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|A Report from birdtours.co.uk|
Vietnam, 28 November 2003 - 14 January 2004,
Transportation unlike all the other reports we had, we did not us the services of Nguyen Van Viet to arrange things for us. Although his service is very good by all accounts, it was too expensive for our budget. We took a chance and hired a car through our hotel in Hanoi for transport in the north. This cost us about ½ as much as Mr. Viet would have charged. In fact we could have saved even more, I believe, by arranging one trip at a time. In the center, we just hired a taxi at the airport to take us to Bach Ma National Park and to fetch us at the end. In the south, we took busses, which are frequent and cheap, to transport us between major sites and motorcycle taxis to specific sites at Da Lat and Di Linh.
Visas Because we were spending 45 days rather than the normal 30 days or less, we had to get a visa extension while in the country. This was easily done by the hotel/travel agent while we were birding. We sent our passports back with the driver after he dropped us at Cuc Phuong National Park. We made copies of our front page of our passports and our visa page before we left home, and those were adequate at most places without actually turning over our passports.
Money the Dong was trading at about 16,000 to the $US while we were there, but the most we ever received was 15,575 to the $US at the Hanoi airport on our arrival. We usually changed $s to Dong at jewelry stores because it was convenient and the rate was fair.
Timing November to April are usually considered the best months. We chose Dec - Jan because it fit into our schedule but would have gone in March if it had worked out better. As with others who came before February, we did not hear even 1 Blue-rumped Pitta calling. We also did not hear Blue-naped at Tam Dao. The timing of our trip may have also lessened our chances for Orange-breasted Laughingthrushes at Di Linh. Because of the length of the country and the mountain ranges, it is difficult to get ideal weather in all parts. We were lucky in having a shorter and drier wet season than usual so we didn't have muddy roads and trails which we could have had at that time of year. We did have quite cold weather in the north.
Flights We flew from San Francisco to Hanoi on China Air and on Vietnam airlines from Hanoi to Hue and from Hue to HCMC. (Vietnamese still call HCMC Saigon in conversation). BUT had we known how comfortable and convenient the trains are we would have taken the train. True, as we read, the flying time is so much faster than the train, and if one isn't stopping in Hue, it would be a long train ride. However, one can get on the train at 7 PM in Hanoi, have a night's sleep, and arrive at Hue at 7AM. And although I didn't check this, I assume you can do the same from Hue to Saigon. The train ride cost c$30 and you do not have to pay for a hotel room for that night.
Trip Reports We bought 3 trip reports from Oriental Bird Club for a small fee. They were all excellent with maps that were invaluable and amazingly remained quite accurate to this day. You can contact the OBC at firstname.lastname@example.org
Or OBC c/o The Lodge, Sandy Bedfordshire, SG19 2DL, United Kingdom
Web site: http://www.orientalbirdclub.org/
The trip reports were:
Vietnam 7th November - 5th December 1996 by Brian Gee
Vietnam November/December 1999 by Paul Holmes
Vietnam 7th March - 4th April 2002 Andy Adcock & Sam Woods
We also had 4 trip reports that we found on the web. These were excellent as well but lacked the maps found in the OBC reports. They were:
Vietnam 21 February - 20 March 2002 Moira and Graeme Wallace
Vietnam 11 December 1998 - 1 January 1999 by Aidan Kelly
2 reports only on North Vietnam including Sapa on the China border
North Vietnam 4 - 20 January 2002 by Remco Hofland
Birding in Vietnam 13 April - 2 may 2001 by Jonathan Williams
Thanks Thanks to Andy Adcock, who we met in the Philippines in 2003, for tapes, to Graeme Wallace, who we met in Malaysia in 2000 and again in the Philippines in 2003, for tapes and other information, to Remco Hofland for tapes, maps, and current information, and to Aidan Kelly, with whom we have birded on 6 international trips and here in Washington State, for tapes.
28 - 30 November Flew Seattle - San Francisco - Taipei - Hanoi
30 November Hanoi visited Museum of Ethnology
1 December Hanoi to Xuan Thuy National Park
2 - 3 December Xuan Thuy National Park
4 December morning Xuan Thuy then to Bong Substation Cuc Phuong National Park
5 - 10 December Cuc Phuong National Park
11 December morning at Cuc Phuong National Park 10:15 left for Tam Dao
12 - 14 December Water Tank Trail, Tam Dao
15 December Water Tank Trail, Tam Dao, 13:00 to Hanoi, 21:30 Train to Lao Cai
16 December Bus to Sapa birded the Ham Rong Botanical Garden
17 December "Ward's Valley"
18 - 19 December "Km 8" road
20 December "Ward's Valley" evening train to Hanoi
21 December Hanoi Temple of Literature and shopping
22 - 23 December Halong Bay tour
24 December Flew to Hue and car to Bach Ma 10:30 birding the road at Bach Ma
25 - 26 December Bach Ma National Park
27 December Pheasant Trail, Bach Ma then to Hue
28 December Flew Hue to Saigon day in Saigon
29 December Tourist Bus to Da Lat
30 December Ta Nung Valley riding with Nam
31 December Mt. Lang Bian National Park
1 January Ho Tuyen Lam
2 January Mt. Lang Bian National Park
3 January morning Ta Nung Valley afternoon bus to Di Linh
4 January birded Deo Nui San are on the road to Phan Tiet
5 January morning road to Phan Tiet afternoon bus and motorcycle taxi to Cat Tien N. P.
6 - 10 January Cat Tien National Park
11 January morning Cat Tien National Park afternoon back to Saigon
12 January Saigon Shopping & War Remnants Museum
13 January 1 day tour to Mekong Delta
14 January shopping and evening flight to Taipei - San Francisco - Seattle
because all other reports have a detailed description of the sites which hasn't changed, I will not duplicate this information, but will only add any new or different description if it is necessary.
Xuan Thuy National Park 2 days + 1 afternoon & 1 morning
This is not a new site but has recently become a national park. We came by car hired through our hotel. I can't recommend our hotel for other reasons but car hire can likely be arranged through most hotels in Hanoi. We did this over the internet before we left. We were assured the driver knew how to find the site which he didn't, but that was no problem since he spoke Vietnamese and just asked directions. The main advantage in booking your car through Mr. Viet is that others have accomplished the check-in at the police station in minutes where we spent 2 hours there. We weren't even sure for some time that we were at the correct place, but it was not wasted time as we birded while the paperwork was being done, seeing our only Pale-vented Bulbuls as well as Red-billed Starlings, Blue Rock-thrush, & other common birds. I speculate, that Mr. Viet must have someone call and say a birder is coming so that they are more prepared. If you use another travel agent, they may be able to do the same thing. The good news was our driver was able to drive all the way there rather than having to go on motorcycles from the police station because there is now a narrow but serviceable road into the headquarters area.
We found the site to be flooded when we arrived. We purposefully planned our arrival to coincide with a few days of high tides as low tide makes getting off on the islands to see Spoon-billed Sandpiper and Saunder's Gull impossible. (I had a hard time finding out when to expect high tides but eventually got good information by contacting Birdlife International in Hanoi.) The staff put chairs in strategic places so we could get to the office and to the accommodation ( This was the only day that the tide was high enough to flood the grounds around the headquarters). The accommodation is indeed basic, but the people were nice and the food was adequate. We did not have them trying to charge us unreasonably as we had heard from other people (Maybe some changes because it is now a national park?). We were charged less than expected: $10 each per day for lodging , $2.50 per meal for food (we only ate dinner, bringing food with us because others have been charged $10 per meal.), $40 per day for the boat, $10 per day for the guide, and $5 each for park entrance -- total - $195 for 3 days for the two of us.
The only problem we had was that, even though we told them we wanted to go to Con Giao Xuan, the largest and farthest out island, to see Spoon-billed Sandpiper, they took us in a small park boat and then said the water was too rough to get to Con Giao Xuan. We ended up on Con Giao Lac, the farthest we could get under the conditions. We saw Black-tailed Gulls, Japanese Thrush, and a small assortment of waders but none of the targets. I raised hell, and the next day we had a different guide and a large boat. The large boat was the same price as the small one so MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE GOING IN A LARGE BOAT THE FIRST TIME YOU GO OR ELSE YOU WILL LIKELY HAVE TO GO AGAIN THE NEXT DAY. We easily went to Con Giao Xuan, wadded ashore in our wellies, dumped out the water, and walked nearly to the far end of the island to find the Spoon-billed Sands. We had good, close scope views of 4, but it took most of the day to do it. Also had at least 3 Heugland Gulls in a group of c15 large, pink-legged gulls -- looked like Pallas Gull, but according to Robson 2000 they are vagrants. Unfortunately there were no Saunder's Gulls.
Best Birds: Spoonbilled Sandpiper 4, Black-faced Spoonbill 43, Chestnut-flanked White-eye 3, Heuglin's Gull 3.
Cuc Phuong National Park 6 days + 1 morning
We were advised by Graeme Wallace to get a bungalow rather than the rat-infested other choice. We paid $25 a night for a pleasant bungalow surrounded by trees. The rat-infested rooms are $8 per person. It was an easy choice for us, may be harder for a single person. The meals were $5 a day per person for 3 meals. We did not always eat the breakfast because we only got them to serve breakfast at 06:00 a couple times. Usually they would not get there until 07:00 which was too late unless we went out and birded and came back for breakfast which was a waste of birding time. We found the meals to be quite good unlike the experience had by others. The trails were excellent, mostly paved, easy to follow, and right outside the door. The weather was much colder than expected. We only had a small amount of rain but several days of low fog which hampered but did not eliminate birding. The entrance road was good as reported. The Valley Trail was good for thrushes, Limestone Wren-Babblers, and Tristram's Buntings. The Ridge or Loop trail was the best for us for Pittas, Streaked Wren-Babblers, & Eyebrowed Wren-Babblers. The Grid Trails were not as good as reported by birders who were here a few years ago.
