23 May 2010

Lathams Snipe

This is a Lathams Snipe. a common summer visitor to Hokkaido and in open country they can be seen atop telephone poles on every country road. This one was on Route 5, the main (and until a recent toll highway was built) and only road north out of Hakodate.

It looks just like every other species of Snipe in the world. I first saw this species in Queensland (where it overwinters and is known as Japanese Snipe). Like many of its congeners it has an extraordinary display.

I couldn't video it flying but here it is calling................handheld out of the car window during a temporary lull in the traffic.

We just spent the weekend camping near Niseko. The first day was very warm and sunny but today was cold, windy, misty and drizzly. I saw lots of birds but couldn't get so many photos.

Wader migration usually peaks around now. Grey Tailed Tattlers were very common and were joined by smaller numbers of Ruddy Turnstone.

Other waders included Bar Tailed Godwit, Common Sandpiper and Little Ringed Plover.

Other stuff in no particular order: Siberian Blue Robin, 6 species of warbler including Arctic Warbler at the campsite, 3 species of flycatcher including loads of Narcissus at Onuma, Woodcock, Great Egret, Pergerine, Eastern Marsh Harrier, Japanese Green Pigeon, loads of Oriental and Common Cuckoo, Japanese and Brown Headed thrush, 5 species of Tit, Mandarin Duck, Scaup, Pochard, Shoveler, Black Scoter, Wigeon, Goosander, Glaucous Gull, an odd sounding bird at night that may have been a Jungle Nightjar (by the time I was fully awake it had gone), several species of Woodpecker.............

I still haven't managed to get a decent Osprey shot.

Like I say not much photography got done so here's a pic of me drinking beer outside the tent instead.

Thanks for clicking this link............



  1. Very clear pictures of the snipe Stu, and the video is good too. Looks like you are enjoying that beer.

  2. Great images. Once again...i really like the idea of adding video!!!

    Have a beer for me ;)

  3. Beautiful images. The image with the stretched wings is my pick of this series...Thomas

  4. Wow all snipes should be like this!
    Very nice images and vid showing its strange call.
    Hope I'll find this species soon...


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