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The Following Reports are available from China:
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"Black-necked Cranes, Caohai ('Sea of Grass'), Guizhou, 1st January 2002. Taken from a punt using a 35mm lens" Photo Steve Bale

Bird Tours of China

Bird tours of

  • We are a bird watching company specializing in  bird identification and bird watching holidays in searching for rare indigenous Chinese birds in remote areas of China. We work with ornithologists and academic institutions in organising customised bird watching for their research in China.

Sichuan, China 2nd-30th April,2006

  • Any birders who would come to China, I think Sichuan area will be the one of the key destinations of China. As Sichuan is really a rich resource of China birds with almost 700 species including about 30 endemic species....Tang Jung reports for China Tibet Travel (Big report - lots of photos)

Beidaihe and Beijing, China: 14-16+18th Sep 2012

  • We recorded 138 species of birds without any undue rushing about. Everything – the ease of the birdwatching, the outstanding food, and extremely comfortable & convenient accommodations - came together to produce a pleasant & enjoyable short break...Jesper Hornskov reports.

China 2nd -10th April 2012

  • This was a family/cultural holiday based mainly in the vast metropolis of Shanghai so I wasn’t expecting to see a lot of birds. Nevertheless, anxious to make the most of every bird-finding opportunity, I calculated a potential 147 lifers, so I reckoned on seeing at least 10 new birds...Geoff Upton Reports.

Liaoning - Northeast China, 24 September 16 October 2011 a report in .pdf format (500Kb) by Paul Holt, Terry Townshend & Peter Cawley

Sichuan (including Crested Ibis extension) 1st May - 24th May 2010 - a report in .pdf format (2.1Mb) by Henk Hendriks

Tibet: birds Seen between Lhasa and the Nepal Border 11 -22 July 2009

  • When we planned this family trip by land cruiser, I only claimed one full day of birding in the Lhasa area and tolerance for a stop along the road now and then. That worked out very well and I saw far more birds than I thought I would...Arend van Riessen reports.

SE China, Taiwan, Singapore and S peninsular Malaysia May 15-June 3, 2009

  • How to see Chinese Crested Tern, Cabot's Tragopan & Spoon-billed Sandpiper in SE China and Rail babler in peninsular Malaysia...Remco Hofland reports.

Qinghai and Xizang (Tibet), with W Sichuan, China July 16 – August 14, 2006

  • Short stop for Himalayan Marmots beside the road resulted in finding first Ibisbill in meandering roadside river – a familiar sight for 100’s of kms this trip. Not long before dusk a Wolf crossed road in front of car as well as first Tibetan Foxes...Remco Hofland reports

Sichuan (China), May 18th - June 18th 2006

  • Due to the good weather, bird activity was overwhelming. There were birds everywhere and we started to see the first good species. The birds were active during the whole day even when temperature was getting high at noon. We had an excellent day with species like Himalayan Swiflet, White-throated Needletail, Crimson-breasted Woodpecker...Peter Collaerts reports

SE of Qinghai/Tibet Plateau, China 6th June to 15th June 17, 2005

  • Today we decided visit Kande Mountain Pass and Kande Gorge for a full day birdwatching. We start from guesthouse at 5am and drive to get to the pass try to look for the Tibetan Bunting. We succeed!! We all saw 3 buntings on the bushes located at the upper mountain behind the village...Tang Jung reports for China Tibet Travel

Sichuan, China May 19 - June 5, 2006

  • Up at 6, everybody went into forest to look for Temminck’s Tragopan. A pair of White-browed Bush-Robin feeding young, not far from the research station, was best find before breakfast....Remco Hofland reports.

Tibet(Xizang and Qinghai Provinces) China, 29 May - 27 June 2005

  • The mystical land of Tibet holds many attractions to westerners. Many come to visit the monasteries, its people, and the stark landscape. In June of 2005, I went there to see the birds of the Tibetan plateau...George Wagner reports.

