16 April 2008
Back to normality
It took a while but I think I've recovered from that long journey home, it took about 4 whole days to manage that..........must be getting old.
It's been pretty warm this week and I've done a bit of halfhearted birding/photographing in Hakodate and Onuma. Ths Goldcrest was 1 of 2 in the trees near my flat yesterday. I was hoping for some summer migrants but the only ones around were some Asian House Martin.
They nest under a nearby bridge and most of the colony seem to have arrived already. Other stuff around has included Reed Bunting, a lone Crossbill, a few Hawfinch and Dusky Thrush, lots of Black Backed Wagtail, a couple of Bullheaded Shrike and the 2 Goldcrest which provided the best photos.
At Onuma the usual species were around but less of them and less tame and more active....
We drove there today to look for Squirrels. We didn't find any but did see the inevitable foxes and turtles as well as loads of voles(?) of some description.
The snow has all gone and spring is well underway in the forest at Onuma. Green shoots everywhere, flowers and birdsong. Another sure sign of spring is you notice all the garbage everywhere in the forest. Plastic bottles, cans, shopping bags, electrical appliances, old tyres. In winter it's buried under the snow and in summer it's hidden by the greenery. Spring and Autumn are the best seasons but unfortunately these are the times you can see the garbage.
Mt Komagadake hasn't changed since last time.
A singing Japanese Bush Warbler was a first for the year and there were a few Oriental Turtle Doves but otherwise the forest was dominated by the ressident Woodpeckers, Nuthatches, Treecreepers, Jays and paridae whilst on the lake there were just 3 Whooper Swans left as well as a few small groups of Goosander, some Grey Heron,several Little Grebe and 1 or 2 Great White Egret.
Over at Kamiso there were still a few Ducks and Gulls. Not much else. 11 species of Duck including 4 Mandarins and several Shoveler and 6 species of Gull including several Glaucous of various ages. I did flush a Snipe species but it could have been 1 of 3 or 4 kinds. the Mandarin flew off as soon as I saw them but the Gulls were more co-operative.
So it looks like Emile Heskey has handed Utd the title. I always knew Arsenal never had the bottle to finish top but I was hoping Chelsea would at least prolong a challenge into May. Doesn't matter anyway. Liverpool will win #6 in Moscow and then I can be petty and parochial pretend international football doesn't exist for a while and ignore the Euro Championships (easier to do here than in England of course) and that'll be the 2007/8 season done and dusted.