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Field Guides Tour Report
Feb 15, 2020 to Mar 7, 2020
Dave Stejskal

We were treated to atypically fabulous views of one of the most confiding White-crowned Forktails that I've ever come across! (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

Thailand is one of those magical places to go birding, and I wish that every birder was able to make a trip to this lovely country! You all are lucky to have been, thanks to Denis's brainstorming and organization of a fine group. I consider myself to be incredibly lucky to have been able to guide in Thailand for the better part of 25 years, and I feel especially fortunate to have had all of you along for my final tour of the country! I'm going to miss seeing those birds and landscapes – and I'm going to miss Wat's companionship as much as anything.

We started out our trip in the Bangkok area, moving south along the coast after sampling some of the local habitats a short drive from our comfortable Bangkok hotel. This first big star of the tour was that fabulous Spoon-billed Sandpiper near the town of Kho Kham. Global numbers of this one have dwindled to a point of grave concern on the part of the conservation world, but it was thrilling to get a look in the scope of a bird that is likely on the brink. We all got our fill of a few dozen other shorebird species in the next two days before we moved on to the southwest to Kaeng Krachan NP.

A major road closure inside the park hampered our efforts at Kaeng Krachan, but our time there was extremely birdy and productive nonetheless. It was at Kaeng Krachan that we got our first taste of so many SE Asian families of birds – many of them for the first time for many in the group. Hornbills, bee-eaters, barbets, broadbills, cuckooshrikes, Old World orioles, woodswallows, woodshrikes, ioras, drongos, monarchs, bulbuls, all sorts of things called babblers, and so many others were new and strange for most folks, and we got repeated looks at many of these during our nearly three days in the park and surrounding areas. Individual highlights were many, with stand-outs being Great Hornbill, Great Slaty Woodpecker, Black-and-yellow Broadbill, Gray Peacock-Pheasant (for some), Kalij Pheasant, Black-thighed Falconet, Orange-breasted Trogon, Blue-bearded Bee-eater, Heart-spotted Woodpecker, Large Scimitar-Babbler, and loads of other great birds.

We shifted to the northeast to Khao Yai NP to a similar, but slightly different, avifauna. While Kaeng Krachan boasts influence from the Thai-Malay Peninsula to the south, Khao Yai NP is influenced mostly by the Indochinese faunal region to the east. Nearly three full days in this area again proved to be very rewarding, with stars of the show including Silver Pheasant and Siamese Fireback (the latter at a nearby reserve), a close Black Eagle, Brown Boobook, Red-headed Trogon, nesting Brown and Wreathed hornbills, Banded Kingfisher, exceptional Long-tailed Broadbill, Blue Pitta, and so much more. Mammals were pretty darned good, too, with nice Barking Deer, Sambar, White-handed Gibbon, and a memorable encounter with Indian Elephant!

We then said farewell to the southern forests and headed to the north, which held the promise of countless new species. After an early morning visit to the Royal Forest Project to the east of Chiang Mai and great encounters with numbers of Green Peafowl, we drove to the south of Chiang Mai to Mae Ping NP, a new park – but a very familiar habitat – for me. Our first visit to the dry forest of the park in the afternoon got us some much needed targets in the forms of Lesser Yellownape, White-bellied Woodpecker, White-rumped Falcon, Gray-headed Parakeet, Burmese Nuthatch, and a few other dry-forest denizens. Those Silver-breasted Broadbills that we ran into were a wonderful surprise, too! After a lovely picnic dinner in the park prepared by our host Wat and his wife and son, we called in a fairly cooperative Oriental Scops-Owl for some decent looks high in a leafless tree. Our next morning in the park brought us good looks of Black-headed Woodpecker, Yellow-footed Green-Pigeon, Red-billed Blue-Magpie, Common Woodshrike, Black-hooded Oriole, and others.

After our morning at Mae Ping, we drove back to the north out of Lamphun Province and back into Chiang Mai Province to Inthanon NP. Our first afternoon was spent at the top of the mountain where we pretty much had the boardwalk through the summit bog to ourselves. It was a pretty good move on our parts to do the bog that first afternoon since most everything was out and foraging and in the open. We had to work a bit to find a few things, but we did really well, seeing Rufous-throated Partridge, Himalayan Shortwing, White-crowned Forktail, Snowy-browed Flycatcher, Green-tailed Sunbird, etc. during our time there. We did need to make one more visit up there to catch up to a couple of skulkers that we missed, but we caught up with Slaty-bellied Tesia and Pygmy Cupwing on that second attempt. Inthanon NP is a big place, and there's a lot of forest to cover, but we did great in our time there.

Our final two mountain venues of the tour, Doi Angkhang and Doi Lang, were both fantastic! That first morning up on Doi Angkhang in the Royal Agricultural Project was really great, with birds like Crested Finchbill, Spot-winged Grosbeak, Black-breasted Thrush, Fire-capped Tit, White-tailed Robin, Rufous-bellied Niltava, and a few others, keeping us busy. And our two days on Doi Lang blew away my expectations. If all that we saw were Hume's Pheasant, Giant Nuthatch, Spot-billed Parrotbill, and Scarlet-faced Liocichla, I would have chalked it up as a huge success!

We finished up our tour way up north in the Golden Triangle region near the towns of Chiang Saen and Chiang Rai. A couple of the places that we visited were new to me, but we ended up doing really well. River Lapwing and Small Pratincole were nice to see along the Mekong River, and that harrier roost spectacle was really something! The Mae Fa Luang Arboretum was definitely worth a visit with lots of wintering thrushes there and a nesting Hodgson's Frogmouth to keep us busy! And, even though our rare ducks had flown the coop, I still liked our boat ride out onto Nong Luang lake, where we had super views of several Ferruginous Ducks, lots of Pheasant-tailed Jacanas, and a few other goodies.

Thanks to Wat and his crew, we all enjoyed an unequalled level of comfort and service on this tour, and we all should be eternally grateful to him, his family, and our drivers for doing such an incredible job of caring for us throughout the tour. And thanks to Denis, and all of you, for joining me on this great trip to one of the best birding countries in the world! I really had a blast with all of you and wish that we could do another tour together somewhere – which looks very unlikely given our current environment and my upcoming retirement (what a year to retire!). I wish you all good health and I hope to run into you in the field after we can start traveling again!


One of the following keys may be shown in brackets for individual species as appropriate: * = heard only, I = introduced, E = endemic, N = nesting, a = austral migrant, b = boreal migrant

Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)
LESSER WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna javanica) – The vast majority of these small whistling-ducks – and the best looks that we had on the tour – were on our boat trip on the final day near Chiang Rai.
RUDDY SHELDUCK (Tadorna ferruginea) – This pair of vagrant ducks had been hanging out along this stretch of the Mekong R. all winter.
COTTON PYGMY-GOOSE (Nettapus coromandelianus) – Good looks at this striking pygmy-goose south of Bangkok and up in Chiang Rai.
GARGANEY (Spatula querquedula) – We had a number of rather distant birds in the mangroves s. of Bangkok at the start of the tour, and finished with quite a few more in Chiang Rai on the last day.

Our driver, Jiang, led us right to the nest tree of this fabulous Wreathed Hornbill, the male of the pair seen here passing food to its mate inside at Khao Yai NP. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

NORTHERN SHOVELER (Spatula clypeata)
EURASIAN WIGEON (Mareca penelope) – Good numbers in the mangroves s. of Bangkok.
INDIAN SPOT-BILLED DUCK (Anas poecilorhyncha) – Quite a few at Chiang Saen Lake up in the Golden Triangle. The old Spot-billed Duck was fairly recently split into two species (Eastern Spot-billed Duck occurs farther north).
GREEN-WINGED TEAL (EURASIAN) (Anas crecca crecca) – Surprising numbers far to the south in the mangroves s. of Bangkok. Sometimes split from our Green-winged Teal in N. America (A. c. carolinensis) and called Common Teal.
FERRUGINOUS DUCK (Aythya nyroca) – A flock of fifteen of these on the final morning was all that remained of the diverse pochard flock (4 species!) reported here earlier. This was our 10th species of waterfowl on the tour, which I'm sure is a record for me in 20+ years of doing Thailand tours!
Phasianidae (Pheasants, Grouse, and Allies)
RUFOUS-THROATED PARTRIDGE (Arborophila rufogularis) – Everybody connected with this gorgeous partridge up on the Doi Inthanon summit.
SCALY-BREASTED PARTRIDGE (Arborophila chloropus) – Glimpsed by a couple of folks at Khao Yai NP.
GREEN PEAFOWL (Pavo muticus) – We had plenty of these at the Huai Hong Khrai forest reserve near Chiang Mai.
GRAY PEACOCK-PHEASANT (Polyplectron bicalcaratum) – Jiang tracked down one of these at Kaeng Krachan, and a few folks got a look before it faded back into the forest.
CHINESE FRANCOLIN (Francolinus pintadeanus) – Close, but no closer. [*]
MOUNTAIN BAMBOO-PARTRIDGE (Bambusicola fytchii) – Great views along the roadside on Doi Lang.
RED JUNGLEFOWL (Gallus gallus) – Excellent views of this one at both Kaeng Krachan and at Khao Yai NP.
HUME'S PHEASANT (Syrmaticus humiae) – I really wasn't holding my breath for this one, given Jay VanderGaast's report from the earlier trip but, sure enough, a male and two females showed up right where we were hoping to see them! Fantastic!
SILVER PHEASANT (Lophura nycthemera) – After a tantalizing encounter with a few of these well off the road in Khao Yai, we ended up finding another adult male along the boardwalk near the military camp. Woo Hoo!
KALIJ PHEASANT (Lophura leucomelanos hamiltonii) – Boon's sharp eyes got us this one at one of the watering holes at Kaeng Krachan late one afternoon.
SIAMESE FIREBACK (Lophura diardi) – It took a special excursion one afternoon to track this one down for the group. Thailand's national bird!
Podicipedidae (Grebes)
LITTLE GREBE (Tachybaptus ruficollis) – A close relative of our Least Grebe.
Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)
ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) [I]
SPECKLED WOOD-PIGEON (Columba hodgsonii) – These birds weren't in their 'traditional' tree on Doi Inthanon, but we soon found them a short distance away. I suspect that they moved in response to that Eastern Buzzard roaming the area.

