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asterisktom
Friday 4th May 2012, 22:06
Various Jilin City sightings (updated)
It was suggested that I should start a new thread for this fairly under-reported region of China. It made sense to me. So I just took my previous post and placed it here in this new thread, corrected and updated.

I thought it might be worthwhile to list a few noteworthy birds that I have seen in the last few weeks here, in various parts in the Jilin City area, and also Changchun. All sightings below are from Jilin or outskirts except for the last ones (AWM and ... a big bat! Both seen in Changchun)

Naumann's Thrush, Turdus naumanni January 26
White-tailed Sea Eagle, Haliaeetus albicilla 白尾海雕. January 27
White-backed Woodpecker, Dendrocopos leucotos 白背啄木鸟 March 27
Daurian Redstart, Phoenicurus auroreus 北红尾鸲 March 29
Orange-flanked Bush Robin, Tarsiger cyanurus 红胁蓝尾鸲 April 1
Eurasian Teal, Anas crecca 绿翅鸭 April 11
Little Ringed Plover, Charadrius dubius 金眶鸻 April 17
Grey Wagtail, Motacilla cinerea melanope 灰鹡鸰 April 17
White wagtail, Motacilla alba 白鹡鸰 April 17
Grey-backed Thrush, Turdus hortulorum. 灰背鸫 April 24
Blue-and-White Flycatcher, Cyanoptila cyanomelana. 白腹蓝姬鹟 April 29
Azure-winged Magpie, Cyanopica cyanus. 灰喜鹊 May 3. Nanhu Park, Changchun.

Also in this park we saw a large, furry bat. This was like 11 in the morning.
Pictures of these last sightings (the flycatcher and bat) will be uploaded later. The magpie pictures were not that good. Also I plan to upload a few more pictures of that mystery warbler, but in a separate post.

I need to go back over my thrush pictures and see if I don't indeed have some Eye-browed Thrushes in there as well.

asterisktom
Saturday 5th May 2012, 00:56
Here are the photos of that warbler. I noticed on some of them a whitish crown on top. Surely that narrows it down to - what? - a leaf warbler?

Frogfish
Saturday 5th May 2012, 15:12
Looks very much like one of my warblers in this ID request here : http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=229372

Gretchen
Sunday 6th May 2012, 01:03
Hi *Tom, nice to see you starting your own thread - it will be quite interesting, being a rather underwatched area I'm sure!

I think I've heard that the AW Magpies have been enlarging their territory. Do you have them in Jilin, or have you just seen them in Changchun? I heard from a Beijing birder (Xiao Ming) that they were intentionally imported into Beijing from the south - some time ago but don't remember the timing. It seems to me that I've seen more here in QHD the last year or two than the previous years, but that is a bit unscientific, and not a large sample size.

By the way, you may want to post your mysterious warbler on the ID forum (here) (http://www.birdforum.net/forumdisplay.php?f=114) - that tends to draw people who may not be located in Asia, but who have a strong background and interest in identifying Asian birds. You may get a quicker response there depending on who's around. (Some experts are also on migration right now :-O)

asterisktom
Sunday 6th May 2012, 20:37
Looks very much like one of my warblers in this ID request here : http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=229372

Hmm. I guess I will just have to live with this mystery. This reminds me of those Empids in the US and Central America. I just had to content myself with "empid sp?"

asterisktom
Sunday 6th May 2012, 20:42
Hi *Tom, nice to see you starting your own thread - it will be quite interesting, being a rather underwatched area I'm sure!

I think I've heard that the AW Magpies have been enlarging their territory. Do you have them in Jilin, or have you just seen them in Changchun? I heard from a Beijing birder (Xiao Ming) that they were intentionally imported into Beijing from the south - some time ago but don't remember the timing. It seems to me that I've seen more here in QHD the last year or two than the previous years, but that is a bit unscientific, and not a large sample size.

