Bird news from Nial Moores, Baek Seung-Kwang and Lee Su-Young
Research and discussion continues in support of the internationally important Yeoncheon Imjin River Biosphere Reserve and Yeoncheon County. Birds Korea’s focus, much as last year, remains on improving understanding of habitat use by the globally Endangered Scaly-sided MerganserMergus squamatus and additional riverine and river-side biodiversity. Reports and a paper (currently still at draft stage) will present much fuller details of this work later this year.
During this 5-day period, in unseasonally mild (warm even) conditions, we conducted three whole day counts along the length of the Imjin River in Yeoncheon County; a one day count along the Hantan River; and spent a half day in the CCZ followed by a 2.5 hour field consultation with Dr Yoo Miyeon back at the Hantan.
In spite of massive disturbance caused by active drills (including heavy hardware in a couple of stretches of river and up to three helicopters overhead for an hour or more at a time), we again found Ramsar-defined internationally important concentrations of the very easily-disturbed Scaly-sided Merganser – with most birds in pairs and strong indications of rapid turnover (based on individual differences in plumage of some individuals, and different numbers within preferred areas during each of the three counts); widespread Mandarin Duck; >2,000 Baikal Teal (revealing several of their behavioral “secrets”) ; good numbers of both Red-crowned and White-naped Cranes watched spiralling up high before departing northward; and decent numbers of other early spring migrants, including several large flocks of Rook with a handful of Daurian Jackdaw mixed in, several flocks of 50-100+ Rustic Bunting (and at least two Little Bunting), and a scattering of Naumman’s Thrush, Long-tailed Rosefinch and Siberian Accentor.
Counts will continue on through March (and the rest of the year) led by Birds Korea Yeoncheon.
Over the weekend of November 26th to 27th, a Birds Korea event was held in the Yeoncheon Imjin River Biosphere Reserve in Gyeonggi-do, with generous support by Yeoncheon County. In attendance was representation from eBird, the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership, … read more
Bird News from Nial Moores with Sandy Darling, Jeni Darling and Tom Thomas (Team Hawk-watch from Ontario, Canada). Timed to capture a mix of autumn migrants and early-returning winter specials, we logged approximately 187 bird species, with several concentrations of … read more
Bird News from Nial Moores with Mike Danzenbaker, Lee Hung and Angus Wilson Several excellent highlights despite the rapidly deteriorating weather, including five Relict Gull, two Chinese Nuthatch, four Oriental Stork, two Long-billed Dowitcher, a presumed First-winter female Black-throated Thrush, … read more
Bird News from Nial Moores with Dr Paul Prevett, Candy McManiman and Mike Friel Scaly-sided Mergansers, great views of Taiga and Tundra Bean Geese, Relict Gull and White-naped Cranes were among the highlights of this Anatidae-focused visit to the North … read more
Dr. Nial Moores, Birds Korea, September 30th 2015 The Scaly-sided Merganser Mergus squamatus is both exquisitely-plumaged and globally Endangered. It breeds only along forest-sided rivers in some of the wildest country in Far East Asia. Shy and elusive, its often … read more
Survey report by Jason Loghry with Lee Keesan, Choi Su-Yeon and Mike Friel On Saturday, a team of us from Birds Korea surveyed the Southeast River for Scaly-sided Merganser. This is the same river that we monitored in the winter of … read more
Posted on 17 April 2014, at the Korea Times website: Degradation of Korean rivers posing challenge to endangered bird, experts say. By Kim Young-jin “With a bright orange bill and exquisite, maze-like patterns on its flanks, the Scaly-sided Merganser is … read more
Nial Moores PhD, Birds Korea, January 27th 2014 A total of 149 Scaly-sided Merganser Mergus squamatus were recorded nationwide by the Birds Korea survey, conducted between January 5th and 22nd 2014. This number is remarkably similar to the 140-149 recorded … read more
Bird News from Nial Moores with Ed Keeble and others As part of the Birds Korea survey on Scaly-sided Merganser, we visited various inland riverine sites from January 11th -14th; and again for part of January 19th and 22nd. In addition, we visited … read more