Our consolation prize on the aborted boat trip at Laem Phak Bia was this fine adult Chinese Egret, one of the rarest of the herons in the world. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

ASHY WOOD-PIGEON (Columba pulchricollis) – A couple of quick flybys only near the Doi Inthanon summit.
ORIENTAL TURTLE-DOVE (Streptopelia orientalis) – Just a few of these at Mae Ping NP and up on Doi Lang.
RED COLLARED-DOVE (Streptopelia tranquebarica)
SPOTTED DOVE (Streptopelia chinensis)
BARRED CUCKOO-DOVE (Macropygia unchall) [*]
ASIAN EMERALD DOVE (Chalcophaps indica) – Now split from the birds in Australasia.
ZEBRA DOVE (Geopelia striata)
PINK-NECKED GREEN-PIGEON (Treron vernans) – A regular bird in small numbers in the parking lot of the Rama Gardens.
THICK-BILLED GREEN-PIGEON (Treron curvirostra) – Very distinctive with that big eye-ring and that stout bill.
YELLOW-FOOTED GREEN-PIGEON (Treron phoenicopterus) – These were a nice surprise in a fruiting tree on our morning visit to Mae Ping NP.

A very welcome surprise on our visit to the arboretum at Mae Fa Luang near Chiang Rai was this Hodgson's Frogmouth sitting on a nest a few feet from the boardwalk! (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

PIN-TAILED GREEN-PIGEON (Treron apicauda) – We found these back down at the base of the steps at the Buddhist temple south of Fang, after we had gone up to the top and back.
WEDGE-TAILED GREEN-PIGEON (Treron sphenurus) – A couple of perched birds were seen briefly by some along the roadside on our second day on Doi Lang.
MOUNTAIN IMPERIAL-PIGEON (Ducula badia) – A couple of nice looks at this huge pigeon, especially along the roadside at Khao Yai NP.
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)
CORAL-BILLED GROUND-CUCKOO (Carpococcyx renauldi) – Drat!!! We had it calling so close to us! [*]
GREATER COUCAL (Centropus sinensis) – Detected almost daily on this tour, as usual.
LESSER COUCAL (Centropus bengalensis) – A single bird flew in front of the lead van on the final morning of the tour near Chiang Rai, but it wouldn't come out of hiding after that.
RAFFLES'S MALKOHA (Rhinortha chlorophaea) – Super views at this small and distinctive malkoha above the campground at Kaeng Krachan NP.
GREEN-BILLED MALKOHA (Phaenicophaeus tristis) – Seen not infrequently on this tour, but most of our encounters were either distant or fleeting. The only species of malkoha in Thailand that occurs north of the base of the Peninsula (i.e. – away from Kaeng Krachan NP on this tour).
ASIAN KOEL (Eudynamys scolopaceus) – Recorded daily – at least by voice. A brood parasite that specializes on mynas and starlings.
BANDED BAY CUCKOO (Cacomantis sonneratii) – Frequently heard, we saw this one very well in the scopes at Kaeng Krachan NP.
PLAINTIVE CUCKOO (Cacomantis merulinus) – Common in the city and disturbed areas.
SQUARE-TAILED DRONGO-CUCKOO (Surniculus lugubris) [*]
LARGE HAWK-CUCKOO (Hierococcyx sparverioides) – We thought that this was going to be an Accipiter at the overlook at Khao Yai NP one morning, but it turned out to be this species.
Podargidae (Frogmouths)
HODGSON'S FROGMOUTH (Batrachostomus hodgsoni) – WOWWW!!! Easily overlooked, this active nest was discovered at the botanical garden sometime in early February (it was missed by the first tour). This bird used to enjoy near-mythical status, but it seems like we find it most years now. [N]
BLYTH'S FROGMOUTH (Batrachostomus affinis) [*]
Caprimulgidae (Nightjars and Allies)
GREAT EARED-NIGHTJAR (Lyncornis macrotis) – These huge nightjars came out shortly after the late afternoon bat show near Khao Yai NP.
LARGE-TAILED NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus macrurus) – We had some decent flyby looks one evening near our lodging at Kaeng Krachan.
INDIAN NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus asiaticus) – Ditto with these that same evening.
Apodidae (Swifts)
BROWN-BACKED NEEDLETAIL (Hirundapus giganteus) – Joe S. may have been the only one to lay eyes on this one at Khao Yai NP.
HIMALAYAN SWIFTLET (Aerodramus brevirostris) – Most, if not all, of the birds in the north appeared to be this species with a minimal amount of pale feathering on the rump.
GERMAIN'S SWIFTLET (Aerodramus germani) – All of our swiftlets in the coastal lowlands looked good for this one, showing a pale rump contrasting with a darker back and tail. Some that we saw in Kaeng Krachan NP I'm not so sure about.
COOK'S SWIFT (Apus cooki) – Doi Angkhang and Doi Lang were the best places to see this species which was recently split from the old 'Fork-tailed' Swift.
HOUSE SWIFT (Apus nipalensis) – Sometimes that white throat isn't very apparent – but the white rump always is.
ASIAN PALM-SWIFT (Cypsiurus balasiensis) – Our most common and widespread swift on the tour.
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
EURASIAN MOORHEN (Gallinula chloropus) – Now split from our Common Gallinule in the New World.
EURASIAN COOT (Fulica atra)
GRAY-HEADED SWAMPHEN (Porphyrio poliocephalus viridis) – Purple Swamphen was recently split up into six species, with this one being found throughout most of mainland s. Asia.
WHITE-BREASTED WATERHEN (Amaurornis phoenicurus) – There's nothing else quite like this one!
WHITE-BROWED CRAKE (Amaurornis cinerea) – Nice views of this one in the marshes s. of Bangkok.
RUDDY-BREASTED CRAKE (Zapornia fusca) [*]

We took to the water in search of rare ducks on our final morning of the tour at Nong Luang. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

BAILLON'S CRAKE (Zapornia pusilla) – Several folks got a glimpse of this one in the cattails where we saw our Manchurian Reed Warbler.
Burhinidae (Thick-knees)
INDIAN THICK-KNEE (Burhinus indicus)
Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)
BLACK-WINGED STILT (Himantopus himantopus)
PIED AVOCET (Recurvirostra avosetta) – This one was a real rarity in Thailand when I started guiding this tour in the '90's, but it's quite regular now, often showing up in big flocks.
Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER (Pluvialis squatarola)
PACIFIC GOLDEN-PLOVER (Pluvialis fulva) – The only species of golden-plover that winters here.
RIVER LAPWING (Vanellus duvaucelii) – We found one hanging with a large flock of Black-winged Stilts in the Mekong R. at the end of the tour. Numbers of this one have plummeted throughout s.e. Asia due to human disturbance.
GRAY-HEADED LAPWING (Vanellus cinereus) – We had a few close encounters with this wintering species, especially in the north.
RED-WATTLED LAPWING (Vanellus indicus atronuchalis) – The common species of lapwing throughout Thailand. There's been some talk about splitting this form from the form found in India, so watch for a potential split down the road.
LESSER SAND-PLOVER (Charadrius mongolus) – This one seems to greatly outnumber the next species during the winter in Thailand. Although it's nearly impossible to separate during the winter, the specimen record indicates that the vast majority of birds that winter here originate on the Tibetan Plateau (the 'atrifrons' group of subspecies), and not in n.e. Asia.

We really couldn't have asked for better looks at this bold Spot-breasted Parrotbill on Doi Lang. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

GREATER SAND-PLOVER (Charadrius leschenaultii) – Longer and stouter-billed than the above species, this one also has longer legs than the Lesser.
KENTISH PLOVER (KENTISH) (Charadrius alexandrinus alexandrinus) – Now split from the Snowy Plover in the New World.
LITTLE RINGED PLOVER (Charadrius dubius) – Much more likely to be found away from the coast during the winter months in Thailand.
Jacanidae (Jacanas)
PHEASANT-TAILED JACANA (Hydrophasianus chirurgus) – All of our birds were still in basic plumage, so they all lacked that long, fancy tail.
BRONZE-WINGED JACANA (Metopidius indicus) – Decent looks at this one at the harrier roosting spot.
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
WHIMBREL (SIBERIAN) (Numenius phaeopus variegatus)
EURASIAN CURLEW (Numenius arquata) – The big flock that normally winters in the Pak Thale area wasn't there this year, but we did find a small flock there on our return through the area from Kaeng Krachan NP.
BLACK-TAILED GODWIT (MELANUROIDES) (Limosa limosa melanuroides) – Good numbers of this one along the coast, but we couldn't find any Asian Dowitchers hanging out with them this year.
GREAT KNOT (Calidris tenuirostris) – Numbers of this one seemed to be way down in the Laem Phak Bia area this winter.
RED KNOT (Calidris canutus)
BROAD-BILLED SANDPIPER (Calidris falcinellus) – These were around in very good numbers this year.
CURLEW SANDPIPER (Calidris ferruginea)
TEMMINCK'S STINT (Calidris temminckii) – A couple of birds only, including one wintering on the banks of the Mekong R. at the end of the tour.
LONG-TOED STINT (Calidris subminuta) – Very similar to our familiar Least Sandpiper in N. America.
SPOON-BILLED SANDPIPER (Calidris pygmaea) – YESSSS!!!!! Mr. T knew where to find this one near the coastal town of Kho Kham, and it didn't take long before we were all getting our lifer looks at this exceedingly rare shorebird in the scope. Numbers of this one have dropped 90%+ in the past few decades.
RED-NECKED STINT (Calidris ruficollis) – One of the most common small shorebirds along the coast at this season.
SANDERLING (Calidris alba)
COMMON SNIPE (Gallinago gallinago)
PIN-TAILED SNIPE (Gallinago stenura) – We had a nice study of one in a rice paddy next to the road as we headed to Inthanon NP from Mae Ping NP. Shorter-tailed when perched compared to the above Common Snipe, and darker on the upper- and underwing in flight.
TEREK SANDPIPER (Xenus cinereus) – We found a few of these unique shorebirds along the coast at the start of the tour.
RED-NECKED PHALAROPE (Phalaropus lobatus) – At least 13 of these near Laem Phak Bia was a good count for coastal Thailand.
COMMON SANDPIPER (Actitis hypoleucos) – Very much like our Spotted Sandpiper.
SPOTTED REDSHANK (Tringa erythropus) – This one can be tricky to i.d. when it's foraging, but this and the Common Redshank are easily separated in flight.
COMMON GREENSHANK (Tringa nebularia)
NORDMANN'S GREENSHANK (Tringa guttifer) – It took some searching at Laem Phak Bia, but we finally found a couple of these rare shorebirds roosting with other shorebirds there. Much paler and shorter-legged than the similar Common Greenshank.
MARSH SANDPIPER (Tringa stagnatilis) – The most common Tringa wintering along the coast here most years.
WOOD SANDPIPER (Tringa glareola) – Like a cross between a Green Sandpiper and Lesser Yellowlegs.
COMMON REDSHANK (Tringa totanus) – This one has a shorter bill than the similar Spotted Redshank, and the bases of both the upper and lower mandibles are red (just the lower mandible in Spotted).
Glareolidae (Pratincoles and Coursers)
ORIENTAL PRATINCOLE (Glareola maldivarum) – Great looks up in the dry fields in the north where we found our Sykes's Short-toed Larks.
SMALL PRATINCOLE (Glareola lactea) – This was the last of our nearly 40 species of shorebirds on this tour.

