The sound of a Beijing wetland at dusk

Beijing’s wetlands come alive in spring as migratory birds, especially waterbirds, pass through on their way to breeding grounds further north.  Some will even stay and breed in the capital.

A few days ago I was lucky to spend the last couple of hours of daylight on the edge of one of Beijing’s primary wetlands in Yanqing District.  With the wind slowly dying as the sun set, the sounds came into their own.  I set up my digital sound recorder and just sat back and relaxed.  What treat!

You can enjoy just over 30 minutes of the recording below.

Amongst the chorus of Dark-spotted Frogs, I have picked out the following species: Common Pheasant, Garganey, Coot, Little Grebe, Black-winged Stilt, Wood Sandpiper, Little Ringed Plover, Common Snipe, Eurasian Curlew, Northern Lapwing, Common Redshank, Common Tern, Black-headed Gull, Oriental Magpie, Collared Dove, Zitting Cisticola, White-cheeked Starling, Buff-bellied Pipit, White Wagtail and Eastern Yellow Wagtail. 

If you identify any more, please let me know!

4 thoughts on “The sound of a Beijing wetland at dusk”

  1. This is beautiful Terry, thank you. It is so different than the dusk chorus here in my southern Nova Scotia pond next to the ocean. The Wood frogs, Green and leopard frogs and the spring peeper Tree frogs prevail along with American Toad. And I have no talking night birds, except the SawWhet Owl.

    1. Thank you, Jane. Although you may not have many dusk-singing birds, I am sure you have many other birds to make up for it. Must be some impressive migration in May?

  2. Loved that soundscape Terry – even though it makes me green with envy. More, more, more of these please…I heard a few additional species – Grey-headed Woodpecker (4:09 & better at 25:34), Great Cormorant (several sequences including 8:12 & 22:35), Water Pipit (16:15), Spotted Redshank (19:38), Olive-backed Pipit (21:42), Eurasian Tree Sparrow (30:04) & Common Kingfisher (33:08).

    1. Thank you, Paul! The Spotted Redshank is a bit of a surprise as I thought I had seen all the shorebirds on site… It just goes to show that more species can be lurking out of sight, making listening as important as looking.

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