Best Birds: Bar-bellied Pitta 3 m, 2 f, heard 22; Blue-rumped Pitta 1 excellent & 3 poor views. Silver Pheasant 1m; Red-vented Barbet 2 seen, many heard; Grey-eye Bulbul 7; Japanese Thrush common; Scaly Thrush common; Asian Stubtail 5; Bianchi's Warbler 2 identified out of the many "Golden-spectacled" seen; Fujian Niltava 4; Rufous-tailed Robin 5; Red-flanked Bluetail (Orange-flanked Bush-Robin) common; White-tailed Robin 1m 3f; Rufous-throated Fulvetta daily; Black-browed Fulvetta common; Fork-tailed Sunbird 3; White-winged Magpie 10; Ratchet-tailed Treepie 8; Tristram's Bunting 3.
Tam Dao 3 days + 1 morning
This site was very cold when we were there with some fog, but even when there seemed to be fog everywhere else, we were able to bird the Water Tank Trail. We spent all of our time on this trail as it seemed from previous reports to hold all the species we were after. In the event, birding was very slow, the poorest birding of any place on the trip. We ended up seeing most of the usual special birds for the site but missed all the goodies seen by Adcock and Woods 2002 as well as Short-tailed Parrotbill.
We stayed at Green World Hotel. This was a deviation from our normal routine as there were less expensive options available. We had a $25 room bargained down to $20, but it was quite nice with a balcony. We stopped by a noodle shop each morning for noodle soup for breakfast on our way to the Watertank Trail. We took snack food with us for lunch. For dinner we ate in the hotel a couple nights and in restaurants in town a couple nights.
Best Birds: Grey Laughingthrush heard frequently but only 1 seen; Black-chinned Yuhina 16; Greater Rufous-headed Parrotbill 1; Fork-tailed Sunbird 5; Golden-throated Barbet common; & Blue Whistling-Thrush M. c. caeruleus with black bill.
SaPa 4 1/2 days. See trip reports by Jonathan Williams 2001 & Remco Hofland 2002
There are many hotels here. We booked ours through our hotel in Hanoi but then negotiated a better price based on staying 4 nights, but one could just wait until one arrives and choose between the many being offered by the bus driver and others waiting for the bus to arrive. We were happy to have one that offered a heater since it was cold here in December. We walked to the square and hired 2 motorcycles to take us to Fansipan Pass for 50, 000vnd each, round trip, their price. Since we knew Remco paid $7.50 each, we gave them 60,000 vnd (c$4) each. Then we gave them 50,000 round trip each day for the shorter trip to km 8 as well.
After spending a good night sleeping on the train, we arrived in Lao Cai at 06:00. A bus was waiting to take train passengers to Sapa which we reached at 07:30. Checked into a hotel, got all our warm clothes out, and found the Ham Rong Gardens at 11:00. The gardens looked good and were not too crowded when we first got there, but soon the tour busses began disgorging huge numbers of noisy tourists with no interest in nature. About the same time the gardens began playing loud music that was blasted out of speakers all over the gardens. We were there during Christmas vacation which likely accounted for how busy it was. We could not find any locals who knew where the gardens were. We did not see very many birds here, but there are good paths and lovely grounds. We thought we would come back on our last day, but decided to return to "Ward's Valley" again instead.
Best Birds: Buff-throated Warbler, Blue-fronted Redstart, Green-tailed Sunbird.
We spent our first full day and our last morning at "Ward's Valley" which is accessed from about 1 km before Fansipan Pass. We learned about this area from Remco's trip report and had a map that Remco emailed to me, but the access had changed so that we wasted some time trying to find the access point. (the km markers are wrong on the map from Remco which was confusing when trying to hire motorcycles to take us there. ) It is actually easier now once we figured out that where the hut was supposed to be is the location of a new forest service building being built. There is a large sign advising that this is the start of a trail up Fansipan Mountain. It is located c1.5 km before the pass. The trail we wanted took off from the far right corner of the clearing. We do not know what the clearing will look like when you get there. It was covered with rocks to make a flat surface for ??? - parking? more buildings? The trail is not that obvious at the start but soon becomes quite good. DO NOT TAKE THE TRAIL TO FANSIPAN which is on the left side of the clearing. On the right hand side, head down to the valley bottom staying slightly right as you descend. You will be able to see a small valley going left from the far end of the main valley. This is the area Remco dubbed Wards Valley. There is a sign several meters up in a tree where the Ward's Valley trail takes off. We certainly did not have the great birding there that Remco had, but we did see quite a bit. The birding is mostly in flocks so can be quite slow between flocks and the 2nd half of the valley requires climbing up the stream or climbing quite a way above it on little or no trail.
Best Birds: Chestnut-tailed Minla; Red-tailed Minla 2; Rusty-capped Fulvetta 2 + 10; Whiskered Yuhina 6.
The 2 middle days of our stay here were spent at a spot dubbed KM 8 by Williams which is a road leading off to the right as you go towards Fansipan Pass and away from SaPa. The road is just a little before the "8 km to SaPa" km stone beside a white house and starting off going up hill through a pine plantation. We just walked the road and birded from it. Again we had a map from Remco, but we missed a junction on our first trip up as it was a path rather than an a fork in the road. The left fork, the one taken by his group, is a path going off through some fields and right by some houses. When we were there it was blocked by a rail gate. We would have had to remove some rails to get through. We did not take it on our second day either as we had just had a torrential rain storm all night and heavy fog that day so the path was very muddy and went into a fog bank. We had great birding on this road the first day and fair birding on the second day.
Best Birds: Crested Finchbill 40 + 6; Collared Finchbill 15 + 10; Broad-billed Warbler 2; Red-billed Leiothrix 15; Golden-breasted Fulvetta 2; Red-tailed Minla 4 + 10; Streak-throated Minla 4; Rusty-capped Fulvetta 3; Whiskered Yuhina 4 + 10; White-collared Yuhina 30+: Spot-breasted Parrotbill 2 + 3; Ashy-throated Parrotbill 6; Black-throated Tit 12 + 20; Black-headed Greenfinch 24 + 5.
Halong Bay: We did a 2 day tour to Halong Bay booked through our hotel in Hanoi. This was a sightseeing trip that was very beautiful, most of the time being spent on a boat in the bay but also walking through a limestone cave.
Best Birds: Asian Pied Hornbill, Black Kite, Pacific Reef-Heron.
Bach Ma National Park 3+ days
We flew to Hue from Hanoi but would have taken the train if we had it to do over. The train leaves Hanoi at 19:00 and arrives Hue at 07:00. The earliest plane, which we took, leaves Hanoi at 06:15 arriving Hue at 07:45. We hired a taxi from the stand at the airport to take us to Bach Ma NP for $40. We could have had the car stay with us for $ 40 a day, but that was beyond our budget. When we checked into the park, which we had to do at the bottom of the hill, we found out that the jeep others had hired to take them to the Pheasant Trail was not available while we were there. So we arranged for the driver to pick us up at our room on our last morning at 05:00, take us to the Pheasant Trail, wait for us to bird until afternoon, and then take us to Hue for the last night. We had not intended to go to Hue, but this seemed our only workable solution. We found out from Minh that we could have arranged motorcycles to go down to the Pheasant Trail, but that would not have been much cheaper than having a car. We paid $62 for our stay: $10 per night & $5 each per day for 3 meals. The food was adequate but not as good as Cuc Phuong, but they would prepare it for us whenever we wanted to eat. During lunch the first day, Minh, who is in charge of the station where you stay, introduced himself to us. He is quite a keen birder. He went out with us after lunch and pointed out the call of the Short-tailed Scimitar-Babbler which we thought we had little chance to see but which turned out to be quite common. Thanks to Minh and probably others as well, there are many programs in place to keep the park free of litter and protected from hunting and destruction. Minh has many more ideas for projects to help educate the local population as to the need to preserve the forest and wildlife in the park. He needs funding for these projects of course since the government in Vietnam does not provide any. So if anyone knows of organizations that might want to help preserve a large and beautiful forest in Vietnam, please send that information to Minh at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
The weather at Bach Ma was the worst we had on the trip as the rainy season was just ending. We arrived on the 5th day of a dry spell that lasted until the middle of the next day. We arrived, dumped our gear, and birded the road below the lodge and the Rhododendron Trail. After lunch we again birded below the road with Minh. That night Minh brought a male Blue-rumped Pitta to our room. It had flown into the dinning room where he had caught it. The next morning Minh went with us to the top of the mountain where the US had a helipad during the war and the Viet Cong had tunnels beneath. After lunch we birded alone below the lodge again, but we had showers to contend with. We had arranged with Minh to get a ride down the next afternoon to go birding with him on another trail for Annam (Vietnamese) Partridge and to stay at the lower accommodations where we would be in position to try the same trail or go directly to the Pheasant Trail. However, it rained almost all day so we cancelled the trip down and stayed where we were. The last morning was rainy most of the way down, but it was not raining at the Pheasant Trail when we arrived and began birding. It started though in just a few minutes. We heard the Annam Partridge after only 20 - 30 minutes. It did not sound too far away, but the vegetation was thick and the rain made hearing and seeing difficult. We walked on for a while before we heard the Crested Argus way off in the distance. By now it was raining hard and having heard the target birds and with the chance of seeing them being next to none, we returned to the car, pulled off a dozen or more leaches, and drove to Hue.
Minh said the Argus is seeable in May when they are displaying. If given some warning he would arrange a 3 day trip to see one on its display area. We hope to do that some time.
Best Birds: Short-tailed Scimitar-Babbler 4; Crested Argus h; Silver Pheasant 1m; Annam (Vietnamese) Partridge h; Rufous-throated Partridge 3; Bar-backed partridge h; Brown Hornbill 2; Blue-rumped pitta 1 in the hand; Siberian Thrush 7; White-winged Magpie 3.
