Thailand Birding: Greater Flamingo


Whilst Greater Flamingo is not on the Thai checklist of birds, it is a species frequently seen in the wild by many birders here. The reason for this is that a Greater Flamingo which has been resident in the Laem Pak Bia/Pak Thale region for a number of years now is in fact an escaped bird.

The above photograph was taken on mudflats at Pak Thale on 20th December by Esa Keikka.

When this bird first turned up in the area in the early 2000s it was thought by many to be a genuine vagrant. However, when I went to the area with Phil Round we could clearly see that all the secondary feathers growing back in a straight line, indicating that at some point they had been cut and that the bird had escaped from a waterbird collection.

I get many reports of this bird from birders excited to find a new species for Thailand and whilst I have to inform them that it is an escape, it is still a beautiful bird to see.

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