Emeifeng 2015, Part 2

This post is about birding Emeifeng in the spring of 2015. The mountain in western Fujian, not to be confused with the more famous Emeishan in Sichuan, ranks high on Shanghai birders’ must-see lists. It is a reliable site for Cabot’s Tragopan, Elliot’s Pheasant, and White-necklaced Partridge, and its vast forests provide habitat for other key southeastern Chinese species. A bit too far to drive, a bit too close to fly, Emeifeng is the perfect expedition for the high-speed train.

This post covers 28 to 31 May 2015, the second of my two four-day trips to the mountain. A post on the first trip, which took place 30 April to 3 May 2015, was published on 12 Jan. 2017.

The photo above, by Elaine Du, shows Craig Brelsford searching for Brown Bush Warbler in the pristine alpine scrub on Emeifeng, elev. 1650 m (5,410 ft.).

HIGHLIGHTS

Cabot's Tragopan, Emeifeng, 1 May 2015.
Female Cabot’s Tragopan, Emeifeng. A mountain in western Fujian, Emeifeng (27.006583, 117.076389) is a reliable spot for Cabot’s Tragopan, Elliot’s Pheasant, and White-necklaced Partridge. For eight days in spring 2015, Elaine Du and I birded the thickly forested mountain, noting dozens of key southeastern Chinese species. (Craig Brelsford)

— Noting the five key game birds: Elliot’s Pheasant, Cabot’s Tragopan, Koklass Pheasant, Silver Pheasant, and White-necklaced Partridge, as well as the beautiful Chinese Bamboo Partridge

— Closely studying three Phylloscopus warblers that breed in southern China: Buff-throated Warbler Phylloscopus subaffinis, Sulphur-breasted Warbler P. ricketti, and Hartert’s Leaf Warbler P. goodsoni fokiensis, as well as having close encounters with White-spectacled Warbler Seicercus affinis intermedius

Major breeding Phylloscopidae warblers of Emeifeng. Craig Brelsford.
Emeifeng is a good place to study Buff-throated Warbler (top L), Hartert’s Leaf Warbler (top R), Sulphur-breasted Warbler (bottom L), and White-spectacled Warbler (bottom R). All four species breed on the mountain. (Craig Brelsford)

— At Shuibu Reservoir, finding Blue-throated Bee-eater, a species unexpected around Emeifeng

— Finding 4 of China’s 5 species of forktail: Little Forktail Enicurus scouleri, Slaty-backed Forktail E. schistaceus, White-crowned Forktail E. leschenaulti sinensis, and Spotted Forktail E. maculatus bacatus

— Hearing the many calls and songs of the accomplished vocalist Buffy Laughingthrush

— Hearing Spotted Elachura singing along a rushing stream

Yellow-cheeked Tit Machlolophus spilonotus rex, 3 May 2015.
Yellow-cheeked Tit, one of dozens of south China species we noted at Emeifeng. Machlolophus spilonotus rex was noted by us on seven of our eight birding days there. (Craig Brelsford)

— Noting 103 species, 81 on the first trip, 86 on the second. Among the birds we found were key southern Chinese species such as Black Bittern, Mountain Hawk-Eagle, Great Barbet, Yellow-cheeked Tit, Sultan Tit, Brown Bush Warbler, Small Niltava, Verditer Flycatcher, Blyth’s Shrike-babbler, White-bellied Erpornis, and Grey-sided Scimitar Babbler

— Enjoying the clean air and unspoiled beauty of Emeifeng

Emeifeng mountain road, 2 May 2015. Craig Brelsford.
Michael Grunwell stands on the Emeifeng mountain road, 2 May 2015. The elevation here is 1350 m (4,430 ft.). A dense hardwood forest covers the mountainside. Cabot’s Tragopan and White-necklaced Partridge thrive in these woods. (Craig Brelsford)

Wed. 27 May 2015
Taining

During our first trip to Emeifeng, Michael Grunwell, my wife Elaine Du, and I agreed to bird the mountain about a month later to see the changes four weeks would bring. Today, that second trip began. As in April, Elaine and I took the high-speed train from Shanghai to Nanchang and at Nanchang boarded the train to Taining. We once again checked in to Huada Hotel (Huádà Jiǔdiàn [华大酒店], +86 598-7817777).

With my camera in the repair shop, I was denied the opportunity to take photographs. I focused harder on good old-fashioned birding and made many sound recordings. The bird photos in this post come from other trips.

Thurs. 28 May 2015

Birds of Emeifeng, 28 May 2015. Red-billed Blue Magpie (L), and Verditer Flycatcher.
Birds of Emeifeng, 28 May 2015. L: Red-billed Blue Magpie, Emeifeng, 2 May 2015. R: Verditer Flycatcher, Laifengshan National Forest Park, Tengchong, Yunnan, 21 Feb. 2010. (Craig Brelsford)

On our return to Emeifeng, Elaine and I noted 57 species. Bird of the day was Elliot’s Pheasant. Other noteworthy birds were 5 Silver Pheasant and 16 Buffy Laughingthrush. Little Forktail became our fourth species of forktail seen at Emeifeng, and Yellow-cheeked Tit put on an amazing vocal display.

