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Endangered bird observed on Qingdao island

(Xinhua ) | 2020-05-14

QINGDAO -- A Japanese night heron, an endangered species, was observed on Lingshan Island, eastern China's Shandong province, in a recent investigation of migrant birds.

Ma Shisheng, a member of the Qingdao Birding Association and a doctoral candidate at the Ocean University of China, observed a bird that looked like the Japanese night heron beside a river on the island on May 8, though he could not confirm due to the heavy rain and high wind at that time.

"I came to the same place again the next day, hiding myself to observe the bird again. I can confirm it was definitely a Japanese night heron," Ma said.

Listed as an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Japanese night heron is very rare because of its restricted breeding area.

Preferring dense and damp forests, this species is threatened by deforestation for timber and farmland.

It breeds in Japan and winters in the Philippines and Indonesia. It is rarely seen on the Chinese mainland.

"We observed the Japanese night heron on Lingshan Island, indicating its natural environment is improving and the biodiversity here is increasing," said Ma.