took photos then followed it down the old road (4WD track) which continues from the parking area, it still ignored me continuing to munch on grass as it wandered down the track.





A couple of days later I followed this track for a few hundred meters, in spite of the sign which said in Thai “Danger no entry” and saw quite a bit of birdlife and some wild pig sign and also some people sign, probably poachers. This is where the danger lies as these people will not hesitate to shoot you if they are seen they have also been known to set firearm traps with trip wires. A ranger was recently shot with one of these at another national park.

Will I go back? Probably not as it is almost 300KM from home and there are many other places I have not as yet been.
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Old 11-01-2016, 02:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Another visit to the May Wong River


Great stuff I've been to Mae Wong but never seen otters, what size appearance are they, when might be a good season/time to see them?
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Old 17-01-2016, 04:47 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Another visit to the May Wong River


Great stuff I've been to Mae Wong but never seen otters, what size appearance are they, when might be a good season/time to see them?

About the size of a small dog or very large cat, black or dark grey. Nothing else around like them so if you see one you will know what it is.

The ones I saw were in the river in front of the houses that are for rent. Staff said there is a family of then lives there although I only saw one, probably the same one on two occasions Evenings or early mornings would be best times.
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Old 17-01-2016, 07:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Good thread Birding - Cheers.

A few shots from Tam Lod (Cave of Lod, Lod's Cave) in Pang Mapha, about

30 clicks from Pai in Mae Hong Son (on the loop)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tham_Lot_cave

19°31'57.7"N 98°16'10.7"E

Best time to go is sunset when all the birds return into the cave system.

Don't price-gouge Farang - 550 baht for a bamboo raft which seats four

(Thai or Farang) - includes 2 guides/raftsmen.

Trip lasts about 2 hours.

Well worth a visit.

























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Old 17-01-2016, 07:18 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Great stuff birding and good info on what to expect at the different parks. Too busy at home again this year to go walkabout but will use this info in the future.
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Old 25-02-2016, 05:44 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Another 6 nights at Phu Thoei NP February 2016

After a couple of false starts finally got underway on my own around midday on a Tuesday, only 130km from home so an easy trip. At the East entrance to the park I was met by the ranger we have become friendly with and he was keen to show me a bird watching hide he has built overlooking a water trough he has put in the forest. I set up the tent first then went with him to have a look. The hide is big enough and has chairs for half a dozen people and the trough which he keeps filled with water is surrounded with logs for birds to perch on. He tells me about 30 species have been recorded coming to drink and bathe which is not surprising as the whole area is extremely dry with the trough the only good water. He charges 200b for the use of the hide which is reasonable considering the work he has put in on his own initiative.



Fresh from their bath in the trough at the hide, Blue-Bearded Bee Eaters.


I went back and finished setting up camp. The ground is extremely hard from lack of moisture and the tent pegs were bending, same went for the west (HQ) side of the park which if anything was even drier with the ground cracking from lack of moisture. Fires have spread over both sides of the hill. After camp was set up I spent the evening in the hide and saw a fair list of birds.



Another one that came to drink and bathe, Black-naped Monarch (male)

Next day there were 5 others who had use of the hide so I went to some other places I have been before then out to eat and to a local Wednesday evening market to stock up on some food for the next day.
Although I normally prefer to walk around in the forest on Thursday I spent the morning and evening in the hide and saw three new species of birds for me as well as around 20 others and a couple of snakes and a small ground squirrel that came to drink.




A non feathered visitor.

Friday I packed up and drove over the hill to the HQ camping area where there is mains power for charging batteries. After going out for a feed a couple of hundred meters down the road where an old lady puts on real nice Thai food I spent Friday afternoon then Saturday and Sunday mornings wandering around some of the old logging roads on that side of the park, as I said fires had been all over the area with some still burning close to the HQ. Although early in the year for this to happen it is a normal thing in this area and I am told it is caused by bamboo spontaneously combusting in the heat. I didn’t believe this to start with till I saw some fires in very isolated places where no people had been, so yes it would seem it is true. The fire doesn’t leap into the air as you sometimes see in other parts of the world but creeps along the ground burning dead leaves and branches. In a normal season this doesn’t affect the mature trees but does burn the saplings and grasses that are the food of browsing and grazing animals such as deer and must kill off a considerable number of insects which would affect the birds food supply.




