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Thailand’s National Bird

March 4th, 2009 by Dave Stejskal· 1 Comment

Thailand may not be rich in endemic birds, but there are some juicy regional specialties that are most easily seen there. One of these is the Siamese Fireback. This, the national bird of Thailand, is now restricted to just a handful of parks and forest reserves in the country, and it’s not guaranteed to be seen. Or so I thought!

Siamese Fireback by guide Dave Stejskal

Siamese Fireback by guide Dave Stejskal

My co-leader, Uthai Treesucon, has a new spot for the fireback that seems to be exceptionally reliable, and we all had our fill of this gorgeous pheasant on our recent Thailand tour after a short walk up the road from our vehicle at this site. It turned out, however, that we hadn’t even needed to walk—since there were two other males back near the parking lot keeping one of our participants, Naomi, company! While enjoying this great bird we managed to steal a few moments for some photos as well, of which I’ve posted one here—what a great bird!

We ended up with almost 500 birds on this tour, and for some participants nearly all of them were lifers as this was their first trip to Asia. The highlights were obviously different for everyone—there were thirty-five ‘favorite’ birds on our tally list at the end of the trip—but this fireback in particular deserved special mention.

[Editor’s Note: Dave and Uthai guided our Thailand tour this year, and the pair will return in 2010. Check out Dave’s complete 2009 report in PDF file format or visit our Thailand tour page for more information.]


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  • Tours by Guide

    Click on a photo for a guide's biography and list of upcoming tours
  • Fun, professionally guided birdwatching trips to 100 destinations worldwide. Providing the best tour experience is the continuing goal of our friendly, top-notch guides and staff
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    Chris Benesh grew up birding in California. After earning his degree in zoology, Chris joined the Field Guides staff, and his life underwent a wonderful transformation. The intervening years at ...Read complete biography

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  • Red-headed Tanager, by guide Dan Lane
  • We love guiding tours
    and it shows.
    We gauge a tour's
    success not by birds
    seen or the revenue
    generated but by
    the smile on your face
    at tour's end.
    Tours are not scientific
    expeditions -
    they are vacations.
  • Client Comment


  • This female Golden-headed Quetzal from our Cloudforests of Ecuador: All the Best of the Wild Northwest tour blends right into its surroundings, even with brilliant green-and-red plumage! (Photo by guide Willy Perez)
  • Our Guides are the single most important aspect of Field Guides birding tours. Our experienced leaders are not only highly skilled birders but also fun-loving people who geniunely enjoy guiding and take pride in making your tour a pleasant experience.
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