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Hokkaido this February

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Old Wednesday 17th January 2018, 05:22   #1
adam.oscarson
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Hokkaido this February

Hi!

I’m going to Hokkaido this February with my girlfriend. We gonna visit Sapporo, Wakkanai, Abashiri, Utoro, Furen and Kushiro.

There’s loads of trip reports for Eastern Hokkaido, the area between Rausu and Kushiro. But does anyone know of any birding sites or other tips for the other places?? There’s a place outside Abashiri called Lake Tofutsu, is this a good place in winter as well?

Best regards,

Adam Oscarson
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Old Wednesday 24th January 2018, 12:17   #2
Alexjh1
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I don't really know much as my own trip was mostly in the vicinity of Kushiro, but I do seem to recall in the research stage seeing Abashiri Harbour mentioned as a being good for Alcids in Winter.

This may also be of some help: http://www.okhotskbirds.com/birdingspots.html
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Old Wednesday 31st January 2018, 12:57   #3
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I'm also going to be in Hokkaido in late February, but like most have planned to focus on the well-birded area to the NE of Kushiro - Tsurui (for cranes), Lake Kussharo (for whooper swans), Yoroushi (hopefully for Blakiston's fish-owl) and Furen Lodge (Steller's sea-eagles and hopefully some alcids).

If you look at the distribution maps in Birds of East Asia there seems to be a good reason for this, as the winter ranges of a number of species such as Steller's sea-eagle and some of the alcids just about make it to NE Hokkaido. Note sure if this is a self-fulfilling consequence of the distribution of observers though!

The Okhotsk Birds website looks a good resource (thanks Alex), I had thought about squeezing in a trip up here to look at the sea ice, if there is none to be seen down in the Nemuro area. But I suspect the page with translations of Japanese bird names will be invaluable in the field.
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