The HQ camping ground can get a bit crowed on weekends.

This year with the lack of rain and the hot dry season still to come I note that the bamboo, which is the main plant of this forest, is turning yellow and shedding its leaves This can be seen from a distance as brownish-yellow hillsides with green spots which are the mature evergreen trees. If the drought does kill off the bamboo it will have a devastating effect on the forests of this area as well as on the animal and birdlife.


So far birds are still about in good number and I recorded over 40 species with 5 new to me, I also disturbed a deer which surprised me as I had never seen one in that area before and never expected there to be any large animals around after the fires, wild pig sign which I have seen on previous trips was absent so they have moved out.
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Old 25-02-2016, 06:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Well done to the ranger for showing some initiative.
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Old 19-03-2016, 04:58 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Fire on the mountain run boy run.

4 nights at Chong Yen Mae Wong National Park.

The closer we got to the park the thicker the smoke got, a very bad sign for it meant major fires in the forest.

And so it turned out, fire had been right up from the gate up to and past the Krating viewpoint with the smoke of fires visible from Khun Nam Yen and Chong Yen, that’s over 30KM of forest burnt with the fires still burning and no way of stopping them for the forest and the ground is extremely dry and the dry season has not as yet got underway properly with no real rain expected for a couple of months.

Up on top at Chong Yen the air was reasonably clear and birds abundant as well as animals and animal sign, I saw a pair of Yellow-throated Marten on the road and one raided our camp one night looking for food.




Yellow-throated Marten

There was a troop of Phayres leaf Monkeys on the old Umphang road and sign of Wild Pig and Elephant farther down the road.


This old road is nothing but a bush track now although it is obvious that in the past it has been a road, I went farther down than I have ever been before past the second of two small streams of running water, an interesting walk with photos of several birds along the way.




Mountain Imperial Pigeon


There is a small hide a short way down the road where I spent a couple of hours and got some photos of birds coming to drink and bathe at a small pool. There is also a feeding station that the staff have set up on the side of the camping area below their accommodation which regularly produces otherwise hard to find bird species, this seems to have taken over from the other places in the gullies down the main road where there used to be hides.




Yellow-cheeked Tit


They have upgraded the toilets since I was last there with both western and Thai style toilets and real showers, cold water only. There are lights in the toilets that are turned off around 10 with power from a solar array and generator.


After seeing the state of the fire at Mae Wong, at Phu Toei farther south, seeing them cutting fire breaks at Mae Wong River and knowing that the farmers at Huai Mae Dee will have burnt their corn stubble right up to the boundary with the sanctuary with the fires spreading I have serious concerns that the whole western forest complex is vulnerable to fire which will devastate the forest and the habitat of the wild animals and birds.


I managed to photograph over 30 species of birds with 8 new to me so from my point of view it was a successful trip.




Asian Paradise Flycatcher
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Old 10-04-2016, 09:23 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Huai Mae Dee March-april 2016

Not actually a national park but a little used access point to the Huai Kha Kaeng Wildlife Sanctuary.

31 March headed off on my own for a few days in the forest with the first stop Huai Mae Dee. Smoke was quite bad on the way through Bahn Rai and up the road but I could see there had been some rain. The forest had burnt for as far as I went both up the road and down the stream, a lot of bamboo has been killed and some mature trees toppled as well, hopefully the rain has been enough to put out any fires that were still burning.


Finished setting up camp just as a shower of rain started, when it stopped I headed up the forest road for an evening look round to be caught in the next shower, some fresh deer tracks and old elephant sign on the road but not much birdlife. One of the consequences of fires then rain is that he lack of undergrowth makes walking easy and the rain softened the dead leaves so it was also quiet. There were signs of recovery with a few new shoots appearing as well as some flowers. Back at camp there is a Red-billed Magpie nest in a tree in the camp ground and a couple of Green Imperial Pigeons in another tree.




