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.

Friday, 20 January 2017

Trip to Kagoshima 1, Izumi

On the way south we stopped at Izumi to visit the cranes at Arasaki. I love the sounds of the 12000 birds when they gather to eat, when they quarrel and when they take to flight all at once. It is one of the most spectacular sights in Kyushu. Of the 4 species that winter here I easily identify the Hooded Crane, ナベヅル

They are most common. Next comes the elegant White-naped Crane, マナヅル

The conditions were kind of bad. A dark blanket of clouds hung on top of us and the wind blew quite strong. The early morning, when all cranes gather for breakfast was dark

When the day cleared a bit I could get more detail. Below one  White-naped Crane, マナヅル  among many Hooded Cranes, ナベヅル who look at him (or her) in a way that seems to say: "What are you doing here? Go find your own"

Soon they all duck down to eat again. Just as well the people of the Crane center supply them with those grains, there would never be enough for all of them.

Watching them interact is most entertaining and sometimes results in interesting photography.

The big challenge of course is to locate any of the other 2 species that are there. There number is so small, maybe 4 or 5 that I don't usually go for that needle in the proverbial haystack. This time however my eye caught something. Among the Hooded Cranes was one different coloured bird. Look below:

This one bird seems to be a hybrid between the Hooded Crane, ナベヅル and a Common Crane, クロ

Other birds I usually look for are sparrows. Not the ordinary Tree Sparrows,
but the Russet Sparrow, ニュウナイスズメ



Omnipresent this month: Rook, ミヤマガラス

Northern Lapwing, タゲリ

 Spotted Redshank, ツルシギ

Below a resident Osprey, ミサゴ

A few Water Pipits, タヒバリ

And a cute young female Kestrel, チョウゲンボウ

But when we saw this beauty we had already left Izumi and were in Satsuma land.

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