WINGS Birding Tours International trip report of a 14-day Cambodia birding tour in November and December 2022 with Sam Veasna Conservation Tours (SVC).

Dates: 28th November to 10th December 2022

Report Written By: Mony Sang, SVC Bird Guide

Tour Leader: Susan Myers, WINGS Tour Leader

SVC Client: WINGS Birding Tours, USA

Locations: Angkor WatPrek Toal Bird Sanctuary, Bengal Florican Grasslands, Prey Veng VillageTmat BoeyBoeng Toal Vulture Restuarant, KratieCambodian Tailorbird Grasslands (Phnom Penh), Pursat GrasslandsBokor National Park.

Total No. of Bird Species: 211

Map of Locations (not exact locations of birding spots):


Such a great start again after more than 2 years Covid-19 outbreak. This is the start of the dry season and is the birding season in Cambodia too. It’s a 14-day trip across Cambodia that we will be visiting a variation of birding sites with Sam Veasna Conservations Tours (SVC), such as Angkor Archeological Park, Prek Toal- Waterbird Breeding Colony, Bengal Florican Grassland, Prey Veng-WWD site, Tmatboey-Ibis site, Beong Toal-Vulture Restaurant, Kampong Thom, Kratie, Cambodian Tailorbird site outskirt of Phnom Penh city, Pursat Grassland and Bokor National Park.

We will be starting from the Angkor Archeological site in Siem Reap and there will be some target species such as Forest Wagtail, White-throated Rock-Thrush, Black- capped King Fisher, Asian Barred Owlet, Hainan Blue Flycatcher, Alexandrine & Red-breasted Parakeets. The Prek Toal Waterbird Breeding Colony located in Battambang province is the largest freshwater waterbird breeding colony in Sout-East Asia we will be looking for Greater & Lesser Adjutants, Milky Stork, Grey-headed Fish-Eagle, Spot-billed Pelican, Oriental Darter, Glossy & Black-headed Ibises. Bengal Florican Grassland is an inundated area during the wet season and the site can access in November or December according to the rainy season, we can see Bengal Florican, Manchurian Reed Warbler, Black-browed Reed Warbler, Red Avadavat, Oriental Pratincole, Australasian Bushlark, Oriental Skylark, Eastern Marsh & Pied Harriers, and Sarus Crane. There’re 3 sites in the northern plants, Prey Veng for White-winged Duck, Tmatboey for Giant & White-shouldered Ibises, and Beong Toal for the 3 Asian Vulture species Red-headed, White-rumped & Slender-billed Vultures. Kampong Thom, there’s a chance for Yellow-breasted Bunting before we continue to Kratie for Mekong Wagtail, Asian Golden Weaver, Ruddy-breasted Crake, Watercock, Grey-headed Swamphen, Bronze-winged & Pheasant-tailed Jacanas, and Irrawaddy Dolphin. The Cambodian Tailorbird is the newly discovered bird species of the world- described in 2013 and we will see them outskirts of Phnom Penh city. Pursat Grassland is the only site to look for Rusty-rumped Grass Babbler/Chinese Grassbird and Yellow-breasted Bunting. The Bokor National Park is the last site that we will be visiting and looking for Chestnut-headed Partridge, Great & Wreathed Hornbills, Spot-bellied Eagle-Owl, and some Wader species in the coastal and Kampot Saltpan areas.

Highlights of the tour

● Giant Ibis
● White-shoulder Ibis
● Greater Adjutant
● Milky Stork
● Bengal Florican
● Mekong Wagtail
● Chinese Grassbird
● Red-headed Vulture
● White-rumped Vulture
● Slender-billed Vulture
● Great Hornbill
● Wreathed Hornbill

WINGS Cambodia Birding Tour 2023

Missed out on 2022? Join WINGS Cambodia 2023 Birding Tour from Saturday 2nd of December to Saturday 16th December 2023.

Trip Report

Day 1: Angkor Wat

We went for sunrise at Angkor Wat and then started birding after breakfast at the back of the complex. Some Forest Wagtails, Hainan Blue Flycatchers, Ashy Minivets, Grey-headed Canary Flycatchers, Ashy Drongos, Hair-crested Drongos, and others were spotted along the path of the forest patch on the northern part of the complex.