Green Imperial Pigeon


Next morning complete with brolly in my pack to make sure it didn’t rain I went down the track to the stream crossed over and went down the other side. It wasn’t till I crossed back over farther down that I got anything worth taking a photo of, there I came across a mixed flock of laughing thrush, woodpeckers and drongo, took photos of Greater Yellownape, Grey-headed Woodpecker and Lesser-necklaced Laughingthrush all are new area records for me. Saw White-crested Laughing thrush, spangled and Greater-racket-tailed Drongo and an Accipitor that I didn’t get a chance to ID. Back at camp it piddled down for most of the afternoon but in a brief pause just before dark I had a walk round the camp ground and saw 7 Green Imperial Pigeons in a tall tree. And a raptor which pounced on a squirrel in a treetop then when it looked around and saw me took off and dropped the dead squirrel, had to apologise for messing up its dinner and never even got a usable photo.




Greater Yellownape


Next morning the rain had cleared and some white flowers had sprung up under a tree by the toilets then during breakfast Red-billed Blue Magpies and Racket-tailed Drongos were buzzing around, a Greater Flameback was tapping on a tree and a Red Jungle Fowl walked past, good omens. Back down the stream this morning but stayed on the camp side, had not gone far when a pair of Yellow-throated Martens appeared in a patch of bamboo and I managed to get a reasonable photo. A bit farther on there was a Giant-Black Squirrel feeding in a fruiting tree, got my best photo so far of one of them, sat around and watched for a while expecting birds to join the meal, only bird that arrived, to the consternation of the squirrel which must have imagined itself as a menu item, was a Crested Serpent Eagle, another photo OP. Next on the way down the track was a little Indochinese Ground Squirrel, looks like a mammal day today. I thought I had it made when I came on fresh tracks and droppings of a bovine, probable a lone Banteng by the size of the footprints. Was tracking it down towards the stream when I was distracted by a grove of fruiting trees with a flock of Pied Hornbills feasting on them, as I sat down to watch a Great Hornbill took off with a whoosh of wings and a flash of yellow, unfortunately it didn’t come back. There were Green Imperial Pigeons in there as well with many smaller birds the only one of which I could ID was a Golden-fronted Leafbird. Left them to it to get back to camp before the anticipated afternoon rain and on the way saw an, as yet to be ID’d, falcon land in a tree across the stream and a Great Hornbill fly past. The rain didn’t come and stars appeared as the rain had cleared most of the smoke from the air. Just on dark several night birds, probably owls landed briefly on the trees around the tent but no chance of photos.




Giant Black Squirrel


Next morning I headed back to where I had seen the hornbills and yes they were still there feeding on the same trees. They all took off when I arrived including 2 Great Hornbills identifiable by the sound of their wings. Sat down and waited for them to come back which took a while, in the meantime Gibbons started calling, one family from the top of the tallest tree in the grove, I could see movement but no chance of a photo through all the branches and leaves. Eventually the Pied Hornbills started to come back I reckon there would have been at least 20 of them. A couple of Green Imperial Pigeons appeared along with a pair of Asian Fairy Bluebirds the first time I have seen them there. No Great Hornbills unfortunately nor much hoped for Rufous or Ticklle’s both of which have been seen in the area but not by me. On the way back to camp I got a photo of a Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush to go with the lessor I got yesterday, just before I got back to camp a deer took off, Samba by the size.


Next day was to be my last as I had run out of food and I walked up the road that goes into the interior of the sanctuary where they won’t let me drive. Lots of bird activity with Racket-tailed Treepie, Barwinged Flycatcher Shrike, Black-naped Oriole among others, and 2 new species for me Grey-chinned Minivet and Grey-headed Parakeet which were in a flock of 6 or 8 birds. There was also fresh sign of elephant, cattle, deer and a small species of cat that had left footprints in some mud, most of the sign was between the second and third bridge which had a large tree fallen over it. Lots of potential and I would have liked to have stayed on longer…. but I will return some time in the future.