Da Lat 4 ½ days. We traveled to Da Lat from HCMC on a tourist bus for $5 each. This took 8 hours. We sent for Nam who came in a few minutes and we arranged to have him take us on his and a friend's motorcycle taxis for the nest 5 days. They picked us up at our hotel each morning and took us to the birding site, picked us up at whatever time we chose, and returned us to our hotel. If we had other business to do like by return tickets, they took us to the right spot on the way home for no extra. We got a little reduced rate because we were going out 5 days in a row. The usual rate is $10 a day. Nam is a great guy who speaks good English. He does not know birds but knows where birders go. He is the one who discovered the current spot for Grey-crowned Crocias. The best bet would be to email him ahead of time as he is often away taking people on multi-day tours. Email: email@example.com. The name of the other driver was Duong Ngoc Nguyen: his English isn't as good as Nam's but good enough, and he knows all the spots and is friendly and reliable. .
The sites we visited are:
Ta Nung Valley This is the new Grey-crowned Crocias site, and it is good. This is the birdiest site we birded in Viet Nam. We went here the first day and the last morning that we were in Da Lat. We found the Crocias to be much easier than expected. We found them in the forest as expected but also along the main road in Lantana scrub and also on the entrance road again eating Lantana berries. Nam knows where the trail is to enter the forest which requires you to walk past someone's house and through their garden. Walk along side the small rose bushes to the edge of the forest. The trail is not visible until you actually get to the edge of the forest. The trail description in Holms's report did not make sense when compared to the description in Adcock's report. But at the end of the day we found another trail which we believe was the one Holms used. We walked both trails: Adcock's is much better. But we had the best birding along the entrance road and along the edge of the forest.
Best Birds: Grey-crowned Crocias 6+ + 5, Indochinese Cuckoo-shrike 4 + 1, White-throated Rock-Thrush 1m, Grey-bellied Tesia 3, White-cheeked Laughingthrush 20+, Rufous-backed Sibia 3 + 3, Gould's Sunbird 2 + 4.
Mount Lang Bian National Park 2 days. Although this is a national park, it is being hacked by local people for charcoal and by the lodge at the bottom for fire wood. Our rides dropped us where the pine forest starts. The pine forest is quite birdie in the morning. Because this is the most reliable spot for the Vietnamese Greenfinch, we birded it as well as we could while trying to move up the very steep road at a reasonably fast pace because we did not want to miss the Collared Laughingthrush.
The first time up we were feeling like we were trying to bird in downtown Da Lat because of the traffic. The first time we tried to call in a Collared Laughingthrush we had a group of 7 local charcoal makers with two barking dogs come through just after the bird called for the first and last time. The next time we had one calling, a group of tourists hiking to the summit came through. There were at least 4 more groups after that and they all came back down as well. Yes, we missed both the Geenfinch and the Laughingthrush. On our second try, we had fewer people and much better success - long, close views of the Laughingthrush but still no Greenfinch.
Best Birds: Collard Laughingthrush 2 seen 2 more heard; Silver Pheasant 2m fighting and1f; Black-headed Sibia 1.
Ho Tuyen Lam 1 day. I seriously considered not going to this site because the latest reports have found it so changed that they had trouble finding the trails and have not been finding the target birds. But because it does seem to be the best place to see Burmese Shrike, the only place besides Di Linh for Black-hooded Laughingthrush , and because it is the only place for Yellow-billed Nuthatch although the latest reports we read had not found either the nuthatch or the laughingthrush, we decided to give it one day.
We were picked up at 06:00 arriving at the lake at 06:15. No boats were ready yet, but Nam yelled and got someone to come over and take us. We wanted to go earlier, but Nam said no one is there that early. At 06:45 we left the boat and walked up the steep slope into the pine plantation. Trail C in the Holmes's report, the only one birded by Adcock and Wallace, was straight forward, and we followed it straight into the forest. We found the trail quite easy to follow until it ended before reaching the valley floor and certainly less than 1 km from the start of the forest. If it was longer 1 or 2 years ago I do not know what happened to it because I spent considerable time thrashing around trying to locate it to no avail. We ate breakfast at the end and had a flock of White-cheeked Laughingthrushes come through. Then we birded our way back out. It still was not noon so we decided to try finding the other trails. We found a trail near the beginning of the pines that led to the lake. We followed it along the lake edge to where Trails A & B were supposed to be. We found what must have been Trail B, but since that was the one where Holmes did not see much and it was so degraded back then we wanted to try A. We followed every elephant track through the grass, but they all dead-ended. We decided to try and find a trail going up through the remnant patch of forest to the Trail C and bird it again. Our trail went up a ways but then started going down again. We bushwhacked our way back to the trail; it was shorter but much harder than going around the way we came. So we went back into the forest on Trail C. Before we got to the end, we found a mixed species flock and about fell over in shock when we saw 2 Yellow-billed Nuthatches on a smallish tree no more than 6-7 m up. They did not stay long, but presented a good view for a few seconds. We had been seeing Chestnut-vented Nuthatches in the pines this day and the day before so there was no mistaking them.
Best Birds: Yellow-billed Nuthatch 2; Burmese Shrike 2; Red Crossbill 4 (2 nest, 1 with a pair, 1 with a f & a fledgling); Black-collared Starling 7.
Di Linh 1 ½ days. Took a tourist bus from Da Lat and told them we wanted to go to a hotel but did not know the name of any. We said we were going to be birding on the road to Phan Tiet so would like to stay near where that road forked off. They dropped us off at hotel that was close, but I can't recommend it. They agreed to one price then after we were all settled in decided that it was that much per person. They agreed to provide motorcycle taxis for one price for 05:00 the next morning. At 05:00 no one was up and they wanted 3 times as much. Then when we left they wanted us to pay for that day even though they knew we were leaving and we were out of the room by noon. We had no problems like this anywhere else on the whole trip, although it is reported to not be uncommon.
On the way to Di Linh on the bus we talked to a tour guide who said the road to Phan Tiet had been paved in the last 6 months and the edges were all torn up and would not be good birding. We began to wonder now if this had been a good choice. Our first problem was that since the road had been repaired and surfaced they had not replaced the km markers so we did not know where 13.5 km was, but since that is where the forest started according to previous reports we got off after we began going into better forest. We soon gave up any idea that this had been a mistake as within a short time we had a mixed flock with a belated Vietnamese Greenfinch first spotted by Thaïs in a tree and then flying across the road and dropping to the tall roadside grass to feed. What a view! Seconds later in the same flock we finally connected with the distinctive race of the Gray-headed Parrotbill followed by Red-billed Scimitar-Babbler. That was the start of the best morning of birding on the entire trip as we also saw 2 batches of Black-hooded Laughingthrushes calling but no views before we figured out that they were not calling until they had come in quite close. So we waited quite a while next time after playing the call, but after a bit we gave up and started to walk on when the woods came alive with their calls. We soon had 5 in one view all giving their amazing calls. When they moved off 4 more began calling. Now we only need Cutia, Indochinese Magpie, and Orange-breasted Laughingthrush. Since we did not have the call of the Lauhingthrush, we tried for the other two while keeping our ears open for a beautiful call that might be the laughingthrush. We actually thought we had it for a few minutes, but it turned out to be a Spot-throated Babbler. I heard a partial Cutia song, so we played its call on the mini-disk, and one flew into a close tree. Soon there was a pair singing and giving great views as they fed like nuthatches and continued to call. We did not get either the magpie or the laughing thrush but we still had one more surprise as a Jerdon's Baza, another bird we have missed everywhere else flew over. We also had great views of a Black-headed Sibia singing from a power line. We had all this great birding while a horde of men were stringing wire on the newly erected power poles. We came back the next morning to try one more time for the laughingthrush but failed to see any of the great birds we had seen the first day.
Best Birds are highlighted above.
Cat Tien National Park 5 ½ days. We did not have to book meals ahead of time at reception but purchased them meal by meal just like in a restaurant. They were good enough, but we spent more than the $5 per day that they charged at the other parks. Of course this is the first place where we actually got a little hot so the beers might have accounted for much of the extra cost.
Cat Tien is a great place to bird. We really did not have many new species to find here. We got the Gray-faced Tit-Babblers and Germain's Peacock-Pheasant the first morning and no more lifers the next 5 days but had good birding the whole time, and we enjoyed the vast array of birds that we saw. We had an absolutely stunning view of a male Bar-bellied Pitta and only our second sighting of Siamese Fireback and Green Peafowl. We dipped on Black-&-Buff & Pale-headed Woodpeckers and Indo-Chinese Green (Yellow-breasted) Magpie.
The park staff seems to be doing a pretty good job of protecting the park, but the trail to Crocodile Lake was really busy when we were there. They have just built accommodations at the lake and were building furniture for the rooms while we were there. On our 2 trips out in late morning we had 3 motorcycles and 3 bicycles pass us. Much of the traffic may have been because of the building going on, but once the rooms are holding guests on a regular basis there will be motorcycles bringing in food, workers, etc. even more often, I'm afraid. Since this is the best trail for seeing Pitas and Germain's Peacock-Pheasant, they may become more difficult. We saw both of them on other trails or the road however.
Species Account: Species italicized are life birds that we have encountered for the first time on this trip.
Little Grebe Tachybaptus furicollis: Xuan Thuy 3 on 1 Dec. and 1 on 2 Dec.; Ho Tuyen Lam 4 on the lake 1 Jan.
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea: Xuan Thuy common: Cat Tien 4 on 10 & 11 Jan.
Purple Heron area purpurea: Cat Tien 3 on 7 Jan. & 2 on 10 & 11 Jan.
Great Egret Ardea alba: Xuan Thuy common; seen driving between sites; Cat Tien 30 on 7 Jan., 9 on 10 Jan., & 5 on 11 Jan
Little Egret Egretta garzetta: Xuan Thuy common; common driving between sites; Cat Tien 1 on 7, 10, & 11 Jan.
