Birdwatching in Oike Koen (December 31, 2010)

Certainly the last birding day of the year 2010.  Oike-koen is located in Asahi-ku, Yokohama City.  Approx. 1 hour from my house.  It is currently known as Kodomo-Shizen-koen, means Kid's Nature Park in Japanese.  Local birdwatchers told me this park holds more variety of birds than Maioka-koen, where I often go. 

It takes 5 min. from Totsuka station to Higashi-Totsuka station by JR train and 20-30 min. by Sotetsu bus to Maki-ga-hara Oike bus stop.  The park is a well-maintained urban park.  There are two ponds and wide types of vegetation. 

As today is a fine day and off for most of Japanese (new year's eve), there were hundreds of people inside the park.  Despite many people, I was still able to see some good birds, such as a flock of Siskin and a male Orange-flanked Bush-Robin.  As the park holds good dark forest, there would be Grey Bunting as some bird watchers have photographed in this winter.

Obeserved species are as below.

1. Little Grebe 2. Spot-billed Duck 3. Tufted Duck 4 Grey Heron 5. Northern Goshawk 1 imm. 6. Oriental Turtle Dove 7. Common Kingfisher 8. Japanese Pygmy Woodpecker 9.Carrion Crow 10. Large-billed Crow 11. Great Tit 12. Varied Tit 13. Long-tailed Tit 14. Brown-eared Bulbul 15. Japanese Bush Warbler 16. Japanese White-eye 17. Pale Thrush 18. Brown-headed Thrush 19. Dusky Thrush 20. Orange-flanked Bush-Robin 1 male 21. Tree Sparrow 22. White Wagtail 23. Siskin 24. Japanese Grosbeak 25. Black-faced Bunting

Pale Thrush

Orange-flanked Bush-Robin (male)

Orange-flanked Bush-Robin (male)

Orange-flanked Bush-Robin (male)

White Wagtail (male)

White Wagtail

Tufted Duck


Birdwatching in Maioka Koen (December 24, 2010)

A windy day.  Very quite both people and birds in the park. 

Little Egret

Bull-headed Shrike (male)

Dusky Thrush

Great Tit (male)

Great Tit

Great Tit (female)

Japanese Pygmy Woodpecker


Birdwatching in Yokohama Shizen Kansatsu no Mori (December 23, 2010)

A fine and warm day.  Due to warm temperature, Orange-flanked Bush-Robin was singing in the bush.  Luckily, a female Grey Bunting was seen in a small flock of Black-faced Bunting. 

Black-eared Kite, Chinese Bamboo Partridge, Japanese Pygmy Woodpecker, Brown-eared Bulbul, Orange-flanked Bush-Robin male 1, Daurian Redstart female 1, Brown-headed Thrush, Dusky Thrush, Japanese Bush-Warbler, Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Varied Tit, Japanese White-eye, Black-faced Bunting, Grey Bunting female 1, Oriental Greenfinch (call), Bullfinch (call), Howfinch, Jay

Black-eared Kite

Black-faced Bunting (male)

Grey Bunting (female)

Long-tailed Tit


Birdwatching in Maioka Koen (December 5, 2010)

A beautiful sunny day.  Mt. Fuji was clearly seen from my house.  Still too warm for some winter visitors, such as Red-flanked Bluetail.

Many Dusky Thrushes were seen together with Howfinch.  A flock of Japanese Grosbeak was flying above the park but didn't come down to trees.

It seems Eurasian Woodcock or Solitary Snipe have already in the marsh but wasn't seen today. 

I spent most of my time to take picture of Common Kingfisher, which was really cheerful today.


Birdwatching in Maioka Koen (September 26, 2010)

After two days rain, finally autumn comes.  According to weather forecast, it is still fine today.  As I obtained a new lens (SIGMA 150-500mm f 5-6.3), I went to Maioka-koen for testing the lens.

Although there were few signs of autumn migration, I heard a call of Narcissus Flycatcher while I saw a Cuculus sp. (probably Lesser Cuckoo).

Despite the reasonable price (90,000 YEN - 100,000 YEN), quality is certainly not so bad.  However, in poor light conditions, such as the 2nd shot, it doesn't perform well as Nikon's original lens.

male Common Kingfisher, probably juvenile

same individual with above, with poor light condition

juvenile Chinese Bamboo Partridge: looks really odd!

same individual with above


Short Birding in Bhutan (August 6-11, 2010)

I had a short visit in Thimphu and Phobjikha in Bhutan between 6 and 11 August.

Bhutan, a retired country, is probably one of the most attractive countries for birdwatchers.  As my purpose was for attending meetings, I was able to spent for birding only in my free time. 

Following species are quite common: Oriental Turtle Dove, Hoopoe, Grey-backed Shrike, Black Bulbul, Green-backed Tit, Large-billed Crow, Red-billed Chough, 3 sparrows (House, Tree & Russet).


Birdwatching and Insect watching in Maioka-koen (July 3, 2010)

In the middle of wet season, birding in Japan is not normally attractive.  It is almost same in Maioka-koen.  Many bird photographers were just sitting nearby a pond to photograph Common Kingfisher while many kids were exciting to look for frogs and dragonflies. 

A House Swift, a local resident, was flying among a flock of Barn Swallow.  Some young individuals of Long-tailed Tit and Great Tit are tame as they are busy for feeding. 

Japanese Bush Warbler and Lesser Cuckoo were still vocal.  Particularly, Lesser Cuckoo was calling very vocally. 

A family of Bamboo Partridge suddenly appeared from bush.  Two chicks are already fairly large.

Rather than birds, I enjoyed photographing flowers and insects.