Bai Mai Dai


General
The whole area down the stream is full of old Elephant sign, probably before the fires, they have been feeding on the reeds in the stream bed and look to have been living there for some time, once things grow again there is a good chance they will be back. Also fresh deer sign of at least 2 species of deer and the fire has exposed some old burrows probably porcupine or some other burrowing animal. Unfortunately there was also people sign with old camp fires and garbage, no doubt poachers. There are still some areas where the fire has not touched but where it has been, it is very bad. Photos don’t really give a good idea of the devastation.


The nature trail that is shown on maps and on some web sites is pretty much nonexistent from the other side of the stream, there have also in the past been tracks down both sides of the stream with signs identifying species of tree, there are still some remains of these blue signs to be seen and it is a shame that the work that has been done in the past has now been lost by neglect. I see this almost everywhere I go with overgrown tracks, berms washed out that have been put in gullies to prevent erosion and damaged buildings. All it needs is a little care and maintenance on an annual basis but it never seems to get done.


The camping area was starting to take on a green tinge with new grass as the rain brought new growth unfortunately next it will be mushroom season and the locals will once again be causing a disturbance, that place needs some serious policing but at present there seems to be only 3 or 4 rangers stationed there, with one on the main gate one at the HQ building on radio watch there is little that can be done at present.
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Old 11-04-2016, 07:50 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Thanx for the pics & posts, very interesting. I didn't know that there are squirrels in Th.
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Old 11-04-2016, 08:47 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I didn't know that there are squirrels in Th
Plenty of them - many of them white.

Wonderful characters too
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Old 11-04-2016, 08:56 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Thanx for the pics & posts, very interesting. I didn't know that there are squirrels in Th.
Oh dear, yes!

At least a dozen varieties - a few native to Thailand, but largely considered indigenous to the broader SE Asia region.
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Old 12-04-2016, 12:45 AM   #19 (permalink)
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^ Some tasty varieties as well...according to the locals
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Old 02-07-2016, 11:24 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Parks we visited on our trip to the south.

We had a list of National Parks we wanted to visit and we managed to have a look at most of them, some we stayed more nights than others depending on what we found, the trip took us just over 2 months.

First and last stop was Kaeng Krachan NP, a place certainly worthy of 2 stops but it was the last place on the trip I will leave it till last.

The next park we stopped at was :

Huai Yang Waterfall National Park.

First impressions, clean and well maintained with a good camping area and toilets with a restaurant open most of the day. Vendors turn up during the day selling meat, fish, ice and cakes.


The track up the waterfalls is easy and well maintained, the most notable bird is Blue–winged Pita which are numerous and easily seen up to the third waterfall above that Bulbuls are dominant but difficult to ID with Blue-whistling thrush also easily seen. There are also large rodent looking things which race around very quickly so I was unable to get a photo.




Blue-whistling Thrush


Around the camping area Indian Roller fly around as well as Barbet and Drongo.
The area across the small bridges from the camp site warrants more investigation as there is a fair bit of bird life in that area.





Green Eared barbet


A problem there are dogs from the temple just down the road, I saw several wandering around on their own up around the waterfalls and when I went up to the first waterfall in the evening to see if any birds came down to bath 3 monks turned up with 10 dogs following along behind, that ensured there would be little birdlife however in spite of their presence I still saw 2 Blue Winged Pita.






Blue-winged Pita



A place worthy of more time than the 2 nights we spent there.
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Old 06-07-2016, 02:58 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Sri Phang Nga National Park




I was keen to get to this park as I had read some great reviews of what was to be found here however what we found was not up to expectations. I had read of others seeing up to 70 bird species in a day but very few of those showed themselves for me with the only hornbills being the pair I saw flying.


For a start nowhere was it mentioned that they have an ‘office hours’ policy that you are not allowed to leave the camping ground before 8am and must return by 5pm a policy I have never seen at any other national park I have visited. This to me in unacceptable as it wastes the best 2 hours of the morning when it is cool and, arguably, bird life is at its peak.


There is a big camping ground which seems little used as we were the only ones camped there for the first 2 nights, small toilets only one of each, M&F, a long way from camp however they are clean with a western style toilet as well as Thai. The showers are the best I have seen with good water pressure.


