My Birding Patch
My birding patch, where I do most of my photography, is in two parts, my garden and the area surrounding my house which is about a 500m circle centered on my home plus two local Thai National Parks located at Tat Mok and Nam Nao.
My garden has a mixed habitat with one large mature tree being the prominent feature. Bird friendly fruiting trees and flowering shrubs that attract a manner of small birds have also be incorporated into the garden design. The house and garden cover about 1200 sq m.
On the wider patch there are two small lakes and an area of woodland with some mature trees. There are also a couple of vacant decent sized plots where the grass is cut.
Both Thai National Parks that I visit on a regular basis are set in the East Phetchabun Mountains. These have similar montane forest coverage although Nam Nao is wetter and also includes areas of pine forest.
Bird Photography on my Patch
I consider myself a novice bird photographer who still has a lot to learn. However I should mention that when designing the house I included two areas ideal for photography both are on the second floor and give good views of the garden and surrounding areas as well as providing an excellent platform for birds in flight photography.
Bird photography in the two National Parks is a different matter altogether, while the public area in Nam Nao is compact and lends itself to walking around, observations in Tat Mok are mainly carried out from the 19km long access road to the waterfall. The habitat and lighting conditions often make photography a real challenge.
Birds I Record on my Patch
About 50% of the birds I record on my patch are observed and photographed from the house, this of course includes flyovers. Little did I know that when I built the house that the plot I had chosen was near the Northern Flyway for raptor migration in Thailand. So any time from September onward I usually get to see some raptor activity, weather permitting.
The garden plays host to several smaller migratory birds in the winter. While the lakes provide a home for migratory water birds on a regular basis in the summer. At other times the area offers up the common Thai birds you would expect in the habitat with the occasional interesting patch vagrant turning up.
Both National Parks offer up the usual collection of forest dwellers you would expect to find in this area.
My garden total for 2018 was 111 species. While overall I have recorded 210 species in Phetchabun Province as of June 2019.
Hosted Birding Trips
If you fancy a free trip out to do some birding and photography in Phetchabun Province please read this article for more detail.