Trip Report – November 2007
Comments: This was a brief stop-over on the way to Thailand but it is worth recording some of the information for future use.
Day 1: Arrived early in the morning and, after dropping our stuff at our hotel, started exploring Kowloon. Walked down Nathan Street, running the gauntlet of the suite sales people and stopped in at Kowloon park to start our birding. This is our first Asia birding so pretty much everything was new – to name a few, Black-collared Starling, Scaly-breasted Munia, White-rumped Munia and Black-winged Cuckoo-shrike.
Continued on down Nathan Street and hopped on the Star Ferry over to Hong Kong Island. Walked through Central District and on to the Peak Tram. It was very hazy up to the top so the views weren’t great but we did see Rufous-capped Babbler.
Stopped off in Hong Part and the Botanical Gardens on the way back down to the ferry and added Masked-laughing Thrush, Yellow-crested Cockatoo and Common Buzzard. Spent the late afternoon and evening exploring Hong Kong Island before making our way back to Kowloon and falling into bed. Night at the Nathan Hotel.
Day 2: We had arranged for a bird guide to take us to Mai Po marsh for the day – you have to get permission ahead of time so going through a guide is a good idea although I did it myself.
Our guide, Roger, picked us up at the hotel and we drove through the Special Admin Region to the marsh. What a great place – it is a RAMSAR site and thank goodness it is there because right across the river is Shenzhen which is a massive city.
We spent a fair bit of time enjoying Mai Po and picked up 6o species, most of which were new for us. I can’t list them all but here are some highlights: – Little Crake, Black-faced Spoonbill, Greater Spotted Eagle, Heuglin’s Gull, White-cheeked Starling, Azure-winged Magpie, Duarian Redstart and Dusky Warbler.
On the way back to Kowloon Roger took us to a few farming areas which were both interesting to see and also gave us more birds – Richard’s and Olive-backed Pipit, Fantail Warbler, Yellow-breasted & Chestnut Bunting.
It was a great day and we celebrated back at the hotel with a beer on the roof before exploring Temple Street night market. Night at Nathan Hotel.
Nathan Hotel – Kowloon
Guides & Resources
Guides: Roger Muscroft – Walk Hong Kong
Field Guides: The Birds of Hong Kong and South China – Clive Vine, Karen Phillips and Lam Chiu Ying.