Thursday, February 18, 2010

Rosy Starling

While this may not be a rare bird in some countries, it took me 19 years of birding to see one in Thailand.
I was at the mangrove project in Petburi watching as birds left their roost in the early morning. After thousands of Black Drongo, Asian Pied Starlings and White-vented Mynas had passed my eyes a small and very tight flock of Starlings came out. They perched in a couple of trees for a few minutes before going on to their feeding grounds. The flock consisted mostly of White-shouldered and Chestnut-tailed Starlings.
But something different caught my eye. Some larger and darker looking birds. I tuned in and could see 2 adult and 2 juvenile Rosy Starlings. Yes, another life bird for 2010!

Then just a couple of days back I got wind of another Rosy Starling visiting a smaller garden in Pathum Thani, just north of Bangkok. I got the man's phone number and he agreed to let me come to his house.

It was a small house in a housing estate. He had a small but lush garden where he had been putting out ripe bananas for awhile. I sat down on a bench and waited.
The man said that the bird had been around for a few months now. When it first arrived it was in a juvenile plumage but now it had started to sing and almost turned into an adult plumage. I had to wait (it was very hot) for about 30 minutes before the bird showed. I had the bird coming in for a couple of minutes twice in the span of 2 and a half hours and this is the result.