March 17, 2009
Many species had been seen around the Ang Trapaeng Thmor. It is a proof of successful ecotourism concept in Cambodia; long-term environmental, socio-cultural and economic sustainability.
I almost forget to mention about a local organization who provides birdwatching tour in Cambodia. The Sam Veasa Center (SVC) in partnership with Wildlife Conservation Society is the tour organizer of our trip. Visit thier website for more information http://www.samveasna.org
March 16, 2009
There are many birds you can see around the Ang Trapaeng Thmor. Spending a day or couple of days, your birds’ wish list would be fulfilled like some of Thai birders I traveled with.
March 15, 2009
Besides the Eastern Sarus Cranes at Ang Trapaeng Thmor, another highlight of the trip was seeing the Eld’s Deers. It might not sound that exciting. But believe me… it was really stirring because we had seen them in the woodland (kind of savanna in Africa). I couldn’t be still in that circumstance. Guess what? I turned myself to be a hunter and followed the Eld’s Deers while they were walking away to keep a distance from strangers (us). The only thought in my head was that I wanted to shoot them!! ….with my camera, of course.
However, it was about at noon. The weather and temperature there was really hot and of course, heat also. The best distance I can get close to them was just about one kilometer. Not the great shots of them I got, but I still insist it was the great moment to encounter them.
Male Eld's Deer
Group of Female Eld's Deers
**Photos taken with Canon 450D and Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS USM lens.
March 12, 2009
Fact: The Eastern Sarus Crane is the tallest crane species, standing six feet tall and with a wingspan of eight feet. Its habitat range is around Indochina, though its populations have dropped significantly in the last 50 years. It’s still had small populations in Myanmar, Vietnam and most notably Cambodia, where its last major breeding ground is.
Photos taken by Canon 450D with Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS. Objects distance apprx. 250-300 meter.
Crane 111/222: "Tower..Tower, request your permission to land"
Tower: "Crane 111, cleared for landing. Crane 222, heavy traffic on the ground, hover for a moment. Copy?"
Crane 111: "Crane 111, cleared for landing, roger."
Crane 222: "Tower, Crane 222 stop hovering, energy level's down. request immediately land" (hahaha)
March 11, 2009
As I mentioned on my previous posting that I went to Cambodia for birding trip, how could not I show you proof of success?
The Ang Trapaeng Thmor was the main destination of the trip. Located in the north western Cambodia and it is not far from the border of Thailand actually. Well, let’s ignore how much effort I had to do on the road to getting into the Sarus Crane area (In case you don’t know that, please see my previous post – Overland Birding Trip), once we arrived to the location it was very lucky moment. The cranes were about to get down on the ground.
At the moment I saw them, there was no word I could say unless “wow..wow…this is really amazing!!’
The Sarus Crane
Could not believe my eyes (really!)
In the air
I believe I can fly...
March 9, 2009
I still insist that I am not a birdwatcher. I know very little which bird is what bird. I rarely touch and use binoculars. A DSLR camera stills be my arms when I do a trip. Anyhow, for whatever reason it looks like my fate is leading me to involve more and more to birding.
Last week I had a chance to travel with one of Thai birdwatcher groups to Cambodia. A trip purpose was seeing birds, the Eastern Sarus Crane at Ang Trapeang Thmor (Sarus Crane Reserve) and the Bengal Florican at Kompong Thom Grasslands; both locations are near Siem Reap.
The trip was for 2 days 1 night by a car starting from Bangkok to Aranyapathet-Poipet Border Checkpoint (Thailand/Cambodia Border), crossing the border, heading to the birding locations in daytime and staying overnight in Siem Reap.
Our group arrived at Poipet around 8:30am. After passing through the Immigration stations, we got on the 4WD vehicles which were our feet throughout the trip.
Welcome to Cambodia
Two of our four vehicles
The road condition in Cambodia is better than what I expected. It looks like new sealed roads which have been done and used recently. It is really good till I thought that a warning about the poor road condition in Cambodia is too much. I enjoyed sitting in air-conditioned vehicle that was running in a speed 80 k.m. per hour. It was smooth riding until I was sleepy and fallen asleep.
Road condition from Poipet to Siem Reap
Road view thru a windshield
Well, once the vehicle led us to the sub-routes heading to the Sarus Crane Reserve area, it was such a different world/road condition!! There is not called as a road to me actually. What does it look like?? Let me show you here…
Drive into the field
Are we in the Africa?
Where do we go from here??
January 20, 2009
I was told that we were very lucky to see a bird named “Scarlet Finch” on the second day we stayed at Doi Lang. The bird is one of the most difficult seeing birds in Thailand. As a result, there was around a hundred of birdwatchers headed up to the Doi Lang rigth after the news of seeing the Scarlet Finch spreaded out in the next day. I heard that some people were willing to drive themselve a round trip more than 4 hours just to watching the bird only 15-30 minutes. Wow!! such a big star “Scarlet Finch”
Male Scarlet Finch
Someone in our group said that seeing a Scarlet Finch is “Lucky”. Two of them seen is “Wonderful”. But we saw three of them at the same time on that day. So, that person named the day “Bloody day at Doi Lang”.
Female Scarlet Finch (Top one)