Elliot’s Pheasant was a life bird for Elaine and me. We found a male near the road to Qingyun Temple just above kilometer marker 8 at an elevation of 1100 m. The bird allowed us several seconds to view it before it slipped away. 4 of the 5 Silver Pheasant we noted were in a flock (3 males, 1 female) on a hillside just above km 6 at an elev. of 940 m.

As was the case four weeks ago, we noted White-spectacled Warbler only above elev. 1400 m. The song of this species, coming from various directions, was one of the most common bird sounds today around Qingyun Temple. Hartert’s Leaf Warbler was not seen, but our other two “southern” leaf warblers from our earlier trip, Buff-throated Warbler and Sulphur-breasted Warbler, were represented by 1 individual each. Buff-throated Warbler was found along the boardwalk to Qingyun Temple and is presumably one of the same pair that I met at that spot on 30 April. The Sulphur-breasted Warbler that I found four weeks ago responded to playback with song; today’s Sulphur-breasted Warbler responded with a brief call.

Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush, Elephant Valley, Yunnan, 1 Jan. 2012.
Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush, a classic forest bird. We noted the species on four of our eight days at Emeifeng. I got this image at Elephant Valley, Yunnan, on 1 Jan. 2012. (Craig Brelsford)

Fog shrouded the Qingyun Temple area most of the day. When it finally cleared, around 15:00, birds became active, as though it were dawn. 8 Buffy Laughingthrush were the main component of a foraging party that included 3 Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush. They moved through the forest next to the boardwalk. The loud, jazzy sound of Buffy Laughingthrush caused a carpenter working in the area to start singing along. Another powerful singer in that wood was Yellow-cheeked Tit. A beautiful male performed three distinct songs for us, stopping only to devour a caterpillar:

Yellow-cheeked Tit, Emeifeng, 28 May 2015 (00:18; 1.5 MB)

Yellow-cheeked Tit, Emeifeng, 28 May 2015 (00:05; 1 MB)

Besides the 8 Buffy Laughingthrush near the temple, we found a flock of 6 quickly crossing the road, 1 amid a flock of 25 Grey-headed Parrotbill, and 1 heard calling from some distant spot in the forest. A pair of Grey-sided Scimitar Babbler were foraging together and calling antiphonally. We found them near the villages in the lower country at an elevation of about 750 m.

Besides Elliot’s Pheasant and Little Forktail, Elaine and I today added Lesser Cuckoo, Masked Laughingthrush, Brown Dipper, and Fire-breasted Flowerpecker to our Emeifeng list.

For our driver we once again hired Dèng Zhōngpíng (邓忠平, +86 138-6059-6327; no English, non-smoker).

Fri. 29 May 2015

Elaine and I noted 63 species. The highlight of the day was finding Blue-throated Bee-eater and Oriental Dollarbird on a utility wire above Shuibu Reservoir. Blue-throated Bee-eater was new to our Emeifeng list and a lifer for Elaine. Other new birds were Mountain Hawk-Eagle, Common Kingfisher, Crested Kingfisher, Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker, Black-naped Oriole, Black Drongo, Red-billed Starling, and White-rumped Munia.

Sat. 30 May 2015

A monotypic species, Brown Bush Warbler <em>Locustella luteoventris</em> ranges from India across southern China to Fujian and Zhejiang. At Emeifeng we found Brown Bush Warbler exclusively near Qingyun Temple in high-quality alpine scrub at elevations between 1500 m and 1600 m. We noted the bird only on the second half of the trip, on 30 and 31 May 2015. As my camera was in the shop, I got no photos of the Emeifeng Brown Bush Warblers. The photo here is of a Brown Bush Warbler at Mt. Wawu, Sichuan, taken by me on 10 July 2010.
A monotypic species, Brown Bush Warbler Locustella luteoventris ranges from India across southern China to Fujian and Zhejiang. At Emeifeng we found the species exclusively near Qingyun Temple in high-quality alpine scrub at elevations between 1500 m and 1700 m (4,920 ft. to 5,580 ft.). We noted the bird only on the second half of the trip, with 6 found on 30 May 2015 and 5 the next day. As my camera was in the shop in late May 2015, I got no photos of Brown Bush Warbler at Emeifeng. I shot the photos here at Mt. Wawu, Sichuan, 10 July 2010. (Craig Brelsford)

Michael Grunwell joined Elaine and me. We noted 54 species. Elliot’s Pheasant were seen in poor light, Cabot’s Tragopan appeared at an elevation of about 1400 m, Blue-throated Bee-eater were present by Shuibu Reservoir, and Brown Bush Warbler were staking out territories at the top of the Emeifeng altitudinal layer-cake.

The Elliot’s were near Shuibu Reservoir at an elevation of about 750 m. As darkness was falling, Michael, walking ahead of us along the road, inadvertently flushed a sub-adult male. Elaine and I arrived in time to see 5 females (or perhaps fledglings) exploding into flight from positions just a few meters from us. The tragopans were seen earlier but also in low light, this caused by fog.

Blue-throated Bee-eater, Qiliping, Hebei, 4 July 2011. Craig Brelsford.
Blue-throated Bee-eater was a surprising find in the forests around Shuibu Reservoir. I photographed this adult at Qiliping, Hubei (31.506333, 114.663000) on 4 July 2011. (Craig Brelsford)

The Blue-throated Bee-eater are a mystery; the species apparently has not bred in the area in recent memory. The habitat around Shuibu Reservoir seems favorable. There are plenty of vertical surfaces of soft earth in which to construct cavity nests, and the artificial lake is at a remote location, near the Fujian-Jiangxi border.