Pacific Reef-Heron Egretta sacra: Halong Bay 3 on 22 Dec. & 1 on 23 Dec.
Chinese Pond-Heron Ardeola bacchus: Xuan Thuy common; common between sites; Mt. Lang Bian 3; Ho Tuyen Lam 3; Ta Nung Valley 1; Cat Tien daily in small numbers
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis: common between sites;
Yellow Bittern Ixobrychus sinensis: Xuan Thuy 1 on 1 Dec.
Cinnamon Bittern Ixobrychus cinnamomeus: Cat Tien 1 on 11 Jan. at Crocodile Lake
Wooley-necked Stork ciconia episcopus: Cat Tien 1 on 7 Jan. at Crocodile Lake & 3 on 9 Jan. from Heaven's Rapids Road
Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus: Cat Tien 6 soaring above Crocodile Lake on 7 Jan.
Black-headed Ibis Threskiornis melanocephalus: Xuan Thuy 3 on 2 Dec. & 1 on 3 Dec.
Black-faced Spoonbill Platalea minor: Xuan Thuy 43 from bund c 3 km se of the lodging (to the right after passing the headquarters).
Lesser Whistling-Duck Dendrocygna javanica: Cat Tien 30+ on 10 Jan. and 100 on 11 Jan. all at Crocodile Lake.
Greylag Goose Anser anser: Xuan Thuy 8 on 2 & 3 Dec.
Eurasian Wigeon Anas penelope: Xuan Thuy 8 on 1 Dec.
Eurasian Teal Anas crecca: Xuan Thuy common.
Spot-billed Duck Anas poecilorhyncha: Xuan Thuy 3 on 1 Dec. & 7 on 2 Dec.
Garganey Anas querquedula: Xuan Thuy 100 on 3 Dec.
Osprey Pandion haliaetus: Cat Tien 1 over the river & 1 at Crocodile Lake on 10 Jan.
Jerdon's Baza Avicda jerdoni: Di Linh on 4 Jan. flew over on the road to Phan Tiet.
Black Baza Aviceda leuphotes: Cat Tien 1 in flight on main road toward Dac Lua on 6 Jan. & 1 perched in large snag on the same rd. on 8 Jan.
Oiental Honey-buzard Pernis ptilorbyncus: SaPa 2 on 20 Dec.
Black Kite Milvus migrans: Halong Bay 7on 22 Dec. & 2 on 23 Dec. soaring over the bay.
Grey-headed Fish-Eagle Idhthyophaga ichthyaetus: Cat Tien on 7 Jan. at Crocodile Lk.
Crested Serpent-Eagle Spilornis cheela: Ta Nung Valley 1 on 30 Dec.; Di Linh 2 on 5 Jan.; Cat Tien 1 or 2 daily.
Eastern Marsh-Harrier Circus spilonotus: Xuan Thuy daily with maximum count of 10.
Pied Harrier Circus melanoleucos: Xuan Thuy 2 on 1 Dec. & 1 on 3 Dec.
Crested Goshawk Accipeiter trivirgatus: Ta Nung Valley 1 on 30 Dec.
Shikra Accipiter badius: Ta Nung Valley 1 each day.
Besra Accititer virgatus: Cuc Phuong 1 on 9 Dec.; Mt. Lang Bian 2 on 31 Dec.
Black Eagle Ictinaetus malayensis: Cuc Phuong 1 on 5 & 10 Dec.; Bach Ma 2 on 24 & 25 Dec.; Ta Nung Valley 1; Mt. Lang Bian 1; Di Linh 1.
Pied Falconet Micohierax melanoleucus: Cuc Phuong 1 on 7Dec. perched in a snag on edge of the Bong Substation & 1 on 11 Dec. along the entrance road.
Peregrine Falcon Falco perigrinus: Xuan Thuy 1 on Con Giao Lac on 2 Dec. & 2 on Con Giao Xuan on 3 Dec.
Rufous-throated Partridge Arborophila rufogularis: Bach Ma 3 below lodge foraging close to the trail on the first morning.
Bar-backed Partridge Arborophila brunneopectus: Bach Ma heard near the summit on 25 Dec.
Scaly-breasted Partridge Arborophila chloropus: Cuc Phuong heard daily; Di Linh heard on 5 Jan.; Cat Tien heard on 5 dates with only 1 seen by Thais.
Vietnam (Annam) Partridge Arborophila merlini: Bach Ma heard on 27 Dec. on the Pheasant Trail.
Red Junglefowl Gallus gallus: Cuc Phuong 1 heard on 10 Dec.; Cat Tien 30+ seen at Crocodile Lk. on 10 & 11 Jan.
Silver Pheasant Lophura nycthemera:Ln beautiful Cuc Phuong 1m from entrance road on 6 Dec.; L. n. beli Bach Ma 1 from entrance rd. below lodge on 25 Dec.; Ln annamensis Mt. Lang Bian 2 males fighting and 1f along the entrance rd. on 2 Jan.
Siamese Fireback: Lophura diardi: Cat Tien 1 f crossing the trail to Crocodile Lk., later a m crossing the same trail both on 7 Jan., 1 f flushed from beside the main road on 8 Jan.
Germain's Peacock-Pheasant: Polyplectron germaini: Cat Tien 1m near the corner of Heaven's Rapids & Dac Lua Roads on 6 Jan., a pair foraging near the Crocodile Lk. Trail on the afternoon of 7 Jan., heard on 8 Jan., 2 heard walking into Crocodile Lk. on 10 Dec. and again on the way out on 11 Dec.
Crested Argus Rheinardia ocellata: Bach Ma heard from the Pheasant Trail on 27 Dec.
Green Peafowl Pavo muticus: Cat Tien 10 seen at Crocodile Lk. on afternoon of 10 Jan. and again on the morning of 11 Jan. with another heard.
Slaty-breasted Rail Gallirallus striatus: Xuan Thuy 1 on 2 Dec. near the Center.
White-breasted Waterhen Amaurornis phoenicurus: Xuan Thuy daily; Ta Nung Valley 1 on 3 Jan.
Ruddy-breasted Crake: Xuan Thuy 1 from the boat on 2 Dec.
Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus: Ho Tuyen Lam 1 on lake on 1 Jan.
Bronze-winged Jacana Metopidius indicus: Cat Tien 2 on 7 Jan., 3 on 10 Jan., 3 on 11 Jan. at Crocodile Lk.
Red-wattled Lapwing Vanellus indicus: Cat Tien 2 at Crocodile Lk. on 11 Jan.
Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubious: Cat Tien 3 at Crocodile Lk. on 7 Jan.
Snowy (Kentish) Plover Charadrius alexandrines: Xuan Thuy good numbers on 2 & 3 Dec.
Mongolian Plover Charadrius mongolus: Xuan Thuy daily.
Greater Sandplover Charadrius leschenaultii: Xuan Thuy on Con Giao Xuan.
Eurasian Woodcock Scolopax rusticola: Cuc Phuong 1 flying over the clearing on the Loop Trail at dusk on 10 Dec.
Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa: Xuan Thuy daily with Max. of 30 on 3 Dec.
Eurasian Curlew Limosa limosa: Xuan Thuy 30+ on 3 Dec. on Con Giao Xuan.
Common Redshank Tringa tetanus: Xuan Thuy daily with max. of 30 on 3 Dec.
Marsh Sandpiper Tringa tetanus: Xuan Thuy 15 daily max on 3 Dec.
Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia: Xuan Thuy daily max. of 30 on 3 Dec.; Cat Tien singles all 3 days at Crocodile Lk.
Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus: Xuan Thuy 1 on 1 Dec.
Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos: Xuan Thuy daily in small numbers; Cat Tien 2 at Falls on 10 Jan.
Sanderling Calidris alba: Xuan Thuy 7 on 2 Dec. & 17 on 3 Dec.
Red-necked Stint Calidris ruficollis: Xuan Thuy 5 on 3 Dec.
Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginous: Xuan Thuy seen on 3 Dec.
Dunlin Calidris alpina: Xuan Thuy 2 on 2 Dec. & 100s on 3 Dec.
Spoon-billed Sandpiper Eurynorhynchus pygmeus: Xuan Thuy 4 on Con Giao Xuan on 3 Dec.
Black-tailed Gull Larus crassirostris: Xuan Thuy 2 on Con Giao Lac 2 Dec.
Heuglin's Gull Larus heuglini: Xuan Thuy 4 on Con Giao Xuan 3 Dec. with about 15 large, pink-legged gulls.
Vega Gull Larus vegae: Xuan Thuy 15 large gulls with pink legs may have been this species seen on Con Giao Xuan on 3 Dec. at the north end of the island.
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus: Xuan Thuy daily with max. of 15 on 4 Dec.
Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica: Xuan Thuy 1 from boat on 2 Dec.
Common Tern Sterna hirundo: Xuan Thuy 2 on 3 Dec.
Little Tern Sterna albatross: Xuan Thuy 3 on 3 Dec.
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus: Xuan Thuy 5 on 3 Dec.
Rock Pigeon Columba livia: seen commonly in towns and cites and while driving between sites.
Red-collared Dove Streptopelia tranquebarica: Cat Tien common at Crocodile Lk.
Spotted Dove Streptopelia chinensis: seen from car; Ta Nung Valley 1 on the road; Cat Tien common at Crocodile Lk.
Emerald Dove Chalcophaps indica: Cuc Phuong 1 on 4 Dec.and singles at Ta Nung Valley and Ho Tuyen Lam.
Pompadour Green-Pigeon Treron pompadora: Cat Tien 2 on 9 Jan. in bare trees on Dac Lua Road.
Thick-billed Pigeon Treron curvirostra: Cat Tien up to 26 on 4 dates.
Wedge-tailed Pigeon Treron sphenura: Mt. Lang Bian 1 and 6 for the 2 days; Ho Tuyen Lam 2.
