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Cinnamon Bittern - Greater Bongkot North Field - Gulf of Thailand - 11 December 2020 (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
Dear members and bird watchers!

05:45 and I spot this bird on the installation. Pitch dark but deck illuminated by flood lights giving a yellow light. I instantly ID the bird as a Yellow Bittern. When the bird turn I am not so sure any more, well, I am pretty sure it is not a Yellow Bittern. Consulting my book that I now have got from my home in Bangkok and I ID the bird as a Cinnamon Bittern.

First picture and it look white on the top throat. Black feathers and it look like the Cinnamon bittern in my book. But the yellow light is very confusing. 2 original pictures and 2 colour edited pictures attached.

Pitch dark so I had to use a crazy ISO speed so the pictures are very poor

When I see the front of the bird it has one black stripe on the breast. My book have no front picture of the Cinnamon Bittern but it looks to be darker on the front of the breast. Anyone here know if my Cinnamon ID is correct?

Kind regards and happy birding

Hmmm. The artificial light makes the ID tricky, because it's hard to judge the colours correctly.
The deep base to the bill, elongated iris shape and dark flecks at the side of the breast should rule out Yellow Bittern and leaves consideration between Cinnamon and Von Schrenck's.
Even with the poor lighting, I think I'd expect to see more contrast on Von Schrenck's between the mantle & wings and between the nape and sides of the neck. So I think you're correct that this is a Cinnamon Bittern.

The dark stripe down the front of the neck is normal. Compare: http://orientalbirdimages.org/search.php?Bird_Image_ID=107923&Bird_ID=1103&Bird_Family_ID=&Location=
Thank you very much!!!

In my book the Schencks have white wings at the end while the Cinnamon have brown all the way back. In my book "Birds of Thailand" the Cinnamon have a little black on the shoulder, same as the picture.

Your link, GREAT! Yes, that is my bird. I have seen quite a few Yellow Bittern and have some of my own pictures. And they have a couple of streaks, like a winter pond heron but weaker.

When I spotted the bird in the dark standing in profile and the light I said Yellow immediately. But when I saw the front I changed my mind

Thank you very much
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