At the morning of the 6.4.2014, Sebastien Delonglee and I (Florian Klingel) looked for birds at Red River, in the cultivations and along the channel between Hanoi and the Island, near the Sofitel
We found a rather plain Acrocephalus at one of the small ponds between Hanoi and the Red River Island. For its short white supercilium and lack of a black supercilium, and considering range information, we concluded intially that it is a Blunt-winged Reed-Warbler A. concinens. However, after consulting several experts (Thanks a lot to Phil Round, Paul J Leader and Peter Kennerley for their detailed answers, which can be read down in the comments section) we are now convinced of the bird being a Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola. A first for Vietnam!
A thin black line above the supercilium can clearly be seen in this shot. And upper half of lower mandible appears to be blackish.
Besindes the morning with Sebastien at 6.4., I've done some more birding around Hanoi the same week:
- Two morning visits to the Botanical Gardens
- A morning at the Red River around the northern tip of the island and in the small tree plantation at Bai Da (the wedding couples photo shooting place)
The Botanical Gardens had a lot of Phyllos Warblers giving me a hard time especially after a 2 years break of visting Vietnam. The ones I could more less confidently identify were: Yellow-browed, Arctic and Pale-legged. At the Red River there were in addtion one Sulphur-breasted and a few Eastern-crowned.
The hill at the Botanical Gardens was teeming with Grey-headed Canary Flycatchers, must have been at least 30 or so. Also interesting was a flock of Chestnut-flanked White-eyes. Quite a few Taiga Flycatcher were around, a single Asian Brown, a female Yellow-rumped and a nice male Blue-and-White Flycatcher at (there was also a male and female BW Fly at the Red River Island).
The little forest at Bai Da had a few Red-breasted Parrakeets, a Large Hawk Cuckoo (another one seen this morning as well) and several Black-naped Monarchs. The out of place song of a Mountain Tailorbird there irritated me quite a bit, but I found it and it really was one.
The northern tip of the Island rewarded me with nice views of the Black-shouldered Kites and a nice male Pied Harrier, always great to see those.
This morning with Sebastien was also quite good. Apart from the interesing find of the Paddyfield Warbler, there were several Black-browed Reed-Warblers about, lots of Critrine and Yellow Wagtails, the channel hat many Pond Herons in breeding plumage, a nice Black-capped Kingfisher, a White-browed Crake and a Moorhen, several Yellow Bitterns and a fly-by Crake, which we think was Ruddy-breasted, but we couldn't relocate it to get better views and confirm.
Once again, surprisingly good birding for a big city.
Below some pictures (apologies for not being up to the usual standard of quality for this blog, perhaps Sebastien will add some better ones later) and the full list.
Chinese Pond Heron
Ruddy-breasted Crake (probable)
Little Ringed Plover
Large Hawk Cuckoo, 2
Grey-headed Canary Flycatcher
Pale-legged Leaf Warbler
Eastern Crowned Leaf-Warbler
Paddyfield Warbler (see also discussion in comments)
Asian Brown Flycatcher
Blue-and-white Flycatcher, 3
female Cyornis Flycatcher
Blue Rock Thrush (roofs in Hanoi)
Eastern Yellow Wagtail