Monday 13 June 2016

Island alive with Kamchatka Leaf Warblers

Last Sunday I visited Hegurajima and was surprised by how many Kamchatka Leaf Warblers were on the island. I went back to the island this week (10 June) and found there were even more, far more in fact. They really were everywhere; from sprigs of emergent vegetation amongst the harbourside pebbles, through dense, nigh impenetrable hip-high coastal vegetation to the island's woodland spine. I posted Quite a few images of examinandus in the the last post so just a single bird this time.

It seems that this may be peak time for these north-bound birds. They're also late going the other way in autumn, passing after the vast majority of locally breeding Japanese Leaf and Eastern Crowned Warblers are long gone. Incidentally, I don't see much difference in plumage between autumn migrants and these, presumably more worn, birds in June.

Black Woodpigeons were still prominent and if I'd had the luxury of time, I think it would've been possible to get some good images of these birds that were sitting up far more often than autumn birds seem to do. As it is I'll have to make do with this.

I did get some shots of the Pigeons flashing iridescence in the sun but never a whole bird; a neck here, a belly there, perhaps a crown peeking over some foliage. Four hours on the island isn't long enough to worry about the prefect Pigeon picture.

A female Japanese Paradise Flycatcher was an altogether different challenge. It wasn't afraid to show itself but there weren't two consecutive seconds that bird wasn't on the move.

Everyone's due a little luck sometime and this male (it was singing) Lesser Cuckoo sat up nicely for me.

A 2CY male perhaps? It has a striking rufous hind collar and brownish pale-tipped coverts.

As usual the ferry journey was disappointing, lots of Streaked Shearwaters but nothing else to speak of. Not even a cormorant. Nevertheless, it's always good to see any details of any shearwater plumage.

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