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  1. #1
    Mmmm, Bowling......
    mobs00's Avatar
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    Shooting and Trapping Wildlife in Kaeng Krachan National Park

    I just came back from another photo expedition with Bruce to Kaeng Krachan in the Petchaburi Province only about 3 hours from BKK.





    Here is some brief info on the park I found from Wiki:

    Geography

    The park covers parts of the districts Nong Ya Plong, Kaen Krachan and Tha Yang of Phetchaburi Province, and of Hua Hin of Prachuap Khiri Khan Province. It consists mainly of rain forests within the eastern slope of the Tenasserim Mountain Range. The highest elevation is at 1200m, the mean elevation of the area is at Two main rivers originate within the park, the Pranburi River and the Phetchaburi River.
    The Phetchaburi is blocked by the Kaeng Krachan dam at the eastern border of the park. The dam creates a lake covering an area of 46.5 km˛. The dam was built in 1966.
    History

    The park was created on June 12 1981 as the 28th national park of Thailand. Originally covering an area of 2,478 km˛, it was enlarged on December 27, 1984 to include the boundary area between Phetchaburi and Prachuap Khiri Khan provinces.
    The park has been included in the list of ASEAN heritage parks. In 2005 it was also submitted to UNESCO for consideration as a future world heritage site.
    Fauna and Flora

    The forests contain a very diverse collection of tree species, both continental trees like oaks, chestnuts, and maples, but also trees found on the Malay Peninsula like palms.
    57 species of mammals and more than 400 bird species had been counted in the park.

  2. #2
    Mmmm, Bowling......
    mobs00's Avatar
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    Kaeng Krachan is also one of the last intact wildlife areas in Thailand. There are elephant herds, tigers, leopards, gaur, tons of birds, monkeys, and the list goes on. Although these animals mostly only survive in a 400 square km area around the park HQ. This is due to human encroachment and poaching in the rest of the 2500 sq km area of the park. Sad really that Thailand is letting its treasures and beauty just disappear or be sold to the highest bidder. KK is actually a priority on the list of national parks to allow concessions. What a terrible idea, destroy the pristine beauty of a place with a McDonalds and a Som Tam stand.

    This is why I really admire what Bruce is doing. If any of you want to see it before it is gone now is the time as every year the flora and fauna population is rapidly being decimated.

    Ok, so enough of the rant and on with pics!

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat davearn's Avatar
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    Looks like fun and, as you say, on with the pics

  4. #4
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Our first stop was the dam to pick up our guide a personal friend of Bruce who is also a park ranger here and the former chief of the park.

    I got this squirrel at his house while we were waiting for him to arrive.



    A few flowers on his property.




    I just got this new camera from the states. Its an entry level DSLR; Nikon D60. It does take great pics though and during this trip I went from knowing little about photography to knowing just slightly more.

    I was shooting in Aperture priority and full manual most of the time.

  5. #5
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    This is the road just after the entrance gate.I was sitting in the back of the truck for the ride in and out hoping to see some wildlife.








    KK only allows daytime visitors during this time of year but we had special permission to stay overnight. There are loads of resorts and cheap guesthouses near the dam where you can spend the night. During the dry season you can camp at the main HQ inside the park. Weekdays are recommended as Thais flood the park during weekends in the dry and just make an obnoxious racket all day and night.

  6. #6
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    The paved road ends and it becomes a dirt track. It is maintained quite well with just a few bumps here and there. The mini buses and cars are able to make the trip to HQ.





    We stopped to take some pictures of a few butterflies. The park is loaded with them and they can be seen everywhere.












    The road in is also littered with elephant crap everywhere. Turns out a while back a German tourist (not the brightest) decided to have a game of footie with the herd figuring they were just as tame as the ones walking the streets. Turns out he lost the match and the elephants used him as the ball for the rest of the game.



  7. #7
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    This is the camping area. There are toilets and plenty of showers just in the back.






    A nature trail also goes down to the stream and around for a bit. While walking the edge of the campground I spotted a barking deer but it also saw me and took off. I saw a few of these during my stay but never got any pictures.




    The stream next to camp.




    When it was first established they spent loads of money on infrastructure some of which is not even being used now. If you follow the nature trail you will come to a large area with many concrete houses they built for boy scout groups and the like; about 50 beds per unit and about 12 units. These are now disused and falling apart.


    This park didn’t feel as remote or pristine as Tung Yai/ Huai Kha Kaeng probably due to the fact that it was once logged. It just didn’t have the feeling of being in the middle of no where. Although later on when we got off the main road it sure did feel like things were sizing me up for a meal.
    Last edited by mobs00; 25-09-2008 at 11:46 AM.

  8. #8
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Here are a few random shots of the area.


