Two sunny days in the first week of March brought out some local birds and winter visitors.

March 2 – Moriyama City

On March 2, 2020, I rode a bicycle to Hatonomori Park in Moriyama City (滋賀県 守山市 鳩の森公園). On the way I saw many greenfinches, buntings, and other small birds in bushes along Yasugawa (野洲川).

Grey-capped greenfinch or Oriental greenfinch (Chloris sinica,  オオカワラヒワ /  カワラヒワ)?
Grey-capped greenfinch or Oriental greenfinch (Chloris sinica, オオカワラヒワ / カワラヒワ)?

Along with the usual turtle-doves, I saw an olive-backed pipit and a daurian redstart in the park.

Oriental Turtle-Dove (Streptopelia orientalis, キジバト)
Oriental Turtle-Dove (Streptopelia orientalis, キジバト)
Olive-backed pipit (Anthus hodgsoni, ビンズイ)
Olive-backed pipit (Anthus hodgsoni, ビンズイ)
Olive-backed pipit (Anthus hodgsoni, ビンズイ)
Olive-backed pipit (Anthus hodgsoni, ビンズイ)
Daurian redstart male (Phoenicurus auroreus, ジョウビタキ)
Daurian redstart male (Phoenicurus auroreus, ジョウビタキ)

Eastern spot-billed ducks were resting at the lower pond as usual.

Eastern spot-billed duck (カルガモ)
Eastern spot-billed duck (Anas zonorhyncha, カルガモ)

As I was watching the ducks, a common kingfisher appeared with a fish in her mouth.

Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis, 川蝉, カワセミ)
Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis, 川蝉, カワセミ)
Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis, 川蝉, カワセミ)
Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis, 川蝉, カワセミ)

March 7 – Ritto City

On March 7th I took a 4.5 kilometer walk through nearby neighborhoods and fields to Yasugawa (野洲川). On the way birds appeared in several locations. Some seemed to prefer sunshine, while others remained in shade.

Daurian redstart (Phoenicurus auroreus, ジョウビタキ ♂)
Daurian redstart (Phoenicurus auroreus, ジョウビタキ ♂)
Daurian redstart (Phoenicurus auroreus, ジョウビタキ ♂)
Daurian redstart (Phoenicurus auroreus, ジョウビタキ ♂)
Pale thrush (Turdus pallidus, シロハラ)
Pale thrush (Turdus pallidus, シロハラ)
Grey wagtail (Motacilla cinerea, キセキレイ)
Grey wagtail (Motacilla cinerea, キセキレイ)
Brown-eared bulbul (Hypsipetes amaurotis, ヒヨドリ)
Brown-eared bulbul (Hypsipetes amaurotis, ヒヨドリ)
Dusky thrush (Turdus eunomus, ツグミ)
Dusky thrush (Turdus eunomus, ツグミ)
Bull-headed shrike (Lanius bucephalus, モズ)
Bull-headed shrike (Lanius bucephalus, モズ)

Bushes and susuki grass along the Yasugawa (野洲川) riverbank shelter many small birds, especially meadow buntings.

Susuki grass, Mikamiyama (三上山), and Bodaijisan (菩提寺山)
Susuki grass, Mikamiyama (三上山), and Bodaijisan (菩提寺山)
Meadow bunting (Emberiza cioides cioide, ホオジロ)
Meadow bunting (Emberiza cioides cioide, ホオジロ)

As spring approaches, more egrets, cormorants, and herons begin to appear at the river.

Great egret (Ardea alba, ダイサギ)
Great egret (Ardea alba, ダイサギ)

See more photos in my Flickr photostream or one of my albums.

Published by Greg Peterson

Professor Emeritus, Kyoto Notre Dame University (1977-2020). Since 1980 I have lived in Shiga Prefecture, Japan, where I enjoy outdoor activities, especially photography, hiking, and cycling.

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