Saturday, December 10, 2011

Pheasant-tailed Jacana in Tainan

(June 7, 2011, Tainan) - There're eight species of Jacana in the world, Taiwan has only one species, known as Pheasant-tailed Jacana (Hydrophasianus chirurgus, 雉尾水雉)Pheasant-tailed Jacana is one of the elegant birds you must see in Taiwan, it is also one of the birds listed in the "100 Birds To See Before You Die", surprisingly I can easily see it in Guantian, Tainan, Taiwan.

Guantian is an agricultural town in Tainan, well known for its water caltrop farms and produces. The most popular annual event in Gauntian is the Water Caltrop Festival (官田菱角節). Due to the abundant of water caltrop farms and other water-based vegetation farms, Guantian is also an important habitat for many species of waterbirds especially the rare Pheasant-tailed Jacana . 

In 1990, a massive project of Taiwan High Speed Train was built across Guantian, and many water caltrop farms and Jacana's natural habitat were disturbed. A conservation project known as Pheasant-tailed Jacana Eco-Educational Park (台南市水雉生態教育園區was then established in 2000 by conservation groups, to preserve a natural habitat for the birds with minimum human disturbance, and to conserve the birds and its nests withim the farms. Currently, this park is one of the best Jacana conservation and educational parks in Taiwan, probably one of the world's best.

Following are the digiscoped pictures of the bird which were taken during the winter and the summer in the same park. (click on the pictures for enlarged view)

The non-breeding plumage in the winter.
Truly beautiful breeding plumage in the summer
An elegant bird wears a golden-yellow scarf 
and copper-bronze coat.
It has four elegant pheasant-like tails

Click HERE to view the documentary (in Chinese only) about the Pheasant-tailed Jacana conservation in Tainan.
Click HERE for the fledgling of the Pheasant-tailed Jacana.
Click HERE to view the first Pheasant-tailed Jacana that I spotted in Malaysia, it was my lifer.

夏天的水雉好美啊, 今天(7-June)是我人生第一次看到夏天的水雉. 好高興喔.
Happy Birding and Love Tainan.


  1. Truly beautiful birds, no one can beat Mother Nature in beauty.

  2. yes, it was my first life experience seeing this truly beautiful bird in the wild in the summer.

  3. Thanks for comments on our Blog,like you i mostly Digiscope.
    You have a great looking Blog,with stunning Images.

  4. Thanks JRandSue, I enjoy digiscoping very much.