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

16 April 2012

A weekend bird walk at Ho Tram

A great place for catching up with some of the typical birds of the dry semi-desert areas of coastal southern Vietnam is Ho Tram. Just a couple of hours by road from Saigon there's a very nice resort imaginatively called Ho Tram Beach Resort where I often go with the family for a bit of weekend R&R. Admittedly I do spend a lot of time playing on the water slides and lazing by the pool but I usually manage to tear myself away for an early morning walk or two. Over the road from the resort, a few hundred metres back from the beach the scattered trees, plantations and cultivated areas are full of birds.

In a pre-breakfast stroll last Saturday I notched up a list of 58 species including the rarely recorded Spotted Owlet (thanks to Moray Iles and his dad who'd seen it there the previous weekend for the heads-up on that one). Abundant species here include Barred Buttonquail, Red-wattled Lapwing, Red-collared Dove, Indian Roller, Little Green Bee-Eater, Hoopoe, Plain-backed Sparrow, Australasian and Indochinese bushlarks. Some of the other species seen last weekend were Rufous Treepie, Stork-billed & Collared kingfishers, Asian Golden Weaver and four species of starling. A scarce bird in Vietnam that I didn't see last weekend but have seen on previous visits to Ho Tram is Pale-capped Pigeon. Always worth keeping an eye out for that one.

In the nicely landscaped grounds of the resort typical species include Golden-bellied Gerygone, Pied Fantail, Olive-backed Sunbird, Grey-capped Greenfinch and Plain-backed Sparrow. Zebra Dove which first appeared at Ho Tram just over a year ago in January 2011 is now all over the place and obviously likes it's new home on the Vietnamese Riviera! A nice find in the resort grounds this time was a very smart male Siberian Blue Robin.

Richard Craik


  1. Wow, Pale-capped Pegion again, that is nice :) maybe I should try to vist that place, sounds good Richard :)

  2. Hi Ha, it's a good chance now that you are studying in Saigon. It's only a two hour drive south of Saigon in Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Makes a nice break from city life - lovely clean beaches, wonderful fresh seafood straight from the fishing net and some nice, easy birding for a change! R

  3. Thanks Richard, I think I will try to go there during next holiday, the liberation day of SG. It is great to hear that "easy birding", that doesn't happen alot in VN, and I am sure no leeches :)

  4. No, you will be very pleased to hear Ha, not a leech in sight... though maybe a sand fly or two ;)

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