Japan’s northern-most island of Hokkaido probably ranks as the country’s most scenic and is certainly Japan’s most rugged and wilderness-rich island. Home to several of north-east Asia’s most iconic birds, we will explore the eastern side of the island in search of mouth-watering species such as the magnificent Red-crowned (Japanese) Crane, Hazel Grouse, Black Woodpecker, Ural Owl, Long-tailed Rosefinch, Middendorff’s and Sakhalin Grasshopper Warblers, Japanese Robin, Siberian Rubythroat, Grey Bunting and the regal Blakiston’s Fish Owl amongst a wealth of other great birds and wildlife.
Red-crowned (Japanese) Crane; Blakiston’s Fish Owl; Hazel Grouse; Black Woodpecker; Ural Owl; Long-tailed Rosefinch; Middendorff’s & Sakhalin Grasshopper Warblers; Japanese Robin; Siberian Rubythroat; Grey Bunting; Harlequin Duck; Rhinoceros Auklet; Spectacled Guillemot.
temperate broad-leaved and coniferous forest, lakes, coastline, wetlands and grasslands
warm sunny days, can be a little cool in the evenings
10 with 1 Rockjumper leader & local birding leader
comfortable minshukus (guest houses) & hotels
good to excellent
The birding and bird vocalisation skills of Erik Forsyth and local guide Bryan Shirley are simply outstanding. So far, I've probably met only 2 guides who were only just about as good as these two!
Erik is a wonderful guide with great birding skills and the ability to help everyone possible see the bird. He is funny and has a pleasant manner to everyone at all times.
This trip was quite an experience: Earthquakes, an erupting volcano, a major blizzard, raw fish and squid for breakfast, some incredible dining experiences, great scenery, and a wicked lot of fantastic birds! Erik Forsyth did a very good job with the tour. He was a bit more laid back than I am used to, but we really had good luck with the birds. A lot of that also had to do with Bryan Shirley, who is also an excellent guide. Erik and Bryan made a great team and appeared to really enjoy the trip, which was infectious for the rest of the group.
Glen, as usual, was the best. This is our third trip with him and would not hesitate to do many more.
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