Bird News by Jason Loghry with Nial Moores
With a spring-like rain and a cool not cold morning, we started our day of birding with a quick stop at a small park near Igidae. There we had really great views of Olive-backed Pipit, a gorgeous Siberian Accentor, but no sign of the previously seen Hoopoe.
We headed to Junam. It was relatively quiet. The morning rain had stopped and there were not large numbers of birds. On the lake were some Smew, Mallard, Northern Shoveler, Northern Pintail, Eurasian Teal, a few groups of Pochard mixed with Greater Scaup, Tufted Duck, but than no sign of any hoped for first for the winter Baer’s.
Opposite the pumping station were a large flock of White-fronted Geese, with one plus Lesser White-fronteds along with one or more possible hybrids. No cranes were found close the reservoir, but 5 White-naped Crane were spotted on some nearby rice fields. Other birds of note were Northern Lapwing, 2 White-tailed Eagle, 1 Eurasian Sparrowhawk, an Eastern Buzzard perching next to a rather large looking Northern Goshawk, both overlooking a small flock Taiga Bean Geese.
At Dongpan we had great views of a gorgeous Naumann’s Thrush, many Dusky Thrush, Grey-headed Green Woodpecker, some White-cheeked Starling. Prize to the best looking birds of the day go to about 5 stunning rosacea Bullfinches.
On our way to Nakdong Estuary, we made a short detour to Hwapo Reservoir for quick scan through about 2,000 Greater White-fronted Geese. Unfortunately, no Lessers. 5 Cinereous Vultures were seen soaring in the sky.
At Myeongji, several Common Shelduck spread about the tidal area, Widgeon, some Greater Scaup, Black-tailed Gull, Black-headed Gull, a few sharp looking Mongolian Gull, some ragged looking Vega Gull, Common Gull, Heuglin’s Gull, Eurasian Curlew, and Osprey.
At Nakdong Estuary, Red-breasted Merganser, Eurasian Teal, Northern Pintail, Spot-billed Duck, Mallard, Northern Lapwing, many Whooper Swans, one Tundra Swan, Black Kite, Eastern Buzzard, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Dusky Thrush, Little Bunting, Black-faced Bunting, and most interesting c. 100 Common Reed Buntings taking flight at sunset with Yellow-throated Bunting and Pallas’s Reed Bunting mixed in. No sign of any of the Avocets previously reported at Nakdong a few weeks before.
And of note* On February 25th, at Nakdong Estuary, more than 30 Japanese White-eyes and a few Penduline Tits were observed feeding in the reeds in the late afternoon.