Welcome to Birdquest

VIETNAM

Sunday 12th March - Sunday 2nd April 2017

János Oláh

Bar-bellied Pitta (János Oláh)

Bar-bellied Pitta (János Oláh)

Birdquest was the pioneer birdwatching company to take birders to Vietnam and ever since we have returned regularly to this amazing country! Indochina has many endemics and an additional wide range of special birds. Vietnam hosts a fairly large number of birds found nowhere else, and it is amazing how much more we see nowadays on the tour compared to the lists of 1990’s. Especially since 2005 a lot of new birding sites and a new generation of birders emerged with the help of the growing economy of the country. This was the time when we revised our itinerary and again we were the first to visit the Central Highlands for some newly described birds. The itinerary keeps changing with new birds and locations being found and we try to keep up with all the changes. For some years we were visiting Ba Be National Park in the north to see the very rare White-eared Night Heron but in 2016 and 2017 we did not go to the site (despite it being in the itinerary) as there were no breeding locations known any longer. The local farmers destroyed the nest in 2016 and it has not been relocated, so seeing the bird became very difficult again. It is not going to be in our programme from 2018 but in case of favourable news before the tour, we can organize a short extension for those who want to try. We have also operated an expedition in 2017 following the regular tour to seek out more special birds and as a result we will have some exciting changes in the 2018 itinerary! Our 2017 tour was again a highly successful one and we managed to find almost all of our target birds on our epic journey across this long country from south to north. We saw an amazing nine species of pheasants and partridges including the enigmatic Orange-necked Partridge and several superb looks of Germain’s Peacock-Pheasant. We also had no less than ten species of cuckoos, six species of owls including an adult and a juvenile Spot-bellied Eagle Owl, fourteen species of woodpeckers and an amazing ten species of laughinghthrushes, which is certainly a main focus of this tour. No doubt the much-localised pittas were also very high on the wish-list and we were not disappointed with several great looks of Blue-rumped and Bar-bellied Pittas!

The wonderful Collared Laughingthrush (tour participant Terry Laws)

The wonderful Collared Laughingthrush (tour participant Terry Laws)