We noted all our Brown Bush Warbler at altitudes of 1500 m to 1700 m (between Qingyun Temple and the radio tower). At Emeifeng, the dense alpine scrub that Locustella luteoventris favors occurs only at those altitudes. Confident in their nearly impenetrable tangle of vegetation, the extreme skulkers allowed us to peek in from distances of less than 2 m. I recorded the soft, monotonous song of this species, like a sewing machine running or an automobile idling.

Brown Bush Warbler, sewing-machine song, Emeifeng, elev. ca. 1600 m, 30 May 2015 (00:06; 266 KB)

Brown Bush Warbler, sewing-machine song, Emeifeng, elev. ca. 1600 m, 30 May 2015 (00:24; 999 KB)

The three of us wanted to explore more of the high country on the peak directly opposite the radio tower, but clouds again engulfed the ridgeline, and rain started to fall.

A search for Spotted Elachura between kilometer markers 12 and 13 got us wet feet but no bird. Hartert’s Leaf Warbler and Sulphur-breasted Warbler also were not noted, a surprise given that we had heard these species singing and defending territories a month earlier.

Besides Brown Bush Warbler, Elaine and I today added Black Bittern and Asian Barred Owlet to our Emeifeng list.

Sun. 31 May 2015

Elaine Du in alpine scrub, Emeifeng, 31 May 2015.
Elaine Du in rich alpine scrub, Emeifeng, 31 May 2015. (Craig Brelsford)

Elaine and I noted 48 species. From the lodge area atop Emeifeng we walked to the little tower on the slope opposite the radio tower. The little tower sits amid pristine alpine scrub and is reachable only by foot. We walked to an elevation of about 1650 m. We were searching for Russet Bush Warbler and failed to find it. We found species similar to those in the scrub between the radio tower and Qingyun Temple, among them Brown Bush Warbler and Buff-throated Warbler.

Earlier, on the dirt road behind the locked gate in the lodge area, Mr. Deng came running back to me, signaling for me to come. We tiptoed a few steps, and there she was, the queen of the high forest, a female Cabot’s Tragopan. She was standing on the edge of the forest track. The tragopan did not flee but foraged calmly in front of us for two magic minutes before creeping silently into the forest.

The magic feeling continued in the alpine scrub. We saw no evidence of logging; the scrub is there not because an older forest was cut, but because Mother Nature intended it that way. The place exudes health and balance. Grass grows lushly, and one can look at almost any spot on the ground and find many types of colorful insects. Butterflies flit from flower to flower. When the clouds parted, we enjoyed the commanding view of the forest below. Flybys of Great Barbet and Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush enlivened the scene. White-necklaced Partridge, Large Hawk-Cuckoo, and Lesser Cuckoo called from hidden locations below. Buff-throated Warbler were busy patrolling their territories, standing sentinel atop the shrubs. Brown Bush Warbler were not calling spontaneously, and their presence might not have been detected but for their vigorous response to playback.

Rich alpine scrub, elev. 1600 m, Emeifeng, Fujian, 31 May 2015.
Another look at the rich alpine scrub atop Emeifeng on 31 May 2015. The grass there is lush, the turf thick, the smell of the earth fragrant. Insects abound. No goats graze, and there is no evidence of logging. The place exudes health and balance. (Craig Brelsford)

The day was nearly windless, and few tourists were visiting the top. The golden silence was broken only by birds, among them a drumming Speckled Piculet. The songs of Blyth’s Shrike-babbler and White-spectacled Warbler carried far. In the contest of laughingthrush songs, Chinese Hwamei took the prize for power, and Buffy Laughingthrush won for melody. Here is a selection of what we heard:

White-spectacled Warbler, Emeifeng, 31 May 2015 (00:03; 913 KB)

Blyth’s Shrike-babbler, Emeifeng, 31 May 2015 (00:10; 1.2 MB)

Speckled Piculet, Emeifeng, 31 May 2015 (01:10; 3.6 MB)

Driving back down the hill, we found a male Silver Pheasant at ca. 1300 m and a female Elliot’s Pheasant at ca. 1200 m.

In addition to Speckled Piculet, Black-collared Starling was new to our Emeifeng list.

PHOTOS

Grey-sided Scimitar Babbler, by Craig Brelsford.
Grey-sided Scimitar Babbler was noted by us on three of our eight days at Emeifeng. Pomatorhinus swinhoei is endemic to southeast China. I got these photos 15 Nov. 2014 in Wuyuan County, Jiangxi. (Craig Brelsford)
Crested Kingfisher, Qiliping, Hubei, 3 July 2011. Craig Brelsford.
A Crested Kingfisher emerges from a creek after an unsuccessful dive. I took this photo 3 July 2011 at Qiliping, Hubei (31.506333, 114.663000). On 29 May 2015 at Shuibu Reservoir below Emeifeng, Elaine and I noted 3 Crested Kingfisher. (Craig Brelsford)
Asian Barred Owlet, Xishuangbanna Botanical Garden, Yunnan, China, 20 Jan. 2012. Photo by Craig Brelsford.
On 30 May 2015 we noted a single Asian Barred Owlet in farmland below Emeifeng. The 30 species of pygmy owl, genus Glaucidium, occur on all the inhabited continents except Australia. Asian Barred Owlet Glaucidium cuculoides ranges from the Himalaya to Southeast Asia and south China. I photographed this individual at Xishuangbanna Botanical Garden (21.932582, 101.248453), Yunnan on 20 Jan. 2012. (Craig Brelsford)
Chinese Bamboo Partridge, Hangzhou Botanical Garden, 21 June 2008. Craig Brelsford.
We found Chinese Bamboo Partridge on seven of our eight birding days at Emeifeng. I photographed this pair at Hangzhou Botanical Park on 21 June 2008. (Craig Brelsford)

