Sunday, June 10, 2012

Doi Lang, Chiang Mai province

Spent this weekend birding the excellent Doi Lang in the company of Chiang Mai birder Dave Sargeant (

It was my first visit to this site, having only been to Doi Inthanon and Doi Chang Dao on past visits to northern Thailand, so I had a few targets. Some of these seemed impossible at this time of year (eg Crested Finchbill), whilst others require a lot of luck (eg Himalayan Cutia, various Parrotbills).

However, what we did see in just a weekend gave me a good introduction to the site, and Dave's extensive knowledge and experience at the site (this was approximately his twentieth visit to Doi Lang) gave me inspiration to return and visit for longer.

New birds that I connected with  included a single Crimson-breasted Woodpecker (Doi Lang is the only  known site in Thailand); Red-faced Liocichla in  several locations including at the upper army camp where two or three birds fed on rice and fruit in the company of three Spectacled Barwings, and several Silver-eared Laughingthrushes; Also Whiskered Yuhina, which is very range-restricted in Thailand but seems quite common on Doi Lang; Black-throated Bushtit (one flock seen several times) and Rufous-fronted Babbler (not a rare bird but something I had failed to see elsewhere).
Crimson-breasted Woodpecker

Red-faced Liocichlas

Black-throated Bushtit

Whiskered Yuhina

Rufous-fronted Babbler

Other goodies included Rufous-throated Patridge seen once and heard several times, Cook's Swift on both days, a pair of Blue-bearded Bee-eaters, both Blyth's and Black-eared Shrike-Babblers  seen several times, Rusty-cheeked Scimitar-babbler, and a Slaty-backed Forktail seen along the road.

Burmese farm seen from Doi Lang (the road up the mountain marks the border)

Spectacled Barwing

Rusty-cheeked Scimitar-babbler

Yellow-cheeked Tit

Large Niltava

Another highlight was getting good views of an inquisitive Yellow-throated Marten on the road on our first morning.

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