We patiently waited in the vans at the appointed time and at the correct spot and were rewarded with this fabulous bird – Hume's Pheasant! (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
BROWN-HEADED GULL (Chroicocephalus brunnicephalus) – Always the most common species of gull wintering along the coast.
LITTLE TERN (Sternula albifrons) – The Old World equivalent of our Least Tern.
GULL-BILLED TERN (Gelochelidon nilotica)
CASPIAN TERN (Hydroprogne caspia)
WHISKERED TERN (Chlidonias hybrida) – Usually the most common species of wintering tern along the coast in Thailand.
COMMON TERN (Sterna hirundo)
Ciconiidae (Storks)
ASIAN OPENBILL (Anastomus oscitans) – This distinctive stork is much more widespread now in Thailand than when I first started guiding here in the 90's.
PAINTED STORK (Mycteria leucocephala) – The same is true with this beautiful stork.
Anhingidae (Anhingas)
ORIENTAL DARTER (Anhinga melanogaster) – Increasing here in recent years.
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)
LITTLE CORMORANT (Microcarbo niger) – Easily the most common cormorant in the country.
GREAT CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax carbo) – A single bird on the final day near Chiang Rai.
INDIAN CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax fuscicollis) – Pretty easily separated in flight from the smaller Little Cormorant.

Guide Dave Stejskal scans for shorebirds along the coast south of Bangkok. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

Pelecanidae (Pelicans)
SPOT-BILLED PELICAN (Pelecanus philippensis) – This species no longer breeds in Thailand. The two birds that we saw s. of Bangkok likely wandered here from nearby Cambodia, where they do breed.
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
YELLOW BITTERN (Ixobrychus sinensis) – Most of our looks were of birds in flight, but some saw it perched in the lakeside vegetation at Chiang Saen.
CINNAMON BITTERN (Ixobrychus cinnamomeus) – Denis and maybe a few others saw this one flush from a marsh s. of Bangkok on our return from Kaeng Krachan.
GRAY HERON (Ardea cinerea)
PURPLE HERON (Ardea purpurea)
GREAT EGRET (AUSTRALASIAN) (Ardea alba modesta)
INTERMEDIATE EGRET (Ardea intermedia)
CHINESE EGRET (Egretta eulophotes) – A single adult in breeding plumage was a nice find in the mangroves on our aborted boat trip at Laem Phak Bia.
LITTLE EGRET (Egretta garzetta)
CATTLE EGRET (EASTERN) (Bubulcus ibis coromandus)
CHINESE POND-HERON (Ardeola bacchus) – All of the birds north of Bangkok should have been this widespread wintering species.
JAVAN POND-HERON (Ardeola speciosa) – A few birds s. of Bangkok were acquiring some breeding-plumage feathers, making i.d. possible for us.
STRIATED HERON (OLD WORLD) (Butorides striata javanica)
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax)
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)
BLACK-HEADED IBIS (Threskiornis melanocephalus) – Several birds feeding in the mud in the mangroves s. of Bangkok on our first full day.
Pandionidae (Osprey)
OSPREY (Pandion haliaetus)
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
BLACK-WINGED KITE (Elanus caeruleus) – These Old World birds with short tails are now split from the birds of the New World.
ORIENTAL HONEY-BUZZARD (Pernis ptilorhynchus) – This one often fools you into thinking that you've got something better than a honey-buzzard.
BLACK BAZA (Aviceda leuphotes) – Very brief views for a few folks of a bird along the roadside near the entrance of Mae Ping NP.
CRESTED SERPENT-EAGLE (Spilornis cheela) – The most frequently-seen large raptor on this tour.
BLACK EAGLE (Ictinaetus malaiensis) – We had one high-flying bird at Kaeng Krachan NP, but the bird right overhead at Khao Yai NP a few days later was really memorable! I don't see this one in Thailand much any more.
GREATER SPOTTED EAGLE (Clanga clanga) – After looking at all of those photos I took of those eagles that we saw south of Chiang Mai, it was pretty obvious that we had at least one adult Greater Spotted, with pale inner primaries, short tail, and no pale border to the underwing coverts.
STEPPE EAGLE (Aquila nipalensis) – We probably had a couple of these at the eagle spot s. of Chiang Mai, with one bird (a juv. bird) being much paler and more strongly marked than the one that I photographed later.
IMPERIAL EAGLE (Aquila heliaca) – The last eagle that I photographed at our eagle spot turned out to be this one after I was able to look at my photos on my computer. The heavy streaking on the underparts of this one really gave it away.
RUFOUS-WINGED BUZZARD (Butastur liventer) – Decent views of this one in the dry forest on the lower slopes of Doi Inthanon.

After hearing many of these in the mountain forests of Doi Inthanon NP and elsewhere, we finally got our fill of the Large Niltava (a female here) on Doi Lang. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

GRAY-FACED BUZZARD (Butastur indicus) – We found this long-winged raptor a couple of times, with our best look probably on our ascent of Doi Lang on our second day there.
EASTERN MARSH-HARRIER (Circus spilonotus) – Excellent views of quite a few birds coming in to roost near Chiang Saen at the end of the tour.
PIED HARRIER (Circus melanoleucos) – We had several fine adult males in dapper black-and-white adult plumage near Chiang Saen.
CRESTED GOSHAWK (Accipiter trivirgatus) – Usually the most common Accipiter on this tour.
SHIKRA (Accipiter badius) – I think that we actually recorded this one more frequently on this tour than the above Crested Goshawk, which is unusual.
BESRA (Accipiter virgatus) – After careful consideration afterward, I think that that the two Accipiters that we had overhead in the cow pasture as we ascended Doi Lang on our second day there were this species, and not Crested Goshawk. Tail shape and overall build just seemed much better for Besra.
BLACK KITE (Milvus migrans) – Lots of these at the eagle spot s. of Chiang Mai.
BRAHMINY KITE (Haliastur indus) – A regular sight along the coast south of Bangkok.
EASTERN BUZZARD (Buteo japonicus japonicus) – Now split from the Common Buzzard to the west.
Strigidae (Owls)
COLLARED SCOPS-OWL (Otus lettia) [*]
ORIENTAL SCOPS-OWL (WALDEN'S) (Otus sunia modestus) – Walking through all of those dry leaves wasn't what I'd call a stealthy approach, but our singing bird stuck to its perch for all to see at Mae Ping NP.
COLLARED OWLET (COLLARED) (Glaucidium brodiei brodiei) [*]
ASIAN BARRED OWLET (Glaucidium cuculoides) – Heard far more often than it was seen.
SPOTTED OWLET (Athene brama) – One of the first birds that we saw on our first afternoon outing on the tour. The pair here (or their progeny) has occupied that hole in the temple roof for at least a couple of decades.
BROWN BOOBOOK (Ninox scutulata) – That pair at our hotel near Khao Yai NP sure was responsive!
Trogonidae (Trogons)
RED-HEADED TROGON (Harpactes erythrocephalus) – Khao Yai was the place for this gorgeous trogon species.
ORANGE-BREASTED TROGON (Harpactes oreskios) – Jiang worked hard at Kaeng Krachan to get us all our first looks at this one. All of the other trogons in the field guide occur farther south on the Thai-Malay Peninsula.
Upupidae (Hoopoes)
EURASIAN HOOPOE (Upupa epops) – A few on the lawns of our Kaeng Krachan accommodations.
Bucerotidae (Hornbills)
GREAT HORNBILL (Buceros bicornis) – One of the most exciting discoveries on our first morning of roadside birding at Kaeng Krachan NP was seeing this impressive beast high in a tree above the main park road. One of the most characteristic and charismatic of all SE Asian species!
BROWN HORNBILL (Anorrhinus austeni) – Jiang and Wat found out where this scarce species was actively nesting in Khao Yai NP, allowing for some great looks as a few came in to feed the occupants in the cavity! [N]

We had to drive a couple of hours to get to a reliable spot to see this gorgeous male Siamese Fireback, but it was worth it! (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

ORIENTAL PIED-HORNBILL (Anthracoceros albirostris) – Our most frequently-encountered hornbill species on this tour (as usual), including a single bird s. of Fang at Wat Phra Phuttabat Noi.
WREATHED HORNBILL (Rhyticeros undulatus) – A large section of forest was cordoned off to give the nesting pair at Khao Yai a little privacy. Great looks of the male feeding the female trapped in the nesting cavity! [N]
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
COMMON KINGFISHER (Alcedo atthis) – Delightfully ornate for a bird called 'Common'!
BANDED KINGFISHER (Lacedo pulchella) – After a lot of whistling in appropriate habitat, we finally tracked this one down in Khao Yai for some great views! One of my favorite Thai birds.
STORK-BILLED KINGFISHER (Pelargopsis capensis) [*]
WHITE-THROATED KINGFISHER (Halcyon smyrnensis) – One of the most widespread of all Old World kingfishers.
BLACK-CAPPED KINGFISHER (Halcyon pileata) – We saw more of these migrants from China than I typically see on this tour.
COLLARED KINGFISHER (Todiramphus chloris) – A common species that favors mangrove habitat along the coast.
Meropidae (Bee-eaters)
BLUE-BEARDED BEE-EATER (Nyctyornis athertoni) – This forest species is quite unlike the Merops bee-eaters found in more open country. Good looks at Kaeng Krachan NP this year.
GREEN BEE-EATER (Merops orientalis) – One big roost that we found near our accommodations at Kaeng Krachan had a nice mix of this one and the rather similar Chestnut-headed Bee-eater.
BLUE-TAILED BEE-EATER (Merops philippinus) – This is typically the species that you find around the greater Bangkok area at this season.
CHESTNUT-HEADED BEE-EATER (Merops leschenaulti) – Unlike the two species above, this one lacks the long tail streamers that those two species possess.
Coraciidae (Rollers)
INDOCHINESE ROLLER (Coracias affinis) – Now split from the similar Indian Roller to the west. A rather ordinary bird until it takes flight.
DOLLARBIRD (Eurystomus orientalis) – Those circular white patches in the primaries in flight are the 'dollars'.
Megalaimidae (Asian Barbets)
COPPERSMITH BARBET (Psilopogon haemacephalus) – The barbet of the cities and towns and most open habitats.
BLUE-EARED BARBET (Psilopogon duvaucelii) – Great views of this small barbet visiting a nest hole along the roadside in Kaeng Krachan NP. [N]
GREAT BARBET (Psilopogon virens) – Drat! [*]
GREEN-EARED BARBET (Psilopogon faiostrictus) – A common barbet voice in Kaeng Krachan NP.
LINEATED BARBET (Psilopogon lineatus) – It took us until Mae Ping NP to get a look at this one with the group!
GOLDEN-THROATED BARBET (Psilopogon franklinii) – The bird down low on the huge trunk at our Eyebrowed Wren-Babbler spot at Inthanon NP was really memorable.

