|Marsh Tit Poecile palustris|
|Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca (mega rarity for Korea)|
|Oriental Turtle Dove Streptopelia orientalis|
|Eurasian Nuthatch Sitta europaea|
|Great Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos major|
|Ferruginous Duck admirers|
December 31, Namhansan
On a hazy and relatively warm last day of 2013, I visited the peaceful hills around Hyeonjeolsa Temple on Namhansan, in Seoul’s southeast. It was a treat to see a variety of birds I don’t get to see on Jeju, such as confiding single-digits numbers of Marsh Tit, Japanese Pygmy Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Eurasian Nuthatch, as well as perhaps a dozen Naumann’s Thrush several Dusky Thrush (and an apparent Dusky x Naumann’s hybrid), and a Goldcrest. Several Great Tit, Varied Tit, Brambling, Large-billed Crow, and an Eastern Buzzard were also seen, but unfortunately I was unable to lay eyes on a Hazel Grouse, in spite of hearing one.
January 1, stream near Eungbong Station, (with Tim Edelsten)
There was a nice assortment of ducks on a small stretch of river feeding into the Han, with most regular winter ducks represented. Notable were about 150 Mandarin Ducks, remarkable for this site. The star attraction was a cracking male Ferruginous Duck, looking spectacular as it swam lazily in the sun.