Mardy presents us with a breakfast omelette, Cambodian-style
(Photos by Narca)
Prey Veng features a very fine wetland––an ancient baray about a mile long and a half-mile wide. (Barays are artificial wetlands constructed centuries ago by the Angkor empire.)
White-rumped Falcon, a highly-sought-after species, graces our camp.
The very first morning, a rare White-rumped Falcon swoops into camp. We had also seen one on the drive in, and to see a second is bounty beyond belief.
We spend two days exploring the baray, finding Eurasian Hoopoes, Lesser Adjutants, Oriental Darters, Oriental Honey Buzzard, a huge Gray-headed Fishing-Eagle, Orange-breasted Pigeons, Golden-fronted Leafbirds, Scarlet-backed Flowerpeckers, Ruby-cheeked and Purple Sunbirds, and spectacular White-bellied Woodpeckers.
A lovely Orange-breasted Green Pigeon
Asian Barred Owlets are quite fun––for us. Not for anything smaller than they are.
Asian Barred Owlet, terror of small birds
I am astonished at the number and variety of butterflies we encounter, even though it's the dry season.
A Gray Pansy, Junonia atlites...
and its more colorful cousin, a Peacock Pansy, Precis (or Junonia) almana
I have barely begun to sort out the butterfly species, and lack the references to do a very good job of it. Here is an unknown species, a striking little hairstreak, which could prove to be a challenge... [but, as of 8 March, it is no longer unknown! Doug Danforth has identified it as a Common Pierrot].
Common Pierrot, Castalius rosimon, near Prey Veng...
and a nymphalid, probably Lexias pardalis.
Throughout our trip, we encountered warm and helpful people. Alan, in particular, received the royal treatment due to a respected elder in Cambodia. After observing a way of making Alan more comfortable, Mardy or our drivers, Da or Li, carried a foldup chair for him on every trail, so he wouldn't become tired with the effort of standing. Now that is exceptional kindness.