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Birds in Hokkaido

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Birds in Hokkaido

Birds in Hokkaido

Tancho (Red-crowned crane)
Order: Gruiformes; Family: Gruidae. Designated and protected as a Special Natural Monument. About 140 cm in length. The red color on the head is their trademark, and "Tan" in the Japanese name Tancho means "red" and "cho" means "crown of head". These cranes were once considered extinct, but the number has now recovered to about 1,000 within the country thanks to devoted feeding and caring. The best place to observe these cranes was always Kushiro-shitsugen Marsh, but now they also live in the Sarobetsu- genya Moor and Notsuke-hanto Peninsula. In Japan, cranes are considered to bring luck, which draws many tourists to the Kushiro-shitsugen Marsh. The Ainu refer to them as Sarurun Kamui or god of the marshes.

Ororon Birds (Common Guillemot)
Order: Charadriiformes; Family: Alcidae. The name Ororon Birds comes from the sound of their call. About 45 cm in length. These birds live on the sea, but during the breeding season they form colonies on rocky cliffs. These birds live only on Teuri-to Island in Japan and are in great danger of becoming extinct in the very near future.

Shimaaoji (Yellow-breasted Bunting)
Order: Passeriformes; Family: Emberizidae. These birds fly to wet grassy fields where common reed grass or Japanese silver grass grows, and their singing is lovely. They usually live in vast grass fields near large rivers such as the area along the Ishikari-gawa River. Their recent decrease in number is of particular concern.

Nogoma (Siberian Rubythroat)
Order: Passeriformes; Family: Turdinae. Summer bird breeding in Hokkaido. The male of this species is easily recognized by the red patch on his throat and the powerful beauty of his song. These birds are often seen in grass fields, wild flower gardens and bushes on the seashore.

Oojishigi (Latham's Snipe)
Order: Charadriiformes; Family: Scolopacidae. These birds breed in the meadows of the Yufutsu-genya Moor in Tomakomai and areas around the western part of Hokkaido. When winter comes, they fly south to Southeast Australia to pass the winter.

Shimafukurou (Blakiston's Fish Owl)
Order: Strigiformes; Family: Strigidae; Genus: Bubo. One of the largest owls in the world. Having decreased in number due to deforestation, they are now seen only in eastern and central Hokkaido. These birds are sometimes called the "Philosopher of the Forest" due to their appearance, and the Ainu call them "Kotan Koru Kamui (god overseeing the village)".