Friday, 5 December 2014

5th December 2014 Ban Maka & Samnak Maiteng Reservoir

Awoke to another heavily overcast day but at least it wasn't raining. Walked the Ban Maka grounds and checked the lake seeing a good selection of species including several Yellow Bitterns and a Ruddy-breasted Crake. We then left to make the drive to Samnak Maiteng Reservoir near Ratchaburi having read of a Pied Harrier roost there on Gerry Brett's blog. After a mile or so we stopped to see if the Green Bee-eaters and Red-rumped Swallows were performing but couldn't find my digiscoping camera. Checked various likely places but couldn't remember having it since leaving the lake at Ban Maka. Thinking it was probably packed-away somewhere we still thought it was worth quickly returning to the lake... and found it where I had last used it! Very fortunate not to have driven any further before realising it was missing! En-route stopped at a Seven Eleven store and much to our surprise they had small speakers available but shaped as either a brown bear or pink elephant. Decided to take a chance on the brown bear and was pleased to find it worked with the minidisc player on testing it out - result. We drove to the Lake Scene Resort conveniently located virtually on the shore of the Samnak Maiteng Reservoir. We arrived at c.2pm and just as we did we received a timely text from Gerry Brett to say his planned ambitious twitch for a Brown Noddy at sea off Lam Pak Bia had been postponed by a day so he was heading for the reservoir for 3pm and would happily show us around. Gerry soon arrived and we were off for a thorough tour of his superb local birding area. Encroachment of the surrounding area has unfortunately taken place over recent years but plenty of good habitat persists especially along the southern shore. During our whistle-stop tour with Gerry we flushed a Rain Quail, saw 350 Small Pratincoles and watched 6 Pied Harriers arrive to roost that included five males. We couldn't have wished for a better introduction to the area and Gerry seemed quite relieved that all his sites had readily delivered.

Red Junglefowl 2
Little Grebe 1
Yellow Bittern 3
Pond Heron sp. 2
Cattle Egret 100
Purple Heron 2
Black-winged Kite 2
Pied Harrier 6
Ruddy-breasted Crake 1
Moorhen 10
Black-winged Stilt 6
Red-wattled Lapwing 10
Little Ringed Plover 20
Bronze-winged Jacana 6
Wood Sandpiper 6
Small Pratincole 350
Whiskered Tern 6
Red Turtle Dove 60
Peaceful Dove 10
Greater Coucal 4
Lesser Coucal 1
Green-billed Malkoha 2
Indian Roller 6
White-throated Kingfisher 6
Black-capped Kingfisher 1
Common Kingfisher 1
Blue-bearded Bee-eater 2
Green Bee-eater 10
Hoopoe 8
Oriental Pied Hornbill 8
Kestrel 1
Ashy Woodswallow 15
Brown Shrike 2
Black Drongo 25
Racket-tailed Treepie 1
Indochinese Bush Lark 4
Swallow 50
Yellow-browed Warbler 4
Black-browed Reed Warbler 1
Grey-breasted Prinia 2
White-vented Myna 50
Asian Pied Starling 50
Oriental Magpie-Robin 1
Taiga Flycatcher 2
Siberian Stonechat 2
Olive-backed Sunbird 2
Plain-backed Sparrow 2 males
Richard's Pipit 2
Paddyfield Pipit 2
Red-throated Pipit 2

Open air dining at Ban Maka

 Ban Maka grounds
Hoopoe at Ban Maka
Green-billed Malkoha at Ban Maka
First-winter Taiga Flycatcher at Ban Maka
Juvenile Yellow Bittern at Ban Maka
Ruddy-breasted Crake at Ban Maka
 Large reservoir near Kaeng Krachen
Birding the southern shore of Samnak Maiteng Reservoir
Indochinese Bushlark at Samnak Maiteng Reservoir
Adult male Pied Harriers at Samnak Maiteng Reservoir