Thursday, 15 December 2016

China: Wuyuan

Today was just one of those days that thankfully doesn’t happen very often. We had a light drizzle until 1.00pm which hampered our birding considerably. We visited another site where I have seen Short-tailed Parrotbill in the past but we had no such luck today and, in fact, bird activity was very low. We began just after 7.00am with a very grey and overcast dawn and a Steijneger’s Stonechat and Crested Kingfisher, whilst a flock of Grey-headed Parrotbills just about gave us the slip as they moved across the top of a hill above us. We tried numerous spots here for the parrotbill without getting any response and didn’t see many birds at all. During short breaks in the weather we saw Chinese Bamboo-Partridge, very brief Chinese Hwamei and Grey-sided Scimitar-Babbler, a few flocks of Huet’s Fulvetta, White-crowned Forktail and that was about it. At 10.30am we left and headed back to the Pied Falconet site where we had lunch but no falconet. Afterwards a few snickers bars were consumed and whilst enjoying our chocolate a cute little Pied Falconet appeared at the top of a tall tree right in front of us. What a little beauty and a bird I wouldn’t have been too pleased to dip on! Buoyed by our success (well sort of!) we set out to a forest where Steven had seen Asian Stubtail in the past. It was a nice area of mature, deciduous forest beside a sluggish river where Mandarin Ducks loafed. In the field across the river a flock of Greater and a few Lesser Necklaced Laughingthrushes were scoped, an Eastern Buzzard flew over and a White-crowned Forktail picked its way along the bank. We heard an Asian Stubtail late in the day as we walked back to the coach but it failed to show and by now the light was fading and it was time to call it  day....

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