February 11, 2011

A Spoonfull of Gorgeousness

A brief update from Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand where I am awaiting transfer to the island Koh Phi Phi Don where hopefully three species of Frigatebird await.

Last week in a day trip from the fast-paced, hectic & teeming Bangkok I was driven 2 hours down the coast by Peter Ericsson to Laem Pak Bia, Pak Thale and the Kings Project in search of Spoon-billed Sandpiper. Peter is a Ex-pat Swede now living in Thailand, and if you thought that my driving was fast then Peter has that Scandinavian rally-driving knack of very fast driving and late braking. Several times in the passenger seat I was stamping on the non-existant passenger seat brake pedal. Despite that Peter is THE man for guiding down the coast and has never failed to get his customers the Spoonies, Nordmann's Greenshank, Malaysian Plover and the enigmatic and undescribed White-faced Plover.

I can't say that I was never nervous of connecting with the target species, because I was and kept logging on to Birdforum for updates. Thanks also due to Mark Andrews who was leading the Wildwings Tours because he even gave me a Welcome to Thailand text to say that there was an incredible 7 Spoonies on site.

Once on site at Pak Thale it took less that 5-minutes to connect with a single bird feeding on the saltpans with Red-necked Stints. Fantastic! A distant bird but tick never-the-less. Further scanning produced another three birds feeding together and a little closer. A joy to watch but never really close enough to get mega pictures.

More to follow but not till I get home

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