A great one to catch up with after missing it in the summit bog was this confiding Dark-sided Thrush lower down on the mountain at Inthanon NP. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

MOUSTACHED BARBET (Psilopogon incognitus) – This seems to be the most common barbet at Khao Yai NP.
BLUE-THROATED BARBET (Psilopogon asiaticus) – The middle elevations of the mountains in the north was where we found this one in abundance.
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
SPECKLED PICULET (Picumnus innominatus) – A couple of brief encounters with this one in the north. This piculet looks much more like the piculets in the New World than the next species does!
WHITE-BROWED PICULET (Sasia ochracea) – I think most folks got some sort of look at this one along the roadside at Kaeng Krachan NP one morning. This species really favors nice stands of bamboo.
HEART-SPOTTED WOODPECKER (Hemicircus canente) – We found a couple of pairs of these along the lower road at Kaeng Krachan NP. Certainly one of the most peculiar woodpecker shapes around!
GRAY-CAPPED WOODPECKER (Yungipicus canicapillus) – This tiny woodpecker – not much bigger than a White-breasted Nuthatch – is fond of the dry dipterocarp forests.
STRIPE-BREASTED WOODPECKER (Dendrocopos atratus) – Similar to the above species, but larger and with a bright red undertail.
CRIMSON-BREASTED WOODPECKER (Dryobates cathpharius) – We got the best looks that I've ever had of this one along the road on our second day on Doi Lang. Very local in Thailand.
BAY WOODPECKER (Blythipicus pyrrhotis) [*]
GREATER FLAMEBACK (Chrysocolaptes guttacristatus) – A pretty common voice, but not always easy to see – like many SE Asian woodpeckers!
COMMON FLAMEBACK (Dinopium javanense) – Very similar to the above species, but with a different voice and some subtle plumage differences.
LESSER YELLOWNAPE (Picus chlorolophus) – The bird at Kaeng Krachan NP was particularly low in elevation (but I've seen it lower in Vietnam).

This pair of Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters posed nicely for participant Joe Suchecki. It's a species we saw in both the north and the south on this tour.

STREAK-BREASTED WOODPECKER (Picus viridanus) – A shy pair of these along the main paved road in Kaeng Krachan NP on our first morning there got away from us before any of us got a satisfying look.
LACED WOODPECKER (Picus vittatus) – We were searching for a Bamboo Woodpecker when this one popped into view at Khao Yai NP.
GRAY-HEADED WOODPECKER (BLACK-NAPED) (Picus canus hessei) – One of the first woodpeckers of the trip along the lower road at Kaeng Krachan NP on our first morning there.
BLACK-HEADED WOODPECKER (Picus erythropygius) – Mae Ping NP turned out to be a terrific place for this distinctive woodpecker. Another species tied to that dry dipterocarp woodland.
GREATER YELLOWNAPE (Chrysophlegma flavinucha) – Carol spotted this one at a nest hole at Mae Ping NP.
GREAT SLATY WOODPECKER (Mulleripicus pulverulentus) – We often miss this huge woodpecker on this tour, but we got lucky with a pair of them at Kaeng Krachan NP on our second morning there. I'd heard early on while guiding in Thailand that this species doesn't drum at all like other woodpeckers do, but I watched one of these softly drum while it was in the scope that morning.
WHITE-BELLIED WOODPECKER (Dryocopus javensis) – We had to satisfy ourselves with mostly flyby views of this close relative of the Pileated Woodpecker.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
WHITE-RUMPED FALCON (Polihierax insignis) – We had no trouble in tracking down this special falcon in the dry forest at Mae Ping NP. This seems to be the place to look for it in Thailand!
COLLARED FALCONET (Microhierax caerulescens) – I was pretty disappointed with our lack of luck in finding this little falcon, but we did see it pretty well in flight at Inthanon NP.
BLACK-THIGHED FALCONET (Microhierax fringillarius) – The pair at that spot along the Kaeng Krachan road has been like money for the past several years.
Psittaculidae (Old World Parrots)
GRAY-HEADED PARAKEET (Psittacula finschii) – Quite common at Mae Ping NP. This is another species that we used to see regularly at Inthanon NP.
BLOSSOM-HEADED PARAKEET (Psittacula roseata) – Mr. T's place near our Inthanon accommodations produced a number of these in the leafless trees behind his house – as usual!
RED-BREASTED PARAKEET (Psittacula alexandri) – My 'go to' spot near Khao Yai NP didn't disappoint.
VERNAL HANGING-PARROT (Loriculus vernalis) – The numbers that we saw in the blooming trees near that first viewpoint at Khao Yai NP were unprecedented in my 20+ years of experience in Thailand.
Eurylaimidae (Asian and Grauer's Broadbills)
BLACK-AND-RED BROADBILL (Cymbirhynchus macrorhynchos) [*]
LONG-TAILED BROADBILL (Psarisomus dalhousiae) – I'm not sure how you could possibly get a better look than what we had at Khao Yai! Ridiculous!
SILVER-BREASTED BROADBILL (Serilophus lunatus) – This was not a species that I was expecting at all in the dry forests of Mae Ping NP.
BANDED BROADBILL (Eurylaimus javanicus) [*]
BLACK-AND-YELLOW BROADBILL (Eurylaimus ochromalus) – We found this gorgeous little broadbill right off the bat on our first morning at Kaeng Krachan NP.
Pittidae (Pittas)
BLUE PITTA (Hydrornis cyaneus) – I had heard that this bird was no longer coming in – but don't tell that to the pitta! Great views!
Acanthizidae (Thornbills and Allies)
GOLDEN-BELLIED GERYGONE (Gerygone sulphurea) – Only found in the mangroves on this itinerary. This is the northernmost representative of a big, largely Australasian family and the only one found on mainland SE Asia..

This migratory black-billed race of the Blue Whistling-Thrush was a common roadside sight in the mountains of the north. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

Campephagidae (Cuckooshrikes)
SMALL MINIVET (Pericrocotus cinnamomeus) – Only seen on the first day of the tour – both in the morning and the afternoon.
SHORT-BILLED MINIVET (Pericrocotus brevirostris) – Separated from the next species by voice and habitat. This one is restricted to the upper elevation broadleaf forests.
LONG-TAILED MINIVET (Pericrocotus ethologus) – Primarily a pine forest specialist, we did see a migrant flock of these along the banks of the Mekong R. at the end of the tour. [N]
SCARLET MINIVET (Pericrocotus speciosus) – These birds, normally conspicuous at both Kaeng Krachan and Khao Yai, seemed to be absent from those parks during our visit.
BROWN-RUMPED MINIVET (Pericrocotus cantonensis) – A very dull minivet species, wintering here from China.
ROSY MINIVET (Pericrocotus roseus) – A couple of really striking adult males were seen during the first half of the tour. Another wintering species here.
LARGE CUCKOOSHRIKE (Coracina macei) – A few in the dry forest at Mae Ping NP.
BLACK-WINGED CUCKOOSHRIKE (Lalage melaschistos) – It was never common anywhere, but we seemed to run into it on a regular basis in mixed species flocks.
Vireonidae (Vireos, Shrike-Babblers, and Erpornis)
BLYTH'S SHRIKE-BABBLER (Pteruthius aeralatus) – A common voice in the highland forests. This one is the result of a four-way split of the old White-browed Shrike-Babbler.
BLACK-EARED SHRIKE-BABBLER (Pteruthius melanotis) – We got this one in the scope for a good look on the slopes of Doi Lang. The scarcest of our three species of Pteruthius on this tour.
CLICKING SHRIKE-BABBLER (Pteruthius intermedius) – We had a couple of really fine looks at this fancy shrike-babbler. Do you guys buy the idea that these shrike-babblers are really vireos?
WHITE-BELLIED ERPORNIS (Erpornis zantholeuca) – This one used to be called the White-bellied Yuhina, but it's clear that it isn't related to the other yuhinas at all.

Our driver, Jiang, knew where this Brown Hornbill was nesting at Khao Yai this year, and he led us right to the nest tree! (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

Pachycephalidae (Whistlers and Allies)
MANGROVE WHISTLER (Pachycephala cinerea) – This one was a bit of a surprise and I hope that it stays right in that patch of mangroves for future Thailand tours.
Oriolidae (Old World Orioles)
BLACK-NAPED ORIOLE (Oriolus chinensis) – Lifer #1000 for Lesa!
SLENDER-BILLED ORIOLE (Oriolus tenuirostris) – Great views in the flowering Erythrina on Doi Lang. More of a pine specialist than the similar Black-naped Oriole.
BLACK-HOODED ORIOLE (Oriolus xanthornus) – This one favors dry forest in Thailand – at least along our route.
MAROON ORIOLE (Oriolus traillii) – Most of the birds that we actually saw were female-plumaged birds, but that red tail is shared between males and females, making the i.d. easy.
Artamidae (Woodswallows, Bellmagpies, and Allies)
ASHY WOODSWALLOW (Artamus fuscus) – A common roadside sight.
Vangidae (Vangas, Helmetshrikes, and Allies)
LARGE WOODSHRIKE (Tephrodornis virgatus) – Seen only at Kaeng Krachan NP on this tour.
COMMON WOODSHRIKE (Tephrodornis pondicerianus) – A single bird came in for a look along the road at Mae Ping NP. It's been a long time since I've seen this one in Thailand!
BAR-WINGED FLYCATCHER-SHRIKE (Hemipus picatus) – Surprisingly scarce on the tour this year.
Aegithinidae (Ioras)
COMMON IORA (Aegithina tiphia) – Common in the more disturbed habitats.
GREAT IORA (Aegithina lafresnayei) – A widespread forest bird in Thailand, but we only saw it a few times in Kaeng Krachan NP.
Rhipiduridae (Fantails)
MALAYSIAN PIED-FANTAIL (Rhipidura javanica) – Common in the coastal lowlands around Bangkok, including our Bangkok hotel.
WHITE-THROATED FANTAIL (Rhipidura albicollis) [*]
Dicruridae (Drongos)
BLACK DRONGO (Dicrurus macrocercus) – A common open country species, wintering here in large numbers.
ASHY DRONGO (BLACKISH) (Dicrurus leucophaeus hopwoodi) – A few of these dark birds in the forest at Kaeng Krachan NP. I suspect that our birds were resident D.l. nigrescens, and not migratory hopwoodi.
ASHY DRONGO (SOOTY) (Dicrurus leucophaeus bondi) – These paler birds were probably represented by a couple of races.
ASHY DRONGO (CHINESE WHITE-FACED) (Dicrurus leucophaeus leucogenis) – A striking and handsome subspecies wintering here from China.
BRONZED DRONGO (Dicrurus aeneus) – A small, forest-based species found throughout the country.
LESSER RACKET-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus remifer) – It's often very difficult to get a good look at this one, but we made out pretty well with species this year.
HAIR-CRESTED DRONGO (Dicrurus hottentottus) – The drongo with the longest bill, by far, on this tour. This one goes bonkers for nectar-producing flowers like the ones we saw in Khao Yai at the viewpoint with all of the hanging-parrots.
GREATER RACKET-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus paradiseus) – This spectacular species occurs at lower elevations than the Lesser.

