More Pharalopes

Red-necked Pharalope

Another typhoon is approaching and it brought more Red-necked Pharalopes. This time in Hakodate………..

Red-necked Pharalope

There were 3 of them as well as 1 Terek Sandpiper, a dozen or so Red-necked Stint, a couple of Common Sandpiper and a lone Eurasian Oystercatcher. They were all very skittish. Except the Pharalopes.

Red-necked Pharalope

More Ospreys


Very hot and humid the last couple of weeks…………

I’ve been pretty lazy and not gone out much. Today there were Osprey just outside town and at Kikonai there were Common Kingfisher, all 3 hirundine species and Pacific Swift but not much else. At Kamiiso there were Japanese Green Pigeon, 2 Terek Sandpiper and several Goosander. Last week at Yakumo there were a few Wood Sandpiper but other wise it was pretty quiet.

Roll on Autumn.




The Ospreys are doing well. We saw them at many sites today…………….


2 youngsters were in the nest on the west coast and there seemed to be a couple of juvenile birds flying near Hakodate.

Other species around today included Wryneck and Lesser Cuckoo. A Black-headed Gull and female Goldeneye were near Hakodate, the last stragglers of winter.

Another one from the roadside

Bull-headed Shrike

Another very common roadside bird of summer is Bull-headed Shrike.

The one above is a male.

The only other 2 Shrike species likely to be seen in Hokkaido are the rare Brown Shrike (which I’ve only ever seen twice, another summer visitor) and Great Grey Shrike, a rare winter visitor. I haven’t seen the latter although many years ago I did see a Shrike swoop in front of the car one January. Bull-headed Shrikes are almost absent in winter. Wish we’d stopped the car and checked that individual……..

The way home

Brown Dipper

A Brown Dipper on the way back from our short camping week earlier this week.

Other stuff we saw were Grey-tailed Tattler, Osprey and Oriental Honey Buzzard. Black-browed Reed Warblers have arrived en masse and there were also quite a few singing Gray’s Grasshopper Warbler too (including one near my apartment).

Nearer home the only thing of interest was this lone Little Egret looking miserable in the rain (one of only 2 rainy days all month).

Little Egret

Quiet end to Spring

Lesser Sand Plover

Well that was a pretty slow spring. No rarities and even the common stuff passed straight through. The weather was just too nice………….

The only waders around at the weekend were Lesser Sand Plover near town, lots of Grey-tailed Tattler everywhere and Dulin and Turnstone at Oshamanbe where there were also 6 species of Gull around including a Black-legged Kittiwake. Rhinoceros Auklet were offshore at Kaminokuni and Hakodate and Black-browed Reed Warbler, Siberian Blue Robin and Japanese Robin put in their first appearances of 2019.

Grey-tailed Tattler

Still slow

Grey-tailed Tattler

Spring migration is still very slow. The calm sunny weather over the last couple of weeks might have meant most of the migrants have passed straight through. Today near my apartment there was a lone Asian Brown Flycatcher and yesterday in the west of town there were 2 Grey-tailed Tattler, 1 Brent Goose, I Goosander, 1 Wigeon and 1 Vega Gull.

I’ve also done something to my leg/back that is making walking difficult. It’s been present on and off for several weeks now. Probably sciatica and hopefully time will heal it…………..