There are two main trails to waterfalls which start about a K up the road from the camping area at a picnic, parking place where kids and big kids can slop around in the water where 2 streams converge the short trail, about 300m, to the Tam Nang Waterfall starts across a bridge on the left of the parking area, this is on the larger of the 2 streams and is quite a nice waterfall. I walked this on the afternoon we arrived, saw very little birdlife other than at a bird bathing spot at the parking area, birds there were all Bulbul of 3 or 4 species which I haven’t ID’d yet. I spent a bit of time watching and saw 2 Hornbill fly to a roost out of sight high on the hill, I then got told off for getting back to camp after 5pm.


Orange-bellied Flowerpecker.



The other trail to the Ton Dang Waterfall is longer and with more birdlife, I got photos of Chestnut-crowned Forktail and some other birds along this stream, also heard and glimpsed Bamboo Woodpecker but no photos. There is a sign 50m before the waterfall and here a short track leads to where guides have set up a feeding place for Pita. Regardless of how you feel of the ethics of feeding to attract wild birds and animals this seems to be the only realistic chance to get photos of Hooded and Banded Pita. I snuck in once the guides had left with their clients and as well as smaller birds got some good photos of the 2 species of Pita. There is a Hooded Pita that has laid claim to the place and chases away any small birds which makes it difficult to get a look at any small species.


Chestnut-crowned Forktail.


Another trail is a steep one which branches off to the right about 50m along the Ton Dang Waterfall trail it heads steeply uphill then to the left along a ridge top to end at a fallen tree. This trail may in the past have continued on but I could find no sign of it. Ropes have been put along most of the steep part of this trail which are a help both going up and down and it appears some surveying has been done up on top as there are marker pegs with string between them and red paint on trees. This trail is through thick mature forest and allows no opportunity to see the few birds that are calling.



One more rarely used track goes to the left off the road to the parking-picnic area, it starts less than 100m from the camping ground and crosses the stream before following a small stream up to a waterfall, the last part of the track is in the stream bed and would be dangerous if there was a lot of water in the stream. By the look of the discarded PVC pipes this was at one time the camp water supply. With lots of little fish in the pools and minimal disturbance this should be ideal habitat for Forest Kingfishers but neither sight nor sound of them did I encounter, nor were there any other birds to be seen, only photos I got were of a pair of Gibbons in the top of a tree.




I took Ying with me on the last evening up to where guides have been feeding birds and when we got to the short track to the feeding spot a Banded Pita followed us apparently looking for food, it hopped around in front of us, it was very tame and at one stage Ying was walking around following it taking pictures with both her camera and her phone, a Hooded Pita also turned up briefly.
I know from experience that guides have to provide clients with what they pay for but have to question the practice of getting birds (or animals) to the stage of expecting food and possibly relying on being fed. There is probably only one Banded Pita and one Hooded Pita that is using that feeding station as that is all we saw.


No large animal sign at all other than primates, Dusky Langur and Gibbons. Not as many squirrels as most other places but I did get a photo of a Common Tree Shrew.


Common Tree Shrew.
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Old 08-07-2016, 07:55 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Khao Sok National Park.

First impressions, staff not so friendly, not happy we wanted to camp as “Tourists” are supposed to stay at their bungalows or one of the many resorts, eat at restaurants and hire guides. Camping site a disaster area, not going to attempt to put up a tent in that mess so we went to the other side of the road where there was a little grass but the ground is very stony and almost impossible to get a tent peg all the way in.


The so called ‘narrow trail’ is a series of deteriorating concrete staircases which leads to a stream with a swing bridge with a sign “Closed for repair”, even the sign is in need of repair , and this sign on the trail :




There is a trail which continues on the other side of the bridge which I presumed was the trail that continued to the waterfall but as I had seen very little bird life I turned round and headed back to camp.


Next day I tried the other trail which is in fact a road that goes for 7km and which follows the river with side tracks to the river which mostly go to swimming spots or are loops where the guides take their clients to walk in the forest.


