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windy and springy Hokkaido

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Old Thursday 10th April 2003, 05:57   #1
HokkaidoStu
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windy and springy Hokkaido

Yesterday was both windy and sunny. No Cherry Blossoms yet though ( the locals go crazy when these come out ).
I decided to have a nice long day out birding. I walked down the river via a local park. There is a small pine area in the middle of the park and it was packed full of birds. there must have been over 30 ( Red ) Crossbills and a few Siskin , Coal tit and Dusky Thrush too. One Great Spotted Woodpecker followed me about and the first spring migrant of the year, a male Bull Headed shrike, was flitting round the bushes too. Back to the river and I got a Daurian Redstart, Common Kingfisher, a lone Hawfinch and loads of Black Backed Wagtails.
It was a long walk to the forest clad cape from here and wow it was REALLY windy. Nowt on the beach except the usual Black Tailed, Slaty Backed and Herring ( Vega? ) Gulls and a few red Breasted Mergansers on the sea. Only last week there were Glaucous and Glaucous Winged Gulls and dozens of Red Necked Grebe on the sea but today it was practically empty......
So I huffed and puffed up to the Cape. I found a great secluded and sheltered spot high up next to some derilict WW2 pillboxes where I sat and chilled out with my hi-strength tea and lo-strength cigarettes. There were Brambling in the trees as well as another 2 kinds of Woodpecker-Japanese Pygmy and Grey Headed. A Siberian Meadow Bunting (another spring migrant up here) was also singing just behind me. A lone male Harlequin Duck was diving around the rocks far below. 2 Kinds of Cormorant were all over the place-Japanese and the smaller Pelagic. But the best bird of the day was an Osprey heading northwards over the straits being mobbed by Gulls. It flew up the cape and soared in the wind at eye level-the best view I`ve ever had of this bird.
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Old Thursday 10th April 2003, 07:41   #2
Euan Buchan
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Sounds like you had a terrific day birding sounds very relaxing :) Keep birding
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Old Thursday 10th April 2003, 23:39   #3
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What a wonderful report, Stu!

Delighted to know that you've signed up for the GGBC. Seeing those species show up on our count will terrific!!
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Old Friday 11th April 2003, 02:36   #4
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Great day Stu, always interesting reading about new birds that I'll probabley never see. ;o(
Sounds like a woodpecker day! my favorites.
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Old Friday 11th April 2003, 09:37   #5
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Stu: that's the sort of thing we love to read. As Bob says, you see the sort of birds the rest of us are never likely to come across. Keep the trip reports coming!
 
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