Green Imperial-Pigeon Ducula aenea: up to 4 on 4 dates at Cat Tien.
Mountain Imperial-Pigeon Ducula badia: between 3 and 6 daily at Da Lat and Di Linh.
Red-breasted Parakeet Psittacula alexandri: very common Cat Tien.
Vernal Hanging-Parrot Loriculus vernalis: up to 5 daily Cat Tien.
Chestnut-winged Cuckoo Clamator coromandus: Cat Tien 1 showed well at intersection of Heaven's Rapids Rd.and Dac Lua Road. Magnificent, only our 2nd. ever and totally unexpected.
Indian Cuckoo Cuculus micropterus: Cuc Phuong 1 heard from room on 6 Dec.
Common Cuckoo Cuculus canorus: 1 on balcony on building next to our hotel in Hanoi on 22 Dec.
Plaintive Cuckoo Cacomantis merulinus: Cat Tien heard for sure on 7 Jan. and probably a few more times.
Green-billed Malkoha Phaenicophaeus tristis: Cuc Phuong 1 on 7 & 11 Dec.; Cat Tien 2 seen on 4 dates.
Greater Coucal Centropus sinensis: Xuan Thuy daily with max. of 8 on 1 Dec.; Cat Tien 2 seen on 2 dates and heard other times.
Lesser Coucal Centropus bengalensis: Ta Nung Valley 1 on 30 Dec.
Mountain Scops-Owl Otus spilocephalus: Cuc Phuong heard 5, 6, & 7 Dec.
Collared Scops-Owl Otus lettia: Cuc Phuong heard 5 dates with max. of 3; Cat Tien heard at Crocodile lake on 10 Jan.
Asian Barred Owlet Glaucidium cuculoides Cuc Phuong heard on 3 dates; Cat Tien 1 seen in the morning along the main north road, another seen in afternoon at the orchid nursery at start of the Headquarters Trail, others heard.
Brown Hawk-Owl Ninox scutulata: Cat Tien 1 at dusk across from hotel then it flew to antenna on the canteen from which it was fly catching on 6 Jan. There again the next night. (Probably every night, but we did not go early enough to see it the other nights).
Great Eared-Nightjar Eurostopodus macrotis: Cat Tien 1 or 2 flying around the canteen and hotel nightly.
Large-tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus macrurus: Cat Tien 1 on 6 Jan. near canteen and 1 at Crocodile Lk. on 10 Jan and heard there the next morning.
Indochinese Swiftlet Aerodramus rogersi: this is split by Clemens from Germain's Swiftlet: Di Linh 12 each day; Cat Tien up to 10 on 4 dates.
House Swift Apus nipalensis: common at Da Lat. We heard them each morning as we were leaving before daylight.
Crested Treeswift Hemiprocne coronate: Cat Tien 1 on 10 Jan.
Red-headed Trogan Harpactes erythrocephalus: Cuc Phuong daily with max. of 5 on 10 Dec.; Bach Ma 1 and 2 on 2 dates.
Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis: Xuan Thuy daily with max. of 10; Bach Ma seen while driving to and from; Ta Nung Valley 1; Cat Tien 1 or 2 on 4 dates.
Banded Kingfisher Lacedo Purcell: Cat Tien 1 m on Headquarters Trail on 6 Jan.
Stork-billed Kingfisher Pelargopsis capensis: Cat Tien 1 on 2 dates.
White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis: Xuan Thuy 1 Dec. 4 and 4 on the way to Xuan Thuy & 1 on 3 Dec.; Ho Tuyen Lam 1; Cat Tien singles on 5 dates.
Black-capped Kingfisher Halcyon pileata: Xuan Thuy common with daily max of 6; Ta Nung Valley 1 both days there.
Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis: Xuan Thuy 2 on 2 Dec. & 1 on 3 Dec.
Chestnut-headed Bee-eater Merops leschenaulti: Di Linh 15 on 4 Jan.; Cat Tien 2 on 7 Jan. and 1 on 8 Jan. on Dac Lua Rd.
Indian Roller Coracias benghalensis: Cat Tien singles on 4 dates, often visible around the headquarters.
Dollarbird Eurystomus orientalis: Cat Tien up to 4 on 3 dates from the road.
Oriental Pied-Hornbill Anthracoceros albirostris: Halong Bay 3 on 22 Dec. on the island with the cave; Cat Tien up to 10 on 4 dates.
Great Hornbill Buceros bicorn is: Cat Tien 1 or 2 on 4 dates, from road and Crocodile Lake Trail.
Wreather Hornbill : Cat Tien 1 seen by Thais 10 Jan.
Brown Hornbill Anorrhinus austeni: Bach Ma 1 below lodge on 24 Dec. and 1 heard and poorly seen near summit and 1 seen below the lodge on 25 Dec.
Red-vented Barbet Megalaima lagrandieri: Cuc Phuong heard commonly 2 seen; Ta Nung Valley heard but not seen; Ho Tuyen Lam heard only; Cat Tien heard commonly and seen on 10 Jan.
Lineated Barbet Megalaima lineata: Cat Tien heard commonly and 1 or 2 seen on 3 dates.
Green-eared Barbet Megalaima faiostricta: Cuc Phuong almost daily, max. of 6; Ta Nung Valley 2; Ho Tuyen Lam heard; Di Linh 2; Cat Tien heard commonly.
Golden-throated Barbet Megalaima franklinii: Tam Dao common; Bach Ma up to 3 all 3 days; Mt. Lang Bian common; Ho Tuyen Lam heard.
Black-browed Barbet Megalaima oorti: Ta Nung Valley and Ho Tuyen Lam up to 6 seen daily, more heard; Di Linh 4 and 5 on the 2 days.
Blue-throated Barbet Megalaima asiatica: Cat Tien 2 making a nest hole 8 Jan. and heard more.
Blue-eared Barbet Megalaima asiatica: Cat Tien heard commonly.
Coppersmith Barbet : heard commonly at Cat Tien with 3 seen on 9 Jan.
White-browed Piculet Sasia ochracea: Tam Dao 1 on 15 Dec.
Gray-capped Woodpecker Dendrocopos canicapillus: Cuc Phuong 1 or 2 on 2 dates; singles at Mt. Lang Bian and Ho Tuyen Lam.
Rufous Woodpecker Celeus brachyurous: 1 at Cuc Phuong on 6 Dec.
White-bellied Woodpecker Dryocopus javensis: Only 1 on 10 Dec. at junction of main road and Heaven's Rapid's Road, Cat Tien..
Lesser yellow nape Picus chlorolophus: Cuc Phuong 1 on 2 dates; Ta Nung Valley 2 on 30 Dec.; Cat Tien 1 or 2 on 3 dates.
Greater Yellownape Picus flavinucha: Cuc Phuong daily in small numbers.
Laced Woopecker Picus vitiates: singles daily at Cat Tien.
Common Flameback Dinopium Javanese: 1 on 10 Dec. Cat Tien.
Greater Flameback Chrysocolaptes lucid us: 1 or 2 on 4 dates at Cat Tien.
Bay Wood-pecker Blythipicus pyrrhotis: Cuc Phuong 1 on 3 dates; Ta Nung Valley 2 on 30 Dec.
Heart-spotted Woodpecker Hemicircus canente: 1 on 9 Dec. on the Lagerstoemia Trail, Cat Tien.
Great Slaty Woodpecker Mulleripicus pulverulentus: 1 on 10 Dec. on Heaven's Rapids Road, Cat Tien, past the rapids where the road goes through original forest.
Black-and-red Broadbill: 1 on Lagerstoemia Trail, Cat Tien, on 9 Dec.
Banded Broadbill Eurylaimus javanicus: 1 on 7 Jan. and another heard on 9 Jan. at Cat Tien.
Long-tailed Broadbill Psarisomus jalousie: 1 on 30 Dec. and 2 on 3 Jan. at Ta Nung Valley.
Silver-breasted Broadbill Serilophus lunatus: Cuc Phuong 1 on 6 Dec. & 6 on 7 Dec. along entrance road, 6 on 10 Dec. on Loop Trail.
Blue-rumped Pitta Pitta soror: Cuc Phuong one of our 2 main targets for the trip, we worked very hard for it. On 8 Dec. we had a poor view of one feeding in shadows at the far end of Loop Trail, on 9 Dec. we had again poor views of a pair feeding at a distance through thick vegetation past the clearing on the Loop trail, but finally on 10 Dec. as we were walking the Loop Trail an hour before dusk to owl the clearing, we came upon a male feeding in the trail. It hopped up onto rocks and roots then pounced onto small prey which we could not see. What a fun bird! When it turned the corner just before the Cay Cho Chi Trail, we advanced fast so as to get a really close look. We did but that spooked it, and it left the trail alongside the smaller trail. In a minute it came out onto the Cay Cho Chi trail. Since we saw Bar-bellied on this same trail 2 times, this is a good place to look for pittas. We did not hear a Blue-rumped call at all anywhere nor did they seem to respond in any way to a playing of their call. Then in Bach Ma on Chrismas Eve Minh brought one to our room that had flown into the dinning room. It was a beautiful male of the petersi race. Magic!
Bar-bellied Pitta Pitta elliotii: The bird of the trip! At Cuc Phuong we heard 5 on 5 Dec., h 9 on 6 Dec. birding the road with Thaïs getting one quick look, h 3 also saw 1 m at the Cay Cho Chi trail and a female that we discovered less than 1 m off the Loop Trail before it crossed the trail and continued to feed 2-3 meters from the trail giving good views for many minutes, h 1 on 9 Dec., h3 and saw 1 m at the same trail as before and another m farther along and a f that flew in and landed close to us as we played a Hainan Blue-Flycatcher song, h1 on the morning of 11 Dec. before leaving. At Cat Tien we had our very best view of a male feeding close to the Logerstroemia Trail in the late afternoon and h 4 and saw 1 male on 7 Dec. and h 2 more on 10 Dec. all on the Crocodile Lake Trail.
