Bird news from Subhojit Chakladar
Summer can be a difficult time to come to terms after such an event filled spring! With migrants gone and no more trips to the islands till fall/autumn, it means looking for birds in the mainland in the summer heat. However, the company of Dr Soyoung Sung and Chansoo Kwon made it a wonderful experience in Paju. Starting from around 7:30am with SS in Paju, CK joined us a little after 8 and helped us navigate his “patch”. Though the habitat in the open areas are heavily degraded, we did find some interesting birds and the forested trails were alive will calls even during the searing heat of mid day. The tree covered trails provided respite from the heat and its inhabitants provided the much needed excitement!!
We arrived in Paju at around 7:30am. Dollarbird and Black-naped Oriole were vocal and flying around. We also came across a Chinese Sparrowhawk, a Hobby and a Common Kestrel. With CK joining us around 8, we drove around the rice fields and were soon rewarded by wonderful views of one and later 2 male Watercock. There were a large number of Cattle Egret and 3 Black-faced Spoonbill (many more found later in the day). An Oriental Scops Owl was also heard calling distantly while the reedbeds were alive with calls of Oriental Reed Warbler.
At around 10:30, as the heat began to rise, we checked a tree lined trail. Grey-backed Thrush were in song everywhere and Great-spotted Woodpecker were busy drumming.
After lunch, we checked out another patch of forest which seemed even more alive with activity. We found breeding Yellow-rumped Flycatcher, Asian Brown Flycatcher, Japanese Paradise Flycatcher, Tiger Shrike, Great Tit and Varied Tit. There were also Japanese Pygmy Woodpecker and Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker.
The complete e-Bird checklist for the day can be found here.