Bird News from Johan Kok
On Sunday 21 September 2015 I went for a long overdue walk along the Taehwa river in Ulsan. The first stop was the area where the Oriental Stork had been seen. It was still present in the same area walking around in the shallows next to a sand bank full of Black-headed Gulls. Also in this area were some Black-tailed Gulls, Grey Heron, Great Egret, Little Egret, Spot-billed Duck and Great Cormorant. In the nearby reeds I spotted a splash of colour which turned out to be a Common Kingfisher. One of several seen along the river during the day.
Also on the sand bank were two mysterious plump ducks that I could not identify. They were later confirmed to be feral or domestic hybrid types via photos. From this area I moved upriver and further into the city where the river narrows with more reeds, little islands and tree cover. Along this section of the river I picked up Common Moorhen, Eurasian Magpie, Brown-eared Bulbul, Eurasian Tree Sparrow, Vinous-throated Parrotbill, Eastern Great Tit, Eurasian Turtle Dove, Japanese Pygmy Woodpecker, Japanese Wagtail and brief glimpses of what looked like Common Sandpiper.
Beside the Oriental Stork the highlight of the day came on the walk back when a single Chinese Pond Heron flew up from the bank and across the river. Even though a quiet day compared to the amount of waterfowl normally present in winter it was still a rewarding walk.
Feral/Domestic Geese with mostly Black-headed Gulls and Grey Heron © Johan Kok
Oriental Stork (on left, background), Great Egret, Grey Heron, and mostly Black-headed Gulls © Johan Kok
Domestic Geese © Johan Kok
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea © Johan Kok
Chinese Pond Heron Ardeola bacchus © Johan Kok