Thailand is home to 12 species of Pitta, although unfortunately some are on the critically endangered list. By their very nature, Pittas are very difficult bird to spot and photograph. Blue -winged Pittas are probably the most common and the easiest to find in many of Thailand's National Parks. Blue and Hooded Pittas follow next on the ease of finding scale. All three are listed as least concern, but the latter two being a little more secretive in their nature. Rusty-naped Pittas are fairly common at Mae Wong NP if you are prepared to wait. The Banded Pitta and Mangrove Pitta are resident in the south of Thailand and Sri Pang Nga NP is an excellent place to find the Banded. Eared Pittas have been reported at Khoa Yai and Kaeng Krachan NP, but I have never had the good fortune of seeing one (yet). Unfortunately Gurney's Pitta is all but extinct in Thailand with no reports of any sightings for a good few years now. Blue-rumped Pitta, Giant Pitta, Bar-bellied Pitta, Blue-naped Pitta and Garnet Pitta are all very elusive and only seem to be found in their own respective areas. A Fairy Pitta was recorded in Phuttamonton Park in Bangkok a few years back, but unfortunately to my knowledge it has not been recorded there again.
After, what must be, 6 or 7 attempts to see/get a pic of a blue pitta (Hydrornis cyaneus) at Kaeng Krachan KM 18, I finally got one on Friday. It turned up twice, once very early in the morning while it was still virtually dark and then again at 15:00. I think I am relieved more than anything - its taken up a lot of my time :+)
I was sat on the floor to get the angle and I have to say how weird is this years weather when there are still leeches about in February.
I guess its going to get harder now for my next one. Which one?
Thanks guys! I have to say, not being knowledgeable about birds I was amazed how well its "camouflage" works. I thought it would be a big bright blue blob - the camera sees that, but from a human's eyes it really was quite hard to see comparatively, especially head on. Obviously well adapted to the low light forest floor - which is somewhat of a surprise to me.