26 September 2007

Autumn approaching

The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting cooler. The leaves haven't changed colour yet but the vegetation is starting to thin out a bit. There's still plenty of places for autumn migrants to hide in though. The 2 most common migrants this year seem to be Siberian Stonechat (above) and Black Crowned Night Heron (below). All over the place.

Other migrants in Hakodate tend to be skulking around and hard to ID. An Arctic Warbler was in the bushes next to my apartment a few days ago and there have been several Asian Brown Flycatchers and lots of dull greenish/brownish things flitting about that are probably warblers or flycatchers of some description. Since I got the DSLR the binoculars often stay at home when I go for a walk in town.

The ducks have started to reurn to Hakodate. Pintail, Wigeon, Teal, Goosander, Mallard and Tufted Duck have all been at Kamiso and today there were also 3 Scaup. The Glaucous Winged Gull was still present.

We went to Onuma this afternoon. The common woodland species were much in evidence. Marsh and Varied Tit, Nuthatch, Japanese and Greater Spotted Woodpecker plus lots of Japanese Grosbeak and a few Japanese Green Pigeon. Coot, Moorhen and Little Grebe were still on the lake. And lots of turtles too.

Tragedy struck at the weekend. This cute little critter went to the great fishtank in the sky.

It was a kind of pufferfish that cost about $30 and stayed alive in our fishtank precisely 48 hours. The Clownfish has had no problems..............fingers crossed.

Lots of nice clear weather the last few days.

Autumn is usually the nicest season around these here parts. I prefer spring in England to Japan but October here is much nicer than back home. The locals do bang on a bit about Japan's 4 seasons as though fall colours are somehow unique to Japan but I'll concede they do have nice autumns. The Salmon runs will start soon and the peak migration season will be upon us in a week or 2. And the old lady downstairs sells us lots and lots of cheap beans.

Just into Season 5 of the Sopranos. This week I downloaded 'Coogan's run' and 'Catterick'-2 series I missed from the UK. I also downloaded an Ian Dury album. 'New Boots and Panties'. My aunt actually taped me this in 1979 (with 'Outlandos d'amour' or whatever it was called on the other side). I'd forgotten what a good album it was. Mt aunt also omitted a track, 'Plaistow Patricia', to protect a 10 year old from hearing the 'c word'. Now after all these years I have to say she left the best song from the album off the tape. Though 'clever Trevor' has stood the test of time just as well.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Stuart, We are back in London. We hoped to see Raicho(thunder bird) in Tateyama but no sign of the bird..We saw some rock larks and uso but we failed to see many birds in the Japanese Alps. The mountains were magnificent though.
    I am envious of you enjoying the beautiful autumn in Hakodate. Hope to see you again! Thank you for your help in Japan. Tony & Megumi


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