Tuesday 28 March 2023

Cherry Blossoms

Friends of mine invited me for a farewell (not forever but for a year) lunch and we went for a hanami stroll at Sogo Reido in Narita. I am not particularly a great fun of cherry blossoms myself but it is always nice to catch up with lovely friends under the blossoms. 



Monday 6 February 2023

Junsai-Ike Park, Kasori

After moving, I've driven past the park every other day but never stopped.

Today, I finally decided to cycle there to have a look at the place and birds there.

Long-tailed tit (enagaエナガ)

Japanese Tit (shijukaraシジュウカラ)

Varied Tit (yamagaraヤマガラ)

I did not see a wide range of birds or a rare one but still, the park was full of bird calls and peaceful:)

Saturday 2 July 2022

Kujukuri, Chiba

 On a gorgeous summer day, going to Kujukuri is one of the best options for birding.

Through a scope, a small group of waders were seen foraging on the beach.
Lesser Sandplover (Medaichidoriメダイチドリ)

a Terek Sandpiper (sorihashishigiソリハシシギ) was resting on a rubbish heap..

Kentish Plover (shirochidoriシロチドリ)

saw some Little ringed plovers, Little terns and some more. 

Kujukuri never disappoints me, or I even could say with confidence, any birdwatcher in all season.

Wednesday 20 April 2022

Oriental Turtle Dove

If you saw a turtle dove in the UK now, it would be a blessing since the British population has plummeted since the 70s. 

The Oriental turtle dove (Kijibatoキジバト) in Japan, on the other hand, are one of the most common birds. Some visit our garden every day and a pair even succeeded in breeding early spring! 

We found a nest on 15Feb2022

found this fellow on 31Feb2022

on 07March2022 

0n 11March2022, we found it fledged! It was on the ground near the nest during the day and went back up the tree where the nest was during the night. 

We spotted it in the morning of 16March2022 for the last time on the ground but it didn't come back to the same tree at night.

A few days later, we saw a fledgling drinking water in the garden, which could have been this one. Who knows?

Now in April, a pair seems to like the edge of our "NO MOW Zone" when the sun is out. Totally relaxed!

Sunday 3 April 2022

Hokkaido V

 We had a storm over night and the sea was raging the next morning

and we found this poor fellow in a sheltered fishing harbour.

This Spectacled guillemot (Keimafuriケイマフリ) looked distressed and weak.  

Hope it will get some rest in the quiet harbour and go back out in the open water where it belongs soon.

Actually, we were not sure what bird it was because it was our first encounter with one! I asked my ornithologist friend (or my mentor, rather) to identify and he told me it probably was a young one which had been born last year as the adults should be in breeding plumage by now. 

We were excited on the spot and feel more excited after learning these facts.


a small group of Black scoters (Kurogamoクロガモ) was also sheltering in the harbour.


Slaty-backed gulls (Oosegurokamomeオオセグロカモメ) & Japanese cormorant (Umiuウミウ)

The rocky cliff facing the harbour is a Slaty-backed gulls' breeding site, we were told.

On another rock was full of Pelagic cormorants (Himeuヒメウ)

Are you sure you're going to lay eggs there?!

Sea otters were in their elements.

(To be honest, they looked like a floating log😁)

The Sea otter (Enhydra lutris) is a different species from the otters found on the coasts of the UK but live on the coasts of the northern Pacific. I've only seen ones kept in zoos so it was very exciting to see ones in wild!

Saturday 2 April 2022

Hokkaido IV

The ground of the woodland was still covered with thick snow but we had chance to see woodland birds near feeders.

Jay (akesuカケス) - a subspecies found in Hokkaido has a very distinct cinnamon coloured head.


We had never seen so many Jays in one place! 

Nuthatch (Gojukaraゴジュウカラ) - a very white underparts compared with the ones we are familiar in Britain.

Great spotted woodpecker (Akageraアカゲラ)

Marsh tit (Hashibutogaraハシブトガラ)


Dusky thrush (Tsugumiツグミ) & Jay

 Japanese tit (Shijukaraシジュウカラ)

Long-tailed tit (Shimaenagaシマエナガ) - completely white face

Brown-eared bulbul (Hiyodoriヒヨドリ)

Carrion crow (Hashibosogarasuハシボソガラス)

Wren (Misosazaiミソサザイ)

All of a sudden, the little ones started to be agitated with alarm calls, and this is why: a beautiful Red fox (Kitsuneキツネ)

 The woodland looks bleak from outside but it surely is getting ready for spring!

Friday 1 April 2022

Hokkaido III

Lake Furen and Shunkunitai sandbar

A board walk on the sandbar called Shunkunitai between Lake Furen and the Okhotsk Sea

Gulls, ducks, swans, cranes and eagles are thriving among the drift ice.

Black scoters (Kurogamoクロガモ) & Slaty-backed gulls (Oosegurokamomeオオセグロカモメ)(?)

a family of Whooper swans (Oohakuchoオオハクチョウ)
Steller's sea eagle (Oowashiオオワシ)
Red-crowned crane (Tanchoタンチョウ)
White-tailed eagle (Ojirowashiオジロワシ)

a male Red-breasted merganser (Umiaisaウミアイサ)(?)