We are in Iwamizawa tonight because it’s just half an hour’s drive to Miyajima Numa or Marsh. What’s so special about a marsh? This one is a registered Ramsar wetlands and at this time of the year, for just a couple of weeks, it hosts up to 60,000 Greater White-fronted Geese (真雁).
They stop off on their migration route to their summer home in Siberia, feasting on the after-harvest rice grains in local farms (not so much of a problem), then moving on to pre-harvest wheat if the other food source runs out.
Mass movement of the geese at dawn and dusk is the attraction. We dropped in for the sunset show and were not disappointed, save for a wee bit of camera lens envy. So here, with only a 200mm lens, are some photos that hopefully convey the action as the sun disappeared over the water.
on long haul geese flights
en route to Siberia
a short stopover
Day two in the car on Hokkaido. Today’s breakfast and lunch provisions were courtesy of 7-11, the convenience store with all that the hungry traveller needs.
First stop today was Bear Mountain, a forest reserve for Japanese Brown Bears set in the midst of ski resorts. We chose to walk along the high boardwalks in the centre to view the bears as they wander about.
We drove back to Furano via Lake Kanayama and had our first experience of putting petrol in the vehicle. Japan has lots of full service stations, all included with the price of the fuel. So no wrangling with the petrol bowser was required.
We spent the afternoon driving around the farmlands of this region. Visiting flower and lavender farms aren’t as much fun when the flowers are not quite ready to bloom. Still, there were a few shots of colour to make it worthwhile.
The landscape of mountains, fast flowing icy rivers and forests was improved today by a bright sun and sky.
The day was topped off by a visit to Miyajima Marsh where we watched thousands of geese return after a day out feeding on spent rice fields. Today’s other post features the geese.