By the way, you may want to post your mysterious warbler on the ID forum (here) (http://www.birdforum.net/forumdisplay.php?f=114) - that tends to draw people who may not be located in Asia, but who have a strong background and interest in identifying Asian birds. You may get a quicker response there depending on who's around. (Some experts are also on migration right now :-O)

Thanks for the info on the warbler, Gretchen. I will take a look at that site in a bit.

No, I've not seen any Azure-wings here in Jilin City. I only saw them that one time in Changchun. (My first time in Changchun, not counting train trips through, so they may be common there.)

I know this is a bird forum, but I still want to share that bat photo. Or should I just show it in a different forum here?

Gretchen
Sunday 6th May 2012, 23:38
No problem to put up a few non-bird photos! If you want people with a special interest in bats to see the photo or help you with i.d., you can also put it up in the "bats" subforum (under "Nature in General", near the bottom of the forum list) - since mostly just those interested in Asia make it so this corner of the forum.

Interesting on the magpies - they are a good looking magpie species, but seem more aggressive than their bigger cousins from my casual observations.

MKinHK
Monday 7th May 2012, 04:09
Show whatever you like Tom - I do!

You did not exactly start at the easy end of the scale with this warbler, but from the last pic The pale fringes to the tertials suggest it may be a Yellow-browed Warbler in very poor light.

Looking forward to hearing more .

Cheers
Mike

asterisktom
Tuesday 8th May 2012, 23:12
I am so behind in my posting and uploading in my Flickr site. It doesn't help that only one out of ten pictures actually shows up after I upload them. (I am hoping that that heavy-handedness on the part of the gov't will change soon to how it was just a couple weeks ago.)

Anyway, here are some pictures I took this morning. To my thinking they seem to be the Yellow-browed.
1. Wingbars seem to fit.
2. Slight yellow on the brows.
3. Hume's seems more out of range here in Jilin.

Thoughts?

asterisktom
Tuesday 8th May 2012, 23:14
Here are two more pictures of the same bird.

MKinHK
Tuesday 8th May 2012, 23:53
YBW works for me

Mike

asterisktom
Wednesday 9th May 2012, 09:28
YBW works for me

Mike

Good. I'll go with that.
Tom

asterisktom
Sunday 13th May 2012, 11:44
Here is the first of my pictures of Nanhu Park in Changchun. We were surprised to see this bat in the middle of the day. This link is to a video of the bat climbing the tree.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/asterisktom/7187695168/in/photostream

asterisktom
Monday 14th May 2012, 04:40
All these were seen in Jilin City, unless they were seen in Changchun on May 4th. I managed to squeeze in some bird-watching in this busy time, hoping to get some migrants passing through. My wife and I even managed a day trip to Changchun, where we saw the bat (last post). Other sightings are:

Eurasian Kestrel, Beishan Park, May 1,
Brambling, May 2, (another old friend from my Germany days, years ago).
Yellow-browed Warbler, seen almost every day.
Mystery bird (Bunting?), Nanhu Park, Changchun, May 4,
Azure-winged Magpies, several. One seen "anting", perhaps. Nanhu Park,
Mystery Swallows or Martins (not Barn Swallows), Songhua River, May 9,
Yellow-browed Bunting, Beishan Park, May 10,
Shrike 1 and 2, The first from our window in the morning, the second in a park later. Maybe the same species? May 11,
Yellow-rumped Flycatcher, Beishan Park, May 13.

Also, as you can see from the uploads, I was able to see two beautiful butterflies. After a long, drab winter, it is wonderful to see this place come to life!

Any help on IDing either the buntings or the swallows would be great. And the shrikes, too.

Tom in Jilin

asterisktom
Monday 14th May 2012, 04:46
Here are additional photos from these two weeks' observations here in Jilin:

asterisktom
Monday 14th May 2012, 04:56
I hope it is OK to send these last three pictures. The first is of the common but interesting wagtail. The other two are of butterflies.

Tom in Jilin

firstreesjohn
Monday 14th May 2012, 08:27
The other two are of butterflies.

