Sunday, 6 March 2016

Japan in November (No. 10)...and final: Kyoto & Arasaki

Daurian Redstart, Arasaki crane reserve.  A "bird on a stick" photo but a rather nice one...
Kyoto in late autumn is the best time for autumn colours, and so the city was quite busy with tourists.  There are plenty of parks, temples and a river that flows through the centre.  The hills are not far away and there are high speed trains that can get you a long way in a short space of time.
Japanese Maple
Japanese Grosbeak, Imperial Palace Gardens - large flocks were busy feeding on the small fruits in these trees
Japanese Maple
Pale Thrush, Imperial Palace Gardens
Varied Tit, Imperial Palace Gardens
Ginko Tree
Dusky Thrush, Imperial Palace Gardens
White-cheeked Starlings, Imperial Palace Gardens
Japanese Maple
crane flock wheeling above Arasaki reserve.  We took a high speed train from Kyoto to Izumi then taxi to the crane reserve.  About four hours journey each way, but well worth it.
Hooded Cranes at Arasaki - about 10,000 winter in an area of about 300 hectares - a good chunk of the world population

White-naped Crane, Arasaki reserve - we also saw a couple of Eurasian Cranes.
Bullfinch, Honshu race (the male is quite pale compared to ours in the UK), hillside above the International Convention Centre
Daurian Redstart, male, Kyoto International Convention Centre
Mandarin Ducks on the lake next to the International Convention Centre
I could have written more about Japan but have run out of time.  My thanks to Tommy Onita at Japan Birdwatching for his excellent help in making arrangements for visiting Hokkaido.

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