South and East Busan, September 13

Bird News from Nial Moores with Jason Loghry.

Following some light rain on the 12th, the 13th was bright and mild (with a max. temperature of approximately 25C) with light north-westerlies. We started the day as dawn broke at Taejongdae (6AM-08:30); then waited for passing raptors from the top of nearby Bongnae Mountain (09:00-12:20); and finished with some seawatching near Cheongsa Po in Haeundae (13:30-16:10).

Species of most note at Taejongdae included one or two Siberian Thrush, most likely of subspecies davisoni (heard by both of us; seen well, if only briefly, by NM); a family party (?) of White’s Thrush and an Ashy Minivet heard; and single male Blue-and-white Flycatcher, presumed Narcissus Flycatcher and two or three small kettles of Chinese Sparrowhawk seen, containing probably 20 or so birds in total.

From the top of Bongnae Mountain, there was good visibility over the ever-changing Busan skyline but little evidence of much raptor movement underway (considering the date), with only two or three Grey-faced Buzzard, probably ten Chinese Sparrowhawk, three Japanese Sparrowhawk one Eurasian Sparrowhawk, 3-4 Eurasian Hobby, two Common Kestrel, one or two Peregrine Falcon and a single female Amur Falcon seen. There were also several Grey-streaked Flycatcher (as at Taejongdae) with five the largest party and probably ten in total heard or seen.

DSC06317Grey-streaked Flycatcher Muscicapa griseisticta © Jason Loghry

Bongnaelooking northrs1

bongnaelookingsouthwestrs1View from Bongnae Mountain: Top, looking north (with Igidae stretching north behind the tallest apartments furthest right, then “Diamond Bay”, and finally Cheongsa Po, Haeundae, to the north); Below, looking southwest, past the Nakdong Estuary which is in front of the rear line of hills, on towards Geoje Island © Nial Moores

Also at Bongnae San, among many swallowtails and several Blue Triangle Butterfly Graphium sarpedon, there was this quite striking looking butterfly  (digiscoped from 20m away) – does anybody know which species this is?


At “Jaeger Point” in Haeundae, two Eurasian Whimbrel and three Grey-tailed Tattler were on the rocks, and the number of feeding Common Tern steadily built up to at least 130 birds, with a few dozen also seen moving south, along with a few small groups of Black-headed and Mongolian Gulls and at least two presumed Taimyr Gulls.

Oddest there and of most note for the day was a smallish, deep-chested, narrow-handed, small-and-round-headed white-headed, white-winged large gull flying south which ticked all the boxes as an adult Iceland Gull. The upper and underwings lacked any obviously dark pigment; the upperparts were grey, with some slightly patchy worn look to the upperwing coverts and more extensive white at the tip of the outer primaries apparently, extending up part of the outer web of p10; and the bill was srong-yellow, with a darker gonys spot. Unfortunately, the bird kept flying south past our watch point and was not seen to land.

One comment on “South and East Busan, September 13

  1. Hi Dr. Moores,
    I’m no butterfly expert, but after having looked through a Korean butterfly book (kindly recommended to me my Mr. Edelsten), I’d have to say that your butterfly looks like a Danaid Eggfly/Mimic/Diadem – Hypolimnas misippus. The range map (from 2012) seems to suggest it is only found on a narrow strip of the southern coast from Goheung to Jindo, and on Jeju’s southern coast.
    Matt Poll.

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