Monday, February 6, 2012

Three days in Mid-Taiwan

Three days Mid-Taiwan Birding.

This is how to do it! Chinese New Year malarkey over, and I finally had an excuse to guide someone birding in central-west Taiwan.
Three days of nothing but birding, mostly great weather, not much time wasted on daytime eating and rest. Some truly outstanding birds found - from now it becomes harder!

18 of the 22 official endemics were seen. Another 20-30 endemic subspecies and possible splits were among the 100+ species seen.

For convenience I am splitting these three days (February 1,2,3)  into 7 parts.

Chun-yang. (visited Feb 1st morning, and 2nd late morning), plus notes on Wushe.

Meifeng. February 1st late morning and lunchtime.

Hehuan and Blue Gate Trail. February 1st lunchtime and afternoon.

Beidongyen Mountain. February 2nd morning.

Near Puli and Lienhuachr. February 2nd afternoon and evening.

Huisun. February 3rd morning.

Shrgang Reservoir and Gaomei Wetlands. February 3rd lunchtime and afternoon.

Catherine, on a short trip to Taiwan from Los Angeles to see her daughter studying in Taipei, had visited Dasyueshan before on a previous visit. She was very enthusiastic about checking out some new sites.

I met her on the Tuesday the 31st evening at Taichung High Speed Rail Station, she was back in Taipei Friday evening with an expanded life-list - and Taiwan Bulbul to get in Taroko Gorge on Sunday.

Species I would have hoped to get, bit missed on this trip: Coal Tit, Eurasian Jay, Taiwan Bush-warbler, Eurasian Nutcracker, Mikado Pheasant, Russet Sparrow, Pygmy Wren-babbler, Varied Tit. For me, these should be picked up at a later date - either in these same areas, or somewhere like Dasyueshan. Would have loved to have spent more time at all these destinations - will be back!

This schedule worked well for us: we were happy rushing around, few noisy tourist were about, and we were blessed with excellent weather. For most people I would suggest birding these sites over a longer period.