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica: Xuan Thuy daily with max. 40; seen between sites; at Cat Tien they were common over Crocodile Lake both times.
Striated Swallow Hirundo striolata: 20 on 4 Jan. at Di Linh and up to 20 on 3 dates at Cat Tien.
Asian Martin Delichon dasypus: Mt. Lang Bian at top of first peak just before descending into the "Saddle" 30+ on 31 Dec. and 2 Jan.
Forest Wagtail Dendronanthus indicus: singles on the road on 2 dates at Cat Tien.
White Wagtail Motacilla alba: Cuc Phuong 2 almost daily by the swimming pool at Bong.
Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava: Xuan Thuy 1 on 2 dates.
Gray Wagtail Motacilla cinerea: small numbers at most sites.
Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsoni: Cuc Phuong seen on 3 dates with max. of 6; Tam Dao 1; SaPa daily with max. of 5; up to 6 at all sites at Da Lat.
Large Cuckoo-shrik Coracina macei: singles at Mt. Lang Bian and Di Linh.
Indochinese Cuckoo-shrike Coracina polioptera: 4 on 30 Dec. and 1 on 3 Jan. at Ta Nung Valley.
Black-winged Cuckoo-shrike Coracina melaschistos: Cuc Phuong 4 on the Valley Tr. On 5 Dec.; 1 at Di Linh on 5 Jan.
Ashy Minivet Pericrocotus divaricatus: 1 on 9 Dec. on Heaven's Rapids Road, Cat Tien.
Long-tailed Minivet Pericrocotus ethologus: common at all sites on the Da Lat Plateau.
Scarlet Minivet Pericrocotus flammeus: common in the north.
Gray-chinned Minivet Pericrocotus solaris: 4 at Bach Ma on 25 Dec. and seen daily at all sites on Da Lat Plateau.
Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike Hemipus picatus: up to 6 on most days in the south.
Crested Finchbill Spizixos canifrons: SaPa 40 on 18 Dec. & 6 on 19 Dec. "km 8".
Collared Finchbill Spizixos semi torques: SaPa 15 on 18 Dec. & 10 on 19 Dec. "km 8".
Black-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus atriceps: recorded on 3 dates at Cat Tien.
Black-crested Bulbul Pycnonotus melanicterus: Tam Dao 6 driving down on 15 Dec.; Common at Ta Nung Valley, Mt. Lang Bian, Di Linh, and Cat Tien.
Red-whiskered Bulbul Pycnonotus jocosus: Cuc Phuong common on Valley Trail, Ta Nung Valley, Mt. Lang Bian, and Di Linh.
Brown-breasted Bulbul Pycnonotus xanthorrhous: common at SaPa.
Light-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus sinensis: Xuan Thuy 8 at the police station while waiting for permit.
Sooty-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus aureate: recorded daily at all sites on Da Lat Plateau.
Strip-throated Bulbul Pycnonotus finlaysoni: Cuc Phuong 1 or 2 on 3 dates; small numbers on 2 dates Cat Tien.
Flavescent Bulbul Pycnonotus flavescent: common Ta Nung Valley, Mt. Lang Bian, and Di Linh.
Streak-eared Bulbul Pycnonotus Branford: 2 on 7 Jan. and 1 on 8 Jan. Cat Tien.
Puff-throated Bulbul Alophoixus pallidus: Cuc Phuong common, Bach Ma, Di Linh, & Cat Tien.
Gray-eyed Bulbul Iole propinquity: Cuc Phuong 5 on 5 Dec. at Bong & 2 on the road on 11 Dec.
Chestnut Bulbul Hemixos castanonotus: Tam Dao 6 on 13 Dec. & 3 on 15 Dec. Water Tank Trail.
Mountain Bulbul Ixos McClelland: SaPa 2 on 2 dates.
Black Bulbul Hypsipetes leucocephalus: Tam Dao 1 on 12 Dec. and common Ta Nung Valley, Mt. Lang Bian, and Di Linh.
Blue-winged Leafbird Chloropsis cochinchinensis: Cuc Phuong 6 on 11 Dec.; Tam Dao 1 on 14 Dec.; Cat Tien up to 10 on 4 dates.
Golden-fronted Leafbird Chloropsis auriferous: Cuc Phuong 2 on 5 Dec.
Common Iora Aegithina tiphia: 2 on 10 Jan. at Cat Tien.
Great Iora Aegithina lafresnayei: common at Cat Tien.
White-throated Rock-Thrush Monticola gularis: 1 m at Ta Nung Valley along the entrance road.
Blue Rock-Thrush Monticola solitarius: Xuan Thuy 1f at police station.
Blue Whistling-Thrush Myophonus caeruleus: M.c. caeruleus Tam Dao 1 or 2 on 3 dates. This is the race with an all black bill;
Orange-headed Thrush: 1 on "Trail C" at Ho Tuyen Lam.
Siberian Thrush Zoothera sibirica: at Bach Ma 2 below lodge on 24 Dec., 1 same place 25 Dec., and 4 f on the road driving down to Pheasant Trail on 27 Dec.
Scaly Thrush Zoothera dauma: Cuc Phuong daily with max. of 5, especially common on the road; Tam Dao 2 on 2 dates; Bach Ma 1 or 2 on all 3 full days.
Gray-backed Thrush Turdus hortulorum: 1 or 2 on 3 dates mostly at fruiting tree on Valley Trail.
Japanese Thrush Turdus cardis: Xuan Thuy 1 on Con Giao Lac on 2 Dec.; Cuc Phuong daily with max. of 6; Tam Dao 1 or 2 daily.
Eurasian Blackbird Turdus merula: Cuc Phuong up to 5 seen on 3 dates at Bong in fruiting trees behind swimming pool.
Lesser Shortwing Brachypteryx leucophrys: Cuc Phuong 1 on 8 Dec. & 1 h on 10 Dec. Loop Trail
Hill Prinia Prinia atrogularis: SaPa 5 and 1 on 2 days at Km 8.
Rufescent Prinia Prinia refastens: 2 on 8 Jan. at Cat Tien.
Yellow-bellied Prinia Prinia flaviventris: Cuc Phuong up to 12 on 2 days on Valley Tr.
Plain Prinia Prinia inornata: Xuan Thuy up to 6 seen daily; Cuc Phuong 5 & 6 on 7 & 8 Dec.; Ta Nung Valley 1 on 3 Jan.
Slaty-bellied Tesia Tesiaolivea: SaPa 5 & h more Ward's Valley on 17 Dec.
Gray-bellied Tesia Tesia cyaniventer: 3 on 30 Dec. Ta Nung Valley and on 31 Dec. Mt. Lang Bian.
Asian Stubtail Urosphenasquameiceps: Cuc Phuong up to 3 on 3 dates especially on Grid trails.
Pale-footed Bush-Warbler Cettiapallidipes: 1 Cuc Phuong on 5 Dec. along the entrance road and 1 Ta Nung Valley on 3 Jan.
Manchurian Bush-Warbler Cettia canturians: 1 on Valley Trail on 10 Dec.
Brownish-flanked Bush-Warbler Cettia fortipes: Birds that were likely this species were found along the Water Tank Trail at Tam Dao, but there seems to be differences of opinion in other reports as to whether they are Brown B-W or this species.
Russet Bush-Warbler : 1 seen by Thasis on 5 Dec. on Valley Tr.
Pallas's Warbler Locustellacerthiola: SaPa 1 on 16 Dec. at Ham Rong Gardens.
Mountain Tailorbird Orthotomus cuculatus: 1 Ta Nung Valley 30 Dec.
Common Tailorbird Orthotomus sutorius: Xuan Thuy 6 on 1 Dec.; Cuc Phuong seen on 3 dates; Tam Dao 1 on 3 dates; Hanoi 3 in gardens of Temple of Literature; up to 4 daily at Di Linh and Cat Tien.
Dusky Warbler Phylloscopus fuscous: Xuan Thuy heard constantly with up to 10 seen daily.
Buff-throated Warbler Phylloscopus: SaPa 1 at Ham Rong Gardens & 3 at Km 8 on 18 Dec.
Radd's Warbler Phylloscopus: 1 Cat Tien 10 Jan.
Ashy-throated Warbler Phylloscopus: SaPa 2 at Ward's Valley on 17 Dec.
Yellow-browed Warbler Phylloscopus inornatus: seen at Ta Nung Vally on 3 Jan.
Arctic Warbler Phylloscopus borealis: 1 at Ta Nung Valley 3 Jan.
Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides plumbeitarsus (Two-barred): 2 Ta Nung Valley & 3 Mt. Lang Bian.
Eastern Crowned Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus coronatus: Cuc Phuong 2 on 5 Dec.
Bianchi's Warbler Seicercus valentini: Cuc Phuong identified singles on 2 dates but saw many "Golden Spectacled" types that we did not identify.
Gray-cheeked Warbler Seicercus poliogenys: 1 Bach Ma 26 Dec.; 1 and 2 on the 2 days at Ta Nung Valley; and 3 on Mt Lang Bian 31 Dec.
Chestnut-crowned Warbler Seicercus castaniceps: Tam Dao 1 on 13 Dec. and 3 Ta Nung Valley 30 Dec.
Yellow-bellied Warbler Abroscopus superciliaris: Cuc Phuong a single on 6 Dec.
Black-faced Warbler Abroscopus schisticeps: SaPa common in flocks with 20+ and 10+ in 2 days at Ward's Valley and 12 on 19 Dec. at km 8.
Broad-billed Warbler Tickellia hodgsoni: SaPa 2 at km 8 on 18 Dec.
Siberian Flycatcher Muscicapa sibirica: 1 Di Linh 4 Jan.; at Cat Tien 1 on 6 Jan, and 2 on 8 Jan.
Asian Brown Flycatcher Muscicapa dauurica: 1 or 2 on 3 dates Cat Tien.