This Black-backed Sibia seemed to always be singing in the background whenever we birded the mountains of the northwest. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

Monarchidae (Monarch Flycatchers)
BLACK-NAPED MONARCH (Hypothymis azurea) – Heard far more often than it was seen.
BLYTH'S PARADISE-FLYCATCHER (Terpsiphone affinis) – We found a nice pair along the steps at the temple south of Fang. The old Asian Paradise-Flycatcher was split into three species recently, and this is the resident bird throughout Thailand.
Laniidae (Shrikes)
BROWN SHRIKE (Lanius cristatus) – Our most frequently-encountered shrike on the tour.
BURMESE SHRIKE (Lanius collurioides) – This handsome SE Asian specialty was seen well a couple of different times, and it seemed to be more common than usual up on Doi Lang this year.
LONG-TAILED SHRIKE (Lanius schach) – This one is usually much more common up in the north, but we saw very few this year.
GRAY-BACKED SHRIKE (Lanius tephronotus) – The entirely gray crown and back separate this migrant species from the other similar shrikes here.
Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)
EURASIAN JAY (WHITE-FACED) (Garrulus glandarius leucotis) – Unless you've birded in Europe or Japan, this was probably a lifer for you. Even if you had seen it in Europe or Japan, they sure didn't look like this distinctive black-capped, white-faced race.
RED-BILLED BLUE-MAGPIE (Urocissa erythroryncha) – They were very obliging at the clearing at the end of the road in Mae Ping NP.
COMMON GREEN-MAGPIE (Cissa chinensis) – Good looks in flight of this one at Kaeng Krachan NP one morning, then most of us saw a bird up close at the military checkpoint in Khao Yai NP a few days later. These Asian magpies aren't nearly as confiding as our magpie in N. America!
RUFOUS TREEPIE (Dendrocitta vagabunda) – A widespread Indian bird that reaches the dry forest of SE Asia.
GRAY TREEPIE (Dendrocitta formosae) – Excellent studies in the flowering Erythrinas on Doi Lang.
RACKET-TAILED TREEPIE (Crypsirina temia) – This was actually one of the first birds that we saw in Kaeng Krachan NP, but we never really nailed it there. Our better looks came at Mr. T's place near Inthanon NP. I love the blue eyes on this one!
LARGE-BILLED CROW (Corvus macrorhynchos) – Someday, someone is going to split up the Large-billed Crows into several species. We probably had a couple of races on this tour – C.m. macrorhynchos and C. m. levaillantii.
Stenostiridae (Fairy Flycatchers)
YELLOW-BELLIED FAIRY-FANTAIL (Chelidorhynx hypoxanthus) – Certainly one of the cutest birds in Thailand!
GRAY-HEADED CANARY-FLYCATCHER (Culicicapa ceylonensis) – We heard this one far more than we saw it, but we had a few good looks at this widespread south Asian species.
Paridae (Tits, Chickadees, and Titmice)
FIRE-CAPPED TIT (Cephalopyrus flammiceps) – One of the more unexpected finds on this trip was the discovery of a flock of about a dozen of these tiny birds on Doi Angkhang. That was only my third sighting of this one in Thailand in 20+ years!
YELLOW-BROWED TIT (Sylviparus modestus) – We saw a very confiding individual along the boardwalk through the bog atop Doi Inthanon. It's hard to turn this one into a tit, let alone see that yellow brow!
SULTAN TIT (Melanochlora sultanea) – We had a few good looks at this stunner at Kaeng Krachan NP. There's a form of this one in c. Vietnam that has a black, not yellow, crest. That one may prove to be a separate species.
JAPANESE TIT (JAPANESE) (Parus minor nubicolus) – Great Tit was split up into three species a while back, and this is the widespread form in e. Asia.
YELLOW-CHEEKED TIT (Machlolophus spilonotus) – This beauty was only seen in the mountain habitats of the north on this tour.

Two very serious birders (Denis and Peter) trying to add one more lifer on our final morning of the tour... (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

Alaudidae (Larks)
INDOCHINESE BUSHLARK (Mirafra erythrocephala) – Nicely in the scope at Kaeng Krachan Country Club one morning.
SYKES'S SHORT-TOED LARK (Calandrella dukhunensis) – Another big surprise on this trip was seeing this vagrant lark near the town of Tha Ton up in the n.w. corner of the country late one afternoon. This one is a fairly recent split from the Greater Short-toed Lark to the west.
ORIENTAL SKYLARK (Alauda gulgula) – The only one that we had was singing and displaying above the dry paddies where we saw the above Sykes's Short-toed Larks.
Cisticolidae (Cisticolas and Allies)
COMMON TAILORBIRD (Orthotomus sutorius) – Nicely on the grounds of our Bangkok hotel that first morning of the trip.
DARK-NECKED TAILORBIRD (Orthotomus atrogularis) – More of a forest species than the similar Common Tailorbird.
HILL PRINIA (Prinia superciliaris) – This one apparently likes mealworms, too!
RUFESCENT PRINIA (Prinia rufescens) – This one likes that grassy/weedy understory of dry forest and pine woodland.
GRAY-BREASTED PRINIA (Prinia hodgsonii) – A few folks got on this prinia on the grounds of our hotel at Kaeng Krachan on that last morning there.
YELLOW-BELLIED PRINIA (Prinia flaviventris) – We had a very close individual in the scope on that first afternoon of the tour for a real 'up close and personal' look!
PLAIN PRINIA (Prinia inornata) – The most widespread of the prinias on this trip.
ZITTING CISTICOLA (Cisticola juncidis) – Just a couple of birds along the coast s. of Bangkok.
Acrocephalidae (Reed Warblers and Allies)
THICK-BILLED WARBLER (Arundinax aedon) – Very quick looks for some on that final morning in the north before we drove to the Chiang Rai airport.
BLACK-BROWED REED WARBLER (Acrocephalus bistrigiceps) – Fleeting looks at this wintering species in a marsh en route to Khao Yai from Kaeng Krachan.
MANCHURIAN REED WARBLER (Acrocephalus tangorum) – Very similar to the above species, we got decent views of a calling bird in the marsh south of Bangkok on our drive northward to Khao Yai. A fairly recent split from Paddyfield Warbler and a very poorly known winterer in Thailand.
ORIENTAL REED WARBLER (Acrocephalus orientalis) – A quick look in flight for a few folks. Quite big for a reed warbler.
Locustellidae (Grassbirds and Allies)
STRIATED GRASSBIRD (Megalurus palustris) – Good views in the scope of a singing bird at the harrier roost in the far north.
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER-WARBLER (Locustella certhiola) – It was tough to find these in this abnormally dry year, but a few folks got on a bird at a marsh en route to Khao Yai.
LANCEOLATED WARBLER (Locustella lanceolata) – We had surprisingly good views of a fairly responsive bird at the dry Rang Sit marsh.
BAIKAL BUSH WARBLER (Locustella davidi) – Pretty much the last lifer of the tour! A relatively recent split from the Spotted Bush Warbler.
Pnoepygidae (Cupwings)
PYGMY CUPWING (Pnoepyga pusilla) – It took us a couple of tries up in the summit bog on Doi Inthanon, but we all eventually scored a look of this tiny charismatic species!

Our driver Boon spotted this Kalij Pheasant as we were leaving Kaeng Krachan NP late one afternoon. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

Hirundinidae (Swallows)
BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica)
WIRE-TAILED SWALLOW (Hirundo smithii) – A couple of birds only at the Mae Taeng irrigation project – where I normally see a dozen or more.
RED-RUMPED SWALLOW (Cecropis daurica) – Normally outnumbers the next species on this tour.
STRIATED SWALLOW (Cecropis striolata) – The only birds that I was sure were this species were up on Doi Angkhang at the army outpost.
ASIAN HOUSE-MARTIN (Delichon dasypus) – I normally see this one in the mountains of the north on the second half of this tour, so I was a little surprised that we only saw it far to the south at Kaeng Krachan NP.
Pycnonotidae (Bulbuls)
BLACK-HEADED BULBUL (Brachypodius atriceps) – We actually had to work to get a look at this one this year – we usually see them without any effort at all!
BLACK-CRESTED BULBUL (Rubigula flaviventris) – We recorded this distinctive bulbul on more tour days than any other bulbul, which is the norm.
CRESTED FINCHBILL (Spizixos canifrons) – This bulbul has a very restricted range in Thailand, and we got some great looks on both Doi Angkhang and on Doi Lang.
STRIATED BULBUL (Pycnonotus striatus) – Strictly a highland species and quite handsome if seen well.
RED-WHISKERED BULBUL (Pycnonotus jocosus) – This species has effectively been extirpated in southern Thailand due to the cage bird trade.
BROWN-BREASTED BULBUL (Pycnonotus xanthorrhous) – Another very local species in Thailand. We had our best looks at this one on Doi Angkhang, which is typically where we get our best looks.
SOOTY-HEADED BULBUL (Pycnonotus aurigaster) – All of our birds were the red-vented northern race.
STRIPE-THROATED BULBUL (Pycnonotus finlaysoni) – All of ours were in the south.
FLAVESCENT BULBUL (Pycnonotus flavescens) – A common roadside bird in the mountains of the northwest.
YELLOW-VENTED BULBUL (Pycnonotus goiavier) – Very distinctive with that bold black-and-white face pattern.
STREAK-EARED BULBUL (Pycnonotus conradi) – Common in the cities and disturbed areas throughout – and one of the most boring bulbuls that I've ever run across!
PUFF-THROATED BULBUL (Alophoixus pallidus) – Common and noisy at Khao Yai and at the lower elevation forests of the north.
OCHRACEOUS BULBUL (Alophoixus ochraceus) – This one replaces the very similar Puff-throated Bulbul in s.w. Thailand, and we had multiples at Kaeng Krachan NP.
GRAY-EYED BULBUL (Iole propinqua) – The distribution of this one is very similar to the Puff-throated Bulbul above.
OLIVE BULBUL (BAKER'S) (Iole viridescens cinnamomeoventris) – We used to call this one the Buff-vented Bulbul – until it was reassigned to this species a couple of years ago. There's still much to learn with these Iole bulbuls...

