The most recent published information about the status of the birds of Beijing was the 1987 book “Birds of Beijing” written by Cai Qikan and published by the Beijing Natural History Museum. Written in Chinese, it’s an important reference, providing information about the status of species found in the capital, including specific details about the occurrence of rarities and specimens collected for the museum.
A lot has happened since 1987, not least a significant increase in the number of birders and thus the number of birds recorded, all of which means that this book, although a hugely important historical record, is now out of date.
The lockdown of early 2020 and subsequent reduction in travel, has meant much more time spent at home, providing an opportunity to research the current status of the birds of Beijing. The result is a new page on this website providing a basic status of those species reliably recorded in the capital, including maximum counts where available. The intention is to maintain this page as “live” and it will be updated as and when new species or notable records are discovered, or when there is a greater understanding of a species’ status.
As of October 2020, the official list of species recorded in Beijing, last published in 2014, is under review by a team led by Professor Zhao Xinru of Beijing Normal University. We expect the revised list to be published later this year and the new page will be updated to reflect the latest list as soon as it is available.
Birding Beijing welcomes corrections, additions and updates in order to ensure the new page is, and remains, as accurate as possible. A big shout out to all the birders who have submitted records to the publicly available sources from which this new page was produced.
I hope this new resource will assist both visiting and resident birders alike.
Title image: Birding in Beijing by Madeleine Donahue.