Bird Watching trip
In the heart of remote Central Asia lies a country that conjures up images of nomadic horsemen striding across barren, wind-swept plains with the grand Altai Mountains rising up above the endless expanse of the Gobi Desert. This land is Mongolia, the world’s most sparsely populated nation, a country of fascinating legend and history; little changed over the years and the heart of the once vast Mongol Empire! Our Mongolia birding escapade offers the very special opportunity of venturing across the lake-covered steppes and through the verdant Taiga forest with the ever-present backdrop of the lofty Altai Mountains. We can look forward to superb summer birding in this gloriously scenic landscape with mouth-watering specialties such as Altai Snowcock, White-naped and Demoiselle Crane, Asian Dowitcher, Relict Gull, Pallas’s Sandgrouse, Amur Falcon, Wallcreeper, Kozlov’s Accentor, breeding flocks of Oriental Plover, Siberian Rubythroat, White-throated (Hodgson’s) Bush Chat and Henderson’s Ground Jay, to name just a few. This is a birding tour like few others and promises to be a most memorable birding, wildlife and cultural adventure!
Mongolia, a land of endless steppes strewn with lakes, the spectacular Altai Mountains covered in pine and birch forests, and the vast Gobi Desert, covering one third of the country – this is a remote and beautiful country, much of it unchanged for centuries! And, with its rich avifauna, this makes it a very sought-after destination for Westerners seeking a real avian adventure. One feels that time has stood still here, where nomadic horsemen still ride across windswept steppe plains and ancient Tibetan Buddhism still flourishes. Furthermore, Mongolia is believed to be the resting place of the great ruler, Ghengis Khan, whose warriors were feared throughout this region and put the country on the World map. Our trip here will see us crossing rivers and valleys, camping in the desert, and traveling high up into the mountains, experiencing fantastic landscapes along the way. From the capital city of Ulaanbataar, we will travel south to the plains and desert, camping as we go. We first head up into the Gobi Altai Mountains searching for Altai Snowcock, Guldenstatd’s Redstarts, Siberian Rubythroat, and Brown and endemic Kozlov’s Accentor. Wetlands at Orog and Boon Tsagaan Nuur support such mouth-watering species as Swan and Bar-headed Geese, elegant Demoiselle Cranes, Pallas’s Fish Eagle, Saker Falcon, White-winged Scoter, the mythical and highly desirable Relict Gull, here at its breeding colonies, whilst the surrounding desert scrub holds Henderson’s Ground Jay, Pallas’s Sandgrouse, Oriental Plover, Mongolian Lark and Saxaul Sparrow.
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