We arrived in Chiang Mai on the 26th of February. In Chiang Mai I didn’t see much besides common things like Bulbuls.
But after we visited Chiang Mai we decided to go into the Northern Highlands by the 3rd highest mountain in Thailand, Doi Chiang Dao. Doi Chiang Dao is not famous for diversity of species, more for special and usually uncommon species. We stayed at the bottom of the mountain and we organized that we could get a car so we could go to the top of the mountains to see the specials such as Mrs. Hume’s Pheasant and Giant Nuthatch. We met a British couple from Brighton, they were also doing a years excursion and one of them doing a big year, we asked Geoff if he wanted to join us for the trip up the mountain. So we woke up before sunrise to get to the top at sunrise so we had a chance to see the nuthatch and the pheasant. When the sun started to rise we were almost at the top in the road a group of Northern English men with binoculars around there necks were out looking for something. We got out our car and asked them what they have seen, their driver had seen the pheasant cross the road but the rest of them missed it. We helped look for, and we soon heard ,a very raucous call, we all rushed over and there in the tree was a Giant Nuthatch, a huge Nuthatch (in comparison to the different nuthatches we saw later) it was truly amazing and completely unexpected sighting. One of the people went to go get something out the car parked just down the road and told us he’d seen the pheasant in the road. We all went o the cars and after a few minutes we saw Mrs. Hume’s Pheasant Displaying in the middle of the road!!! The female popped out of the thicket a few seconds later! What a great experience!!
Other cool birds we saw were Spot-winged Grosbeak, Burmese Shrike, Long-tailed and Scarlet minivets, Mountain Imperial Pigeon, Spangled Drongo, Eurasian Jay, Streaked Spiderhunter, Lesser Yellownape and Blue-bearded Bee-eater!
There were quite a few species near we were staying at the bottom of the mountain some good ones were White-rumped Shama, Black-hooded Oriole, Crested Serpent-Eagle, Ashy Minivet, Blue-throated Barbet, Oriental Pied-Hornbill, Blue Rock-thrush, Brown Shrike, Grey-backed Shrike, Scaly-breasted Munia and Velvet-fronted Nuthatch. I also saw 5 species of Bulbuls.
White-rumped Shama Blue-throated Barbet Blue Rock-thrush
We are off to Cambodia now and hope to see many new birds!