Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

April 3, 2011


Filed under: Birds — Tags: , , , — admin @ 11:22 am

Honshu, Japan

It is very easy to get to Nara from Kyoto. I just took the bus to Kyoto Station and asked Tourist Information how to do it! They held my hand through the whole process and almost put me on the train. A really nice lady even told me to get off a few stops later and catch the express. Nara is a lot smaller than Kyoto so it is not such a mad, bustling city. There are lots of old temples and ponds. In the parks the deer wander around freely and people feed them even though they are not supposed to. Nara Park has many world heritage listed sites such as Kofukuji Temple, Todaiji Temple and Kasuga Taisha.

 Sika Deer (Cervus Nippon)
Sika Deer (Cervus Nippon)

The cherry blossoms are coming out and this lovely couple was having their photos taken in traditional costume. I am not sure if they were getting married or not but they looked very nice indeed.

The Lovely Couple
The Lovely Couple

There is a very old five storey pagoda and this massive Buddha temple which was completed in 752 but burnt down twice. This one was built in 1709 and is the largest wooden structure in the world.


While I was there I managed to video some birds. The Oriental Turtle Dove was filmed in Kyoto. The highlights of the birds in Nara were the Spot-billed Ducks, the White Wagtail, and the Little Ringed Plover.

Birds of Nara

I did take some video of the turtles in the pond, but since found out that they are feral animals – Red-eared Slider Turtles (Trachemys scripta elegans). They are commonly kept as pets and in Australia they are banned because they can get to be such a pest. I stayed in this fantastic traditional Japanese Guest House in Nara with sliding panel doors and tatami mats. It was so cool.

Bird List of Nara, Japan

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) – Kiji-bato
Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Common Teal (Anas crecca)
Little Ringed Plover (Charadrius dubius) – kochi-dori
Chinese Spot-billed Duck (Anas poecilorhyncha)
Great Egret (Ardea alba)
Pale Thrush (Turdus pallidus)
Dusky Thrush(Turdus eunomus)
Japanese Cormorant (Phalocrocorax capillatus)
White Wagtail (Motacilla alba)
Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea)
Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus)
Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis)
Large-billed Crow

Red-eared Slider Turtle (Trachemys scripta elegans) feral.
Sika Deer (Cervus nippon)

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