This stunning Scarlet-faced Liocichla finally made an appearance high along the road at Doi Lang. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

BLACK BULBUL (Hypsipetes leucocephalus) – We even had a few white-headed birds up on the lower slopes of Doi Lang.
ASHY BULBUL (Hemixos flavala) – We really only had one decent encounter with this one at Khao Yai NP this year.
MOUNTAIN BULBUL (Ixos mcclellandii) – Common and pretty conspicuous in the mountains of the northwest.
Phylloscopidae (Leaf Warblers)
ASHY-THROATED WARBLER (Phylloscopus maculipennis) – Only seen up high near the summit of Doi Inthanon. Very small, even for a Phylloscopus.
BUFF-BARRED WARBLER (Phylloscopus pulcher) – I know that all of these Phylloscopus just make you go cross-eyed when looking at them and trying to differentiate one from another, but this one is actually pretty easy to i.d. The dingy underparts, yellow rump, white in the tail, and the buffy wingbars all point you to this species.
YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER (Phylloscopus inornatus) – If you learn the call of this one, you soon realize that it's absolutely everywhere in Thailand during the winter months.
HUME'S WARBLER (Phylloscopus humei) – I know that they all pretty much look alike, but this one looks particularly similar to the above Yellow-browed Warbler.
PALLAS'S LEAF WARBLER (Phylloscopus proregulus) [*]
RADDE'S WARBLER (Phylloscopus schwarzi) – We had a few of these early on, but that one very confiding bird along the roadside at Kaeng Krachan as we were walking back to the campground was particularly memorable.
DUSKY WARBLER (Phylloscopus fuscatus) – We got our best looks at this one in the mangroves at Phak Thale south of Bangkok.
BUFF-THROATED WARBLER (Phylloscopus subaffinis) – A wintering species that barely gets into the n.w. mountains.
EASTERN CROWNED WARBLER (Phylloscopus coronatus) – We found a couple of birds at Kaeng Krachan NP this year. I'm not sure if they were wintering here or if they were early spring migrants.

This bird used to be called the Purple Swamphen when we first started guiding tours in Thailand, but it has since been split up into multiple species throughout its huge range from Spain to Australia. This Gray-headed Swamphen is the expected species in Southeast Asia. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

GRAY-CROWNED WARBLER (Phylloscopus tephrocephalus) [*]
BIANCHI'S WARBLER (Phylloscopus valentini) [*]
MARTENS'S WARBLER (Phylloscopus omeiensis) – This call note of this one sounds quite a bit like our Wilson's Warbler. We had a difficult time trying to track it down, but finally succeeded on Doi Lang.
ALSTRšM'S WARBLER (Phylloscopus soror) – We used to call this one the Plain-tailed Warbler, but it's now known as Alström's Warbler. [*]
GREENISH WARBLER (Phylloscopus trochiloides) – A few of us got a look at one bird at the botanical garden at the end of the tour.
TWO-BARRED WARBLER (Phylloscopus plumbeitarsus) – A fairly common wintering bird in the lowland and foothill forests. Like so many of these phylloscopid warblers, best i.d.'ed by call.
PALE-LEGGED LEAF WARBLER (Phylloscopus tenellipes) – A few of us got on one while we waited for the Blue Pitta to show at Khao Yai NP.
CHESTNUT-CROWNED WARBLER (Phylloscopus castaniceps) – We called one in for some great views up on Doi Lang on our second day there.
SULPHUR-BREASTED WARBLER (Phylloscopus ricketti) – We usually only see a couple of these wintering birds during a normal Thailand tour, so I was a little shocked by how common they appeared to be this year.
BLYTH'S LEAF WARBLER (Phylloscopus reguloides assamensis) – The loud song of this one is a little reminiscent of the familiar Common Yellowthroat.
CLAUDIA'S LEAF WARBLER (Phylloscopus claudiae) – A few folks got on this wintering bird at the big bridge on the Doi Lang road on our second visit to the mountain. Similar to the Blyth's, but it behaves more like our Black-and-white Warbler than that species.
DAVISON'S LEAF WARBLER (Phylloscopus intensior) – One of the most common warbler voices in the mountains of the northwest.
Scotocercidae (Bush Warblers and Allies)
SLATY-BELLIED TESIA (Tesia olivea) – Fabulous looks at this tiny skulker in the bog at the summit of Doi Inthanon!
CHESTNUT-HEADED TESIA (Cettia castaneocoronata) [*]
YELLOW-BELLIED WARBLER (Abroscopus superciliaris) – This bamboo specialist was seen well along the main road near Mae Ping NP – in the bamboo, of course.
MOUNTAIN TAILORBIRD (Phyllergates cucullatus) – Excellent views on the slopes of Doi Inthanon. Not at all closely related to the Orthotomus tailorbirds, though it was thought to be for many years!
ABERRANT BUSH WARBLER (Horornis flavolivaceus) [*]
Aegithalidae (Long-tailed Tits)
BLACK-THROATED TIT (Aegithalos concinnus) – A very local bird in Thailand, we had ours along the roadside on Doi Lang on our first day there.
Sylviidae (Sylviid Warblers, Parrotbills, and Allies)
GRAY-HEADED PARROTBILL (Psittiparus gularis) – A few of birds working in the flowering Erythrina trees on Doi Lang. We even got them in the scope!
SPOT-BREASTED PARROTBILL (Paradoxornis guttaticollis) – One of the more charismatic birds on any trip to Doi Lang, our confiding bird gave us all a very good look on our first day there.
Zosteropidae (White-eyes, Yuhinas, and Allies)
WHISKERED YUHINA (Yuhina flavicollis) – Another very local species in Thailand, Doi Lang is the only place that we're likely to find it following this itinerary.
CHESTNUT-FLANKED WHITE-EYE (Zosterops erythropleurus) – This wintering species seemed to be the most common species of white-eye this year on the tour.
INDIAN WHITE-EYE (Zosterops palpebrosus) – There was a big taxonomic revision done within the genus Zosterops a couple of years ago, and none of the old names in the books apply any more to what we see on this tour. This one is what we used to call the Oriental White-eye
SWINHOE'S WHITE-EYE (Zosterops simplex) – This one is what we called the Japanese White-eye in years past.
Timaliidae (Tree-Babblers, Scimitar-Babblers, and Allies)
CHESTNUT-CAPPED BABBLER (Timalia pileata) – Not seen on the tour until the very last morning near Chiang Rai – and not very easy to see at that!
PIN-STRIPED TIT-BABBLER (Mixornis gularis) – This was probably our most common and widespread 'babbler' on the tour, but it was mostly just heard on many days.

Although it is very often one of those mammals that only earns a 'heard only' asterisk, this very vocal White-handed Gibbon at Khao Yai gave us multiple fine views. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

GOLDEN BABBLER (Cyanoderma chrysaeum) – Great looks at close range along the roadside on Doi Inthanon.
RUFOUS-FRONTED BABBLER (Cyanoderma rufifrons) – A few folks got onto this one at Kaeng Krachan NP. It sounds very much like the above Golden Babbler, but looks nothing like it!
WHITE-BROWED SCIMITAR-BABBLER (Pomatorhinus schisticeps) – We had a very difficult time with this one this year – we saw the other two species of scimitar-babblers much better.
LARGE SCIMITAR-BABBLER (Megapomatorhinus hypoleucos) – Nice looks near the HQ of Kaeng Krachan NP one afternoon. What a great voice!
RUSTY-CHEEKED SCIMITAR-BABBLER (Megapomatorhinus erythrogenys) – These were one of many co-stars at the Hume's Pheasant spot on Doi Lang.
GRAY-THROATED BABBLER (Stachyris nigriceps) [*]
Pellorneidae (Ground Babblers and Allies)
COLLARED BABBLER (Gampsorhynchus torquatus) – Not easy to see at all as they foraged high in the tall stands of bamboo on the Doi Lang road.
RUFOUS-WINGED FULVETTA (Schoeniparus castaneceps) – Very confiding in the forest at the summit bog on Doi Inthanon.
PUFF-THROATED BABBLER (Pellorneum ruficeps) – Nicely on the same log that hosted the Blue Pitta at Khao Yai NP.
SPOT-THROATED BABBLER (Pellorneum albiventre) [*]
BUFF-BREASTED BABBLER (Pellorneum tickelli) [*]
EYEBROWED WREN-BABBLER (Napothera epilepidota) – We couldn't find this one in any of the usual places this year on Doi Inthanon, but we managed to find one on a trail that I hadn't been on for 10+ years!
ABBOTT'S BABBLER (Turdinus abbotti) – A single bird came in while we sat in the hide waiting for the ground-cuckoo (which never appeared).
LIMESTONE WREN-BABBLER (RUFOUS) (Turdinus crispifrons calcicola) – We found this rock-loving babbler straight away at the temple en route to the Bangkok airport. It's very likely that the few disjunct forms of this 'species' will be split in the near future.
STREAKED WREN-BABBLER (Turdinus brevicaudatus) [*]
Leiothrichidae (Laughingthrushes and Allies)
BROWN-CHEEKED FULVETTA (Alcippe poioicephala) – One of the first babblers of the tour was this nondescript species along the roadside at Kaeng Krachan NP.
YUNNAN FULVETTA (Alcippe fratercula) – One of the most common birds in the understory in the high mountains of the northwest.
HIMALAYAN CUTIA (Cutia nipalensis) – This one never responded... [*]
WHITE-CRESTED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Garrulax leucolophus) – Fabulous looks at a few close birds at the Siamese Fireback spot near Khao Yai NP.

