Oriental Birding ID Forum 3

Mystery Chats


The following birds were all photographed by Atle Ivar Olsen in Hokkaido, Japan in 2001. The text accompanying the images is from the original posting by Atle on the Kantori (English-language Japanese birding) mailing-list. I have included some images of adult birds.

After this we have a raptor photographed by Rohan Clarke in Christmas Island (in the Indian Ocean off Java)


Please send all comments to aviceda@sunshine.net.au where they can be cross-posted to the relevant mailing-lists.


1. Mystery Chat

We went to Hokkaido in August-September last year and we saw some birds I have not been able to identify. They are all young passerines and I don't think they are anything unusual but I don't have any literature to help me so I have placed some photos in an album on the yahoo Kantori Group site. They are still photos from video recordings so maybe not the best quality but I hope good enough for identifying them. You can find them on the Yahoo Kantori Group Site



mystery chat1

mystery chat1


Bird 1  At Ochiishi Misaki, September 1 2001. No sound and it was flycatching from this plant until it flew away. I believe it is a kind of Erithacus/Luscinia sp, it was of that size. Can it be a young Siberian Rubythroat (No-goma)?

Very bright legs (like bird 3), dark tail but rufous upper-tail coverts on a rather dark brown tail. Whitish/buff underside and vent. Brown back with big light-brown spots.


2. Mystery Chat


mystery chat2

mystery chat2


Bird 2  Hashirikotan, north side of Lake Furen September 2, 2001. It had a sound like a dry "tje, tjet", and a few sharp "tssiii" in between, and it was very active, moving around all the time. Also an Erithacus/Luscinia sp.?

Apparently white border to tail, then a darker line and the inner tail-feathers are all brown and black, maybe more rufous at the base of the tail?


3. Mystery Chat


mystery chat3

mystery chat3


Bird 3  Notsuke Hanto, 3 September 2001. This is somewhat like a Japanese Robin (Komadori) but it was flycatching from this gasoline tank and it was very open around, maybe a 100 m to the nearest trees. We heard no sound. As it still has some downs on the head it may be just recently fledged.


Images of similar species



Himalayan Rubythroat

Siberian Rubythroat

Himalayan Rubythroat (Luscinia pectoralis) by Bjorn Johansson

Siberian Rubythroat (Lusciniacalliope) photo by E.M. Korovitsky


Swinhoe's or Red-tailed Robin

Japanese Robin

Swinhoe's or Red-tailed Robin (Luscinia sibilans) Image by Shimpei Watanabe

Japanese Robin (Luscinia akahige) Image by Enami

4.Mystery Raptor

Text and image by Rohan Clarke  (first put on the Asian Raptors Mailing-List   25 Feb 2002)

A few other comments that might help.

The bird was seen 10 Dec 2001 on Christmas Island, Indian Ocean (Australia) 360 km south of Java.
Same size or slightly larger than an Australian Little Eagle Long broad wings, moderate length tail.
When gliding wings held flat except for tips of primaries which were upswept.
When soaring in a thermal wings ever so slightly dihedral.
When viewed from below and behind (i.e. as the bird flew away) impressions were that it was hooded but this was not
pronounced when viewed from directly below. Photograph shows tail four narrow dark bars and a broader terminal tail band.
Barring and shape appear to be consistent with juv Hawk Eagles (Spizaetus)Barring also appears to be consistent with Short-toed Eagle (except for terminal tail band) but the bird appears too dark.
I have reasonably detailed notes and a number of images if anybody has specific questions.



Mystery Raptor



  Correspondence from Asian-Raptors Mailing-list

Hello Victor and Rohan,

Interesting photo. The raptor looks like a typical Oriental Honey-Buzzard (Pernis ptilorhyncus), from the tail bandings, barrings on trailing edge of wing, fairly broad wings and longish tail. The most diagnostic feature is the long pigeon-like head (which protudes quite well away from its body) and which other raptors does not have.
This looks like a dark 'morp' bird, possibly of the P. orientalis japonensis race. O. Honey-buzzard is a common passage migrant in Peninsular Malaysia, and I'm very familiar with this species here.

If it was seen in the Christas Islands, it may be well off its normal range, and could it be a new bird to that area? I'm not sure about the avifauna of C. Island, but I think it has a very limited bird list, and perhaps Rohan can confirm if Oriental Honey-buzzard has been recorded there. It could be a bird which was blown off course during
the last autumn migration I would appreciate to view other pics if available, to confirm further.
Others on this list may agree on my ID or suggest other species.

Best wishes. Mike

Mike H.N. Chong <mikechn@p...>
Asian Raptor Research & Conservation Network-Info Centre
233C, Jalan Bandar 13, Melawati Metro, 53100 Kuala Lumpur

ARRCN URL: http://www5b.biglobe.ne.jp/~raptor/index.htm



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