SYSTEMATIC LIST

Birds Noted Around Emeifeng, Fujian, China, 30 April 2015 to 3 May 2015 and 28-31 May 2015 (103 species)

Anseriformes: Anatidae

Mandarin Duck
鸳鸯 (yuānyāng)
Aix galericulata

9 on 2015-05-02
23 on 2015-05-03
1 on 2015-05-28
15 on 2015-05-30

Galliformes: Phasianidae

White-necklaced Partridge
白眉山鹧鸪 (báiméi shānzhègū)
Arborophila gingica

8 heard on 2015-04-30
1 heard on 2015-05-01
4 on 2015-05-03
2 heard on 2015-05-30
2 heard on 2015-05-31

Chinese Bamboo Partridge
灰胸竹鸡 (huīxiōng zhújī)
Bambusicola thoracicus

7 on 2015-04-30
14 on 2015-05-02
10 heard on 2015-05-03
6 on 2015-05-28
19 on 2015-05-29
9 on 2015-05-30
5 on 2015-05-31

Cabot’s Tragopan
黄腹角雉 (huángfù jiǎozhì)
Tragopan caboti

2 (male & female) on 2015-05-01
1 male on 2015-05-02
2 on 2015-05-03
3 (1 male, 2 females) on 2015-05-30
1 female on 2015-05-31

Silver Pheasant
白鹇 (bái xián)
Lophura nycthemera fokiensis

1 on 2015-04-30
9 on 2015-05-01
1 on 2015-05-03
5 on 2015-05-28
1 on 2015-05-31

Elliot’s Pheasant
白颈长尾雉 (báijǐng chángwěizhì)
Syrmaticus ellioti

1 male on 2015-05-28
6 on 2015-05-30
1 female on 2015-05-31

Pelecaniformes: Ardeidae

Black Bittern
黑鳽 (hēiyán)
Dupetor flavicollis

1 on 2015-05-30

Chinese Pond Heron
池鹭 (chílù)
Ardeola bacchus

1 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-02
5 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-29
3 on 2015-05-30
1 on 2015-05-31

Eastern Cattle Egret
牛背鹭 (niúbèi lù)
Bulbulcus coromandus

5 on 2015-05-02
1 on 2015-05-03
5 on 2015-05-28
1 on 2015-05-31

Little Egret
白鹭 (báilù)
Egretta garzetta

6 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-30

Accipitriformes: Accipitridae

Mountain Hawk-Eagle
鹰雕 (yīngdiāo)
Nisaetus nipalensis

1 on 2015-05-29

Black Eagle
林雕 (líndiāo)
Ictinaetus malaiensis

2 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-03

Crested Goshawk
凤头鹰 (fèngtóu yīng)
Accipiter trivirgatus indicus

1 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-30

Chinese Sparrowhawk
赤腹鹰 (chìfù yīng)
Accipiter soloensis

9 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-01
4 on 2015-05-02
4 on 2015-05-03
2 on 2015-05-29
4 on 2015-05-30

Besra
松雀鹰 (sōngquèyīng)
Accipiter virgatus

1 on 2015-05-28
1 on 2015-05-31

Columbiformes: Columbidae

Feral Pigeon (Rock Dove)
原鸽 (yuángē)
Columba livia

1 on 2015-05-29
1 on 2015-05-30
1 on 2015-05-31

Oriental Turtle Dove
山斑鸠 (shān bānjiū)
Streptopelia orientalis

35 on 2015-05-02
13 on 2015-05-03
1 on 2015-05-28
3 on 2015-05-30

Spotted Dove
珠颈斑鸠 (zhūjǐng bānjiū)
Spilopelia chinensis

1 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-29
1 on 2015-05-30
2 on 2015-05-31

Cuculiformes: Cuculidae

Large Hawk-Cuckoo
鹰鹃 (yīngjuān)
Hierococcyx sparverioides

4 heard on 2015-04-30
4 heard on 2015-05-01
1 heard on 2015-05-02
2 heard on 2015-05-03
2 heard on 2015-05-29
1 heard on 2015-05-30
2 heard on 2015-05-31

Lesser Cuckoo
小杜鹃 (xiǎo dùjuān)
Cuculus poliocephalus

1 heard on 2015-05-28
1 heard on 2015-05-30
1 heard on 2015-05-31

Strigiformes: Strigidae

Collared Owlet
领鸺鹠 (lǐng xiūliú)
Glaucidium brodiei

3 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-01
3 heard on 2015-05-03
3 heard on 2015-05-28

Asian Barred Owlet
斑头鸺鹠 (bāntóu xiūliú)
Glaucidium cuculoides

1 on 2015-05-30

Apodiformes: Apodidae

House Swift
小白腰雨燕 (xiǎo báiyāoyǔyàn)
Apus nipalensis

5 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-02
30 (flock) on 2015-05-28
4 on 2015-05-29