Framed nicely by red rhododendron flowers in the summit bog on Doi Inthanon, this Chestnut-tailed Minla was one of the more confiding birds that we found there. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

WHITE-NECKED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Garrulax strepitans) – Very shy and very difficult to see well. Most of us got pretty frustrated with this one on Doi Angkhang.
GREATER NECKLACED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Ianthocincla pectoralis) – Brief looks for some along the roadside at Kaeng Krachan NP. I think everyone at least got to see this one fly over the road there.
BLACK-THROATED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Ianthocincla chinensis) – The birds at the military checkpoint in Khao Yai have been pretty reliable there for a few years now. A real beauty!
WHITE-BROWED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Ianthocincla sannio) – Nicely along the road at the Hume's Pheasant spot on Doi Lang.
SILVER-EARED LAUGHINGTHRUSH (Trochalopteron melanostigma) – Maybe the easiest laughingthrush that you'll ever see!
BLACK-BACKED SIBIA (Heterophasia melanoleuca) – The haunting song of this one was with us the entire time we were up in the mountains of the northwest.
LONG-TAILED SIBIA (Heterophasia picaoides) – This was a good find along the road on Doi Lang. Another very local species in Thailand and not a bird that we see every year.
SILVER-EARED MESIA (Leiothrix argentauris) – Fantastic looks at this beautiful babbler in the roadside undergrowth on Doi Inthanon. This birds beauty makes it a target for cagebird trappers throughout its range.
RUFOUS-BACKED SIBIA (Minla annectens) – Nice looks along the roadside at Doi INthanon NP. This one was recently taken out of the Sibia genus of Heterophasia and placed in the genus Minla - yet it's still called a Sibia!
SCARLET-FACED LIOCICHLA (Liocichla ripponi) – A stunning bird seen extremely well at the military checkpoint on Doi Lang.
SPECTACLED BARWING (Actinodura ramsayi) – We had this beautiful, elegant bird high in the mountains of the northwest.
BLUE-WINGED MINLA (Actinodura cyanouroptera) – We didn't find this bird anywhere on the tour until we got to Doi Angkhang. It was recorded daily after that. This and the next species were part of a big babbler taxonomic re-shuffle a few years back. They were moved from the genus Minla to the Barwing genus of Actinodura - but retain the name of Minla in the common name!
CHESTNUT-TAILED MINLA (Actinodura strigula) – Common and confiding at the Doi Inthanon summit. Sometimes called the Bar-throated Minla.
Sittidae (Nuthatches)
BURMESE NUTHATCH (Sitta neglecta) – While not common, we had no trouble finding this local species on that first afternoon at Mae Ping NP. We used to get this one regularly in Doi Inthanon NP, but we haven't seen it there for years.
CHESTNUT-VENTED NUTHATCH (Sitta nagaensis) – We all eventually caught up with looks at this one on Doi Angkhang and Doi Lang. The most common nuthatch species in the mountains of the northwest.
VELVET-FRONTED NUTHATCH (Sitta frontalis) – We had several fine looks at this distinctive nuthatch, the first coming at the campground at Kaeng Krachan NP. This one occurs in a wide range of habitats, and we found it with the other three nuthatch species in their respective habitats.
GIANT NUTHATCH (Sitta magna) – One of the real special birds of the northwest mountains in Thailand, we had super views of this one along the roadside on Doi Lang. This one occurs here, in neighboring n.e. Myanmar, and in s.w. Yunnan, China. Thailand is, by far, the easiest place to see it!
Certhiidae (Treecreepers)
HUME'S TREECREEPER (Certhia manipurensis shanensis) – The loud song of this one is not what you would expect from a treecreeper – if you're a birder from N. America, that is.
Sturnidae (Starlings)
GOLDEN-CRESTED MYNA (Ampeliceps coronatus) – After a quick flyby look on that first morning at Kaeng Krachan NP, we ended up getting some scope looks at this one along the same road the following morning.
COMMON HILL MYNA (Gracula religiosa) – I was pleased to see and hear a few more of these than what has been the usual low numbers on our tour – it's another species hit hard by the cagebird trade.

Gray Wagtail lives up to its name during the winter months. We saw many on this tour that sported much more green and yellow in their plumage as they molted into breeding dress. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

BLACK-COLLARED STARLING (Gracupica nigricollis) – A big, noisy, open-country starling.
ASIAN PIED STARLING (Gracupica contra) – Just a few of these in the first half of the tour from Bangkok southward.
WHITE-SHOULDERED STARLING (Sturnia sinensis) – Very distant views of a couple of birds with some Chestnut-tailed Starlings at the Rang Sit marsh early on.
CHESTNUT-TAILED STARLING (Sturnia malabarica) – We ended up with great looks at this one next to the tower at Mr. T's place near Inthanon NP.
COMMON MYNA (Acridotheres tristis) – One of the few birds on the tour that we recorded every single day.
VINOUS-BREASTED STARLING (VINOUS-BREASTED) (Acridotheres burmannicus leucocephalus) – This one is always a challenge to try and track down, but the Kaeng Krachan Country Club grounds have been pretty reliable in recent years.
GREAT MYNA (Acridotheres grandis) – This one used to be known as the White-vented Myna.
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
DARK-SIDED THRUSH (Zoothera marginata) – We had a fantastic encounter with this one from inside the hide at Inthanon NP!
WHITE'S THRUSH (Zoothera aurea aurea) – A single bird along the roadside at Kaeng Krachan NP was a wintering vagrant there – my first ever for the park!
SCALY THRUSH (Zoothera dauma) – One at the Doi Inthanon hide gave us some super, close views.
GREEN COCHOA (Cochoa viridis) [*]
GRAY-WINGED BLACKBIRD (Turdus boulboul) – A couple of birds, at least, among the other thrushes at the botanical gardens near Chiang Rai at the end of the tour.
BLACK-BREASTED THRUSH (Turdus dissimilis)
GRAY-SIDED THRUSH (Turdus feae) – We had decent numbers of these along the road high in Doi Inthanon NP and then quite a few mixed in with the many Eyebrowed Thrushes at the botanical gardens near Chiang Rai.
EYEBROWED THRUSH (Turdus obscurus) – This was probably the most common thrush species that we saw this year, which is what one would expect.
Muscicapidae (Old World Flycatchers)
ASIAN BROWN FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa dauurica) – A couple of birds early on during the tour, and that was it.
ORIENTAL MAGPIE-ROBIN (Copsychus saularis) – We recorded this one nearly daily.
WHITE-RUMPED SHAMA (Copsychus malabaricus) – One of the most charismatic and characteristic birds of Southeast Asian lowland forests. Most of our sightings were in Kaeng Krachan NP and Khao Yai NP.
WHITE-GORGETED FLYCATCHER (Anthipes monileger) – After a mostly futile attempt to see this one at Doi Inthanon NP, we enjoyed prolonged, close looks at birds on our two visits to Doi Lang.
HAINAN BLUE FLYCATCHER (Cyornis hainanus) – We had a few unmistakable males, including one that hung out near the Blue Pitta log at Khao Yai NP.

The group on our 'get away' day at Mr. T's near Inthanon NP. (Photo by participant Joe Suchecki)

PALE BLUE FLYCATCHER (Cyornis unicolor) – Excellent views of a couple of responsive males at Doi Lang on our first morning there. Normally a canopy bird, I was blown away when one of these popped into view below eye-level!
HILL BLUE FLYCATCHER (Cyornis banyumas) – Great views of a nice male at the military checkpoint at Khao Yai NP on our first morning there.
INDOCHINESE BLUE FLYCATCHER (Cyornis sumatrensis) – When I was guiding this tour for 20+ years for Field Guides, we called this one Tickell's Blue Flycatcher. Tickell's is now confined to the Indian subcontinent and Indochinese is the widespread species in bamboo throughout SE Asia.
LARGE NILTAVA (Niltava grandis) – We were teased by this one until we got to Doi Lang on our second visit there. The pair at the military checkpoint obliged the group very nicely!
SMALL NILTAVA (Niltava macgrigoriae) [*]
RUFOUS-BELLIED NILTAVA (Niltava sundara) – We had a lovely unmistakable adult male at the restaurant buildings at Doi Angkhang.
VIVID NILTAVA (Niltava vivida) – A female at the hide on Doi Inthanon had us scratching our heads for a bit, but we finally figured it out.
VERDITER FLYCATCHER (Eumyias thalassinus) – An unusual color in the world of birds.
HIMALAYAN SHORTWING (Brachypteryx cruralis) – The old name for this one was White-browed Shortwing – before it was split into four species (likely more in the future!). We had fabulous looks at a couple of males working the mud beneath the summit boardwalk.
SIBERIAN BLUE ROBIN (Larvivora cyane) – That constant tail quivering is a good field mark for this one when it's not in adult male plumage.
WHITE-BELLIED REDSTART (Luscinia phaenicuroides) [*]
BLUE WHISTLING-THRUSH (BLACK-BILLED) (Myophonus caeruleus caeruleus) – This was the black-billed migrant form that winters commonly in the mountains of n. Thailand.
BLUE WHISTLING-THRUSH (YELLOW-BILLED) (Myophonus caeruleus eugenei) – The yellow-billed form that we saw at Doi Inthanon and elsewhere. These yellow-billed birds are (mostly) resident in Thailand and they have calls that are strikingly different from the black-billed birds, so I'd say it's a pretty good candidate for a split.
WHITE-CROWNED FORKTAIL (Enicurus leschenaulti) – Consider yourselves very fortunate to have gotten the great looks at this one that you did on Doi Inthanon! It's normally a very shy bird and you typically hear a few high-pitched calls then see a flash of black-and-white disappearing into the forest.
SIBERIAN RUBYTHROAT (Calliope calliope) – Fabulous views of an adult male on Doi Lang!
WHITE-TAILED ROBIN (Myiomela leucura) – We had our very reliable adult male at the feeding station on Doi Angkhang.
HIMALAYAN BLUETAIL (Tarsiger rufilatus) – After seeing a few unidentified females earlier in the tour, we finally got onto a nice adult male with a turquoise brow along the road on Doi Lang.
SLATY-BACKED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula erithacus) – This is a very good tour for these Asian Ficedula flycatchers, and this is one of the most common in the mountains of the country.
SLATY-BLUE FLYCATCHER (Ficedula tricolor) – I doubt that we ever would have seen this one without those little feeding stations on Doi Lang. Unlike most of the other Ficedulas, this one skulks in the densest of weedy cover.
SNOWY-BROWED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula hyperythra) – A couple of very confiding birds up at the summit bog at Doi Inthanon NP.

