Sunday, October 12, 2008
Khao Yai National Park
With the moon nearly full, I decided that last night would be a good time to go to Khao Yai for night birds and mammals, and I wasn't disappointed, with three different ELEPHANT encounters (two singles, plus a party of four which included a VERY protective mother and her tiny calf - needless to say I backed off pretty damn fast when she started trumpeting at my car, even though I was more than 50 metres from her), a couple of MALAY PORCUPINE, poor views of what can only have been a YELLOW-THROATED MARTEN, two separate LARGE INDIAN CIVETS, GOLDEN JACKEL, and most bizarrely a SLOW LORIS on the ground, waddling across the road (at surprisingly high speed). On the night bird front I had a bit less success with only LARGE-TAILED NIGHTJAR seen, but I heard three different MOUNTAIN SCOPS OWLS as well as one ORIENTAL SCOPS.
Birding before dark yesterday afternoon produced a lot of the usual Khao Yai goodies such as GREAT HORNBILL, and I was surprised to hear a BLUE PITTA calling briefly. Migrants included a nice flock of about 10 BLUE THROATED BEE-EATERS. I also got nice views of a singing WHITE-HANDED GIBBON.
Trips like this make me realise that I should go more often, particularly as it's only 140 km from my front door to the National Park's southern gate (that's about the same distance as Cambridge to Cley) and takes about 2 hours to drive.