Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Japanese White-eye (Zosterops japonicus)

Adult Japanese White-eye (subspecies Z. j. japonicus) outside Haneda Airport, Tokyo, Japan - December 2014

Local Name (Japan) - Me-jiro (メジロ) - "White-eye"
Features subspecies: Zosterops japonicus japonicus
Weight: 9-13g
Length: 11-12cm
Wingspan: 15-18cm
NO UK STATUS / IUCN Red List Least Concern

The Japanese White-eye is a small warbler like bird found in East Asia.  It is found in both normal rural habitats and parkland, feeding off insects, nectar and fruit.  Widely depicted in Japanese art, it was traditionally kept as a songbird.  Outside of the breeding season it may join with other species in flocks. I saw more on my second trip to Japan, the last of which was this rather showy individual in the trees outside the airport terminals.

Related Species:
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Zosteropidae
Genus: Zosterops
Subspecies: Z. j. yesoensis, Z. j. japonicus, Z. j. stejnegeri, Z. j. insularis, Z. j. loochooensis, Z. j. alani, Z. j. daitoensis, Z. j. simplex, Z. j. hainanus

- Sighting Locations -
JAPAN - Common resident. 
 - KYOTO 2013 TRIP: Several seen in the Imperial Palace Gardens in Kyoto
 - TOKYO/HOKKAIDO 2014 TRIP: Fairly common in Tokyo with particularly showy individuals in the trees outside Haneda Airport

Further Notes: RSPB, Wikipedia, BirdGuides, BirdForum Opus, Arkive, IUCN Red List

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