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Beijing Birds Watching Tour
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Wenhai Lake

Wenhai Lake, a sub-alpine lake within the Lashihai Nature Reserve (Situated along the southeastern slopes of the towering Jade Dragon
Wenhai Lake BirdingSnow Mountain (5500 meters) and surrounded by mountains on all sides, the diamond-
shaped basin of Lashihai Watershed is a spectacular setting for exploring the intricate
relationship between the abundant natural resources of this land and the people who live off
it.), is a habitat for migrating birds, most notably the endangered black stork. Each year, for
reasons not yet completely known, Wenhai undergoes a transformation from sub-alpine lake
to grazing grasslands. Beginning in early spring, the lake gradually disappears, believed to
drain through underground limestone formations to Lashi Lake, about 500 meters below.
Then, with the return of the summer rainy season, Wenhai Lake begins to fill again. By fall it
reaches its full size, ready for the arrival of migratory birds in late December. The watershed’s
highland forests support a wide variation of plant and animal species, including protected
raptors, forest wildlife, traditional medicinal plants and treasured fungi. In spring, the region’s
famous rhododendrons – over 15 species -- burst into bloom, creating mountains of colorful flowers.

Located northwest of Kunming and bordered Tibet, Lijiang has the wonderfully picturesque old town and great and beautiful surroundings. It
boasts Naxi, Tibetan, Mosu, Lisu and Pumi nationalities, breathtaking mountain and lake scenery, Tibetan monasteries, deep gorges and the
backpacker comforts of Lijiang’s lovely old town.
There are several good areas to go birding around Lijiang:
a. Black Dragon Pool Park is right on the northeastern edge of Lijiang town This is the best site in China for Giant Nuthatch - search the “relict
pines” near the second pavilion/pagoda near the stepped track around Elephant Mountain.
b. Lashihai (Lashihai Lake or previously more commonly known as Lashiba Hai) – a sizeable lake 20 kilometers almost directly west of Lijiang
that holds large numbers of wintering waterfowl (often including small numbers of Falcated Duck), Common Cranes and occasional birds of prey
such as White-tailed Eagle.

Wen Hai Lakec. Jade Dragon Snow Mountain: About 35 kilometers (50 minutes drive) north of Lijiang is this
spectacular mountain. In winter it’s largely inaccessible but spring visits can produce Buff-
throated Partridge, White Eared & Lady Amherst's Pheasants, Rufous-bellied Woodpecker,
White-throated Redstart, Giant Laughingthrush, Rufous-tailed Babbler & both Alpine &
Maroon-backed Accentors here. There are several chairlifts up the mountain – the one at Yun
Shan Ping Suo Dao starts at 09:00 & goes up to Yun Shan Ping (4700 meters) and is the best
for birding.


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