Coraciiformes: Coraciidae

Oriental Dollarbird
三宝鸟 (sānbǎo niǎo)
Eurystomus orientalis

1 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-29
1 on 2015-05-30

Coraciiformes: Alcedinidae

Common Kingfisher
普通翠鸟 (pǔtōng cuìniǎo)
Alcedo atthis

1 on 2015-05-29
1 on 2015-05-30

Crested Kingfisher
冠鱼狗 (guān yúgǒu)
Megaceryle lugubris

3 on 2015-05-29

Coraciiformes: Meropidae

Blue-throated Bee-eater
蓝喉蜂虎 (lánhóu fēnghǔ)
Merops viridis

5 on 2015-05-29
17 on 2015-05-30

Piciformes: Megalaimidae

Great Barbet
大拟啄木鸟 (dà nǐzhuómùniǎo)
Psilopogon virens

13 on 2015-04-30
8 heard on 2015-05-01
2 on 2015-05-02
12 heard on 2015-05-03
7 on 2015-05-28
6 heard on 2015-05-29
4 heard on 2015-05-30
3 on 2015-05-31

Piciformes: Picidae

Speckled Piculet
斑姬啄木鸟 (bānjī zhuómùniǎo)
Picumnus innominatus

1 on 2015-05-31

Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker
星头啄木鸟 (xīngtóuzhuómùniǎo)
Dendrocopos canicapillus

1 on 2015-05-29

Bay Woodpecker
黄嘴栗啄木鸟 (huángzuǐ lìzhuómùniǎo)
Blythipicus pyrrhotis

3 heard on 2015-04-30
1 heard on 2015-05-01
2 heard on 2015-05-03
2 on 2015-05-28
4 on 2015-05-29
1 heard on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Campephagidae

Grey-chinned Minivet
灰喉山椒鸟 (huīhóu shānjiāoniǎo)
Pericrocotus solaris

2 on 2015-04-30
6 on 2015-05-01
3 on 2015-05-02
7 on 2015-05-03
6 on 2015-05-28
5 on 2015-05-29
5 on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Laniidae

Brown Shrike
红尾伯劳 (hóngwěi bóláo)
Lanius cristatus

3 on 2015-05-02
5 on 2015-05-03

Passeriformes: Vireonidae

White-bellied Erpornis
白腹凤鹛 (báifù fèngméi)
Erpornis zantholeuca

2 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-29
2 heard on 2015-05-31

Blyth’s Shrike-babbler
红翅䴗鹛 (hóngchì júméi)
Pteruthius aeralatus

4 on 2015-05-03
2 (pair) on 2015-05-29
4 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Oriolidae

Black-naped Oriole
黑枕黄鹂 (hēizhěn huánglí)
Oriolus chinensis

1 on 2015-05-29

Passeriformes: Dicruridae

Black Drongo
黑卷尾 (hēi juǎnwěi)
Dicrurus macrocercus

1 on 2015-05-29

Passeriformes: Corvidae

Eurasian Jay
松鸦 (sōngyā)
Garrulus glandarius sinensis

2 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-02
5 on 2015-05-28
4 on 2015-05-29
6 on 2015-05-30

Red-billed Blue Magpie
红嘴蓝鹊 (hóngzuǐ lánquè)
Urocissa erythrorhyncha

12 on 2015-04-30
3 on 2015-05-01
4 on 2015-05-02
11 on 2015-05-03
7 on 2015-05-28
20 on 2015-05-29
13 on 2015-05-30
4 on 2015-05-31

Grey Treepie
灰树鹊 (huī shùquè)
Dendrocitta formosae

3 heard on 2015-04-30
2 heard on 2015-05-01
5 on 2015-05-03
5 on 2015-05-28
5 on 2015-05-29
2 on 2015-05-30
2 heard on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Paridae

Sultan Tit
冕雀 (miǎn què)
Melanochlora sultanea seorsa

3 on 2015-05-01

Japanese Tit
远东山雀 (yuǎndōng shānquè)
Parus minor

10 on 2015-04-30
4 heard on 2015-05-01
6 on 2015-05-02
3 on 2015-05-03
8 on 2015-05-28
15 on 2015-05-29
4 on 2015-05-30

Yellow-cheeked Tit
黄颊山雀 (huángjiá shānquè)
Machlolophus spilonotus rex

3 on 2015-04-30
3 on 2015-05-01
6 on 2015-05-02
8 on 2015-05-03
11 on 2015-05-28
2 (pair) on 2015-05-29
7 on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Pycnonotidae

Collared Finchbill
领雀嘴鹎 (lǐng quèzuǐbēi)
Spizixos semitorques

18 on 2015-04-30
8 on 2015-05-02
7 on 2015-05-03
5 on 2015-05-28
28 on 2015-05-29
7 on 2015-05-30
7 on 2015-05-31

Light-vented Bulbul
白头鹎 (báitóu bēi)
Pycnonotus sinensis

1 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-02
2 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-28
10 on 2015-05-29
3 on 2015-05-30
2 on 2015-05-31

