Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Phnom Kraom January sightings

Having spent more time at the SVC office in Siem Reap since the New Year I've been heading out to the rice fields and lotus wetlands just north of Phnom Kraom more regularly. Best bird for me was undoubtably Chestnut-winged Cuckoo on two dates, 15th and 20th January. I suppose the Eurasian Coot seen with Simon Mahood on 25th may also be good! January species totalled 104, from 7 visits.

Coot. This is called 'putting the bird in a landscape context'.

Comb Ducks

Ducks have been sporadic, flocks of Comb Duck (13 on 15th and 15 on 25th Jan) and a maximum of 20 Garganey with the ever present Indian Spot-billed Ducks, Cotton Pygmy-Geese and Lesser Whistling Ducks, A Grey-headed Fish-eagle on 3rd January was perhaps expected given that the world's highest density breeds just over the Tonle Sap at Prek Toal but it's an impressive beast on the local patch. Other raptors included Osprey and Common Kestrel on 15th and Peregrine on 10th. Waders were a bit thin on the ground, Wood Sandpiper and Black-winged Stilt regularly noted but just one group of stints, 8 Long-toed Stint seen on 25th January, plus a couple of Greenshank. Numbers of Asian Openbill were increasing through the month, but only to 40 by 25th and there was only a single Painted Stork (15th).

Osprey, 15th January

White-shouldered Starlings
Regular stuff runs to Watercock and Greater Painted Snipe, over 100 Pheasant-tailed and a few Bronze-winged Jacanas, Black-backed Swamphens, Yellow and Cinnamon Bitterns. White-shouldered Starling are seen most days, with a maxima of 60 on 3rd January. One White Wagtail was present on 3rd January and a Red-throated Pipit passed over on 25th. A couple of Richard's Pipit were present at the start of January, but haven't been seen since the 6th.
In addition, Thick-billed Warbler, Siberian Rubythroat and Lanceolated Warbler are all birds guaranteed to quicken a British birders' pulse that I often bump into down t'marsh.
Oriental Darter
Rob Martin


  1. Ah, those Lanceolated Warblers... Still haven't tracked one down.

    Listen for this, they've already started doing the bursts of song. Any bits of taller grass among the rice fields have got Lancy's in at the moment.