Then temple sighting with our temple guide and moved on to Bayon before we go for lunch. After lunch somewhere beyond the temple complexes, we visited Ta Prohm temple, a Jungle Temple that was overgrown with forest trees. This is the home of 2 endangered Parakeet species, Red-breasted & Alexandrine Parakeets. We have seen both species in this area.

Day 2: Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary

Prek Toal is a boat trip from Meychrey- Siem Reap dock as planned. We take the first boat from Siem Reap for about an hour and a half to get to Prek Toal floating village including g breakfast stop on the boat. Then check in at the research station and split into 2 smaller boats to get to the observation tower “platform #49”. We spent about 2 hours rotating clients to climb up the platform for the best view of the breeding colony of Greater & Lesser Adjutants, Milky & Painted Storks, Asian Openbills, Spot-billed Pelicans, Black-headed & Glossy Ibises, Grey Herons, and other waterbird species.

Day 3: Bengal Florican Grasslands

We will spend our morning birding in the Preahood Florican Grassland of Chikreng district, Siem Reap province about 1 hour and a half drive from the hotel. As the neighbor site was not reliable for the Bengal Florican so we choose this one and our local flashed a male Florican from the second crops field after a short walk through the cultivation areas behind the monastery complex. Not long, after seeing the Florican we are ready to move on to the northern plants of Cambodia. Prey Veng village is the home of the White-winged Duck located in Kulen Prohmtep Wildlife Sanctuary of Preah Vihear province. It was such a challenge to drive through the forest road for about 2 hours from the Koh Ker temple areas to get to the village and spent our late afternoon birding in the Baray Tumnob Leu. We had a great look at the Brown Boobook sitting on the dead branch above our heads when we arrived back at dusk.

Day 4: Prey Veng Village

We have a last morning birding here until lunchtime, so we spent some time birding on the west-south parts of the Baray. We heard Giant Ibis calls and probably feeding on the northeast corner of the reservoir unfortunately we cannot reach there as it is still very wet and muddy.

We spotted some Black-headed Woodpeckers, Asian Emerald Cuckoo, Chestnut-tailed Starlings, Vinous-breasted Mynas, Bar-winged Flycatcher-Shrikes, Asian Barred Owlets, and other bird species in this area. Then we continue our journey to Phnom Tbeng Resort for our night and go birding in the late afternoon in Tmatboey- Ibis site. We went to look for the White-shoulder Ibis roosting site and spotted 5 WSI came to roost, not long then we turned around to the eco-lodge for dinner.

Day 5: Tmat Boey

We went to look for the Gian Ibis in the nesting tree about 20 minutes of driving and 10 minutes of walking through the grassy forest bed to get to the nest. After a shortly arrived the other adult returned to the nest and take turns looking after the nest, after a short communication with his/her partner then the first one left the nest, and the second one sit on the nest. Not long as we do not want to disturb the Giant Ibis then we turn around to do birding somewhere else a different spot and birding until late morning.

Late afternoon we went birding to the Phnom Raeng area to look for Savana Nightjar, our local guides found a bird sitting on a rocky spot on the site, we all have a good location for it. We heard Chinese Francolin calls near our spot, I found a bird perching on the falling tree branch but suddenly it drops into the grass. On our way back to the vehicle we also wait until dusk to look for Oriental Scops-Owl. 2 birds start to call when the sunset then I went by myself to approach the calling spot and found a bird, then all come to see it.

Day 6: Tmat Boey

As we missed the White-rumped Falcon, we went to look for it in the usual spot where most of the tour group went. Unfortunately, we cannot find any sighting of them but saw some Yellow-crowned Woodpeckers and a Chinese Francolin running on the trail.

In the late afternoon, we looked for White-bellied Woodpeckers and some other bird species we missed. We spot a Siberian Rubythroat after hearing a call in the bushy spot near where we stand and birding.

