Late Autumn Birds

Near the end of November bird photography becomes even more interesting in the southern part of Shiga Prefecture. Some larger birds, including most egrets, herons, and cormorants, fly south for the winter, but winter migrants appear, and some species that live here throughout the year seem more prominent and attractive as the temperatures drop and […]

Wildflowers and Insects

Here in Shiga Prefecture some wildflowers continue to bloom well into November. They attract a variety of flying insects, including butterflies, moths, bees, hoverflies, and wasps. On November 3, 2018, quite a few insects were feeding along an irrigation canal near rice and soybean fields near my home. Common grass yellow butterfly (Eurema hecabe hecabe, […]

End of Summer

The last days of summer 2018 in Shiga Prefecture have been mostly cloudy, with quite a bit of rain and very little sunshine. Whenever it was not raining too hard, I went out with a camera most days September 11-19, 2018. September 11 – insects in a garden, Yasugawa, nearby fields Physostegia virginiana flowers (obedience, […]

Egret Rookery

Great egrets (ダイサギ), cattle egrets (アマサギ), and other birds nest in the woods at Hyozu Shrine (兵主大社) in Yasu City, Shiga Prefecture, Japan. I recorded the sounds of the rookery on Sunday, May 27, 2018, and posted a six-minute sample on radio aporee ::: maps and SoundCloud. https://soundcloud.com/gpjp/egret-rookery The woods are between a large shrine […]

Flowering Weeds in Early Spring

In March and April the Japanese countryside comes to life as weeds appear along fields and streams, anywhere with soil. Some of these plants are known for medicinal properties, and some are gathered as food. Most are ignored or cut down. This year I’m trying to learn the names of flowering weeds as they appear […]