Mountain Bulbul
绿翅短脚鹎 (lǜchì duǎnjiǎobēi)
Ixos mcclellandii

17 on 2015-04-30
13 on 2015-05-01
6 on 2015-05-02
1 on 2015-05-03
20 on 2015-05-28
10 on 2015-05-29
14 on 2015-05-30
13 on 2015-05-31

Chestnut Bulbul
栗背短脚鹎 (lìbèi duǎnjiǎobēi)
Hemixos castanonotus canipennis

30 on 2015-04-30
7 on 2015-05-01
15 on 2015-05-02
8 on 2015-05-03
19 on 2015-05-28
14 on 2015-05-29
25 on 2015-05-30
5 on 2015-05-31

Black Bulbul
黑短脚鹎 (hēi duǎnjiǎobēi)
Hypsipetes leucocephalus

8 on 2015-04-30
4 on 2015-05-01
7 on 2015-05-02
8 on 2015-05-03
7 on 2015-05-28
1 heard on 2015-05-29
4 on 2015-05-30
1 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Hirundinidae

Barn Swallow
家燕 (jiā yàn)
Hirundo rustica

35 on 2015-05-02
20 on 2015-05-03
4 on 2015-05-28
30 on 2015-05-29
9 on 2015-05-31

Red-rumped Swallow
金腰燕 (jīnyāo yàn)
Cecropis daurica

16 on 2015-05-01
7 on 2015-05-02
25 on 2015-05-28
21 on 2015-05-29

Passeriformes: Pnoepygidae

Pygmy Wren-babbler
小鳞胸鹪鹛 (xiǎo línxiōngjiāoméi)
Pnoepyga pusilla

1 heard on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-01
1 heard on 2015-05-02
1 heard on 2015-05-03
1 heard on 2015-05-28
1 heard on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Cettiidae

Rufous-faced Warbler
棕脸鹟莺 (zōngliǎn wēngyīng)
Abroscopus albogularis

38 on 2015-04-30
11 on 2015-05-01
11 on 2015-05-02
21 on 2015-05-03
23 on 2015-05-28
25 on 2015-05-29
40 on 2015-05-30
18 heard on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Aegithalidae

Black-throated Bushtit
红头长尾山雀 (hóngtóu chángwěishānquè)
Aegithalos concinnus

2 on 2015-04-30
20 (flock) on 2015-05-28
21 on 2015-05-29
19 on 2015-05-30
8 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Phylloscopidae

Buff-throated Warbler
棕腹柳莺 (zōngfù liǔyīng)
Phylloscopus subaffinis

2 on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-02
6 on 2015-05-03
1 on 2015-05-28
2 on 2015-05-29
4 on 2015-05-30
5 on 2015-05-31

Pallas’s Leaf Warbler
黄腰柳莺 (huángyāoliǔyīng)
Phylloscopus proregulus

1 on 2015-05-03

Yellow-browed Warbler
黄眉柳莺 (huángméi liǔyīng)
Phylloscopus inornatus

3 on 2015-04-30

Two-barred Warbler
双斑绿柳莺 (huāngbān lǜliǔyīng)
Phylloscopus plumbeitarsus

1 on 2015-04-30

Hartert’s Leaf Warbler
华南冠纹柳莺 (huánán guānwénliǔyīng)
Phylloscopus goodsoni fokiensis

1 on 2015-05-03

Sulphur-breasted Warbler
黑眉柳莺 (hēiméi liǔyīng)
Phylloscopus ricketti

1 on 2015-05-01
8 on 2015-05-02
5 on 2015-05-03
1 on 2015-05-28
1 on 2015-05-29

White-spectacled Warbler
白眶鹟莺 (báikuàng wēngyīng)
Seicercus affinis intermedius

8 on 2015-04-30
1 heard on 2015-05-01
13 on 2015-05-03
7 on 2015-05-28
14 heard on 2015-05-29
12 on 2015-05-30
8 on 2015-05-31

Chestnut-crowned Warbler
栗头鹟莺 (lìtóu wēngyīng)
Seicercus castaniceps

3 on 2015-05-01
2 on 2015-05-02
16 on 2015-05-03
12 on 2015-05-28
7 on 2015-05-29
7 on 2015-05-30
1 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Locustellidae

Brown Bush Warbler
棕褐短翅莺 (zōnghè duǎnchìyīng)
Locustella luteoventris

6 on 2015-05-30
5 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Cisticolidae

Yellow-bellied Prinia
黄腹鹪莺 (huángfù jiāoyīng)
Prinia flaviventris

10 on 2015-05-02
8 on 2015-05-29
1 heard on 2015-05-30
1 heard on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Timaliidae

Grey-sided Scimitar Babbler
华南斑胸钩嘴鹛 (huánán bānxiōng gōuzuǐméi)
Pomatorhinus swinhoei

1 on 2015-05-03
2 on 2015-05-28
5 on 2015-05-29

Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler
棕颈钩嘴鹛 (zōngjǐng gōuzuǐméi)
Pomatorhinus ruficollis

2 on 2015-04-30
3 heard on 2015-05-01
3 heard on 2015-05-02
5 on 2015-05-03
6 on 2015-05-28
7 heard on 2015-05-29
12 on 2015-05-30
5 heard on 2015-05-31

Rufous-capped Babbler
红头穗鹛 (hóngtóu suìméi)
Stachyridopsis ruficeps

18 heard on 2015-04-30
2 heard on 2015-05-01
4 heard on 2015-05-02
2 on 2015-05-03
5 on 2015-05-28
12 heard on 2015-05-29
5 heard on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Pellorneidae