Day 7: Tmat Boey to Boeng Toal Vulture Restaurant

This is our last morning birding in Tmatboey, so we looked for some of the missing species we did not see on this site. We went out the whole morning and return to the eco-lodge for lunch then continue to Beong Toal- A vulture feeding station in Chheb Wildlife Sanctuary.

After arriving at the Vulture site, we check our tent and start birding to the hide at about 3: 30 PM. There are more than 10 vultures with all 3 species that came to the carcass, but we will be returning tomorrow morning for a better show.

Day 8: Boeng Toal Vulture Restaurant to Kampong Thom

We started at 4:30 AM walk about a kilometer to the hide, last 100 meters we must turn off our lights and walk in the dark. We got it silently, seated, and wait for lighting and vultures will come down to the carcass. Four vultures came down and slowly start to feed on the carcass and look nervous as they were keeping looking around for their safety. But they flashed and went back to those trees. We wait for about 2 hours, and they did not come down as I wait until 10:30 AM. This morning there were about 30 vultures in 3 species that we have seen.

We have early lunch at about 11:00 AM and left the site afterward to Kampong Thom province for an overnight.

Day 9: Kampong Thom to Kratie

Krous Krom is one of the former Bengal Florican sites where we can see this species in the past 10 years ago, so we spent our few hours in the morning birding in this area. After breakfast in the hotel, we are starting to pack up and continue our trip to Kratie.

We have a bit late lunch in Kratie, a short break then goes birding to the marshland and wetland for Asian Golden Weaver, some Rails species, Pheasant-tailed Jacana, Grey- headed Swamphen, Pallas’s Grasshopper Warbler, Yellow-bellied Prinia, and some other wetland bird species.

Day 10: Kratie to Phnom Penh

This is a boat trip morning to see Mekong Wagtail, Grey-throated Martin, Small Pratincole, and Irrawaddy Dolphin in Kampi Pool where they exist. We spent about 2 hours on the boat to look for them, many Grey-throated Martin fly around, and we also found some of their nesting colony on the sandbank, a few Mekong Wagtails were seen well and about 5-8 Irrawaddy Dolphins swim around this pool area.

As we must go to Phnom Penh which takes around 5 hours, so we depart from Kratie at about 10:00 AM with our lunch break on the way as we can save some time.

We also spent a short time looking for Cambodian Tailorbird and Spotted Owlet outskirts of Phnom Penh city.

Day 11: Phnom Penh to Pursat

A bit of driving this morning from Phnom Penh to Pursat as we need to look for Chinese Grassbirds and some other bird species that occurred in this Bakan Grassland of the southern part of the Tonle Sap Great Lake. After a whole morning driving, we arrived at Pursat town at about noon and then have our lunch and an hour’s break.

We went birding at 2:30 PM about an hour’s drive from Pursat town to the grassland near Trampae village. 2 Chinese Grassbirds responded to our tap and saw well plus some bonus of Red Avadavats, Zitting Cisticola, Bluethroat, Pied & Eastern Marsh Harriers, Blue-tailed Bee-eater, and some other grassland bird species.

Day 12: Pursat to Kampot

This is another long drive from Pursat to Kampot, so we depart from Pursat after breakfast and had lunch somewhere on Road #41 before reaching Kampot. After about 5 hours of driving, we arrived safe and sound, checked in at the hotel, and went birding later.

We went birding to the new coastline spot called Kep Thmey just about 20 minutes of driving from the town to see Waders’ species.

There were about 50 Caspian Terns, Red-necked Stints, some White-faced & Malaysian Plovers, Eurasian Curlew, Grey Plovers, Bar-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshanks, Chinese Egret, and a lot of Lesser & Greater Sand Plovers.

Day 13: Bokor to Phnom Penh

This is our last morning birding of the trip, we went birding up on Bokor Mountain at about 4:30 AM as we need to look for Spot-bellied Eagle-Owl unfortunately it was too windy this morning, we did not get any response but heard Collared Scops-Owl close but not seen. After breakfast break, we continued birding downhill. About 25-30 Great Hornbills fly to the fruiting trees and feed, at least a single Wreathed Hornbill flight through and show up twice.

