Saturday 20 April 2013

Matsugaoka Shimin no Mori

I happened to learn about the existence of these woods (which look so tempting for a birdwatcher to have a wander in) while cycling in our new neighbourhood the other day, and today I determined to drag my husband, who had been suffering from social pressure (i.e. a hangover;), out for some fresh air:)

Matsugaoka Shimin no Mori is a patch of woodland managed by the Matsugaoka local residents. It's really green at this time of year, which is wonderful, but not great for birdwatchers as you can hear birds but can't see them... but I feel really grateful for the people who give their time to keeping this wood so lovely.

A flock of fast-moving Japanese White-eys (Mejiroメジロ) were foraging amongst the fresh leaves. Gorgeous little things they are.

A hard time for newly hatched caterpillars...

There was a flock of Hawfinches (Shimeシメ) flying through the trees, who started short sharp tick-tick calls almost like Robins' when they landed on top of the trees. As we are still not familiar with many of the Japanese birds' calls, we had to stop and investigate which bird was making a particular call. Not easy at all with all the thick leaves!

We think we now can recognise Hawfinches' calls, thanks to them showing themselves very well as they were making the calls.

Some mysterious birds were feeding on the ground but they flew up into the trees every time we came too close to them without knowing they were there. Finally, we spotted their distinct thick white eye brows through the binoculars so we are quite confident to say they were Olive-backed Tree Pipits (Binzuiビンズイ). Hope we can get their pics next time:)

We didn't see many birds today because of the unfriendly weather: chilly and showers. On the way back home, we went through Aoba no Mori Koen and saw more Hawfinches there.

There are still lots of blossoms in bloom in Aoba no Mori Koen and all the nector lovers and flower-eaters, such as Hawfinches and Brown-eared Bulbuls (Hiyodoriヒヨドリ) were having a feast.

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