Dalian – Day Five

After staying in Jinshitan following the wader bonanza, we enjoyed a relative lie-in until 0530 and were up and ready at the station to catch the first train to Dalian at 0630.  From there we took a bus (8 Yuan – about 80 pence) from Dalian to Lushun where we dumped our bags and set out straight for Laotieshan.  We obviously missed the early morning visible migration but we were on site by 10am.  It was a gorgeous day with very good visibility and temperatures of around 20 degrees Celsius.  Highlights include Asian House Martin, Red Collared Dove, 2 Mugimaki Flycatchers, a single Grey-streaked Flycatcher and, for the sheer spectacle, the hundreds and hundreds of hirundines – Swallows, Red-rumped Swallows, Sand Martins and Fork-tailed Swifts – that were feeding over the point all afternoon – simply awesome to watch these expert aviators hang, glide and swoop in the stiff north-easterly breeze..

I am posting a few images from today and also a couple of the ‘crabbers’ that were very active on the mudflats yesterday… maybe that’s why we didn’t see a Spoon-billed Sandpiper!

These early mornings and full days in the field are starting to get to me..  I feel very tired this evening..  but hopefully I’ll be in bed by 9pm tonight and some good birds at first light tomorrow will no doubt wipe the sleep from my eyes!  Have just set the alarm for 4am.. gulp.

Fork-tailed (Pacific) Swift, Laotieshan, 15 May 2011

Fork-tailed (Pacific) Swift, Laotieshan, 15 May 2011. Note how the white rump wraps around onto the sides.

Fork-tailed (Pacific) Swift, Laotieshan. Hundreds of these superb birds were hawking around the point for insects all afternoon.

Record image of the Asian House Martin, Laotieshan, 15 May 2011. In the field this bird looked noticeably dusky on the underparts and there was no hint of pale underwing coverts.

Watching the 'crabbers' paddle out to the mudflats on polystyrene rafts on the falling tide was an interesting sideshow to yesterday's wader-fest at Pikou.

Digging for crabs/shellfish is hard work. The guy in the middle is clearly the boss.

Full species list (in chronological order):

Asian Brown Flycatcher (11)

Red-rumped Swallow (200+)

Spotted Dove (1)

Yellow-browed Warbler (25)

Eurasian Sparrowhawk (9)

Siberian Stonechat (1)

Tristram’s Bunting (5)

Radde’s Warbler (6)

Taiga Flycatcher (6)

Chestnut Bunting (3)

Amur Falcon (12)

Chinese Bulbul (2)

Dusky Warbler (12)

Eastern Marsh Harrier (1 plus 1 brief harrier sp, probably also this species)

Yellow-browed Bunting (3)

Fork-tailed Swift (250+)

Pallas’s Warbler (2)

Two-barred Greenish Warbler (4)

Chestnut-eared Bunting (1)

Chinese Hill Warbler (1)

Rufous-tailed Robin (1)

Black-naped Oriole (1) in off sea at 1105

Purple Heron (1) in off sea at 1120

Black-faced Bunting (3)

White-throated Rock Thrush (2) including one in the lighthouse garden

Black Drongo (1)

Brown Shrike (7)

Japanese White-eye (1)

White-eye sp (20+)

Oriental Greenfinch (4)

Common Pheasant (4)

Ashy Minivet (5)

Common Kestrel (1)

Great Tit (4)

Olive-backed Pipit (3)

Pale-legged Leaf Warbler (4)

Vinous-throated Parrotbill (6)

Sand Martin (7)

Mugimaki Flycatcher (2) – a male and a female

Grey-streaked Flycatcher (1) – associating with the Mugimakis

Hobby (2)

Common Swift (1)

House Martin sp (1)

Yellow Wagtail (1)

prob Oriental Cuckoo (1) in off sea at 1530.  Heavily streaked underparts including streaked underwing coverts.

Eastern Crowned Warbler (1)

Red Collared Dove (1) – a beautiful bird

Yellow-rumped Flycatcher (1)

Asian House Martin (1) – see photo

Oriental Turtle Dove (2)

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About Terry Townshend

I am a British birder living and birding in Beijing from August 2010 until 2015. Through this blog I hope I can convey a sense of what it is like to live in this thriving, confident and contrasting city and the birdlife that can be found in its environs. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it! Terry Townshend, Beijing September 2010
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