I believe the RH shot to be a Dragon Swallowtail Sericinus montela, a complex of many sub-species. Here is an interesting link: http://www.tolweb.org/Sericinus_montela/65396

The middle pic is, I think, Pieris erutae. Various members of the Aporia family (Black-veined Whites) are similar, but these have more sharply-defined veining.

I used an excellent little book, the cover of which is pictured below.

Dong Bei
Wednesday 16th May 2012, 00:20
Tom in Jilin,

The swallows/martins above look like Eurasian Tree Sparrows in flight but not completely sure.

The Bunting is a Yellow-browed.

The shrikes are all Brown Shrikes

The wagtail is White Wagtail ssp leucopsis

Tom in Dalian.

thirudevaram
Wednesday 16th May 2012, 02:57
Tom in Jilin,

The swallows/martins above look like Eurasian Tree Sparrows in flight but not completely sure.

The Bunting is a Yellow-browed.

The shrikes are all Brown Shrikes

The wagtail is White Wagtail ssp leucopsis

Tom in Dalian.

LOL! I like the way two Tom's quote each other 3:-)

asterisktom
Monday 21st May 2012, 20:16
I believe the RH shot to be a Dragon Swallowtail Sericinus montela, a complex of many sub-species. Here is an interesting link: http://www.tolweb.org/Sericinus_montela/65396

The middle pic is, I think, Pieris erutae. Various members of the Aporia family (Black-veined Whites) are similar, but these have more sharply-defined veining.

I used an excellent little book, the cover of which is pictured below.

Hmm. These butterflies sound even more complicated than the warblers when it comes to ID. Thanks for the info.

Yesterday I went to Beishan Park here in Jilin and saw, along with some interesting birds, a small longwing-type of black-and-white butterfly, lighting on a cigarette butt (no pun intended!). I will show the pics (a few birds also) after I com home from today's park venture.

asterisktom
Monday 21st May 2012, 20:20
Tom in Jilin,

The swallows/martins above look like Eurasian Tree Sparrows in flight but not completely sure.

The Bunting is a Yellow-browed.

The shrikes are all Brown Shrikes

The wagtail is White Wagtail ssp leucopsis

Tom in Dalian.

Thanks, Tom. It may be that I accidently filmed the ETSs, thinking they were the swallows. But I do know that there were swallows/martins also, and they didn't look like Barn Swallows.

Today I am off for Longtan Park.

Tom in Jilin.

asterisktom
Monday 21st May 2012, 20:27
Yesterday's sightings at Beishan Park were interesting. I really enjoyed getting out in nature. Such peace and quiet (with the occasional yell heard in the distance). Then the loudspeakers came on. I guess many parks are like this here in China, the serenity marred by the didactic droning of someone telling us to enjoy the peace of being out in nature!

I saw and heard a Eurasian Cuckoo. First time for me, even though I had lived for years in Germany. He sounded just like the clock.

Some other birds I want to run by this board, one a reddish one. But these will wait until I get back from today's outing.

It may be that I am uploading too many pics here, so I will try to just do the ones that seem more noteworthy.

Tom in Jilin

Frogfish
Tuesday 22nd May 2012, 00:47
Sounds like you are having fun Tom ! I think you'd get a far faster response to ID requests in the ID forum as many of the people here are working or out birding ! Just make sure you add the location, 'Jilin, China' to the title so the China experts can help you out. They are incredibly knowledgeable !

asterisktom
Thursday 31st May 2012, 01:03
My wife and I managed to squeeze in a short trip to Lafa Shan, Dunhua and Mudanjiang, then back through Harbin on our way here to Jilin again. For now I just want to share one interesting bird I saw and photographed on Lafa Shan. As far as I can tell, this is the Guldenstadt's redstart (umlauts needed). See the photo.

If it is indeed this bird, then he is quite far out of his limits.

Tom in jilin

(Sorry for the typos. I am n a hurry, being on batteries)

Dong Bei
Thursday 31st May 2012, 01:30
Tom,

I believe your bird is a Daurian Redstart. They can show quite a bit of white on their head. Maybe more this time of year?

