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S Thailand Drongo ID help please (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
Hi, I took these photos on August 24, 2020 from about 5:00 pm to 5:30 pm. Unfortunately neither the light nor my camera skills were as good as one might hope.
This first 2 photos are of the same bird, which I think is an ashy drongo.
The next 3 photos may well be of the same bird or a different one. They were taken about 15 minutes later then the first set.
The bird in the second 3 photos seems to me to have a shorter tail, or at least a shorter distance between its vent and where the tail feathers end. Also the slit in the tail feathers seems shorter than the earlier photos, but perhaps that is just an accidental feature of how its tail feathers were arranged.
So two questions if I may; first, is the bird in the first two photos an ashy drongo (I think yes); second, is the bird in the last 3 photos an ashy drongo or another species - bronzed drongo is the only other drongo in this area I believe.
The area where these photos was taken is small farm but just off the junction of two busy secondary highways. While there is a creek running through the area the area itself is pretty dry.
Thank you in advance


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I agree with Ashy for the first bird, one of the dark subspecies (I'm not sure which you have locally).

The second bird appears to be a juvenile that has not yet completely finished growing the tail. The feathers are slightly uneven length, suggesting they are growing. Based on the structure of the head and bill I'd say it's another Ashy (actually I thought the barring on the undertail coverts favoured Black, but you suggest these aren't in the area).
Hi John, thanks for the comment and assistance. I double checked eBird and turns out that black drongo is possible, as is crow-billed drongo and even racket-tailed drongo, though the latter 3 appear to be unusual this time of year in Hat Yai area. That being said I do not think this part of Thailand has been as thoroughly birded as other parts.
Hopefully I can get a better photo next time of them.
thanks again
Both Ashy Drongos Steve, and as John alludes, the second bird is a juvenile as indicated by the greyish-white fringes to the under tail coverts + growing tail. Juvenile Black shows much more extensive white scaling to the underparts + it's a winter visitor to these parts.

The resident race of Ashy is nigrescens part of the 'Blackish' group.

Photo tip: If you're using a DSLR, or any camera with exposure compensation, add a few stops when shooting against the sky. +2 is a good place to start.
Thanks for the photo tip, much appreciated. I am using a Nikon Coolpix 600 which I do not think can do that:)

I actually saw an adult and a juvenile ashy drongo together today, August 24, 2020, sitting on the same branch. And they looked like the two in the photos. Today the light was much better and both showed glossy back with a dullish dark grey breast and belly, the Juvenile showed the same tail feather pattern and was appreciably smaller overall.
thank you everyone
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