5 March 2010

On this day (March 5th)....................

March 5th 2008.

Male Common Crossbill in Goryokaku Park. This individual is presumably a 3rd year or older bird as its plumage is deep red, younger birds tend to be more orange in colour.

This individual was part of a very tame group that came down to drink some of the snow, I got up early to take this shot before the park was overrun by tourists.

The park is now overrun by a construction project and the part of the park where I shot this is currently out of bounds..........the work will apparently finish this summer after 4 or so years of plundering the tax revenues to create artificial jobs and no doubt big bank balances for corrupt local politicians.

The last 2 years were very good for Crossbills but they are an unpredictable bird, so far in 2010 I have yet to see a single one. I check all the local stands of pine trees every day almost as an act of faith................

I first saw them back in 2002 and they came the next 2 years and then were absent from 2005 until 2008: I hope it won't be such a long gap this time, they have to be my fave small bird.



  1. I hope they keep suitable habitat for small birds in the same area of the park. Lovely picture. I'm yet to see one.

  2. Hi,
    This is a bird that has started to come to Iceland recently and we have been constantly been spotting some around the Southwest coast.. We even spotted immature and we suspect that there is some breeding around but no real proofs yet... Beautiful pictures you got, and it is rare to get them on the ground!


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