Dusky Fulvetta
褐顶雀鹛 (hèdǐng quèméi)
Alcippe brunnea

1 on 2015-05-02
1 heard on 2015-05-03

Huet’s Fulvetta
黑眉雀鹛 (hēiméi quèméi)
Alcippe hueti

24 on 2015-04-30
17 on 2015-05-01
5 on 2015-05-02
14 on 2015-05-03
20 (3 flocks) on 2015-05-28
40 on 2015-05-29
10 (flock) on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Leiothrichidae

Chinese Hwamei
画眉 (huàméi)
Garrulax canorus

1 on 2015-05-02
10 on 2015-05-28
10 on 2015-05-29
2 on 2015-05-30
2 heard on 2015-05-31

Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush
黑领噪鹛 (hēilǐngzàoméi)
Garrulax pectoralis

12 on 2015-05-01
9 on 2015-05-02
3 on 2015-05-28
5 on 2015-05-29

Buffy Laughingthrush
棕噪鹛 (zōng zàoméi)
Garrulax berthemyi

2 heard on 2015-05-03
16 on 2015-05-28
23 on 2015-05-29
3 heard on 2015-05-30
10 heard on 2015-05-31

Masked Laughingthrush
黑脸噪鹛 (hēiliǎn zàoméi)
Garrulax perspicillatus

2 on 2015-05-28
2 on 2015-05-29
3 on 2015-05-30
3 on 2015-05-31

Red-billed Leiothrix
红嘴相思鸟 (hóngzuǐ xiāngsīniǎo)
Leiothrix lutea

2 on 2015-04-30

Passeriformes: Sylviidae

Grey-headed Parrotbill
灰头鸦雀 (huītóu yāquè)
Psittiparus gularis

2 on 2015-05-03
33 (flock of 8 & flock of 25) on 2015-05-28
5 on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Zosteropidae

Indochinese Yuhina
栗耳凤鹛 (lì’ěrfèngméi)
Yuhina torqueola

36 on 2015-04-30
16 on 2015-05-01
24 on 2015-05-02
21 on 2015-05-03
70 on 2015-05-28
120 on 2015-05-29
45 on 2015-05-30
30 on 2015-05-31

Black-chinned Yuhina
黑额凤鹛, hēi’é fèngméi
Yuhina nigrimenta

4 on 2015-04-30
15 on 2015-05-02
15 on 2015-05-03
6 on 2015-05-28
16 on 2015-05-29

Passeriformes: Elachuridae

Spotted Elachura
丽星鹩鹛 (lìxīng liáoméi)
Elachura formosa

1 heard on 2015-05-01

Passeriformes: Sturnidae

Crested Myna
八哥 (bāgē)
Acridotheres cristatellus

4 on 2015-04-30
5 on 2015-05-01
9 on 2015-05-02
4 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-28
14 on 2015-05-29
6 on 2015-05-30
4 on 2015-05-31

Red-billed Starling
丝光椋鸟 (sīguāng liángniǎo)
Spodiopsar sericeus

2 on 2015-05-29

Black-collared Starling
黑领椋鸟 (hēilǐng liángniǎo)
Gracupica nigricollis

5 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Turdidae

Chinese Blackbird
乌鸫 (wū dōng)
Turdus mandarinus

1 heard on 2015-05-01
1 on 2015-05-03
2 on 2015-05-29
1 on 2015-05-31

Passeriformes: Muscicapidae

Oriental Magpie-Robin
鹊鸲 (quèqú)
Copsychus saularis

1 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-29

Small Niltava
小仙鹟 (xiǎo xiānwēng)
Niltava macgrigoriae

2 (pair) on 2015-04-30

Verditer Flycatcher
铜蓝鹟 (tónglán wēng)
Eumyias thalassinus

1 on 2015-05-03
2 on 2015-05-28
1 on 2015-05-29
2 on 2015-05-31

Mugimaki Flycatcher
鸲姬鹟 (qú jīwēng)
Ficedula mugimaki

2 on 2015-04-30

Little Forktail
小燕尾 (xiǎo yànwěi)
Enicurus scouleri

2 on 2015-05-28

Slaty-backed Forktail
灰背燕尾 (huībèi yànwěi)
Enicurus schistaceus

2 on 2015-05-02
3 on 2015-05-28

White-crowned Forktail
白冠燕尾 (báiguān yànwěi)
Enicurus leschenaulti

5 on 2015-04-30
4 on 2015-05-01
3 on 2015-05-02
4 on 2015-05-03
4 on 2015-05-28
4 on 2015-05-29
6 on 2015-05-30
6 on 2015-05-31

Spotted Forktail
斑背燕尾 (bānbèi yànwěi)
Enicurus maculatus

3 on 2015-04-30
5 on 2015-05-01
1 seen by Michael Grunwell on 2015-05-03

Blue Whistling Thrush
紫啸鸫 (zǐxiàodōng)
Myophonus caeruleus

2 on 2015-05-01
1 on 2015-05-28

Plumbeous Water Redstart
红尾水鸲 (hóngwěi shuǐqú)
Phoenicurus fuliginosus

2 on 2015-04-30
3 on 2015-05-01
8 on 2015-05-02
3 on 2015-05-03
8 on 2015-05-28
9 on 2015-05-29
2 on 2015-05-30
3 on 2015-05-31