Down a side track a bit over a kilometer down the road by a sign telling of bamboo there is what appears to be a Broadbill nest under construction so I hung around and was rewarded by the sight of a pair of Red and Black Broadbill presumably the owners of the nest, unfortunately not very good photos due to a misty morning . When I went back the next morning hoping to get better photos the broadbill did not appear but instead a Chestnut-naped Forktail hopped into sight for a brief photo OP and a Wallace’s Hawk Eagle landed in a tree across the stream for a long range shot.


Wallace's Hawk Eagle.


On both days I carried on to a sign pointing to Wing Hin Waterfall about two and a half KM down the road, never did see the waterfall but there is some interesting trees at the river crossing which were attracting small birds which I was able to get some photos of including this Blue-winged Leafbird.




I have since heard from annoyed tourists that there is a ranger station about half a kilometer farther down that road where anyone who has not hired a guide is charged 1000 baht if they want to walk any farther. There is nothing to tell of this before you get there and that charge is causing a lot of resentment, fortunately I didn’t go that far.
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Old 10-07-2016, 04:12 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Klong Phanom National Park

There was very little information about this park anywhere on the internet, the only thing I could find was that it had been a hideout for communists back in the sixties so we had to do everything by touch.


The HQ about is 100m off the main road (401) at the 21km milestone east of Khao Sok NP.


First impressions, great setting flanked by 2 massive rock pillers, good place to camp around the helicopter pad, staff friendly and very helpful, they don’t get many foreigners, boss speaks a little English, toilets clean and well maintained, there is a restaurant area where we charge batteries and I wrote a few things on the laptop but no food service.







The park is also know for a large flower which was not in bloom at the time we were there.






There is a 2km nature trail starting from behind the HQ that leads to a big tree, there are also other access points 3 of which we explored. This is a little visited Park with great potential and I recommend it to anyone who plans to be in the area. There were what I would call ‘civilisation’ birds around the HQ like Common Myna and Magpie Robin plus some others on ripe bananas and a flowering tree up behind the staff houses as well as a pair of interesting little striped Squirrels racing around in the trees above our camp.




Burmese Striped Squirrel


We were taken to what is called Bamboo on a 4WD track through rubber and palm oil plantations and into the forest they then showed us the start of the trail. They told us that no foreigner had been to that place for 13 years. We didn’t get to the Bamboo place as we lost the track on top of the ridge but we had another go a few days later after getting farther directions from staff this time we failed even to get to the start of the track up the hill as there had been heavy rain and even in 4WD the track proved too slippery so we walked the last 200m to where we had parked the previous time. I did however get some bird photos and information from a lady working in a palm oil plantation, she told us that 20 years ago there were lots of animals in the area including Tigers and Bears but now everything is gone.


Male Brown-throated Sunbird


We spent 2 nights in a comfortable rental house at Klong Boon Naak ranger station No 2, it is a ranger station 5km up a road about 10km back towards Khao Sok. The road gets progressively worse and the last stream crossing is definitely 4WD territory. The place is on a stream that comes from the forest, it is possible to camp there but we chose to leave our tent set up at the HQ. I walked a fair way up the stream and up a track that led to the ridge top, difficult to see birds in the thick forest but I could hear calls of Great Aegus farther along the ridge and came across a patch about 6m X 3m that had been cleared of leaves which I presumed is a display area, I sat down and watched with soap,emm, hope in my soul for a time but no birds turned up.


There are Chestnut-Naped Forktail and kingfishers in the stream, got photos of the Forktail but all I saw of the Kingfishers was them in fast flight past me, other birds seen were Bulbul and sunbirds. For anyone seriously wanting to track down Great Argus this might just be a very good place to look.


We then moved on to Nam Tok Ton Yai ranger station No 3 which due to a misunderstanding I had thought was the access to the old communist area but that it turns out is from the HQ area via the big tree track. We only stayed one night as there are limited tracks and unlimited leaches. I still managed to get good photos of both male and female Crimson-breasted Flowerpeckers, new species for me, on a fruiting tree where we stayed.






If you are in the area don’t by-pass this one.


Robby
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Old 16-08-2016, 12:03 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Khao Pu - Khao Ya National Park

Not an easy place to find as it is poorly signposted, we arrived at this park just before dark got the tent up and slept.


