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Winter Bird Watching: A Perfect Way to Salute Migratory Birds on Their Journey
Date 11-30-2018 09:51
Winter Bird Watching: A Perfect Way to Salute Migratory Birds on Their Journey


Imagine a flock of migratory birds soaring all at once into the sky as the sun sets in their background. This is a dramatic scene worth waiting for even in the winter cold. Birdwatching is a cool activity of observing birds calmly without scaring them. What you must bring to this activity is a calm willingness to observe birds as they are. Binoculars and bird guides are optional. Enjoy the serene dances of migratory birds at famous bird habitats in Korea.






A Sanctuary for Over 200 Species of Migratory Birds: Cheonsuman Bay, Seosan


The area in Seosan, known as Cheonsuman Bay, is a world-famous destination for birdwatching. The creation of the Ganwol and Bunam Lakes turned the surrounding area into an endless cluster of farmland. The post-harvest grains left on these fields provide food for winter migratory birds. As this bay is located halfway along the migratory routes of birds, extending from Siberia and Manchuria to Southeast Asia, countless birds stop by on their way to recharge themselves. Today, Cheonsuman Bay is a living museum of ornithology where you can spot nearly 200 species of migratory birds. Every winter, more than 300,000 ducks and geese fly in. More than 90% of all Baikal teals in the world are also found at this bay.
If you are with children, you should visit Seosan Bird Land nearby. This is where you can learn about the ecology of migratory birds and join an expert-curated birdwatching tour. The place offers diverse activities during the summer school vacation and the wintering season of birds.



Photo : the Office of Public Information, Seosan Municipal Government.


- Address: Buseok-myeon and Gobuk-myeon, Seosan, Chungcheongnam-do
- Tel: +82-41-661-8054 (Seosan Bird Land)
- Website: http://www.seosanbirdland.kr




A Ramsar Site Welcoming Migratory Birds: Junam Reservoir, Changwon


Junam Reservoir, as background for the Nakdonggang River, is a complex of three reservoirs, that is, Sannam, Dongpan, and Junam. The combined area of the three reservoirs amounts to 8,980,000 sq m, much of which is occupied by migratory birds in winter. Junam Reservoir became a famous birdwatching destination in the 1980s when Baikal teals first landed on her as their temporary habitat. Although there were as many as 8,000 Baikal teals boasting their exquisite dance on water here at one point, these birds have all but disappeared today. Instead, natural monuments like white-naped cranes, Eurasian spoonbills, swans and big geese, and white-fronted geese frequent this area today.
Junam Reservoir offers a well-maintained hiking trail along its embankment. You can find telescopes for birdwatching at various spots on this trail, which extends from the entrance of the reservoir to Milpi (birdwatching site) via the Junam Floodgate. By the entrance of the reservoir are Ramsar Culture Center and Junam Ecological Center. Climb to the Eco Observatory on the second floor of Ramsar Culture Center and you can view migratory birds busily pecking away at leftover rice grains on post-harvest rice paddies.





- Address: 26 Junam-ro 101-beongil, Dong-eup, Uichang-gu, Changwon, Gyeongsangnam-do
- Tel: +82-55-225-2798 (Ramsar Culture Center) / +82-55-225-3491(Junam Ecological Center)




Taking Subway to Watch Birds: Wangsong Lake, Uiwang


There is an excellent birdwatching destination in Gyeonggi-do, reachable by a subway ride from Seoul. Wangsong Lake in Uiwang is just a 10-min walk away from Uiwang Station on Metro Line 1. Uiwanghosu-gil is an eco-friendly hiking trail advertised by the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs, and also a perfect setting for enjoying birdwatching and strolling in leisure at the same time. Take a slow walk around the tranquil lake, and you will have seen more than 50 varieties of winter migratory birds, including natural wonders like mandarin ducks, mallards, and red-crowned cranes. A flock of ducks is tucked away by themselves near the Nature Learning Park, while red-crowned cranes and gray herons idle away toward the neighborhood on the other side of the lake.
Uiwang Bird Ecology Museum provides curated programs, including the Birdwatching Class and the Curated Observation Class. The highlight of this place is the observatory on its fifth floor, from which you can enjoy an uninterrupted view of the surroundings, while observing rare birds on the lake, neighboring rice paddies, and wetlands through a telescope.





- Address: 209 Wangsongmotdong-ro, Uiwang, Gyeonggi-do
- Tel: +82-31-345-3853 (Uiwang Bird Ecology Museum)
- Website: http://bird.uw21.net