Not a busy morning as too windy, so we turn around to the hotel at about 10:00 AM, pack up, had lunch, and departed to Phnom Penh.


Mony Sang

Mony Sang

SVC Guide


Mony has over 15 years of bird guiding experience with SVC and has often represented SVC at international birdfairs including in the Global Birdfair and Asian Birdfair in 2022. Milky Stork, Greater Adjutant, Giant Ibis, and Bar-bellied Pitta are his favourite species to show clients in Cambodia.

Complete Bird List

Total No. of Bird Species: 211
See detailed bird lists for each location on the following link:


1. Cotton Pygmy-Goose Nettapus coromandelianus
2. Indian Spot-billed Duck Anas poecilorhyncha
3. Red Junglefowl Gallus gallus
4. Chinese Francolin Francolinus pintadeanus
5. Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis
6. Rock Pigeon Columba livia
7. Red Collared-Dove Streptopelia tranquebarica
8. Spotted Dove Spilopelia chinensis
9. Asian Emerald Dove Chalcophaps indica
10. Zebra Dove Geopelia striata
11. Yellow-footed Green-Pigeon Treron phoenicopterus
12. Green Imperial-Pigeon Ducula aenea
13. Bengal Florican Houbaropsis bengalensis
14. Greater Coucal Centropus sinensis
15. Lesser Coucal Centropus bengalensis
16. Green-billed Malkoha Phaenicophaeus tristis
17. Asian Koel Eudynamys scolopaceus
18. Asian Emerald Cuckoo Chrysococcyx maculatus
19. Violet Cuckoo Chrysococcyx xanthorhynchus
20. Banded Bay Cuckoo Cacomantis sonneratii
21. Plaintive Cuckoo Cacomantis merulinus
22. Savanna Nightjar Caprimulgus affinis
23. Germain’s Swiftlet Aerodramus germani
24. Asian Palm Swift Cypsiurus balasiensis
25. Crested Treeswift Hemiprocne coronata
26. Gray-headed Swamphen Porphyrio poliocephalus
27. Watercock Gallicrex cinerea
28. Black-bellied Plover Pluvialis squatarola
29. Red-wattled Lapwing Vanellus indicus
30. Lesser Sand-Plover Charadrius mongolus
31. Greater Sand-Plover Charadrius leschenaultii
32. Malaysian Plover Charadrius peronii
33. White-faced Plover Charadrius dealbatus
34. Pheasant-tailed Jacana Hydrophasianus chirurgus
35. Bronze-winged Jacana Metopidius indicus
36. Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata
37. Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica
38. Red-necked Stint Calidris ruficollis
39. Common Snipe Gallinago gallinago
40. Pin-tailed Snipe Gallinago stenura
41. Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos
42. Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia
43. Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia
44. Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida
45. Asian Openbill Anastomus oscitans
46. Asian Woolly-necked Stork Ciconia episcopus
47. Lesser Adjutant Leptoptilos javanicus
48. Greater Adjutant Leptoptilos dubius
49. Milky Stork Mycteria cinerea
50. Painted Stork Mycteria leucocephala
51. Oriental Darter Anhinga melanogaster
52. Little Cormorant Microcarbo niger
53. Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
54. Indian Cormorant Phalacrocorax fuscicollis
55. Spot-billed Pelican Pelecanus philippensis
56. Gray Heron Ardea cinerea
57. Purple Heron Ardea purpurea
58. Great Egret Ardea alba
59. Intermediate Egret Ardea intermedia
60. Chinese Egret Egretta eulophotes
61. Little Egret Egretta garzetta
62. Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
63. Chinese Pond-Heron Ardeola bacchus
64. Striated Heron Butorides striata
65. Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
66. Black-headed Ibis Threskiornis melanocephalus
67. White-shouldered Ibis Pseudibis davisoni
68. Giant Ibis Pseudibis gigantea
69. Osprey Pandion haliaetus