    They have crabs,




    Spiders,



    Snakes,



    Lizards,



    Bugs,



    More butterflies,





    And even plants. They don't do much but are still fun to shoot.





  9. #9
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    Go to a Thai national park and take pictures of wild animals on man made breeze blocks


  10. #10
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    That night we set up a camera trap next to the mess hall to see what we could find. Barking deer, porcupine, civet are all frequent visitors. Elephants even wander straight through HQ and you can see sign of it on the roads. There is also a resident black leopard in the back that we may catch on film.



  11. #11
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog View Post
    Go to a Thai national park and take pictures of wild animals on man made breeze blocks


    There's always a critic. I was wondering who would point that out. and so quickly too

  12. #12
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    I wake up to the sound of monkeys and birds in the trees. A bit of an uneasy sleep last night with all the creatures roaming around camp at night.

    At about 8am in comes 2 mini buses full of bird watchers. They head off down the road in the direction we will soon be going. Today we are going to set up some camera traps to try and catch a few tigers and whatever else may pass by.

    Off we go. Vehicles are not allowed beyond HQ's unless they have special permission, which we did.






    Who do we run into? Friggin bird watchers. They wave us to stop so here we are waiting for about 5-10 minutes until finally we say screw it and drive on past. Oops! Scared a bird.


    One of them even brought a dog which, try as we did, we only barely avoided running over.




  13. #13
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    DAMN !

    i thught this thread was about shooting stuff.....


  14. #14
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    We stop down the road at a large game trail and walk in for about 200 meters to set up 2 camera traps.





    I found some sign of elephant and am told there are lots of leopard and tiger that use these trails.





    On the way I saw this strange mushroom like fungus.




    This I what happens when you take a piss around butterflys. There were hundreds of them and they would not move at all. Almost like they were drunk; could’ve been the lao kao last night?





    We then headed back to camp to see if we can shoot some civet tonight.



  15. #15
    I am in Jail
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    great pics.

  16. #16
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    So I am sitting at the table eating my dinner of Ma Ma noodles and rice (a rangers staple diet) and this bastard starts crawling on my face!



  17. #17
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    Some of the rangers like to take pictures of wildlife so they set up there own little feeding area behind the kitchen. This is where I got the pics below of a Large Indian Civet.







    The civets were spooked easily and we only got a couple of shots. It was 10pm now and time to turn in. The next morning I will be up at first light to see if I can catch the monkeys and hornbills.
    Last edited by mobs00; 26-09-2008 at 09:30 AM.

  18. #18
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Come about 05:30am the birds start to wake up and make quite a racket. I get up and look off the balcony to see a barking deer running off, monkeys jumping around in the trees and the hornbills feeding on fruit.

    I take my camera and head down to the fruit tree in the campground to take some photos and sure enough about a dozen hornbills are there.


















  19. #19
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    There were also other bird species in this popular tree.






  20. #20
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    And to add to my portfolio of gay wildlife I unknowingly took 2 shots of an “Asian Fairy Bluebird”. This should go well with my “Lemon Pansy Butterfly”.





    Here it is taking flight.



  21. #21
    Thailand Expat Bobcock's Avatar
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    I went to the book launch and met Bruce. Turns out we have a mutual friend in Tim Redford, though I see Tim rarely. Tim was at the launch, but amazingly I missed him. Bought his book the other day, pics look far better than on the FCCT screens.

    What's the biggest lens you are using?

  22. #22
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Dusky Langur

    I see some movement in the trees quite a ways off. After a closer look they seem to be monkeys. Too far to get any good shots so I just watch them.

    What happens next was great. The whole troop starts coming closer and closer to me till they are only about 20 feet away! I took the next series of shots during this time. There were around 10 Dusky Langurs jumping around and having a great time; even a little one mixed in.















  23. #23
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobcock View Post
    I went to the book launch and met Bruce. Turns out we have a mutual friend in Tim Redford, though I see Tim rarely. Tim was at the launch, but amazingly I missed him. Bought his book the other day, pics look far better than on the FCCT screens.

    What's the biggest lens you are using?

    I am using a Nikon 18-200 VR lens for most of the shots. The VR option on these new DX lenses are crap. They malfunction all the time and make a lot of noise. I just turned it off. I am also using a 60mm Macro lens for some of the close ups.

  24. #24
    Thailand Expat Bobcock's Avatar
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    Bruce took my card, I'm hoping he'll invite me along, but I can only photgraph markets and temples. I do have a 400mm lens though....5555

  25. #25
    Mmmm, Bowling......
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    Today is our last day and we need to head off early to set up 7 more camera traps.

    We pack up and drive back towards the park entrance to stop off at an old logging road and made our way in.






    Tons of Gaur tracks here and lots of elephant sign.



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