Monday, February 6, 2012

Shrgang Reservoir, Gaomei Wetlands

Shrgang Reservoir and Gaomei Wetlands.

When passing through Dongshr Town I resisted the temptation to wander up towards Dasyueshan - Fork-tailed Sunbirds have been reported at the 23.5km mark. Something else was planed.

Made a short diversion to the Shrgang Reservoir, not for the handful of Grey Herons, Black-crowned Night-Heron, Egrets, and Grebes but to twitch the Scaly-sided Mergansers present. Quite rare in Taiwan, there were 3 (1 male, 2 female) visible - as reported on the CWBF website. From our viewpoint in the middle of the dam wall, they were to be seen (in the scope) in the water to our north-east. Also a single Osprey on south side.

Shrgang is between the eastern end of Freeway 4 and Dongshr. To get to the dam, turn of road #3 (normal road, not freeway) just east of km mark 165.

To end the (increasingly chilly) afternoon we went to the western end of Freeway #4 and the much-abused Gaomei Wetlands on the south side of the Dajia Rive rivermouth. Directions: Freeway #4 blends into highway #17, just as it goes under an elevated highway (#61) there are signs for Gaomei Wetlands. Turn right here, cross the railway tracks and immediatly turn left - under the elevated highway, and towards the windmills. The road narrows and veres north before the windmills. Possible to make a loop north-east-south back to #17.

We generally ignored the waders on the seaward side of the embankment (could be some good stuff there) and instead had a look at the tatty plowed fields/small ponds/graves/wasteland on the landward side. Had good views of 6 Red-billed Starlings. Also 10 Black-faced Bunting, Common Snipe, 1 Kestrel, 1 Ruddy-breasted Crake.

New Birds at Shrgang Reservoir and Gaomei Wetlands:

Scaly-sided Merganser    Mergus squamatus
Osprey    Pandion haliaetus
Red-billed Starling    Sturnus sericeus
Ruddy-breasted Crake    Porzana fusca

Merganser image from