Happy Island, Beidaihe and north of Huairo 30 April - 22 May 2005

  • In May 2005 we visited NE-China to experience migration of waders and passerines. We also had the opportunity to see Ibisbill just north of Beijing...Bas van den Boogaard reports. (325kB.pdf)

China March 16 - April 10, 2005

  • During the course of an OAT tour of China, I took every opportunity to break away for birding. Following are some suggestions as to where others might productively visit....Edward C. Hall reports

A winter birding trip to China 1-18 January 2005

  • For anyone with a special interest in wildfowl, the huge Poyang Hu area is, in winter, a must. The huge numbers of wildfowl are quite impressing, even when one’s from The Netherlands where 100,000s of ducks and geese are found each winter. An additional reason for visiting Poyang Hu are the large number of endangered birds one can see...Remco Hofland reports

China  September 16 - October 4, 2003

  • I have just returned from three weeks in China as part of a school trip so basically I was acting as a sheep dog for 57 teenagers and most birdwatching was incidental. We visited the usual places although we did spend 10 days at Gaoyou which is located on the Grand Canal.....Rob Drummond reports.

Wuling Shan, Hebei 14th -15th June 2003

  • I am attaching a report I wrote a while back, which tells people how to get to the Fea's Thrush breeding area; which is quite close to Beijing....Steve Bale reports.

Hong Kong 11 to 17 Oct. 2002

  • For some reason this 34-year old bird enthusiast had never strayed outside Europe. I can tell my Common from my Green sandpiper and my Motacilla alba from my yarrellii, but I had zero experience with munias, mynas or prinias. I was content that way, or so I thought....Martijn Voorvelt reports

Beidaihe area, Beijing, China 1+2 December 2002

  • As an add-on to a business visit to Tianjian, JK travelled up to Beidaihe by train. The journey takes c3 hours as it does from Beijing; alternatively Beidaihe can be reached conveniently from both cities by car or public express bus also in c3 hours, and we believe our list would recommend a similar adventure to anyone visiting N China under similar circumstances...Jesper Hornskov & Jan Kiel report

Winter birding in eastern and south-western China (Shanghai, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Guizhou, and Yunnan)

  • The day was again very bright, and with the sun behind us we were able to fully enjoy the spectacle of Caohai, which stretched away to the horizon, a mass of water, short vegetation, and birds. We were told that about 400 Black-necked Cranes winter here, and so were delighted to be able to see 120 of them in front of us....Steve Bale reports.  

Hong Kong 11th to 22nd April 2002 

  • The main aim of this trip, the first leg of our round the world trip, was to try and see the trio of rare waders- Asiatic Dowitcher, Nordmann's Greenshank and Spoon-billed Sandpiper. The first two fell quickly......Neil Osborne reports.

Beidaihe (and surrounding area), Hebei, China February 9th – 16th, 2002

  • ...Then on to the Sand Flats for a sighting of historical importance (in Beidaihe-birding terms). We had made our way to the foreshore to look at the gulls. The final count there was 40 Vega Gulls (including 3/4 nominate Vegas); c300 Common Gulls (including 3 1st-winter Kamchatkas); a lone 1st-winter Heuglin's Gull; and c100 Black-headed Gulls. Then, at about 12.30 pm, we heard a bunting call above our heads....Steve Bale reports.

Birding in Yunnan February 21st - February 26th 2001

  • The 'left side' wooded area produced Speckled Piculet, 2 Scarlet Minivets, 3 Chinese Thrushes, 2 Red-flanked Bluetails, 2 Blue-fronted Redstarts, Chestnut-bellied Nuthatch, 4 Great Tits, Ashy-throated Warbler, 2 Blue-winged Minlas, Spectacled Fulvetta, 15 Rusty-capped Fulvettas, 5 White-collared Yuhinas, and 10 Green-backed Tits.  Walked to the top of the mountain (ie through the dragon's gate and up the public footpath to the top), with the objective of finding Godlewski's Bunting....Steve Bale reports

Sichuan Province, China June 1 – 30, 2001

  • Since our trip was in June, we missed the brunt of the spring migration and the territorial singing was less than what it might have been had we gone in May. This made the birding more difficult, but we feel we still managed to find a lot of what we were seeking....Ron Hoff reports

Tibet 2nd May - 7th May 2001

  • This was not a birding trip, as such.  My wife and I joined a tour group, organised by the Tibetan Tourist Bureau in Shanghai, (the only official way a foreigner living in Shanghai is allowed into Tibet).  The itinerary, therefore, was focused on Tibetan culture and not Tibetan birds.  I broke away from the group at every opportunity - typically birding the area outside the respective monastery, while the group (including my wife) toured the inside....Steve Bale reports