Rufous-gorgeted Flycatcher Ficedula strophiata: Tam Dao 2, 1, & 1 on 3 days on Water Tank Trail.
Red-breasted Flycatcher Ficedula parva: Ta Nung Valley 1 on 30 Dec. and 2 on 3 Jan.; Mt. Lang Bian 1 on 31 Dec.; Cat Tien 1 on both 7 and 8 Jan.
Snowy-browed Flycatcher Ficedula hyperthyroid: a pair at Mt Lang Bian 31 Dec.
White-gorgeted Flycatcher Ficedula monileger: Tam Dao 1 on 16 Dec.
Little Pied Flycatcher Ficedula westermanni: 4 Mt. Lang Bian 2 Jan. and 2 Ta Nung Valley 3 Jan. Verditer Flycatcher Eumyias harassing: Cuc Phuong single on 1 date; up to 4 daily all sites Da Lat and Di Linh; 1 Cat Tien 6 Jan.
Large Niltava Niltava grandis: up to 3 all sites at Da Lat.
Fujian Niltava Niltava davidi: Cuc Phuong singles on 4 dates.
White-tailed Flycatcher Cyornis concretus: Cuc Phuong 1; Tam Dao 1.
Tickell's Blue-Flycatcher Cyornis tickelliae: 1 m on 2 dates Cat Tien.
Gray-headed Canary-flycatcher Culicicapa ceylonensis: Cuc Phuong up to 2 on 6 dates; up to 5 at all sites on Da Lat Plateau.
Rufous-tailed Robin Luscinia sibilans: Cuc Phuong up to 3 on 3 dates. Usually along the edge of the road.
Siberian Blue Robin Luscinia cyane: 1 f on the Crocodile Lk. Trail on and near the ground.
Red-flanked Bluetail Tarsiger cyanurus: Cuc Phuong up to 3 on 6 dates; Tam Dao 1 on 2 dates; SaPa 1 at Ward's Valley; Bach Ma up to 5 daily.
Oriental Magpie-Robin Copsychus saularis: Cuc Phuong a pair hung out in tree beside out bungalow; Cat Tien up to 4 on 3 dates especially in a wet area along the road.
White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus: Cuc Phuong up to 4 seen daily; 1 Bach Ma on Pheasant Trail; Common Cat Tien.
Blue-fronted Redstart Phoenicurus frontalis SaPa 1 f at Ham Rong Gardens.
Plumbeous Redstart Rhyacornis fuliginous: SaPa 1 on stream at km 8.
White-tailed Robin Cinclidium leucurum: Cuc Phuong singles on 4 dates; 1 Ho Tuyen Lam 1 Jan.; 2 Cat Tien 10 Jan. near barrier.
Black-backed Forktail Enicurus immaculate: Bach Ma 2 on 24 Dec. & 4 on 26 Dec. around the lodge and above.
Slaty-backed Forktail Enicurus shitakes: Bach Ma up to 3 on 3 dates below the lodge and on Rhododendrun Trail.
Green Cochoa Cochoa viridis: We really wanted to see this, our only unseen cochoa species. We only heard 1 and saw none on Water Tank Tr., Tam Dao.
Stonechat Saxicola rubicola: SaPa up to 3 seen daily.
Gray Bushchat Saxicola ferrea: Tam Dao a pair on 2 dates in town; SaPa 4 in Ham Rong Gardens; 2 and 1 in 2 days on Mt. Lang Bian; 2 Di Linh on 4 Jan.
White-throated Fantail Rhipidura albicollis: Xuan Thuy 2; Cuc Phuong 1; Bach Ma singles on 2 dates; Ta Nung Valley 3 on both days; Mt. Lang Bian 4 on 2 Jan.; Di Linh 2 on 4 Jan.
Black-naped Monarch Hypothymis azurea: up to 3 on 3 days at Cat Tien.
White-crested Laughingthrush Garrulax leucolophus: very common by sound and up to 6 seen on 3 dates at Cat Tien.
Black-hooded Laughingthrush Garrulax milleti: Di Linh 9+ seen calling on 4 Jan. and many heard on both 4 and 5 Jan.
Gray Laughingthrush Garrulax maesi: Tam Dao saw 1 the first morning, but despite hearing them frequently we had no more sightings. Frustrating.
White-cheeked Laughingthrush Garrulax vassali: quite common on Da Lat Plateau. After no encounters at Ta Nung Valley on 30 Dec. and only quick views on Mt. Lang Bian on 31 Dec., we saw them well with up to 20 at all sites including Di Linh. Although they are common, they are shy and not really easy to see well.
Collared Laughingthrush Garrulax yersini: Only heard on our first trip up Mt. Lang Bian, but seen very well on the second try. When the trail forks in the saddle area we took the left trail or "cattle track" as it is called in some other reports. Before long there is a gully which is where Holms had this species in 1999. We decided to try there. When we got to the gully one was calling. When we called back it responded and came in quickly. It was much closer than it sounded.
Abbott's Babbler Malacocincla abbotti: 4 at Cat Tien on 9 Jan.
Buff-breasted Babbler Pellorneum tickelli: Cuc Phuong up to 12 on 4 dates; Bach Ma 3 on Pheasant Trail 27 Dec.
Spot-throated Babbler Pellorneum alienate: 2 Di Linh on 4 Jan. Amazing song, difficult to see.
Puff-throated Babbler Pellorneum ruficeps Cuc Phuong 4 at junction of Valley and Loop Trail on 10 Dec. & 3 on the entrance road on our last morning; 2 Cat Tien on 7 Jan. on Crocodile Lake Trail.
Scaly-crowned Babbler Malacopteron cinereum: 2 Cat Tien 6 Dec.
White-browed Scimitar-Babbler Pomatorhinus schisticeps: Bach Ma 1 on 25 Dec. and 1 seen and another heard on 26 Dec.
Streak-breasted Scimitar-Babbler Pomatorhinus ruficollis: Tam Dao 2 in mixed flock.
Red-billed Scimitar-Babbler Pomatorhinus ochraceiceps: 2 Di Linh in mixed species flock with the Vietnamese Greenfinch and the Gray-headed Parrotbill.
Short-tailed Scimitar-Babbler Jabouilleia danjoui: Bach Ma 1 on 24 Dec. below lodge and 3 on 25 Dec. above and below the lodge. We heard them frequently and they responded well to play back or imitation of their whistle. Minh can help if he is there.
Limestone Wren-Babbler Napothera crispifrons: Cuc Phuong 1 on 5 Dec. Valley Trail & 2 on 8 Dec. Loop Trail.
Streaked Wren-Babbler Napothera brevicaudata: Cuc Phuong up to 5 on 4 dates; Tam Dao 2 on 13 Dec.; 1 at Bach Ma on 25 Dec.; 3 heard at Di Linh on 5 Jan.
Eyebrowed Wren-Babbler Napothera epilepidota: Cuc Phuong singles on 4 dates.
Pygmy Wren-Babbler Pnoepyga pusilla: SaPa up to 2 heard on 3 dates; Ta Nung Valley 1 seen and another heard; Mt. Lang Bian 2 heard.
Rufous-capped Babbler Stachyris ruficeps: 1 on both days at Mt. Lang Bian; 8 at Ta Nung Valley 3 Jan.; Cat Tien 1 on 5 Jan. and 8 on 8 Jan.
Golden Babbler Stachyris chrysaea: Tam Dao up to 5 seen on 2 dates; Bach Ma 6 on 26 Dec.; 1 Cat Tien 6 Jan.
Gray-throated Babbler Stachyris nigriceps: Cuc Phuong common, 2 Ta Nung Valley 3 Jan.
Spot-necked Babbler Stachyris striolata: Tam Dao up to 5 on 3 dates.
Striped Tit-Babbler Macronous gularis: Cuc Phuong common; Tam Dao 1; common cat Tien.
Gray-faced Tit-Babbler Macronous Kelley: Cat Tien only. We found 5 in the first 100 meters of the Heaven's Rapids Road on our first morning there. We only saw a few after that, but we were not specifically looking for them again. Less common then Striped but not hard.
Silver-eared Mesia Leiothrix argentauris: Tam Dao up to 4 on 2 dates; 1 Mt Lang Bian 31 Dec.
Red-billed Leiothrix Leiothrix lutea: SaPa 15 & 6 on the 2 days at km 8.
Cutia Cutia nipalensis legalleni: 2 of this distinct and beautiful subspecies at Di Linh 4 Jan.
White-browed Shrike-Babbler Pteruthius flaviscapis: Tam Dao 3 on Water Tank Trail; SaPa 2 at Ward's Valley; 1 Bach Ma; 1 Ta Nung Valley; and 2 on 2 dates at Cat Tien.
Black-eared Shrike-Babbler Pteruthius melanotis: SaPa 6 on 19 Dec. Km 8.
Chestnut-fronted Shrike-Babbler Pteruthius aenobarbus: 2 at Ta Nung Valley on 3 Jan. and at Di Linh 4 Jan.
White-hooded Babbler Gampsorhynchus rufulus: Tam Dao 6 on 12 Dec.
Blue-winged Minla Minla cyanouroptera: SaPa up to 12 on 3 dates; Minla cyanouroptera orientalis were common at Ta Nung Valley on 30 Dec. This is the race without blue in the wing.
Chestnut-tailed Minla Minla strigula: SaPa on 3 dates max. of 6 on 17 Dec. at Ward's Valley.
Red-tailed Minla Minla ignotincta: SaPa on 3 dates max. 10 on 19 Dec. at Km 8.
Golden-breasted Fulvetta Alcippe chrysalis: SaPa 2 on 19 Dec. Km 8
Streak-throated Fulvetta Alcippe conferences: SaPa 4 on 19 Dec. Km 8.
Rufous-throated Fulvetta Alcippe rufogularis: Cuc Phuong daily with max. of 5 usually on or near the ground.