First impressions, looks good with western style toilets but no showers but I have the technology to counter that, toilets are a bit far from where we camped but not a problem really. Obviously no rain here for some time as the place is very dry.




First morning I headed up a nature trail which starts a s a concrete road then as a series of concrete staircases past a huge cliff that looks as if it could fall on your head at any time.





Bee Cliff in English



The stairs end at a ridge top and a short track to the right and some sharp rocks that overlook some fruiting trees with a dead tree on the left that were well populated with birds which turned out to be mostly barbet’s and bulbuls.





Male Red-throated barbet


A bit of an effort to climb all the way up but well worth it from my prospective as I ended up with 3 new bird species and a don’t know for the morning. Next morning I headed back to the same place and although most of the fruit had been eaten from the trees the birds were still around although mostly the same species, I was able to add a Banded Woodpecker to the list.





Female Red-throated Barbet


Went again the next morning but even fewer birds, but a flight of hornbills landed in the top of some tall trees above me then when I moved they flew off giving me a brief glimpse of 5 birds as they passed a gap in the trees, not a good enough look to be able to tell the species but it does prove hornbill are in the park. Took Ying up to have a look at the cliff in the afternoon and we saw a bird that I at first thought may be a honey guide as the cliff is full of beehives but no such luck for it looks to be some kind of thrush with long slim wings that make it look like a swallow or swift when in flight.


Had a large bird fly over our camp and land briefly in a tree for a very poor photo, I saw another the same when I walked up cave road on the morning we moved on and managed to get enough of a photo to ID it as a Chestnut-breasted Malkoha, another new species for me.



This is quite an exciting place that is rarely visited by birders and deserves farther exploration, several times I heard what sounded like pita alarm calls but as the undergrowth is very thick was unable to see the birds. One of the staff told us that this is the only place in Thailand where Blythe’s Frogmouth can still be found, whether that’s true or not I don’t know.


No large animals in the park but saw a troop of Long-tailed Macaques and 4 small ground animals, again no photos.






There are two main trails, the one to the cliff-top and the other to the cave which is a concrete road with another track through the forest. There is an indistinct side track at the 2300 marker which heads off to the left (on the way up) I followed it for a couple of hundred meters and it heads up a valley into the forest, if we had stayed longer I would have followed it to see where it went but we had planned to leave the morning I saw it and as there was a celebration on that day to mark 25 years since the establishment of the park and lots of people arriving we decided to move on.


If you are ever in the area don’t bypass this one as it is full of barbet and has great potential to produce hard to find southern species

Bird List
Brown Barbet
Red-throated Barbet
Banded Woodpecker
Streaked Wren Babbler
Magpie Robin
Stripe-throated Bulbul
Blue-whistling Thrush
Chestnut-breasted Malkoha
Blue Rock Thrush
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Old 08-09-2016, 08:34 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by birding View Post
Phu Toei National Park
The road up the valley crosses the park into Uthai Thani province cutting off a northern park, we haven’t visited the part of the park to the north of this road so don’t know what it is like.
Found HQ and the Ranger 3 camp site. But where does one find the cut off in the north?

Quote:
Originally Posted by birding View Post
On one trip we drove up to the Karan Village which is a tortuous drive mostly in first gear up the hill and stopped at one waterfall
We got as far as the camp site. But turned back as it was getting late and I didn't want to drive down in the dark. Not for the faint hearted that one. My wife says I do it alone next time. Is there any reason to visit the Karan? Food of any sort? Exotic textile weaving, jewellery or just a few farmers wondering who it is?


Quote:
Originally Posted by birding View Post
Friday I packed up and drove over the hill to the HQ camping area where there is mains power for charging batteries. After going out for a feed a couple of hundred meters down the road where an old lady puts on real nice Thai food I spent Friday afternoon then Saturday and Sunday mornings wandering around some of the old logging roads on that side of the park
I assume this is not the "resort" at the turn off to HQ. Where is the best place to eat local? The old lady the closest? Have you tried the eatery at the gate to Tham Than Lod? Som Tam, larb and omelette are good.
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