Well I’ve declared the weekend that just passed five days long, solely for blog purposes. Last weekend began on Wednesday, 20th November.
November in HK was known traditionally among expats as “Wrinkly Season” - the best weather of the year, when people’s aged relatives chose to make a pre-Christmas visit.
The birding was good too, with feathered winter visitors arriving in numbers.
Perhaps fewer expats and “wrinklies” now, and the climate seems milder than twenty years ago, but there are still many birds around in late November.
|“ocularis” White Wagtail|
|Daurian Redstart (f)|
An outgoing tide at Mai Po on Friday 22nd drew us out to the boardwalk, bright and early.
In the clearest of light, we watched the Cormorants pouring out of Nam Sang Wai and out over Deep Bay.
|Great Cormorants - crossing Deep Bay|
....and the Wigeon came very close to the boardwalk hide.
|Eurasian Wigeon (f)|
|Eurasian Wigeon (m)|
|Musical notes ?|
The tides weren’t looking so promising on Saturday 23rd, so we just strolled to the scrape at Mai Po Nature Reserve, along the casuarinas.
|Typical winter view looking towards the Border Fence|
Once numbered in HK in hundreds, Chinese Spotbills don’t reach double figures here now.
|"Chinese Spot-billed Duck" |
A "Grebe Day" on Sunday 24th..we ventured forth after casting our votes (For candidates, not Grebes).
The biggest Grebe, Great Crested, was at an overgrown Fung Lok Wai, near Yuen Long.
|Great Crested Grebe|
Meanwhile the twice-a-decade* Black-necked Grebe near San Tin returned to the fishpond where it was originally found (by Geoff Carey) on Tuesday, 19th November.
|Black-necked Grebe (Little Grebe in BG)|
|Black-necked Grebe - “Eared Grebe” in the USA|
....and a bonus Rosy Starling, also at San Tin...
...a rarity here in HK.
Perhaps the same bird as originally seen (by Chris Campion) at San Tin on 7th October. Or perhaps not - this blog doesn’t do certainties.
* Last two BN Grebe records were 2018 (briefly, one observer) and 2010