70. Black-winged Kite Elanus caeruleus
71. Oriental Honey-buzzard Pernis ptilorhynchus
72. Black Baza Aviceda leuphotes
73. Red-headed Vulture Sarcogyps calvus
74. White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis
75. Slender-billed Vulture Gyps tenuirostris
76. Crested Serpent-Eagle Spilornis cheela
77. Rufous-winged Buzzard Butastur liventer
78. Eastern Marsh-Harrier Circus spilonotus
79. Pied Harrier Circus melanoleucos
80. Shikra Accipiter badius
81. Gray-headed Fish-Eagle Haliaeetus ichthyaetus
82. Collared Scops-Owl Otus lettia
83. Oriental Scops-Owl Otus sunia
84. Asian Barred Owlet Glaucidium cuculoides
85. Collared Owlet Taenioptynx brodiei
86. Spotted Owlet Athene brama
87. Brown Boobook Ninox scutulata
88. Eurasian Hoopoe Upupa epops
89. Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis
90. Oriental Pied-Hornbill Anthracoceros albirostris
91. Wreathed Hornbill Rhyticeros undulatus
92. Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis
93. White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis
94. Black-capped Kingfisher Halcyon pileata
95. Collared Kingfisher Todiramphus chloris
96. Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis
97. Asian Green Bee-eater Merops orientalis
98. Blue-tailed Bee-eater Merops philippinus
99. Chestnut-headed Bee-eater Merops leschenaulti
100. Indochinese Roller Coracias affinis
101. Coppersmith Barbet Psilopogon haemacephalus
102. Blue-eared Barbet Psilopogon duvaucelii
103. Lineated Barbet Psilopogon lineatus
104. Moustached Barbet Psilopogon incognitus
105. Gray-capped Pygmy Woodpecker Yungipicus canicapillus
106. Yellow-crowned Woodpecker Leiopicus mahrattensis
107. Rufous-bellied Woodpecker Dendrocopos hyperythrus
108. Greater Flameback Chrysocolaptes guttacristatus
109. Common Flameback Dinopium javanense
110. Black-headed Woodpecker Picus erythropygius
111. Greater Yellownape Chrysophlegma flavinucha
112. Great Slaty Woodpecker Mulleripicus pulverulentus
113. Collared Falconet Microhierax caerulescens
114. Alexandrine Parakeet Psittacula eupatria
115. Blossom-headed Parakeet Psittacula roseata
116. Red-breasted Parakeet Psittacula alexandri
117. Vernal Hanging-Parrot Loriculus vernalis
118. Golden-bellied Gerygone Gerygone sulphurea
119. Small Minivet Pericrocotus cinnamomeus
120. Scarlet Minivet Pericrocotus speciosus
121. Ashy Minivet Pericrocotus divaricatus
122. Large Cuckooshrike Coracina macei
123. Indochinese Cuckooshrike Lalage polioptera
124. Black-naped Oriole Oriolus chinensis
125. Black-hooded Oriole Oriolus xanthornus
126. Ashy Woodswallow Artamus fuscus
127. Large Woodshrike Tephrodornis virgatus
128. Common Woodshrike Tephrodornis pondicerianus
129. Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike Hemipus picatus
130. Common Iora Aegithina tiphia
131. Malaysian Pied-Fantail Rhipidura javanica
132. White-browed Fantail Rhipidura aureola
133. Black Drongo Dicrurus macrocercus
134. Ashy Drongo Dicrurus leucophaeus
135. Hair-crested Drongo Dicrurus hottentottus
136. Greater Racket-tailed Drongo Dicrurus paradiseus
137. Black-naped Monarch Hypothymis azurea
138. Blyth’s Paradise-Flycatcher Terpsiphone affinis
139. Brown Shrike Lanius cristatus
140. Burmese Shrike Lanius collurioides
141. Red-billed Blue-Magpie Urocissa erythroryncha
142. Racket-tailed Treepie Crypsirina temia
143. Large-billed Crow Corvus macrorhynchos
144. Gray-headed Canary-Flycatcher Culicicapa ceylonensis
145. Indochinese Bushlark Mirafra erythrocephala
146. Common Tailorbird Orthotomus sutorius
147. Dark-necked Tailorbird Orthotomus atrogularis