Common along lowland forest streams in Thailand and elsewher in s.e. Asia, this male Chinese Waterfall Damselfly flashed brilliant metallic green on the upperside of its wings whenever it opened them. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

RUFOUS-GORGETED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula strophiata) – I think that this is one of the most handsome of the Ficedulas.
SAPPHIRE FLYCATCHER (Ficedula sapphira) – Often found in the same pine habitat as the above Slaty-backed and the Ultramarine below.
LITTLE PIED FLYCATCHER (Ficedula westermanni) – This dapper little guy was in all of the high mountain ranges that we visited.
ULTRAMARINE FLYCATCHER (Ficedula superciliaris) – It took a little bit of a wait, but that reliable old male finally came in for a roadside treat on Doi Lang, posing nicely at close range.
TAIGA FLYCATCHER (Ficedula albicilla) – The most common and widespread of the wintering Ficedula flycatchers in Thailand. It's found in most open habitats, and even in the middle of Bangkok. A fairly recent split from the related Red-breasted Flycatcher to the west.
BLUE-FRONTED REDSTART (Phoenicurus frontalis) – This one is a winter vagrant to n. Thailand, and we were lucky enough to find a couple of birds that had been found by others earlier in the season: a male on Doi Inthanon, and a female at the botanical gardens near Chiang Rai.
PLUMBEOUS REDSTART (Phoenicurus fuliginosus) – We found a single female on one of the small streams that we checked in the Doi Inthanon area. We usually see more of these in a typical year.
WHITE-CAPPED REDSTART (Phoenicurus leucocephalus) – A definite stream obligate, this fancy little black, orange, and white bird was once known as the River Chat – a name that I much prefer.
WHITE-THROATED ROCK-THRUSH (Monticola gularis) – Some got a very quick look at this one, a male, along the wooden steps where we ended up seeing our Silver Pheasant at Khao Yai NP.
BLUE ROCK-THRUSH (PANDOO) (Monticola solitarius pandoo) – The few males that we saw were of this all-blue variety.
SIBERIAN STONECHAT (STEJNEGER'S) (Saxicola maurus stejnegeri) – A fairly common sight in open fields and rice paddies. Now split from the European Stonechat to the west.
PIED BUSHCHAT (Saxicola caprata) – A few in some of the open fields of the north. It's difficult to get 'Pied' out of this one when you see it perched, but it's obvious in flight.
GRAY BUSHCHAT (Saxicola ferreus) – Particularly common in the pine woodland on Doi Lang.
Dicaeidae (Flowerpeckers)
FIRE-BREASTED FLOWERPECKER (FIRE-BREASTED) (Dicaeum ignipectus ignipectus) – The birds in the mountains of the north sport a nice patch of 'fire' red on the chest of the males, like most of the birds in the range of this one.
FIRE-BREASTED FLOWERPECKER (CAMBODIAN) (Dicaeum ignipectus cambodianum) – These southern birds (the birds we saw at Khao Yai) completely lack any hint of red on the chest and would be called the Cambodian Flowerpecker if it were ever split.
SCARLET-BACKED FLOWERPECKER (Dicaeum cruentatum) – The common flowerpecker in Bangkok and in other towns in the lowlands.
Nectariniidae (Sunbirds and Spiderhunters)
RUBY-CHEEKED SUNBIRD (Chalcoparia singalensis) – Almost warbler-like in its behavior, this beautiful sunbird is unique among the other Thai sunbirds.
BROWN-THROATED SUNBIRD (Anthreptes malacensis) – Until last year, this one was called the Plain-throated Sunbird. The birds found throughout much of the Philippines has been split out as Gray-throated Sunbird.
VAN HASSELT'S SUNBIRD (Leptocoma brasiliana) – A quick walk along the path to a waterfall at the southern end of Khao Yai NP yielded a few nice males. Recently split from the Purple-throated Sunbird of the Philippines.
PURPLE SUNBIRD (Cinnyris asiaticus) – It's tough to get any 'purple' out of this one, but it's usually the most common sunbird in the dry dipterocarp forests that we visited.
OLIVE-BACKED SUNBIRD (Cinnyris jugularis) – Mostly in the cities and towns and disturbed areas.
BLACK-THROATED SUNBIRD (Aethopyga saturata) – Curiously absent this year.
MRS. GOULD'S SUNBIRD (Aethopyga gouldiae) – The 'Mrs.' was finally added back to this bird's name after many years. It was named after John Gould's wife Elizabeth after all!
GREEN-TAILED SUNBIRD (DOI INTHANON) (Aethopyga nipalensis angkanensis) – The race that we saw up at the summit of Doi Inthanon is endemic to that particular mountain top and is found nowhere else.
CRIMSON SUNBIRD (Aethopyga siparaja) – We saw a few of the eye-catching crimson males at Kaeng Krachan NP.
LITTLE SPIDERHUNTER (Arachnothera longirostra) – This species was very quiet this year and surprisingly inconspicuous in places where it's normally quite common.
STREAKED SPIDERHUNTER (Arachnothera magna) – It took us a while to find a perched one!
Irenidae (Fairy-bluebirds)
ASIAN FAIRY-BLUEBIRD (Irena puella) – If you can find a fruiting tree in the lowlands, you'll find this beauty. The blue plumage looks very unnatural and almost like plastic to me when you view it closely.
Chloropseidae (Leafbirds)
BLUE-WINGED LEAFBIRD (Chloropsis cochinchinensis) – The first of the three leafbirds that we saw on this tour.
GOLDEN-FRONTED LEAFBIRD (Chloropsis aurifrons) – This species seems to prefer a bit drier forest type than the other two species that we saw, but there's a lot of overlap, especially between Blue-winged and Golden-fronted.
ORANGE-BELLIED LEAFBIRD (Chloropsis hardwickii) – The elevational range of this one is mostly above the other two that we saw.
Ploceidae (Weavers and Allies)
BAYA WEAVER (Ploceus philippinus) – There was a lot of nest-building going in the Bangkok area at the start of the tour! [N]
Estrildidae (Waxbills and Allies)
RED AVADAVAT (Amandava amandava) – Most of our looks at this tiny estrildid finch were of birds in flight.
SCALY-BREASTED MUNIA (Lonchura punctulata) – Our most widespread munia on the tour. Also known as Nutmeg Mannikin.
CHESTNUT MUNIA (Lonchura atricapilla) – All of ours were in the coastal lowlands in and around Bangkok.
JAVA SPARROW (Lonchura oryzivora) – Great looks at these distinctive introduced finches on our first full morning near Rang Sit. [I]
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus indicus) – When I first started doing this tour back in the mid-'90's, there weren't any House Sparrows around anywhere. Now, they're approaching Eurasian Tree Sparrow in abundance and range.
PLAIN-BACKED SPARROW (Passer flaveolus) – We had a nice study of this one at the temple on the first afternoon of the tour. A very handsome Passer!
Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)
GRAY WAGTAIL (Motacilla cinerea) – Yes, Gray Wagtails are mostly yellow. Habitat requirements during the winter months are quite different for this one and the Eastern Yellow Wagtail.
EASTERN YELLOW WAGTAIL (Motacilla tschutschensis) – The only birds that we had on the tour were in the hot coastal lowlands around and south of Bangkok.
CITRINE WAGTAIL (Motacilla citreola) – It took us until the very end of the trip to track this one down when we spotted one working the edge of a gravel bar in the Mekong River! Whew!
WHITE WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba) – Plenty of these on the Mekong River. The predominant race wintering here is M.a. leucopsis.
PADDYFIELD PIPIT (Anthus rufulus) – Also called the Oriental Pipit.
OLIVE-BACKED PIPIT (Anthus hodgsoni) – This one tends to winter in small openings in forested country – and it shows no hesitation flying up into a tree when flushed, unlike most pipit species. It used to be called the Olive Tree Pipit.
RED-THROATED PIPIT (Anthus cervinus) – Lots of these, in a wide range of plumages, at the Sykes's Short-toed Lark spot near Tha Ton.
Fringillidae (Finches, Euphonias, and Allies)
SPOT-WINGED GROSBEAK (Mycerobas melanozanthos) – This one is definitely not a species that we see every year, but we were very lucky with it this year, finding it at both Doi Angkhang and at the botanical gardens near Chiang Rai.
COMMON ROSEFINCH (Carpodacus erythrinus) – Surprisingly few of these wintering along our route this year.
Emberizidae (Old World Buntings)
CRESTED BUNTING (Emberiza lathami) – Early morning saw these visiting the Erythrina flowers up on Doi Lang. Another species that we infrequently see on this tour.

LYLE'S FLYING FOX (Pteropus lylei) – Good numbers of these were seen roosting in the mangroves near Laem Phak Bia. I don't think that I'll look at flying foxes the same way ever again after this coronavirus pandemic!
WRINKLE-LIPPED FREE-TAILED BAT (Chaerephon plicatus) – All of those big groups of bats that we saw at dusk near our hotel near Khao Yai that first evening were this species.
NORTHERN TREESHREW (Tupaia berlangeri) – Squirrel-sized and shaped, but with a long, pointed snout.
CRAB-EATING MACAQUE (Macaca fascigularis) – Also called Long-tailed Macaque, and I probably called it that more than once on this tour.
PIGTAIL MACAQUE (Macaca nemestrina) – I was surprised that we didn't see the large numbers of these at Khao Yai that I normally see.
DUSKY LEAF MONKEY (Presbytis obscura) – Lots of great looks at this common primate at Kaeng Krachan NP.
PILEATED GIBBON (Hylobates pileatus) [*]
WHITE-HANDED GIBBON (Hylobates lar) – Sometimes, we never see these guys on the tour, we just hear them. I was glad that we had such a good experience with them this year!
MOUNTAIN RED-BELLIED SQUIRREL (Callosciurus flavimanus) – This one looks a lot like the other medium-to-large squirrels that we saw on the tour, but this one has a rich rufous belly.
FINLAYSON'S SQUIRREL (Callosciurus finlaysoni) – This is the one that I was calling Variable Squirrel – an appropriate name given that we saw such a wide range of color morphs.
GRAY-BELLIED SQUIRREL (Callosciurus caniceps) – The dorsal coloration of this one changes from place to place, but it always has that distinctive black tail tip.
HIMALAYAN STRIPED SQUIRREL (Tamiops macclellandi) – If you heard a fruiteater singing at a number of our birding stops, it was this guy. It's the small arboreal squirrel that folks were calling a chipmunk (it's not a chipmunk).
INDIAN ELEPHANT (Elephas maximus) – Tough to miss this one, especially when it stops all of the traffic coming and going in the park! We only see this on about 1/3 or fewer of our trips here.
MUNTJAC (BARKING DEER) (Muntiacus muntjak) – Several very good looks at Khao Yai NP.
SAMBAR (Cervus unicolor) – The largest of the extant native deer here.
COMMON HOUSE GECKO (Hemidactylus frenatus) – We had this one in most of our dwellings throughout the tour.
BLACK-BANDED TRINKET SNAKE (Oreocryptophis porphyraceus) – This was the pretty red snake that we found in the road on Doi Lang. It goes by a number of names, but this one seems to get the most widespread usage.
RED-EARED SLIDER (Trachemys scripta elegans) – Those turtles that we saw in the pond on our first afternoon were this familiar N. American species. Introduced here. [I]
FLYING LIZARD SP. (Draco sp.) – There are a few species of flying lizards in Thailand, but I'm not sure which species we had.
TOKAY GECKO (Gekko gecko) [*]
WATER MONITOR (Varanus salvator) – The huge aquatic lizards that we saw along the coast.


Totals for the tour: 474 bird taxa and 15 mammal taxa