January 23, 2017

Ashy Minivet
Pericrocotus divaricatus:
first record for Mongolia

text and photos by Ariunbaatar Barkhashbaatar

On 30 June 2016 Otgonsuren Avirmed and I were measuring Elm Ulmus pumilo trees at the Undai River in Khanbogd soum, Umnugobi province (42.6734ºN 106.9606ºE). This was part of an ongoing survey by the Wildlife Conservation Society of Mongolia.

When I looked up I saw a strange bird which was mainly white, grey and black. It was feeding slowly within the canopy of the trees and I quickly took two photographs. I could not identify it at the spot so pictures were sent to Gankhuyag Purev-Ochir, Purevsuren Tsolmonjav, Amarkhuu Gungaa and Batmunkh Davaasuren for checking. It turned out that we had found Mongolia's first Ashy Minivet! We could not check the site the next day so it remains a one-day wonder.

Male Ashy Minivet
Khanbogd, southern Mongolia, 30 June 2016

Male Ashy Minivet
Khanbogd, southern Mongolia, 30 June 2016

Comment by BirdingMongolia

Ashy Minivet has been on our "next for the country list" for long. It breeds from Amurland in Russia's Far East and NE China south to Korea and also in Japan. Its non-breeding range lies mainly in SE Asia, on the Greater Sundas and in the Philippines, and it occurs also regularly India. Given this range the species has been expected to visit Mongolia on migration for some time! Congrats guys! 


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