Mang Den is the name of a resort town under development approximately 50 km to the east of Kontum, in Vietnam’s Central Highlands. The town itself is mostly planted with conifers but within a few kilometres of the town centre large areas of excellent montane evergreen forest survive mostly intact.
Like Lo Xo, Mang Den falls within the Kontum Plateau EBA, and it is here that the little-known Chestnut-eared Laughingthrush can be found. Discovered and described as recently as the late 1990s this enigmatic species is known only from the Kontum Plateau and until mid-2010 had only been seen by a handful of birders.
In addition to Chestnut-eared Laughingthrush, the Mang Den area is the without a doubt the best site in Vietnam for Black-hooded Laughingthrush and Yellow-billed Nuthatch, two highly sought-after near endemics, that are both locally common here.
Fortunately for birders, the Black-crowned Barwing, discovered in 1996 and known from only three sites in Vietnam and Laos, seems to favour the easily accessed scrub and secondary growth bordering the highway.
Mang Den’s most wanted
Pale-capped Pigeon, Northern Brown Hornbill, Stripe-breasted Woodpecker, White-winged Magpie, Ratchet-tailed Treepie, Pale Blue Flycatcher, Grey-crowned Tit, Rufous-faced Warbler, Grey-headed Parrotbill, Indochinese Wren-babbler, Chestnut-eared Laughingthrush, Black-hooded Laughingthrush.