Gallery of Mongolia 2015 images
MONGOLIA AUGUST - SEPTEMBER 2015
We have recently returned from our second successful tour of Mongolia, where we explored three key areas for birds and wildlife: firstly steppe areas west of Ulan Bator, secondly the Gobi Desert to the south and finally the taiga forest in the Khan Khenti wilderness.
After arrival in Ulan Bator, we explored the Hustai National Park where amongst unforgettable open landscapes we were entertained by the rare Przewalski Horses as well as by exciting avian encounters with Amur Falcons, Azure Tits, Pallas's Gull, and Pallas's Fish Eagle. Steppe lakes are an important refuge for birds, and who can forget the marvellous array of migrant waders which included 500 Pacific Golden Plover, 55 Red-necked Stints, 125 Temminck's Stints, 4 Long-toed, 3 Little Whimbrel, 2 Sharp-tailed and 2 Broad-billed all on the same lake shore!
Returning to Ulan Bator and following an evening of culture at the Mongolian Dance Theatre, a short flight south brought us to the fascinating Gobi Desert, a land of surprising contrast such as stunning sand dunes one day and deep mountain gorges the next; a photographers paradise! A key species is the Henderson's Ground-jay, and we all enjoyed very close views of four individuals a stone's throw from our pleasant ger accommodation. Saxual Sparrows performed well and over 200 were counted assembling to roost, one of the highest recent counts of this localised species of which we are aware. Blyth's Pipits, Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler and Thick-billed Warblers were amongst a host of migrants vying for attention with Pallas's Sandgrouse and all these specialised species ensured top drawer bird watching. Mongolian Gazelles and close encounters with various types of Jerboa, some of the group even stroking these cute nocturnal creatures, added mammalian interest.
It was with reluctance that after 6 days we returned north, this time heading east of the capital firstly to the lakes of Gun Galut. Here Argali Sheep and White-naped Crane were a highlight, but rarer still the Oriental Stork that we discovered, a species so rare in Mongolia that the sighting instigated a twitch from Ulan Bator! The tour ended at Jalman Meadows, a beautifully scenic valley set in the taiga forest where Siberian Rubythroats, Pine Buntings and Long-tailed Rosefinches headed an impressive caste.
enquiries already coming in, Birding Abroad will be touring Mongolia
again in 2017 or 2018, so we suggest you register any expressions of
interest with us as soon as possible.
Amur Falcon Hustai National Park
male Amur Falcon
Arctic Warbler a frequent migrant through Mongolia
inside the restaurant ger at Jalman Meadows
brushing against the taiga forest at Jalman Meadows
Daurian Shrike, a common inhabitant of the Gobi Desert
the amazing Flaming Cliffs of Bayanzag where dinosaur eggs of Oviraptor were found in the 1920's
Saker Falcon, can be expected every day + Taiga Flycatcher, a smart male
sand dunes at Khongar Els, a most beautiful setting in the Gobi Desert
the iconic Henderson's Ground Jay, four individuals gave super views
Siberian Ibex, a most impressive beast!
Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler - if only this would happen at Spurn!
Azure Tit - stunning birds
Przewalski's Horse in its natural home - the only species of wild horse left in the world
A beautiful White-naped Crane. We found several family parties of this sought after species
juvenile Black-eared Kite, quite a sight close up
Pallas's Fish Eagle Ogiy Nur
the mighty Lammergeier
Demoiselle Crane - what a beauty!
Grey-necked Bunting at Yolyn Am
One of our frequent encounters with the Upland Buzzard
walking around an ovoo for good luck
sunset Ogiy Nur
many thanks to Andrew Ashworth for allowing us to use his photographs all taken on the tour