Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Crazy Crake

A couple of days ago I was told of a report of a Red-legged Crake at the unlikely venue of Chulalonkorn University's down town campus, slap bang in the middle of Bangkok, next to the shopping malls of MBK and Siam Square.

Looking at a map, it is easy to understand why this site has a bit of a track record when it comes to good birds - it is one of very few green spaces in the centre of the city and has a  bunch of student birders on site. In fact it has actually hosted a Fairy Pitta, a Slaty-legged Crake and various Mugimaki Flycatchers in the past few years!

I saw a photo of the Red-legged Crake and made an early morning trip to see if I could find it, however being unsure exactly where it has been seen left me using guess work, and with another appointment at 9am I couldn't stick around too long, and consequently drew a blank.  That evening I was told that in fact the bird was still present, and in roughly the area I had been checking.  Yesterday I found myself downtown running some errands and remembered that it might be worth another go, but I didn't have any optics with me, so would be reliant on other birders who I expected by now would be on site. 

Sure enough I found a small group of enthusiastic young Thai birders staking out  small ornamental maze and we eventually got views of the bird creeping about in the undergrowth and it popped into full view a couple of time before flying to thicker cover, out of site.

This bird apparently has a "floppy wing", but was able to fly so I'm unsure if there is any need to catch it and hospitalise it (which was being attempted as I left).  Given that it has god food supply and adequate cover it may be best left in peace.

Below are a couple of daft photos taken on my iPhone!


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