24 January 2012


On Sunday the wind direction changed and it became unexpectedly mild and it even rained. Unfortunately subzero temperatures soon returned and the slush from a couple of days ago has now become glassy ice and it is horrible to walk on even with spikes.

I was watching the above unusually confiding Great Egret near my apartment, it looked like it was just going to do something interesting when it was disturbed by an old man who threw away blocks of ice he'd been chipping away at in front of his house next to the river. I watched in horror as he threw the slabs of ice over the railings at the side of the river, the egret flew off. 'F**king hell" I shouted in English, the old man nodded sheepishly (to be fair he didn't know the egret was there but the silly old bastard must have known I was photographing something).

Not much else around, small groups of Dusky Thrush and Grey Starling (but no Waxwings yet), 6 species of duck including Goosander, a lone male Daurian Redstart, a Grey Heron: that's about it. On Sunday there were 2 adult White Tailed Eagle and some Black Necked Grebe in Kamiiso but the weather was so bad photography was impossible.

I've given up on Liverpool finishing in the top 4 though at least Arsenal and Chelsea are struggling too, you never know.

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



  1. You can be driving along an icy road here and people will shovel snow right in front of the car. You look in amazement as you feel the car go 'bump' when you hit the mound in the road's centre. Saw a Stellers sitting on an electrical tower here through a scope on Sunday but when we got in the car and drove up to the tower it had already left.

  2. Hi Stu, I don't know about your waxwings but it looks like it has not been a good year in Europe for the bohemian. We did not get any this year in Iceland.
    Concerning the old man and the egret, you will not change people you know ;-) We got a huge storm of snow yesterday night and another 40cm... Three months of snow, Iceland had not seen that since 1923!!!

  3. Great photos Stu, as always. Shame about the cold weather. My friend leaves for Japan tomorrow, I better tell her to take some more warm clothes!

  4. Thanks for the comments.

    Russell-yes birds do tend to fly away, the bane of our hobby-the selfish creatures........

    Chris-strange, I always associated Iceland with, well, ice and snow........maybe I was wrong.

    Richard, if your friend is coming to Hokkaido it is freezing cold. right now!

  5. I know how you feel.... Just the existence of another human being while I'm trying to get photos of a bird is already irritating.

  6. Ayuwat..........I know you're joking (slightly!) but what you say is so so true..........

  7. My dog is usually the spoil sport when I'm trying to get a good shot!!The Egret looks really cold,well done for spotting it,it's a
    good shot.

  8. Funny how the "F" word seems to be universal and readily understood in many parts of the world.

  9. Phil, I don't think he understood the words but my tone of exasperation was universal.


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