Some flocks

White-fronted Goose

The big goose flock was still near Onuma yesterday.

I wanted to get some Cackling Goose pics (there are a few in among all the White-fronted Geese). You can see a couple resting here (the ones with the black heads and white cheeks).

White-fronted and Cackling Goose

They weren’t the only flocks around that location. Lots of swans of course but also this group of 100 or so Common Redpoll.

Common Redpoll

A foggy morning in Onuma

White-fronted Goose

On Monday morning we went back to Onuma to check the huge geese/swan flocks.

But it was foggy……………

Some of them were resting on the lake.

Bewick’s Swan
Bean Goose

Also around were lots of ducks including large numbers of Pintail, 2 Steller’s Sea Eagle, 1 White-tailed Eagle, several Great Egret and a pair of Japanese Wagtail.


Bewick’s Swan

There were huge numbers of Bewick’s Swans near Onuma, in addition to the huger numbers of White-fronted Geese.

This is only a passage visitor to Hokkaido. Whooper Swans are common here in winter (and there were plenty of those around too ) but Bewick7s are always worth a second look in Hokkaido.

Bewick’s Swan
Bewick’s Swan

More geese

White-fronted Goose

I don’t know why there are so many geese this year. I’ve seen huge numbers in the skies above town the last week or two. And the numbers in Onuma yesterday were unprecedented………..

White-fronted Goose

This is the commonest goose in Japan. I see quite a few very year but 2020 is a bumper year for them.

White-fronted Goose

An ID Error

Bewick’s Swan

Oops. I thought I’d found a real rarity today at Onuma. This black-billed Swan was one of many Swans at Onuma today. I thought, wow……………….it’s a Trumpeter Swan. I even told some people there about it. And then I came home and double-checked the ID.

Oh no. It’s the North American race of Bewick’s Swan, sometimes called Whistling Swan. Cygnus columbianus columbianus. In my defence, I have no experience of this subspecies.

So if you are one of those Japanese birders I talked to today about the ナキハクチョウ all I can say is sorry I made a mistake. It is a アメリカコハクチョウ. Still interesting but not as interesting as I’d thought.

Oh the shame.

ナキハクチョウ じゃないです!!!