Saturday, February 11, 2006

Japanese Skylark

Location: Tama River (Komae Area), Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture

Access: Shinjuku Station to Izumi-Tamagawa Station - Odakyu Line

Weather: Clear, Warm, Still

Time: 9.30am - 12.30pm

Birds: Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Great Cormorant, Little Egret, Great Egret, Eurasian Wigeon, Gadwall, Common Teal, Northern Pintail, Northern Shoveler, Tufted Duck, Long-billed Plover, Dunlin, Common Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Rock Dove, Japanese Skylark, Buff-bellied Pipit, White Wagtail, Japanese Wagtail, Brown-eared Bulbul, Dusky Thrush, Carrion Crow, Eurasian Tree Sparrow, Black-faced Bunting, Siberian Meadow Bunting

Comments: Approaching the Tama River from the north, from Izumi-Tamagawa Station, we immediately see a single Great Crested Grebe in the centre of the river (our first on this river). Following the river bank east, we then find two Japanese Skylarks (lifers) feeding in short grass. They do not exhibit the crest depicted in the field guide, but this is quite common. Later, we find that these two Skylarks have attracted more attention with a small group of birders gathered to watch and photograph them.

Further down river, on the exposed rocky river bed, we locate a single Long-billed Plover, and a Dunlin (another first for us on this river). Large flocks of Dusky Thrush are to be found along the water and high in the trees that line the banks. The ubiquitous flocks of Eurasian Tree Sparrow fill the tall dry reeds, amongst small numbers of Siberian Meadow Buntings.

2006 Japan Bird Count: 73 Species


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