Another very common summer visitor to the grasslands is Black-browed Reed Warbler. There are lots of them singing at Yakumo and other places this year………..
Siberian Stonechats (sometimes split as Stenjeger’s Stonechat) are one of the commonest summer visitors and on the grasslands they are abundant at this time of year.
The young have just left the nest and the adults tanely sit atop bushes and reeds watching over them. Very easy to photograph………..
The colony of Grey Heron and Great Cormorant at Yakumo already have chicks………………
Is it usually this early?
A male Common Reed Bunting in Yakumo at the end of Golden Week a couple of days ago. This is a common summer visitor to suitable habitats in south Hokkaido,
In the fishing ports local fishermen leave the nets out to dry. I guess the nets contain rotting seafood and in early May some kind of fly lay their eggs in the stinking netting and when the insects emerge they are food for any birds in the area.
Chestnut-cheeked Starlings are common summer visitors and flocks of them were feasting on the flies………..
Not a vintage Golden Week for birds. Despite fine weather and lots of time off and traveelling around SW Hokkaido I didn’t see anything particularly rare or unusual. Yakumo still had plenty of wildfowl on the 4th/6th including Garganey, Falcated Duck and White-fronted Geese and both species of Scoter were offshore at Oshamanbe. Other summer visitors to arrrive included Oriental Reed Warbler, Brown-headed Thrush and Oriental Cuckoo. On passage there were lots of Dusky Thrush and a nice male Rustic Bunting (at Yakumo) but not much else.
The above Intermediate Egret was at Yakumo. All 3 species of commoner egret weer evident across the region at the weekend: this is the scarcest of the 3.
There were lots of duck species around at Yakumo today. The avove Falcated Duck and a male Garganey were the most interesting and there were also Gadwall, Shoveler and another dozen or so species as well as Mandarin Duck and Smew at Onuma.
All flight shots today.
White-fronted Geese pass through south Hokkaido all the way through spring. Today there was a flock of 40 or so of them at Yakumo…………….
The Glaucous-winged Gulls are coming into summer plumage before their return trip north.
They fit in well in Japan. Like the locals, they eat pretty much anything that comes from the sea…………..
A Steller’s Sea Eagle in Yakumo on Sunday.
The numbers are slowly falling as the salmon stock dwindles and the birds begin to disperse. There were still a fair few around though but for most of the morning the skies were too dark and blizzards hit in the afternoon.
There were more eagles of both species up in Oshamanbe, they won’t be leaving quite yet.