Sichuan (China) - Mammals and Birds
AT A GLANCE
Mammal and birds tour
Chengdu (China) – Labahe – Rouergai – Tangjihahe - Chengdu
Red Panda, Pallas’s & Chinese Mountain Cats, Tibetan Fox, Wolf, Tibetan Gazelle, Hog Badger, Chinese (Golden) Takin, primates, various deer plus birds.
Can be cold on the Tibetan Plateau around Rouergai particularly if windy, and snow is possible.
Comfortable hotels with private facilities, travel in MPV & 4x4 vehicles
We are delighted to announce another specialist tour for mammal and bird enthusiasts. Richard Webb has recently returned from a third, very successful mammal watching trip to Sichuan in China and we will be running a new and original small group tour, for up to six participants only.
Our first location will be one of two reserves to the south of Chengdu where we will look for Red Pandas. Our preferred reserve, Labehe, where Richard saw four separate Red Pandas in 24-hours on his previous autumn recce, re-opens to the public after re-development work in May 2016, and assuming visits this autumn prove successful, will be the first location on the trip.
If not, we will visit another nearby reserve where Red Pandas are regularly encountered in fruiting trees at this time of year.
Rouergai lies on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau at around 3,500 metres and has become the place to see Pallas’s and Chinese Mountain Cats. On his most recent trip, Richard saw two Pallas’s Cats (sightings on four out of five days), and no fewer than four Chinese Mountain Cats (six sightings over four days). The area is also superb for Tibetan Fox and we can expect to see double figures of this charismatic species on several days. By visiting the area in late autumn, we also hope to see good numbers of Wolf (Richard saw at least 14 on his previous autumn visit), and Tibetan Gazelle, along with large numbers of Plateau (Black-lipped) Pika and smaller numbers of Woolly Hare, Red Fox plus, if they have not already started hibernating, Himalayan Marmots.
We can also expect Black-necked Crane and Guldenstadt’s Redstart in this area along with large numbers of birds of prey which feed on the abundant pikas and offer great photographic opportunities.
At nearby Baixi we will visit an area of upland forest to look for Chinese (White-maned) Serow, Siberian Roe Deer, Tufted Deer, wild Sika Deer and Gansu Pika. We also hope to see the spectacular Blue Eared Pheasant and genuinely wild Common Pheasants, here along with other good birds such as redstarts, laughing-thrushes and Robin Accentor.
Our third site will be Tangjiahe where we can expect to see Hog Badger, Masked Palm Civet and a wide variety of ungulates including Chinese (Golden) Takin, Chinese (White-maned) Serow, Chinese Goral, Tufted Deer, Reeve’s Muntjac and Wild Boar. Primates are represented by Tibetan and Rhesus Macaques and if we are extremely lucky, Golden Snub-nosed Monkey. Richard saw one on his latest recce. Other less-likely possibilities include Leopard Cat, Asiatic Black Bear, Chinese Ferret-Badger and Forest Musk Deer along with two of three species of squirrel. Likely birds include the spectacular Golden Pheasant and hopefully the superb Tawny Fish Owl.
Access to areas and reserves in China is constantly changing, as evidenced by the fact that wild Giant Pandas in Foping, were only accessible for a three to four year period before the reserve was closed again to westerners. (If you wish to visit one of the Giant Panda ‘rehabilitation’ centres, before or after the tour, please contact us to extend your flights) Richard believes that Rouergai and Tangjiahe currently offers some of the best mammal-watching in the Eastern Palearctic and should not be
Day 1: Depart London Heathrow or Manchester around 0900, changing aircraft in Frankfurt.
Day 2 - Arrive Chengdu early morning. Transfer to Labahe or our alternative Red Panda site. Nights in Labahe Hotel.
Days 3-4 Exploring Labahe.
Day 5 - Transfer to Chengdu. Overnight hotel in Chengdu or nearby.
Day 6 - Transfer to Rouergai. Nights Le Grand or similar.
Days 7-10 – Exploring Rouergai area.
Day 11 - Transfer to Tangjiahe. Nights Tangjiahe Hotel.
Days 12-13 – Exploring Tangjiahe.
Day 14 - Transfer back to Chengdu.
Day 15 – Early hours departure of flights back to UK, again changing aircraft in Frankfurt, arriving home around 0900.
Please note: All itineraries are subject to weather, local conditions and final approval by the relevant authorities.
Dates: 21st October to 4th November 2018.
Leaders: Richard Webb plus local guides.
Cost: c£3495 per person sharing a twin room.
Single supplement: £259
Group size: 6 plus leader
2019: This tour will run 20th October to 3rd November (to be led by Nigel Goodgame and local guides). You may advance register for £50pp (refundable).
The 2017 trip report and confirmed pricing for 2018 will be available soon.
Price includes: International economy class flights from London Heathrow to Chengdu* including pre-paid taxes, all ground transportation in MPV and 4x4s, accommodation with private facilities and meals, park entry fees, services of WildWings leader and local guides, day by day mammal and bird checklist for your use on tour.
*A flight supplement of £155pp currently applies from Manchester.
Price excludes: travel insurance, laundry bills, drinks (tea/coffee included with breakfast, water with lunch), other items of a personal nature, gratuities to local guides and drivers.
Richard’s 2012 and 2016 recce trip mammal and bird lists can be found above, from the tour reports tab.
21st October to 4th November 2018