This blog is for family and friends, to share my feelings and photos with and for myself, to support my fading memory and improve my Japanese. I intend to do some writing in kanji, but am not getting very far without a Japanese computer. So for the moment I say "konnichi wa". Aisatsu dake - just saying hello.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Red-breasted Flycatcher, ニシオジロビタキ

It is difficult to distinguish the Red-breasted from the Taiga Flycatcher, but the lower mandible on both birds seems a little pinkish, so here we go:

Red-breasted Flycatcher, ニシオジロビタキ   Times 2

No details about their locations are published, in order to protect the birds and secure their rest.

Cruising the coast

After a last bout of snow the weather improved. Time to check the shoreline and see what's up.

Black-necked Grebe, ハジロカイツブリ

Summer plumage!  夏羽

Pacific Loon, オオハム

Pacific Reef Egret, クロサギ

Saturday, 22 March 2014

White’s Thrush, トラツグミ

This doesn’t feel right. Scaly Scaly Thrushes are shy, lurking in thickets, briefly coming out for feeding spells. It’s the kind of bird that when stumbled upon will stay in your memory for ever.

It should not be like this.

White’s Thrush, トラツグミ

Bull-headed Shrike, モズ

While the waxwings are taking a break from their devastating attacks on the berry trees I take the chance to observe other birds in the area.
At first the shrikes. A male and female are actively dating and it looks like the female already has a location for the nest in mind. She calls out loud for food and when her mate shows up she lures him into the shrubs.

Bull-headed Shrike, モズ

Left the female calling and fluttering her wings in display, right the male


They share their territory

He's got something for her.

Thank you!

Immediately asks for more. (Who does she remind you of?)

The waxwings confiscate all the berries on top, they are too scared to lower themselves to humans' eye level, but the thrush is a little braver. 

Pale Thrush, シロハ

And the bulbuls have no problem with that at all.    Brown-eared Bulbul, ヒヨド

Another family in the make.

And look who's watching!  Common Pheasant,

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Waxwings, レンジャク

When spring comes waxwings gather to have a feast in and around the city of Dazaifu, where berry trees line the streets and parks. The flock of over 50 birds consists of mainly Japanese waxwings, but some Bohemian Waxwings are seen, easily recognized by the yellow terminal band on their tail and the lack of red markings generally.

Waxwings, レンジャク

below Japanese Waxwing,  ヒレンジャク

below  Bohemian Waxwing,  キレンジャク


Suddenly the birds take to their wings and attack a tree or bush. They gobble up as many berries as possible during a few minutes or just half a minute before returning to the top of the bare trees, from where they can keep a safe look out.

  Side by side, Bohemian and Japanese Waxwings

When you see what these birds can do to a tree in one day you understand why they are called Pest birds in Dutch.