A snowy Monday in Hakodate

Japanese Waxwing

The first real snow of 2020 in Hakodate is falling. I went out for a walk this morning not expecting much but was happy to see a huge flock of Waxwings (300 or more). They seemed to be mainly Bohemian Waxwings (in fact I’d say over 90% were) but there were some Japanese mixed in there too. This must be a different flock from the one in town last month.

Bohemian Waxwing

Very very dark and heavy snow so it was tricky to take photos.

They were in the same place as last month’s flocks and under the trees they use to roost there are a lot of red droppings. A flock of 100 or so Bramblings were on the ground feeding there.


Have to say I didn’t know Bramblings eat Waxwing poop. You learn something every day.

They came back

Bohemian Waxwing

It was a grey grey day but the local high street was lit up with hundreds of Waxwings. They were feeding on the main street which is very difficult for photography: you can’t predict which tree they will swarm down to, there are loads of cars, buses and pedestrians going past which spooks them and it is impossible to cross the road quickly. Plus it was very dark and gloomy.

The Dusky Thrushes, Bramblings and Hawfinches were still around too.


A typical view of Waxwings………….



Bohemian and Japanese Waxwings

The Waxwings were easily disturbed. They don’t seem to mind people that much but they really really hate cars and fly off as soon as one drives past.

The flock also attracted raptors which also causes them to fly off. On Sunday morning a Eurasian Sparrowhawk nabbed one. A Peregrine and Northern Goshawk were also around eyeing them.

Passerines are hard for decent BIF shots, these and the above post are the best of a bad bunch.

Bohemian and Japanese Waxwings
Bohemian and Japanese Waxwings