148. Cambodian Tailorbird Orthotomus chaktomuk
149. Brown Prinia Prinia polychroa
150. Rufescent Prinia Prinia rufescens
151. Gray-breasted Prinia Prinia hodgsonii
152. Yellow-bellied Prinia Prinia flaviventris
153. Plain Prinia Prinia inornata
154. Zitting Cisticola Cisticola juncidis
155. Oriental Reed Warbler Acrocephalus orientalis
156. Pallas’s Grasshopper Warbler Helopsaltes certhiola
157. Lanceolated Warbler Locustella lanceolata
158. Striated Grassbird Cincloramphus palustris
159. Gray-throated Martin Riparia chinensis
160. Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
161. Red-rumped Swallow Cecropis daurica
162. Black-headed Bulbul Brachypodius melanocephalos
163. Black-crested Bulbul Rubigula flaviventris
164. Sooty-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus aurigaster
165. Stripe-throated Bulbul Pycnonotus finlaysoni
166. Yellow-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus goiavier
167. Streak-eared Bulbul Pycnonotus conradi
168. Yellow-browed Warbler Phylloscopus inornatus
169. Dusky Warbler Phylloscopus fuscatus
170. Two-barred Warbler Phylloscopus plumbeitarsus
171. Pale-legged Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus tenellipes
172. Indian White-eye Zosterops palpebrosus
173. Chestnut-capped Babbler Timalia pileata
174. Pin-striped Tit-Babbler Mixornis gularis
175. Chinese Grassbird Graminicola striatus
176. White-crested Laughingthrush Garrulax leucolophus
177. Burmese Nuthatch Sitta neglecta
178. Velvet-fronted Nuthatch Sitta frontalis
179. Common Hill Myna Gracula religiosa
180. Black-collared Starling Gracupica nigricollis
181. Siamese Pied Starling Gracupica floweri
182. White-shouldered Starling Sturnia sinensis
183. Chestnut-tailed Starling Sturnia malabarica
184. Common Myna Acridotheres tristis
185. Vinous-breasted Myna Acridotheres leucocephalus
186. Great Myna Acridotheres grandis
187. Asian Brown Flycatcher Muscicapa dauurica
188. Oriental Magpie-Robin Copsychus saularis
189. White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus
190. Hainan Blue Flycatcher Cyornis hainanus
191. Indochinese Blue Flycatcher Cyornis sumatrensis
192. Verditer Flycatcher Eumyias thalassinus
193. Bluethroat Luscinia svecica
194. Siberian Rubythroat Calliope calliope
195. Taiga Flycatcher Ficedula albicilla
196. Blue Rock-Thrush Monticola solitarius
197. Amur Stonechat Saxicola stejnegeri
198. Pied Bushchat Saxicola caprata
199. Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker Dicaeum cruentatum
200. Purple Sunbird Cinnyris asiaticus
201. Olive-backed Sunbird Cinnyris jugularis
202. Asian Fairy-bluebird Irena puella
203. Golden-fronted Leafbird Chloropsis aurifrons
204. Scaly-breasted Munia Lonchura punctulata
205. White-rumped Munia Lonchura striata
206. Red Avadavat Amandava amandava
207. House Sparrow Passer domesticus
208. Plain-backed Sparrow Passer flaveolus
209. Mekong Wagtail Motacilla samveasnae
210. Paddyfield Pipit Anthus rufulus
211. Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsoni

Additional Taxa

212. harrier sp.Circus sp. (Probably Eastern Marsh Harrier)

Mammal List

1. Variable Squirrel Callosciurus finlaysonii
2. Cambodian Striped Squirrel Tamiops rodolphii
3. Indochinese Ground Squirrel Menetes berdmorei
4. Long-tailed Macaque Macaca fascicularis
5. Northern Pig-tailed Macaque Macaca nemestrina
6. Pileated Gibbon Hylobates pileatus
7. Small Asian Mongoose Herpestes javanicus
8. Irrawaddy Dolphin Orcaella brevirostris

Reptile List

1. Speckled Forest Skink Eutropis macularia
2. Garden Fence or Oriental Garden Lizard Calotes versicolor