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JAPAN IN WINTER

Friday 10th February - Sunday 26th February 2017

Craig Robson

Steller's Sea Eagle (Craig Robson)

Steller's Sea Eagle (Craig Robson)

Another winter, another fantastic tour to Japan, with its thrilling and spectacular avifauna. The weather stayed fine for the most part this year, and combined with the comfortable transport, and great local guiding and hospitality, it was another trip to remember. Bugling hordes of wintering cranes at Arasaki, a multitude of wintering waterfowl including 100s of Baikal Teal, dancing Red-crowned Cranes in snowy Hokkaido, hundreds of awesome Steller’s Sea and White-tailed Eagles on the pack-ice, and the incredible Blakiston’s Fish Owl were just a few of the headlines on the main tour. The extension brought great views of three species of albatross, including the regionally endemic Short-tailed. Among the many other avian highlights this time were: Mandarin and Harlequin Ducks, Copper and Green Pheasants, Japanese and Red-faced Cormorants, Black-faced Spoonbill, Saunders’s Gull, Ancient and Japanese Murrelets, Least and Crested Auklets, Spectacled and Pigeon Guillemots, Ural Owl, White-backed, Japanese Pygmy and Japanese Green Woodpeckers, Ryukyu Minivet, Azure-winged Magpie, Daurian Jackdaw, Chinese Penduline Tits, Dusky and Pale Thrushes, Japanese Accentor, Japanese Grosbeak, Asian Rosy Finch, Pallas’s and Long-tailed Rosefinches, Arctic (or Hoary) Redpoll, and Grey and Yellow-throated Buntings. On the post-tour extension, we added Brown-cheeked Rail, White’s and Brown-headed Thrushes and, briefly, the endemic Izu Thrush.

White-tailed Eagle (Craig Robson)

White-tailed Eagle (Craig Robson)