Away on holiday

Before finally leaving Mongolia in February 2008 we are on holiday in SE-Asia at the moment, following the Siberian migrants south and escaping the fiercely cold Mongolian winter for a while (we had a 60 deg C difference between Ulaanbaatar and Bangkok!).

But blogging will resume later, watch this space!

Axel
Asian Waterbird Census


Several Mongolian rivers remain open and provide habitat
for wintering waterbirds. Khovd river, 31 Dec 2006. © A. Braunlich

The Asian Waterbird Census focuses on monitoring wetland and waterbird in January is the largest biodiversity monitoring programme in the Asia-Pacific region initiated in 1987. It has so far covered more than 6300 wetlands in 27 countries with active support by tens of thousands of volunteers. The AWC 2008 will be carried out from 5 to 20 January 2008; I would like to call you active participation to the census.

For more information on the AWC visit our website here. Download AWC guidelines and forms here.

Besides, the latest AWC newsletter (No.14, December 2007) is now available and can be downloaded from Wetlands International website.

The newsletter provides an update to the AWC since June 2007, highlights including the launch of the AWC strategy 2007-2015, alarming new figures for coastal waterbirds in Southeast Asia, AWC 2005-2007 results update, news of the AWC in the Asia-Pacific region, announcement of the International Black-faced Spoonbill Census and the report for the 2nd Meeting of Partners of the East Asian- Australasian Flyway Partnership.

Thank you very much and I look forward to a success and fruitful AWC 2008 with your great support.

Best regards,

David Li
AWC International Coordinator
Wetlands International
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/asianwaterbirdcensus

Lingering autumn migrants in Khovd and Tsetserleg
Konrad Schleicher (Khangai Mts) & Axel Braunlich (Altai Mts)

In Khovd there was a female Common Chaffinch and a Masked Wagtail on 2nd December. The last observation for Chaffinch in Khovd in 2006 was similar (1st Dec) while the last Masked Wagtail was seen much earlier (13 October 2006 versus 14/15/19/30/31 Oct, 3/28 Nov and 2 Dec 2007).

An exiting record comes from Tsetserleg, where on the same day an extremely late Red-throated Pipit was found by Konrad.


Red-throated Pipit, 2nd Dec, Tsetserleg.
Photo © K. Schleicher


Red-throated Pipit, 2nd Dec, Tsetserleg.
Photo © K. Schleicher

There were also 2-3 White-throated Dippers and a female Guldenstadt’s Redstart, both firsts for Konrad’s local spot.


Guldenstadt’s Redstart. Tsetserleg.
Photo © K. Schleicher


Guldenstadt’s Redstart. Khovd.
Photo © A. Braunlich

Further species seen near Tsetserleg on 2nd Dec include Grey-headed and White-backed Woodpecker, Daurian Partridge, Common Magpie, Willow and Great Tit.


Common Redpoll, 4th Dec, Tsetserleg.
Photo © K. Schleicher