Friday 11 May 2018

Paddy Fields in Sakura

My new bird-watching friends living in Sakura asked me out to see Grey-tailed Tattlers and Whimbrels on paddy fields near their places.

Grey-tailed Tattlers (Kiashishigiキアシシギ)

Whimbrels (Chushakushigiチュウシャクシギ)

Both species are migratory birds and only stop over on the paddy fields around here in spring. Unfortunately, the paddy fields in Japan have no water when they are on their way back south in autumn.

The estuaries, mudflats and beaches in Japan have become catastrophic as habitats for wildlife, and paddy fields have started to attract attention as important areas for wildlife. Some wildlife-friendly projects, such as 'Fuyumizu-tambo' in which the rice farmers keep water even after harvesting the rice so that wintering waterfowl can have extra places to rest and forage, and 'Tageri-mai' in which the rice farmers keep their paddy fields as wildlife friendly as possible especially in favour of wintering Tageri 'Lapwings', have been developed and hopefully, it will be acknowleged and supported by many more people.

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