Doi Ang Khang: 24-26 October 2012


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Overview

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24-26 October 2012.
Variable cloud cover with some rain. Temperature 25°C by day, 15°C by night.
Doi Ang Khang.

24 Oct. A short trip to check logistics, trails, access and do some mapping. Arrived at Ban Luang just after midday, and having checked in to the accommodation headed out to the Km 21 Trail.

Little Pied Flycatcher
Little Pied Flycatcher

Burmese Mountain Snake
Burmese Mountain Snake

With the weather not having been particularly cold as yet, many wintering migrants had yet to arrive. A couple of hours along the Km 21 Trail and the firebreak revealed good numbers of Golden-throated Barbet and Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon, on account of several fruiting trees. At the start of the trail a ground skulker sounded suspiciously like White-bellied Redstart but could not be coaxed into view. Other species recorded included Martens's Warbler, Chinese Leaf Warbler, Chestnut-crowned Warbler, Small Niltava, Large Niltava and Grey Treepie. A couple of Rufous-throated Partridge seen at very close range whilst they were more interested in a territorial dispute than their own safety. Moved along to the now abandoned campsite at Km 19.5 where several Spot-breasted Parrotbill were heard and glimpsed in the valley below the viewpoint. No sign of any Giant Nuthatch. Finished the day along the Arunothai road around Km 37 with good views of Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler. A passing raptor, despite close range, remained a total mystery.

25 Oct. Surprisingly warm at 15°C early morning, probably on account of the cloud cover and some overnight rain. Started at the cemetery and old pea farm area first thing with a single Black-breasted Thrush, Brown-breasted Bulbul and half a dozen Chestnut Bunting of note. A couple of hours spent slowly birding down the first few kilometres of the Arunothai road produced more Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon and Siberian Rubythroat. A young Burmese Mountain Snake was a great find.

After a late breakfast decided to give the Mae Phue Valley a look, but was thwarted by the closure of the access road due to reconcreting, so decided to try the Burma (Nolae) road. First stopped at the Ang Khang Pagoda where good activity produced a Bianchi's Warbler, 2 Black-throated Laughingthrush, Scarlet-faced Liocichla, Rufous-bellied Niltava and Large Niltava. Next stop was the view point, where tried a hack up the hill and a longer walk on the firebreak beyond, finding Blue Rock Thrush and Large Cuckooshrike but little else in the heat of the day. Finding Golden Sapphire was a surprise, as usually this species only seen on Doi Lang. Continued along the road as far as Nolae village seeing little so returned to the Arunothai road, which despite the cooling afternoon was totally dead. Spent the last hour in the degraded habitat between the rubbish dump at Ban Luang village. Noted that the access road to the dump is totally blocked with rubbish and no one appears to be tending the dump, other than opportunistic cows browsing on the rubbish. Milk must taste pretty odd up here.

26 Oct. Overcast with low cloud kept bird activity low. Scrub along the road near Ban Luang village held a singing Russet Bush Warbler. Very quiet down the Arunothai road with only Common Green Magpie and Spot-throated Babbler new additions to yesterday's list. Got caught out badly in a downpour a couple of kilometres from the vehicle, which necessitated a return to the accommodation for a new set of clothes.

Golden Sapphire
Golden Sapphire

Cow at dump
A free lunch

As the Mae Phue road still under maintenance finished with a hour at the Ang Khang Pagoda and a short walk along the Ban Khob Dong road.

En route back to Chiang Mai, dropped into the checkpoint and temple areas at Chiang Dao where in the heat of the day a fair number, for the time of year, butterflies were active, including a nice collection of nawab and rajah species enjoying a good feed on a fresh pile deposited by the ranger's dog. Non-eventful return to Chiang Mai.

Butterflies
Beauty and the beast

Small Niltava
Small Niltava

Species List

  Common Name Count
  Rufous-throated Partridge 4
  Mountain Bamboo Partridge 25
  Red Junglefowl 2
  Mountain Hawk-Eagle 1
  Barred Buttonquail 2
  Rufous Turtle Dove 1
  Spotted Dove 7
  Barred Cuckoo-Dove 2
  Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon 9
  Banded Bay Cuckoo 2
  Collared Owlet 4
  Himalayan Swiftlet 25
  Cook's Swift 2
  Blue-bearded Bee-eater 1
  Great Barbet 6
  Golden-throated Barbet 10
  Blue-throated Barbet 2
  Speckled Piculet 3
  White-browed Piculet 2
  Lesser Yellownape 2
  Bay Woodpecker 2
  Long-tailed Broadbill 1
  Common Iora 2
  Large Cuckooshrike 2
  Black-winged Cuckooshrike 2
  Grey-chinned Minivet 4
  Long-tailed Minivet 8
  Long-tailed Shrike 3
  Blyth's Shrike-babbler 4
  Maroon Oriole 1
  Ashy Drongo 10
  Bronzed Drongo 2
  Hair-crested Drongo 12
  White-throated Fantail 8
  Common Green Magpie 2
  Grey Treepie 25
  Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher 6
  Japanese Tit 6
  Yellow-cheeked Tit 7
  Crested Finchbill 2
  Striated Bulbul 12
  Black-crested Bulbul 2
  Red-whiskered Bulbul 6
  Brown-breasted Bulbul 6
  Sooty-headed Bulbul 20
  Stripe-throated Bulbul 2
  Flavescent Bulbul 30
  Mountain Bulbul 10
  Ashy Bulbul 6
  Black Bulbul 6
  Barn Swallow 20
  Striated Swallow 10
  Yellow-bellied Warbler 2
  Mountain Tailorbird 6
  Yellow-streaked Warbler 3
  Chinese Leaf Warbler 1
  Yellow-browed Warbler 60
  Hume's Leaf Warbler 10
  Greenish Warbler 1
  Claudia's Leaf Warbler 2
  Davison's Leaf Warbler 30
  Grey-crowned Warbler 2
  Bianchi's Warbler 1
  Martens's Warbler 2
  Chestnut-crowned Warbler 1
  Russet Bush Warbler 1
  Hill Prinia 10
  Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler 12
  White-browed Scimitar Babbler 10
  Buff-chested Babbler 3
  Yunnan Fulvetta 30
  Spot-throated Babbler 1
  White-necked Laughingthrush 12
  Black-throated Laughingthrush 2
  White-browed Laughingthrush 6
  Silver-eared Laughingthrush 4
  Blue-winged Minla 20
  Scarlet-faced Liocichla 5
  Silver-eared Mesia 20
  Dark-backed Sibia 10
  Spot-breasted Parrotbill 4
  Chestnut-flanked White-eye 50
  Oriental White-eye 20
  Chestnut-vented Nuthatch 3
  Blue Whistling Thrush 2
  Black-breasted Thrush 1
  Siberian Rubythroat 1
  Oriental Magpie-Robin 3
  Siberian Stonechat 2
  Grey Bush Chat 20
  Blue Rock Thrush 2
  Taiga Flycatcher 6
  Little Pied Flycatcher 4
  Verditer Flycatcher 1
  Rufous-bellied Niltava 1
  Large Niltava 2
  Small Niltava 1
  Blue-winged Leafbird 2
  Orange-bellied Leafbird 4
  Plain Flowerpecker 10
  Fire-breasted Flowerpecker 6
  Mrs. Gould's Sunbird 4
  Black-throated Sunbird 10
  Streaked Spiderhunter 1
  Eurasian Tree Sparrow 20
  Grey Wagtail 2
  White Wagtail 4
  Olive-backed Pipit 40
  Chestnut Bunting 6