Tom in Dalian.

asterisktom
Thursday 31st May 2012, 02:25
Tom,

I believe your bird is a Daurian Redstart. They can show quite a bit of white on their head. Maybe more this time of year?

Tom in Dalian.

OK. Too bad, but thanks. Anyway I have a few other birds to sort through when I get the time. I see now that the amount of black on the tail is the clincher, the Guldenstadt having very little.

Being still fairly new to China I still need to get a sense of what the "usual suspects" are, the common birds that need to be considered. I remember when I first started birding years ago. I saw a House Sparrow. Looking through my bird book for sparrows, I concluded it must be the uncommon Harris Sparrow!

Thanks for the quick response, Tom.

Tom in Jilin

Dong Bei
Thursday 31st May 2012, 03:08
Tom,

I hear you and don't claim to be an expert myself. If you dig around the birdforum posts from a few years ago, I believe I asked the same question about a Daurian Redstart!

Tom in Dalian.

asterisktom
Friday 1st June 2012, 11:31
I am going through my pictures and videos of our trip through Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces. The following video and pic our from a bird I saw in Lafa Shan, near Jilin City. Is this the Siberian Accentor? If not, what could it be?

Thanks in advance.

Tom in Jilin

I wasn't able to post the video, which is shame since the picture is somewhat blurry. But hopefully it is enough to go on. The video of the bird's singing uploaded onto my Flickr site.

MKinHK
Friday 1st June 2012, 12:58
This is a Phylloscopus warblerof some sort - my guess would be yellow-browed, but there's not much to go on in this pic

Cheers
Mike

asterisktom
Friday 1st June 2012, 20:29
This is a Phylloscopus warblerof some sort - my guess would be yellow-browed, but there's not much to go on in this pic

Cheers
Mike

Thanks. I am batting 1000 (not!) on these Chinese bird IDs. But that is part of the fun. I can go back to the video and try to figure out the song and compare it with my online book. Luckily the bird is fairly sharply focused on the video.

Tom in Jilin

asterisktom
Saturday 2nd June 2012, 00:25
Thanks. I am batting 1000 (not!) on these Chinese bird IDs. But that is part of the fun. I can go back to the video and try to figure out the song and compare it with my online book. Luckily the bird is fairly sharply focused on the video.

Tom in Jilin

Here is the video link:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/asterisktom/7313742660/in/photostream

Judging by the song and by what detail I can see it seems to be either a Yellow-browed (most likely) or a Pallas's Leaf-Warbler. At least I can't see any other option. Additional information: This bird was seen on one of the medium-high ridges of the Lafa Shan Mountains.
Tom in Jilin

rockfowl
Saturday 2nd June 2012, 11:38
It's a Pallas's Warbler Tom

asterisktom
Saturday 22nd June 2013, 14:04
My remaining time in Jilin proved so busy or diverting that I never got around to posting the rest of my birding activities in that province. I have plenty of notes and pictures still. Later I will post the best ones.

We are now in Kansas, but it looks like I may be getting another teaching stint, this time (fingers crossed) in Dalian.

MKinHK
Saturday 22nd June 2013, 16:20
Any more conversations with taxi drivers - one of the funniest things I read this year!

Cheers
Mike

Dong Bei
Monday 24th June 2013, 10:35
Tom of Jilin and Kansas,

Get over here!

Tom of Dalian

p.s. schools in Jinshitan offer the most birding opportunities.....at least the development zone.

asterisktom
Monday 24th June 2013, 16:49
Tom of Jilin and Kansas,

Get over here!

Tom of Dalian

p.s. schools in Jinshitan offer the most birding opportunities.....at least the development zone.

I'm hurrying things up the best I can. BTW, the school is 大连财经学院
Dalian University of Finance and Economics. It looks to be more in a city area. But it would be good to just be in the Dalian area.

To be back in China, for that matter.