1. Get up early– The sunrises between 6 and 7 am and this is when birds are the most active. At dusk, (2-3 hrs before sunset) birds are also active but not as intense as the morning hours. The best thing is to not miss the morning rush.
2. Pick a good location – National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries are places to start. Rural areas, such as farms, temple and areas of secondary growth, will provide another setting for birdwatching.
3. Be silent and patient – Tread lightly and look around slowly as you search for small movements. Another strategy is to stop often and wait for birds to come into view, especially if you are near a food or water source.
4. Stake out fruiting and flowering trees – Food sources are an excellent place to sit and watch many species as they visit the trees and feed. You will also be able to observe different feeding behaviors and social interactions.
5. Wear appropriate clothing – Comfortable and protective clothing will keep you better able to stand your time birding in the elements. Long-sleeved cotton shirts provide sun cover, protection from insects and sweat control. Leech socks are needed is the rainy season to keep you safe from the nasty bloodsuckers.
A Field Guide to the Birds of Thailand
by Craig Robson
This book has been called the “must-have” for any birder in Thailand. It is recommended for novice and expert bird watchers alike since it is the most up-to-date book for Thailand. This guide includes all but the most recent additions to the Thai list. It also is convenient for use in the field as it’s size and weight do not compromise portability for the completeness of the book. The organization of the book is something to mention as it is very clear and precise. All left side pages contain text relating to the illustrations on the opposite page. The text for each species consists of a clear and updated distribution map. The illustrations also include several varieties of the species such as male, breeding male, female and juvenile, when appropriate.
One downside to this field guide is the lack of mention of the birds’ habitats. It appears that space has limited the amount of text dedicated to matters other than pure identification features. Perhaps the authors forgot that another way to identifying and differentiating bird species is via bird behavior.
Despite this major fault, this books is essential for any birding trip in Thailand. It is more than sufficient for identifying all of the bird species that you may encounter in around Thailand.
Price: 695 baht
- 128 color plates
- great detail and organization
- well spaced and clearly annotated
- size and weight good for field
- text page opposite illustrations