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18 December 2011

Cuu Thac - Tu Son / 17-12-2011

Scarlet Minivet male

A solo motorbike trip to Cuu Thac - Tu Son. I found again the elusive "Indiana Jones trail". According to local people, it leads to a pass which marks the entrance of Thuong Tiên Natural Reserve (4 hours walk from the car park - we can add one hour for us). The trail is great. It follows the river and offers unobstructed views of the forest which, you can imagine, get better and better as we climb. I didn't found any kind of forest which we could call "relatively untouched" ; I just saw secondary-growth, but with more and more massive trees. Very promising !
Birds I saw :

-Golden, Grey-throated, Buff-breasted, Spot-necked Babblers
-a lone Coral-billed Scimitar Babbler exploring the trunk folds of a banana tree
- a Green Magpie heard and seen (just a glimpse as usual) around the... VIP restaurant. My 3rd observation of this bird, but each time I cannot clinch the ID between Indochinese/Common. Very frustrating. They can share the same habitat, can't they ?
-Many Silver-eared Mesias often in mixed-species foraging flocks with Golden/Grey-throated Babblers, White-bellied Yuhinas
-2 males Fujian Niltava
-1 Blue-winged Minla
-1 male Black-throated Sunbird, spotted at 1m50 (!), attracted by pishing (an another bird easily attracted is the Buff-breasted Babbler, a good candidate for the price of "the most curious guy of the forest" !)
- 2 Seicercus Warblers, many Yellow-browed Warblers, Puff-throated Bulbuls, some Slaty-backed Forktails, 1 White-capped Water Redstart, a flock of Japanese Thrushes, Grey-headed Canary Flycatchers, mouhoti Ashy Drongos, Scarlet Minivets...

Scarlet Minivet female

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