Passage Migrants

On March 16, I visited Chiang Mai University to look for some passage migrants that were reported earlier by a local birder. There was a particular tree which was full of worms and attracted many birds including a couple of Himalayan Cuckoos, Swinhoe’s Minivets, a pair of Greater Racket-tailed Drongos, a male Hill Blue Flycatcher and several Phylloscopus warblers.

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A female Himalayan Cuckoo in hepatic morph was located without much effort but it kept staying on the canopy and didn’t allow me any decent shot. A male bird was also reported earlier but I couldn’t find it. This species is one of the fairly common passage migrant in northern Thailand.


Male Hill Blue Flycatcher


Taiga Flycatcher moulting into breeding plumage


One of the obliging Greater Racket-tailed Drongos that were guarding the area


A flock of about 10 Swinhoe’s Minivets was also staying in the same area. Here’s one of the male birds.


One of the several Phylloscopus warblers which turns out to be most likely a Yellow-browed Warbler. Despite the darkish legs and feet, the clear whitish wing bars and large median covert bar seem to suggest Yellow-browed rather than Hume’s Leaf Warbler.

After a while, I moved on to a different area in the university to look for a breeding pair of Brown Hawk Owl. As soon as I arrived at the area, I spotted one of the birds sitting right in the middle above the road. It was surprisingly tame and allowed me to get some satisfying shots and videos. I couldn’t locate another bird though. It was probably staying in the nest hole which I had no idea where it was.

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