China ( Sichuan Province ) 26th May - 11th June 1995

  • Now, with access possible, only a few western birdwatchers have visited the central part of this enormous country. Birdlife in China is prolific with more than 1200 species recorded. The diversity of birdlife is somewhat limited in parts of the heavily populated east but Sichuan province in the centre of China is sparsely populated and this province offers some of the finest birding in China, holding around two thirds of the country's endemic birds...Jan Vermeulen reports

Hong Kong 8/12/99

  • David Cooper stopped over in Hong Kong on the way to Western Australia: With just an hour and a half of birding time before it got dark, this is what he saw:


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Some Useful bird books for China:
Do you have a good book for this region that we haven't featured? let us know

A Field Guide to the Birds of China
John MacKinnon, Karen Phillipps (Illustrator), Dave Showler (Illustrator): Buy from or
  • This is a comprehensive, taxonomically modern, and illustrated field guide to the birds of China. Over 1300 bird species are illustrated in 128 original colour paintings, by Karen Phillipps and Dave Showler. The species accounts stress the key points for field recognition and give a full description of the plumage, voice, range, distribution, status, and behavioural characteristics for every bird, with additional descriptions provided for hundreds of subspecie

Birds of East Asia (Helm Field Guides), Eastern China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Eastern Russia.
Mark Brazil: Buy from or

  • This is the first single volume guide devoted to the eastern Asian avifauna. Birds endemic to this region include representatives of many of the major families, from the world's largest eagle - Steller's Sea Eagle - to the tiny Formosan Firecrest. The guide features the most up-to-date text available, which, in conjunction with extensive colour plates throughout, facilitates the field identification of all of the species known from the region. Colour distribution maps enhance the text by providing a visual analysis of the summer, winter and migratory ranges of all species.

Birds of China
Cizu Zhang, Xiang Zhu, Bingzhang Pang: Buy from

  • China has more varieties of birds than any other country in the world, 1244 species can be found across its vast territory: from south to north - across the equator, tropic, subtropic, warm temperate, temperate and frigid zones; from east to west - spreading over the islands coast and extending to the central part of the Asian continent and to the highest topography of southwest border. This illustrated text covers 400 species. It includes rare and special as well as common birds.

A Photographic Guide to Birds of China Including Hong Kong
John MacKinnon, Nigel Hicks: Buy from or

  • This photographic guide deals with the basics of bird identification in China by presenting those species that are most likely to be seen in accessible habitats throughout the region. The book is aimed directly at field identification. For those species that are sexually dimorphic, have both breeding and non-breeding plumages, or in which the juvenile plumage differs markedly from that of the adult, more than one photograph has been included. Thumbnail silhouettes aid the reader in quickly locating the correct group of birds, and for each species account a map shows the bird's distribution.

Where to watch birds in Asia
Wheatley, Nigel: Buy from or

  • This guide to birdwatching in Asia deals with over 250 sites in detail, and more in passing, from Turkey to Thailand and India to Indonesia. It is designed as much for pre-planning birding trips as for use in the country or countries on the itinerary. The countries are dealt with alphabetically and after a general introduction, there are site details, which include a list of birds to be seen, organized under the headings "Endemics", "Specialities" and "Others"; a list of "Other Wildlife" is also included where there is something of particular interest.

Recommended travel books for China:

Bradt: Great Wall of China: Beijing and Northern China
Available direct from Bradt travel guides  
Thammy Evans: Buy from or

  • The Ming Great Wall, the last of four Great Walls in China, snakes through nine provinces from the border with North Korea to Gansu along the Silk Road. A range of cultural information - Chinese food, customs, history, politics and economy -provides the essential background to gain an insight into the local way of life.

Lonely Planet: China
Caroline Lios: Buy from or

  • Just as the authors describe China as "massive and endlessly fascinating", so is the material they have collected in this guide--an important travellers' opus. The 200-plus maps feature keys in English and Chinese script, there are essential details on transport options, a 12-page Chinese arts section, and a useful feature on the Chinese language.
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