31 May 2018
We just got back from a short trip.....................
A lot of photos to sort through but this was from the start of the trip. A Brown Dipper, the east Asian species of Dipper that is common on almost every local river (upstream at least).
I've seen Dippers in Europe, Nepal, the USA and Japan.3 species in all. I recall the first ones I ever saw: on a stream high up in the hills in the Lake District near a farm where my grandparents kept a caravan. Must have been over 40 years ago............
They appear to be difficult to photograph wherever they are though.
Labels: Brown Dipper
29 May 2018
28 May 2018
27 May 2018
A totally and utterly crap picture of an Oriental Honey Buzzard high in the sky near my apartment a couple of days ago. There were 2 of them, presumably just arrived from the south and slowly drifting over Hakodate..................the last of the spring migrants I guess.
The spring migration is just about over and it wasn't a vintage year. Maybe the weather wasn't helpful plus I was a bit sick at thes start of the month or too busy to do much birding later on. Perhaps the autumn will compensate.......
At Kamiiso today there were a couple of Grey-tailed Tattlers, 1 Pintail, 2 Goosander and 2 Wigeon. Oriental Reed Warblers, Common Cuckoo, Siberian Stonechats and Chestnut-eared Buntings are singing on the outskirts of town but otherwise not much to report............
Labels: Oriental Honey Buzzard
25 May 2018
24 May 2018
23 May 2018
22 May 2018
21 May 2018
20 May 2018
A Eurasian Spoonbill enjoying the warm spring weather in the padis outside Hakodate this afternoon.
A crap picture; into the light, cropped a lot and handheld out of the car window at 700mm with my misbehaving teleconverter. It flew off as soon as I got out.
This is only the 4th time I've seen this species in Japan: it's a bit scarce especially up here in Hokkaido.
19 May 2018
18 May 2018
May 18th 2015.
Not a good photo but on this day 3 years ago I saw my only Little Terns in Japan to date. This was on a river in Tokyo, near Haneda Airport. This species doesn't nest in Hokkaido..............
I saw one on the Ribble almost exactly 20 years before this individual and I think I saw one in Australia (is it the same species?).
Labels: Little Tern
17 May 2018
16 May 2018
15 May 2018
May 15th 2013.
A male Blue and White Flycatcher in one of the local parks 5 years ago today. There was an astonishing fall of common migrants that lasted several days that week: low pressure, cool temperatures and very low cloud caused it I think.................in the subsequent years the same park has been very quiet since.
Labels: Blue and White Flycatcher
14 May 2018
13 May 2018
May 13th 2013.
A Black-winged Stilt near Hakodate 5 years ago today. This is a regular overshoot visitor these days but Spring 2013 saw a big influx into south Hokkaido with birds at multiple sites. Nice to see one in flight too..............
11 May 2018
May 11th 2012.
A male Narcissus Flycatcher in one of the local parks 6 years ago today. This was in the middle of a run of several springs when this species was a common passage visitor in the various parks in Hakodate but the last several years I've not seen so many in town............
10 May 2018
8 May 2018
7 May 2018
5 May 2018
4 May 2018
I've been out of action for the last 3 days. A bit annoying as this is the season when birding is the most interesting and I did have lots of free time. I spent the free time in bed with a nasty cold or at the dentist having the start of root canal work due to some sudden but violent toothache.
I felt slightly better today and we had a quick look to see if anything interesting had appeared. The Saunders Gull was still there but not much else of interest. The same place as the Saunders Gull had produced Caspian Tern and both species of Spoonbill during late April/early May in the last 2 years so this small gull has carried on the tradition of this spot for turning up local rarities.
I have 3 days off coming up but it looks like it will be raining for most of the time................
3 May 2018
May 3rd 2013.
A mushy record shot of a Red-rumped Swallow in Kikonai 5 years ago today. Terrible weather..........drizzle and poor light I recall but the camera was just about up to the task of a BIF shot at least. This is a scarce overshoot visitor to Hokkaido: I've only ever seen this species twice here and both times were in early May..................
Labels: Red Rumped Swallow