Getting the Most out of Spring, Part 1: Birdwatching

A hearty hello to all of our readers near and far!

As we enter the final third of May, there can be no denying that spring has sprung. Mornings may be chilly, but are no longer freezing. The once bare tree branches are bedecked in vibrant green leaves. And we certainly hope to have seen the last flash blizzard of the season.

Like every season in Kamikochi, spring comes bearing its own basket of delights: seasonal flora and fauna along with some of the clearest skies you’ll see.

Today, we take a moment to praise the birds of spring, beginning with the Periparus ater seen at the top of the page. Commonly called the “coal tit,” this little guy can now be spotted around central Kamikochi. As with other species featured in today’s blog, they don’t venture to the higher branches of trees. By scanning the lower portions of a tree, right around the eyeline, you can spot birds with relative ease. Just look in the direction the birdsong is coming from and Bob’s your uncle.

Speaking of distinctive birdsong’s, the next entry on our list is the Horornis diphone or “Japanese bush warbler.”

The warbler is often said to be “more often heard than seen.” While the distinctive ho-hokekyo cry is indeed easy to hear, intrepid birdwatchers will often be rewarded with a site of a bush warbler while hiking the area around Kappa Bridge.

Next, we turn our gaze to the Muscicapa dauurica or “asian brown flycatcher:

This species breeds in Japan, Siberia and the Himalayas and spends winters in warmer climes like India and southeast asia. The bird’s Japanese name, 小鮫鶲, includes the kanji for “shark” ( 鮫) for some reason…

What to Wear in Late May

Currently, warm daytime temperatures in Kamikochi top off at around 20 degrees Celsius, with morning lows of 5 or 6. This means that judicious use of layering will help you fend off morning cold while being able to shed layers for the warmer daytime conditions.

And with that, we conclude today’s blog. Thanks as always to the folks at Five Sense for making all of this possible through their diligent coverage of Kamikochi.

Till next time, stay safe!

Sources of Information:

Nature Guide Five Sense, Kamikochi blog: