Birding in Taiwan

 

 
Birding Stories

 

Birding in Taiwan
Dale Jensen
Langley, British Columbia, Canada


From Nov. 10 through Nov. 19, 2003, I joined the Birding tour of Taiwan. We spent three+ days in the mountains of central Taiwan where we found many passerines, including several species endemic to Taiwan, several hawks, the Whistling Green-Pigeon, and had excellent views of the Mikado Pheasant. We then traveled to the west coast lowlands where we observed many shorebirds, and were treated to good views of the Black-faced Spoonbill and the Pheasant-tailed Jacana. We drove to the south end of the island to see the endemic Styan’s Bulbul and the rare Black-naped Oriole, then returned north, to Taipei and Yangminshan National Park, to see the Taiwan Magpie.
Over the course of the 10 days I saw about 160 species, of which over half were "lifers".
I enjoyed the food immensely. It was always good, and there was plenty of variety. Sometimes I wasn’t sure what I was eating, but I ate almost everything and always found it tasty.
I enjoyed visiting Taiwan. The people are very friendly and helpful. One night I went for a walk after supper and got lost, so I showed people my hotel key and everyone pointed me in the right direction until I found my way back.
I was particularly impressed by the efforts made by conservation groups, the Taiwan government, et al to protect endangered species, notably the Black-faced Spoonbill, the Fairy Pitta and the Pheasant-tailed Jacana. Regrettably, there are more species becoming scarce and needing protection, but only so much can be done, and it is good to see that considerable effort is being made. I was also glad to see that school children are taken on field trips to observe the protected birds. This will generate more help for conservation measures when these children become adults.

Japanese Green Pigeon

 

Black-faced Spoonbill