Bird News by Jason Loghry
Eager to see what’s on the move, I headed to the temple (which is located at the peak of this mountain) for a Sunday morning sit. On the way up the mountain, I passed a large group Large-billed Crow (30). Arriving at sunrise, within seconds of getting off my bike I counted a flock of Olive-backed Pipits (87) ascending to the sky from the mountain’s edge. Soon another flock of Olive-backed’s (31) took flight in the same direction. I rushed to get to the top and get positioned for my sit. For the next 3 hours, every thirty minutes I took note of cloud cover, wind, and temperature. It was very exciting to watch so many groups of birds rapidly arrive and depart. The most numerous species was Eastern Great Tit, counting up to 358. Highlights include Tristram’s Bunting (11), Goldcrest (16), and Dusky Thrush (2), all personal firsts for the season at this site. Also observed were Arctic Warbler sensu lato (6), Yellow-browed Warbler (2), Pale Thrush (1), Brown-eared Bulbul (43), Marsh Tit (28), Daurian Redstart (48), Northern Hobby (1), Eurasian Kestrel (3), Grey-headed Woodpecker (2), Pygmy Woodpecker (3), White-backed Woodpecker (1), and Yellow-throated Bunting (1). After more visitors started to show, I decided to peel out and head to Hwapo Cheon, a nearby wetland.
A few more small flocks of Eastern Great Tits (including one of 17), Greater Spotted Woodpecker (3), Brambling (13), and what looked to be an Eastern Buzzard soaring high were seen on my route to Hwapo Wetland. Hwapo was a bit quiet (bird-wise) with mostly Spot-billed Duck, Eurasian Teal, and Great Egret. I was told it is a good spot for waterbirds during winter, so I’ll definitely check back again soon.