There was a really strong blizzard about 10 minutes after I took these shots…
More heavy blizzards today but I made it out in the gaps. Only 2 Crossbill and not many other birds around but I did find a flock of 7 Japanese Waxwing. They were feasting on a bigger berry than normal.
They yellow belly immediately distinguishes this species from Bohemian Waxwing (which were around last week but have since moved on).
Some Dusky Thrush were in the same tree…
They don’t only eat red berries.
A Japanese Waxwing eating cherry blossoms, how Japanese can you get?
A few interesting birds in town today. The above Great Egret was fishing in the river and there were was also a flock of Japanese Waxwing around.
Lots of Dusky Thrush too. All these passerines attracted this male Goshawk.
They’d been there for a week and their numbers had grown……………….
Wonder if Hakodate will get another influx?
2020 will go down in history for other more important things but here in Hokkaido one thing I’ll remember is the number of Waxwings. From late January to late February and again in late November/early December. Loads of ’em.
These ones in Yakumo were not as tame and easy to photograph as the ones near my apartment last winter.
The mixed waxwing flock was still in Yakumo and the numbers had increased: well over 100 now.
The weather was not good: dark and snowing most of the time.
The blue in the background is not sky: just the wall of a building………….
There was quite a big flock of waxwings in Yakumo last weekend. Most were Japanese Waxwings…………
But there were a few Bohemians mixed in too…………….
There were also a few Crossbill around. Waxwings and Crossbills both had huge invasions into south Hokkaido last winter so I wasn’t expecting to see either of them much this time round.
After last winter’s invasion it was nice to see some Waxwings again. There was a small flock of them in Onuma.
Other stuff passing through included lots of Dusky Thrush and a few Siskin.
I went to the park on Sunday expecting no Waxwings at all: there had only been one the last time I’d gone a couple of days before.
But there was a small mixed flock of about 8 or 9 birds including 3 Japanese Waxwings.
The Waxwings were on the ground yesterday looking for fallen berries under the snow or just drinking mouthfuls of the white stuff.
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.
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.