Blue Rock Thrush (“Red-bellied Rock Thrush”)
蓝矶鸫 (lán jīdōng)
Monticola solitarius philippensis

1 on 2015-05-02
1 on 2015-05-03

Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush
栗腹矶鸫 (lìfù jīdōng)
Monticola rufiventris

2 on 2015-05-02
2 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-28
1 on 2015-05-29
2 (pair) on 2015-05-30
4 on 2015-05-31

Grey Bush Chat
灰林鵖 (huī línjí)
Saxicola ferreus

2 (pair) on 2015-04-30
2 on 2015-05-03
2 (pair) on 2015-05-29
3 (pair & fledgling) on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Cinclidae

Brown Dipper
褐河乌 (hè héwū)
Cinclus pallasii

2 on 2015-05-28
2 on 2015-05-29

Passeriformes: Chloropseidae

Orange-bellied Leafbird
橙腹叶鹎 (chéngfù yèbēi)
Chloropsis hardwickii

2 (pair) on 2015-05-01

Passeriformes: Dicaeidae

Fire-breasted Flowerpecker
红胸啄花鸟 (hóngxiōng zhuóhuāniǎo)
Dicaeum ignipectus

1 on 2015-05-28

Passeriformes: Nectariniidae

Fork-tailed Sunbird
叉尾太阳鸟 (chāwěi tàiyángniǎo)
Aethopyga christinae

2 on 2015-05-03

Passeriformes: Passeridae

Eurasian Tree Sparrow
树麻雀 (shù máquè)
Passer montanus

30 on 2015-04-30
1 on 2015-05-02
ca. 30 on 2015-05-03
2 on 2015-05-28
16 on 2015-05-29

Passeriformes: Estrildidae

White-rumped Munia
白腰文鸟 (báiyāo wénniǎo)
Lonchura striata

28 (flock of 20 & flock of 8) on 2015-05-29
10 on 2015-05-30
1 on 2015-05-31

Scaly-breasted Munia
斑文鸟 (bān wénniǎo)
Lonchura punctulata

4 on 2015-05-03
6 on 2015-05-28
8 on 2015-05-29
12 on 2015-05-30

Passeriformes: Motacillidae

Grey Wagtail
灰鹡鸰 (huī jílíng)
Motacilla cinerea

2 on 2015-05-02

White Wagtail
白鹡鸰 (bái jílíng)
Motacilla alba leucopsis

2 on 2015-04-30
4 on 2015-05-01
6 on 2015-05-02
3 on 2015-05-03
3 on 2015-05-28
14 on 2015-05-29
4 on 2015-05-30
5 on 2015-05-31

LIST OF PLACE NAMES

Emeifeng (Éméifēng [峨嵋峰])

Emeifeng is in western Fujian. (Wikimedia/Craig Brelsford)
Emeifeng is in western Fujian (red), near the border with Jiangxi, 635 km (395 miles) SW of People’s Square in Shanghai. (Wikimedia/Craig Brelsford)

Mountain W Fujian. Elev.: 1528 m (5,013 ft.) at Qingyun Temple (Qìngyún Sì [庆云寺]). Higher slopes reach elevations of 1700 m. 27.006583, 117.076389. Also Emei Feng.

Fujian (Fújiàn Shěng [福建省])

Fujian (red) is a province in southeast China.
Fujian (red) is a province in southeast China (yellow). (Wikimedia/Craig Brelsford)

Coastal province SE China. Pop.: 37.7 million. Area: 121,400 sq. km (46,900 sq. mi.). Area (comparative): 20% larger than Jiangsu (but with less than half as many inhabitants). Same size as North Korea & Pennsylvania; slightly smaller than Greece.

Jiangxi (Jiāngxī Shěng [江西省]): province SE China W of Fujian.

Nanchang (Nánchāng [南昌]): capital of Jiangxi.

Sanming Prefecture (Sānmíng Shì [三明市]): sub-provincial administrative area W Fujian. Officially, Sanming “City” (市).

Shancheng Zhen (Shānchéng Zhèn [衫城镇]): urbanized area & seat of Taining County. Commonly referred to as “Taining.”

Taining County (Tàiníng Xiàn [泰宁县]): sub-prefectural administrative area Sanming Prefecture.

Zhejiang (Zhèjiāng Shěng [浙江省]): province E China N of Fujian & S of Shanghai.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

Brazil, Mark. Birds of East Asia. Princeton University Press. Along with Birds of Southeast Asia, my first reference at Emeifeng.

John MacKinnon wrote the most influential field guide ever published about China's birds.
John MacKinnon recently published a post on the owls of Inner Mongolia.

MacKinnon, John & Karen Phillipps. A Field Guide to the Birds of China. Oxford University Press.

Robson, Craig. Birds of Southeast Asia. Princeton University Press. Co-first reference at Emeifeng.

Xeno-Canto Foundation. Xeno-Canto: Bird Sounds from Around the World. xeno-canto.org. Craig has downloaded hundreds of calls from this Web site.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Per Alström sent me a recording of Hartert’s Leaf Warbler. Michael Grunwell’s recommendation of Emeifeng enticed us to go; his knowledge of the area was indispensable.

Click here for the first post in our two-post series about birding Emeifeng.