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BURMA

Sunday 24th March - Saturday 6th April 2019

DAVE FARROW

The very mega Hooded Treepie we saw at Saw (Dave Farrow)

The very mega Hooded Treepie we saw at Saw (Dave Farrow)

This years' Birdquest tour to Burma was once again a successful and enjoyable affair. We saw all nine of the Burmese endemics – Hooded Treepie, Jerdon’s Minivet, White-throated Babbler, Burmese Bushlark, White-browed Nuthatch (surely the ‘jewel in the crown’ of the endemic birds), Burmese Bushtit, and Irrawaddy Bulbul - the ‘newest’ of the set, plus Davison’s Bulbul and Burmese Collared Dove that are not yet universally split. We also found six taxa that could be described as near-endemics - Collared Myna, Striped and Brown-capped Laughingthrushes, Mount Victoria Babax, Burmese Yuhina and Chin Hills Wren-Babbler. In addition to these sparkling headliners we found a great array of special birds, such as at Bagan where we found Rain Quail, Laggar Falcon, Vinous-breasted Starlings and Pied Harrier, plus numerous Sand Larks and White-tailed Stonechat along the Irrawaddy river. In the rich forest habitats that lie between the Irrawaddy and the Chin Hills we found White-eyed Buzzard, Black Baza, White-rumped Falcon, Alexandrine, Blossom-headed and Grey-headed Parakeets, and Burmese Nuthatch. On Mount Victoria we enjoyed a splendid female Hodgson’s Frogmouth, Grey-sided Thrush, Black-bibbed Tit, Crested Finchbill, Spot-breasted and Black-throated (or Buff-chested) Parrotbills, Rusty-capped Fulvetta, Spotted Elachura, Crimson-faced Liocichla, Grey Sibia, Black-headed Shrike Babblers, Streak-throated and Rusty-fronted Barwings, Assam Laughingthrush, Broad-billed Warbler, Brown Bush-warblers, Fire-tailed Sunbirds and Spot-winged Grosbeak. Along forested ridges at Mindat we saw Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler, another Mt Victoria Babax and Scaly-breasted Cupwing. In the Shan State in the east of the country, at Inle Lake we saw Chinese Grassbird, Collared Mynas, Cook’s Swift and numerous Jerdon’s Bushchats, and in the mountain forests around Kalaw we found Pin-tailed Green Pigeon, Silver-breasted Broadbill, Slender-billed Oriole, Black-breasted Thrush, Dark-backed Sibia, White-browed Laughingthrush, Blunt-winged Warbler and Black-headed Greenfinch. We recorded a total of 372 species.