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Bird news from Vietnam, from Vietnam's resident and visiting birders.

27 December 2010

Tristram's Buntings for Christmas

Hi all,

One day trip to Mount Ba Vi last Sunday (26th December).
In winter, this mountain can be very foggy and birding impossible. Sunday, the weather was nice, cold for sure but no mist, and the 3 famous peaks were perfectly visible as the photo shows (foreground : Đồng Mô lake):


I focused on the degraded forest and thickets around the restaurant area. Surprisingly, I saw many interesting species that we encounter generally in good forest, mixed with birds of more open habitats and forest edges. Many fruiting trees yielded flocks of Thrushes and other good birds.

Highlights : 2 Tristram's Buntings, 1 male Fujian Niltava and 1 Chestnut Bulbul (hard to believe I know, but good views...)

Seen also, among many others : - Barbets : Great (heard only), 1 Green-eared, 1 Blue-throated

- Thrushes : 1 Black-breasted, some Grey-backed and Scaly

- 1 Verditer Flycatcher

- 1 Stripe-Tit Babbler

- 1 Oriental Turtle Dove

- Flowerpeckers : 1 Scarlet-backed and 2 Fire-breasted feeding on the same fruiting tree

- very showy Orange-bellied Leafbirds, male singing and female

- 1 Chestnut-flanked White-eye in a flock of Japanese ones.

- Sunbirds : 2 Crimson, 1 Fork-tailed

- some Orange-flanked Bush Robins

- 1 Green Magpie sp
Tristram's Bunting. I flushed 2 birds, non identified. One of them, more curious, reappeared in the thickets in which they had just disappeared, and observed me during long et nice seconds.
Fire-breasted Flowerpecker male

Fire-breasted Flowerpecker female

Gorgeous Crimson Sunbird male


Blue-throated Barbet. I saw this bird 500m after the cactus garden, so at low altitude (300m). Each time I go to Ba Vi, I stop at this place which offer panoramic view on the valley and I have generally a contact with this species, moving in a degraded open forest. I don't understand why this bird which don't seems to have narrow habitat requirements (I mean good forest) is so rarely spotted elsewhere.


Scaly Thrush


A Japanese Thrush which seems to hesitate : Hmm, which one to choose ?



On the way back to Hanoi, I came across a flock of 20-30 Grey-capped Greenfinches at Đồng Mô lake, along the dyke (the northest one), feeding over grasslands grazed by cattle and perching sometimes on eucalyptus trees. Difficult to approach.




A nice birding trip with 2 lifers in the pocket (the Greenfinch and the Bunting), exactly one year after I began to interest myself in the vietnamese avifauna and twitched my very first local bird, it was a Robin Magpie...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone !

Sebastien

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