Rusty-capped Fulvetta Alcippe dubia: SaPa on 3 dates max, 10+ on 19 Dec. Km 8.
Gray-cheeked Fulvetta Alcippe morrisonia: Tam Dao most common species here.
Mountain Fulvetta Alcippe peracensis: common at Bach Ma and all Da Lat sites.
Black-browed Fulvetta Alcippe grotei: common.at Cuc Phuong.
Gray-crowned Crocias Crocias languidness: Ta Nung Valley is the spot for this species now. They were common and easy to see when we were there. We found them in the forest, on the entrance road, and on the road before the entrance road. See the section on Ta Nung Valley above for more detail.
Rufous-backed Sibia Heterophasia annexes: 3 on both days at Ta Nung Valley.
Black-headed Sibia Heterophasia disjoins: 1 just where the trail goes steeply up to the summit on Mt. Lang Bian and 1 at Di Linh.
Striated Yuhina Yuhina castaniceps: 6+ in a single-species flock at Bach Ma 25 Dec.
Whiskered Yuhina Yuhina clavicles: SaPa up to 10 on 3 dates.
Stripe-throated Yuhina Yuhina gularis: SaPa 2 at Ward's Valley.
White-collared Yuhina Yuhina diademata: SaPa 30+ on 18 Dec. at Km 8.
Black-chinned Yuhina Yuhina nigrimenta: Tam Dao 6 on 11 Dec. Radio Tower Steps, 10 on 12 Dec. Water Tank Trail.
White-bellied Yuhina Yuhina zantholeuca: seen commonly in small numbers at most sites.
Gray-headed Parrotbill Paradoxornis gularis: 1 Di Linh 4 Jan. This is the endemic race with the black cap.
Spot-breasted Parrotbill Paradoxornis guttaticollis: SaPa 2 on 18 & 3 on 19 Dec. at Km 8.
Ashy-throated Parrotbill Paradoxornis alphonsianus: SaPa 6 on 18 Dec. at Km 8.
(Greater) Rufous-headed ParrotbillParadoxornis ruficeps: Tam Dao 1 on 13 Dec. Water Tank Trail.
Black-throated Tit Aegithalos concinnus: SaPa up to 20 on the 2 days at Km 8; 4 at Bach Ma on 25 Dec.; 6 at Mt. Lang Bian 2 Jan.; and 6 Ta Nung Valley 3 Jan.
Green-backed Tit Parus monticules: Mt Lang Bian 3 on 31 Dec. and 2 on 2 Jan. in the pine forest.
Yellow-cheeked Tit Parus spilonotus: SaPa up to 6 daily.
Sultan Tit Melanochlora sultanea: Cuc Phuong 1 or 2 on 3 dates; Tam Dao 8 & 6 on 2 dates; 2 at Bach Ma on 26 Dec.
Chestnut-vented Nuthatch Sitta nagaensis: Mt. Lang Bian 2 and 4 and Ho Tuyen Lam 4.
Yellow-billed Nuthatch Sitta solangiae: 2 on "Trail C". For details see the sites section for Ho Tuyen Lam.
Plain-throated Sunbird Anthreptes malacensis: 1 Cat Tien on 8 Jan.
Purple-naped Sunbird Hypogramma hypogrammicum: Cuc Phuong 1 from forest beside entrance rd. 7 Dec.
Olive-backed Sunbird Cinnyris jugularis: 2 Cat Tien 6 Jan.
Gould's Sunbird Aethopyga gouldiae: up to 4 daily at all sites around Da Lat -- stunning.
Green-tailed Sunbird Aethopyga nipalensis: SaPa up to 5 on 3 dates.
Fork-tailed Sunbird Aethopyga christinae: Cuc Phuong 2 on 6 Dec. & 1 on 7 Dec. from entrance road; Tam Dao 1 m & 2 f on 13 Dec., heard on 14 Dec., and 2 on 15 Dec. all from Water Tank Trail.
Black-throated Sunbird Aethopyga saturata: SaPa 2 at Ham Rong Gardens 16 Dec.; 6 and 3 on 2 days at Di Linh race A. e. Johnsi.
Little Spiderhunter Arachnothera longirostra: Cuc Phuong singles on 2 dates; 1 Mt. Lang Bian 31 Dec.; up to 5 on 3 dates at Cat Tien.
Streaked Spiderhunter Arachnothera magna: Cuc Phuong 2 on 3 dates; Tam Dao small numbers on 3 dates; 2 on both dates at Ta Nung Valley; and 3 & 2 on the 2 days at Di Linh.
Yellow-vented Flowerpecker Dicaeum chrysorrheum: 1 at Cat Tien 9 Jan.
Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker Dicaeum crenate: Cat Tien 3 on 6 Jan. and 1 on 10 Jan.
Chestnut-flanked White-eye Zosterops erythropleurus: 3 Xuan Thuy on 1 Dec. in mangroves along the bund going right past the headquarters.
Oriental White-eye Zosterops palpebrosus: 2 at Ta Nung Valley and recorded once at Cat Tien.
Japanese White-eye Zosterops japonicas: Cuc Phuong up to 15 on 2 dates; SaPa up to 30 on 2 dates Km 8.
Black-naped Oriole Oriolus chinensis: singles on 3 dates at Cat Tien.
Black-hooded Oriole Oriolus xanthornus:2 on 2 dates at Cat Tien.
Maroon Oriole Oriolus traillii: Cuc Phuong 1 on 8 Dec.
Asian Fairy-bluebird Irena puella: Cat Tien 2 on 8 Jan. and 1 on 9 Jan.
Brown Shrike Lanius cristatus: traveling between sites; Cuc Phuong 1 on 2 dates on Valley Trail; 1 Ta Nung Valley; 1 Cat Tien.
Burmese Shrike Lanius collurioides: 1 Mt. Lang Bian at bottom early morning and 2 Ho Tuyen Lam in pines close to the start of the trail.
Long-tailed Shrike Lanius schach: Xuan Thuy up to 4 daily.
Large Woodshrike Tephrodornis gularis: Cuc Phuong 15 on 2 successive days in with a large flock of Scarlet Minivets.
Common Woodshrike Tephrodornis pondicerianus: 1 Cat Tien 8 Jan.
Black Drongo Dicrurus macrocercus: common beside road traveling between sites.
Ashy Drongo Dicrurus leucophaeus: Common throughout the south.
Bronzed Drongo Dicrurus aeneus: 2 Cat Tien 6 Jan.
Lesser Racket-tailed Drongo Dicrurus remifer: 1 Ho Tuyen Lam; 4 and 1 on the two days at Di Linh; 2 Cat Tien 8 Jan.
Hair-crested Drongo Dicrurus Hottentot's: 1 Bach Ma 27 Dec. and up to 4 on 3 dates at Cat Tien.
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo Dicrurus paradiseus: Cuc Phuong 2 seen most days; daily in small numbers at Cat Tien.
Eurasian Jay Garrulus glanderous: common in the pine forest on Mt. Lang Bian and heard at Ho Tuyen Lam.
Gold-billed Magpie Urocissa flavirostris: SaPa 2 from motor cycle taxis on 17 Dec.
White-winged Magpie Urocissa whiteheadi: Cuc Phuong 3 & 7 on 2 dates Valley Trail in fruiting tree and 1 or 2 on 3 dates at Bach Ma.
Green Magpie Cissa chinensis: Cuc Phuong 2 on entrance rd. 7 Dec.; Tam Dao 1 on Water Tank Tr.
Yellow-breasted MagpieCissa hypotenuse: This was one of our big misses only hearing it once at Bach Ma and once at Di Linh and this despite considerable time and effort being devoted to it..
Racket-tailed Treepie Crypsirina temia: At Cat Tien we had 2 on 10 Jan. and singles on 3 other dates.
Ratchet-tailed Treepie Temnurus temnurus: Cuc Phuong up to 3 on 4 dates and at Bach Ma we had 1 on 24 Dec. and 3 on 26 Dec.
Large-billed Crow Corvus macrorhynchos: 3 at Halong Bay.
Golden-crested Myna Ampeliceps coronatus: 6 in bare tree along the Dac Lua Road before the barrier at Cat Tien.
Common Hill Myna Gracula religiosa: Cat Tien up to 6 on several dates.
Black-collared Starling Gracupica nigricollis: 7 at boat launch and over the lake at Ho Tuyen Lam.
Red-billed Starling Sturnus sericeus: Xuan Thuy 2 at police station on 1 Dec., 11 at headquarters 2 Dec., 9 on bund 3 Dec.
White-rumped Munia Lonchura striata: Xuan Thuy 5 on 1 Dec.
Scally-breasted Munia (Nutmeg Mannikin) Lonchura punctulata: SaPa 7 on 18 Dec. Km 8.
Tristram's Bunting Emberiza restrain: Cuc Phuong 3 on 5 Dec. Valley Trail.
Little Bunting Emberiza pusilla: SaPa 1 f Hon Rong Gardens; 4 & 6 on 2 days at Km 8.
Yellow-breasted Bunting Emberiza aureola: Xuan Thuy 2 on 1 Dec.
Common Rosefinch Carpodacus erythrinus: SaPa 8 on 19 Dec. Km 8;
Red Crossbill Loxia curvirostra: 4 at Ho Tuyen Lam where we had 2 nests, one with a pair and the second with a fledgeling and 1 adult. Endemic race: L. c. meridionalis
Vietnamese Greenfinch Carduelis monguilloti: We really had to work for this one, only getting one on our first morning at Di Linh in a mixed species flock near the start of the forest between 13.5 and 15 km.
Black-headed Greenfinch Carduelis ambigua: SaPa a flock of 24 in flight on 18 Dec.& 5 in flight 19 Dec. all at Km 8 in Pine plantation, on 20 Dec. at Ward's Valley 6 in mixed flock in forest.
Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus: common around human habitations.