How Long?

Bitterns are always such great birds to see. I visited a local birding site near my hometown on the morning of September 22 and came across 2 Yellow Bitterns perching along the small creek next to the rice field. It was interesting to observe how the birds reacted when they noticed me. Both of them tried to stretch their necks as much as possible hoping to camouflage as dried sticks as usual.

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“As long as you can!” This juvenile Yellow Bittern was trying to imitate a dried stick hoping to get away from my camera just like any bittern would do. Sorry, you obviously failed.

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After a long while, the bird was finally relaxed and started to move around.

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And I almost caught it pooping!

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Interesting to see the black scales on its neck sides, the feature typically covered by its long neck feathers.

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Some more shots of the same bird from a different angle.

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Not sure what it was doing but it definitely looked funny. Notice the tiny pointed tongue?

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And a couple of shots of the other individual that I found. This one’s an adult bird, probably a female according to faint rufous streaks on the neck, which should lack or less distinct in males. The crown is also less greyish and more streaked.

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While I was taking photos of the bittern, a pair of Plain Prinias came singing close to where I was standing. The subspecies P. i. blanfordi of northern Thailand has overall more buffish plumage than the subspecies found in other parts of the country. However, both of them were in their breeding plumage, which is more whitish than in non-breeding plumage.

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