Japan is a dream destination for a lot of people. It is the home country of sushi, it has very unique traditions, culture, temples, tea ceremonies, kimonos, origami, poetry, sculpture, anime, manga…the list is just endless.
If you ever have the opportunity to visit the volcanic island of Hokkaido, Japan’s most northern island, don’t be surprised if you see little white cotton balls flying everywhere around you.
It is a very unusual long-tailed tit bird, it lives there, and it just looks like a little white cotton ball, with small black eyes.
These birds are native to Europe and Asia too, however the species that lives on the Hokkaido Island, have a white face, and a body that looks like a cotton ball. In some other areas these birds have brown and grey feathers mixed with the white ones, or they don’t have white feathers at all.
Hokkaido has 17 prefectural and quasi-national parks, also six national parks, and it is very popular because of the countless endemic species that can be seen there.
The Island is home to countless endemic species, also species that are comfortable being surrounded by a lot of people, by tourists. These small cotton ball birds are very social, they can sometimes even land on somebody’s shoulder.
The Japanese people are simply obsessed with these tiny white birds!
Floating Cotton Balls
The Shima-enaga flying creatures, as they are nicknamed, move in enormous herds, and they make conspicuous calls to the gathering individuals, that sound like ‘si-si-si-si.’
They are for the most part found in mixed forests, however they can live anyplace from parks and ranches to waterway prairies and thick forests.
They are defenseless against cold winter climate, so to guarantee their endurance, they need dependable access to vitality rich food during the brief days, and can be regularly observed around gardens.
However, during spring, they move out into the wide open to breed.
In adulthood, these winged animals are 13 – 15 cm long in adulthood and weigh between 7 – 9 grams. They have a perfectly white face and neck with a smoothed out body, and a long, dull shaded tail.
These winged animals carry on with a mutual life, as settling alone is exceptionally troublesome. Subsequent to rearing season in July-February, the winged animals unite with around 7 – 15 different flying creatures which they for the most part communicate with.
They nest in thick bush shrubs or tree branches. A few of them scan for food, while the others stay to deal with the babies.
If you want to have a closer contact with these social and friendly birds, you might want to offer them some treat, like pizza crusts, breadcrumbs, peanuts, or seeds.
So, don’t you think cuteness just got a new name?