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mustap
Thursday 13th December 2012, 17:11
Does anyone know if it is possible to arrange a visit to the boardwalk/hides for sunrise, or are you forced to wait until the visitor center opens at 10am?

Seems like Mai Po is not open until 9am either...so i am wondering what fields/mudflats are possible to visit in the 7-9am window? Tsim Bei Tsui ponds or Long Valley perhaps?

Target birds are shorebirds and waders.

johnallcock
Friday 14th December 2012, 06:16
Mustap, I have sent you a PM about access to the reserve. Please check.

In brief, Mai Po is accessible early in the morning if you have arranged the permits. The shorebirds at the reserve are very dependent upon the tide, so it is best to time your visit according to the expected tide, and early morning may not be the best time.

Other sites in the area which could be good are Long Valley (mostly farmland with a few freshwater waders - Wood Sandpiper, Black-winged Stilt, Little Ringed Plover), fishpond areas near Mai Po/San Tin (mostly Wood, Green & Common Sandpipers, Little Ringed Plover, Temminck's Stint on drained ponds) or Nam Sang Wai (tidal river - Pied Avocet, Black-winged Stilt, Spotted Redshank, Common Greenshank, Grey-headed Lapwing).
Tsim Bei Tsui is close geographically, but it takes a long time to travel between there and Mai Po. Also the birds are usually not close.

mustap
Friday 14th December 2012, 13:48
Hi John, thank you very much for your response. I also heard back via seperate email from HK Wetland Park. They are only open during their official hours 10am-5pm (and closed on Tuesdays which aren't a holiday).

johnjemi
Saturday 15th December 2012, 13:18
Hi Mustap, from the reference to "7 - 9 am window" I'm guessing you're interested in photography... the slipway at Nam Sang Wai is fine for a few waders and possibly Black-faced Spoonbill. I did a blog post about it here: -
http://johnjemi.blogspot.hk/2012/11/nam-sang-wai-hong-kong-22nd-nov-2012.html
There is no restriction on access, and it can get quite crowded especially at weekends... nearest West Rail station is Kam Sheung Road.
In December and January the midwinter tides are low, so wader viewing is not-so-good.
As John A. mentioned Long Valley is a good site, too

johnallcock
Sunday 16th December 2012, 02:13
Hi Mustap
Sorry, I had not quite understood you original post and thought you were referring solely to Mai Po, and did not pick up the reference to HK Wetland Park. The two are separate and operate differently.
You are right that HK Wetland Park will only be open during official opening hours.
HK Wetland Park can get very busy at times. You will see birds in some parts of the park (especially the 'mudflat hide') but Mai Po has lower disturbance, usually has more birds, and has access to the floating hides overlooking intertidal areas of Deep Bay.