Both travel and birdwatching guides will warn you that visiting Korea in July or August is not a good idea: it is hot, it rains a lot, and the interesting migrant birds are absent. Also, it is holiday season, which will mean popular resort areas are full. If you are visiting Korea in summer because of a scientific congress (if you search the web for trip reports, you'll see this is an important reason!), you may still want to try and do some birdwatching – and such was also the case for me. With the World Cup just over, I was very popular as a Dutchman (if you know about football, you'll understand).
Weather: I was lucky in having mostly sunny skies while birdwatching, although it could get quite hot. Do not underestimate the danger of the monsoon season! When it rains, it will usually rain the whole day, and this may last for a week or so if you're really unlucky. On my last day in Korea, amounts over 100 mm (4 inches) fell throughout the peninsula (with peaks over 300 mm), causing localised flooding and mud slides. A few weeks after I left, Gangneung received an incredible 871 mm (34 inches) during a hurricane.
Language: Some basic Korean is essential: you will find that the people you need often do not speak English! Learning the Korean alphabet is surprisingly easy, and helps to explain where you want to go (your pronunciation will likely be wrong). When travelling by public transport, ticket machines and timetables may be just in Korean (although people will rush to help you). When you mastered the alphabet, you will find out that Korean borrowed many words from English. Learning numbers and civilities is also advisable (and appreciated). The metro in Seoul is a good place to learn the pronunciation, as all stations are indicated and announced in English.
However, note that the English transcription of Korean has recently been changed. Now, at the beginning of a word, B, G, J or D are written for 'unaspirated letters' instead of P, K, Ch, or T. However, pronunciation is closest to the latter! 'Aspirated letters' are still indicated with P, K, Ch, and T: these used to be indicated with an apostrophe ('). Short vowels are now indicated by an 'e' preceding the vowel, instead of the (usually neglected) diacritical marker (˘): 'eo' and 'eu', instead of ŏ and ŭ. I found out that the N at the beginning of a word is pronounced almost like a D, which was not mentioned in my phrasebook.
Birds: W.-S. Lee, T.-H. Koo, J.-Y. Park, T. Taniguchi, A Field Guide to the Birds of Korea, LG Evergreen Foundation, 2000. The pictures are fine, but the translation is full of 'Koreanisms'.
Sites: N. Wheatley Where to watch birds in Asia, Christopher Helm, 1996. (old spelling).
Birdwatching Korea: http://www.knto.or.kr/english/etheme/E_Birdwatching/birdwatching_main.htm (new spelling)
Tim Allison, Shorebirds on the Keumgang Estuary, Kunsan, South Korea (old spelling)
Urs Geiser, Trip Report: Seoul, South Korea, July 24-30, 1994, (of little use, but it shows you how bad things can be if you have to stay in Seoul).
The website of Birds Korea has a wealth of information, that I found a bit too late: Birds Korea.
General: R. Storey, E. Park, Korea, 5th edition, Lonely Planet Publications, 2001 (new spelling).
Y. O. Kim, R. J. Dowling, Korean Phrasebook, 2nd edition, Lonely Planet Publications, 1995 (old spelling).
Health, Water & Food: 'Vivax' malaria occurs along the border with North Korea, including Ganghwado. I trusted on insect repellent, and didn't get stung once.
Water from the tap is safe, but so strongly chlorinated that you will not hesitate to drink bottled water! Koreans often get their drinking water from springs at temple sites: I had no problems drinking this.
Basic Korean food is cheap, hot, and if you're not fussy it's really not bad. It is not always obvious how to eat it. In small villages, eating out may be problematic if you're a vegetarian who does not speak Korean (like me). In the interior, 'sanchae bibimbap' (rice with 'mountain vegetables' and egg) is a good choice for vegetarians (in lowland areas, bibimbap may come without meat if you ask – say “gogi-eopso” [sounds like “coogy-upso”]. In cities, American food is ubiquitous – even more than in Europe. And for those who like to be judgemental: yes – dog is also served, but do not expect to notice this: advertising in English is not allowed.
Small villages may only have tiny shops with limited choice. Beware that some shops sell products that have long passed their expiry date (which I noted both in Oepo-ri and Sogeumgang): a better shop is always nearby.
Money: The unit of currency is the won (W). W1,000 equalled 0.88 euro, or $ 0.85. Exchanging money in banks is no problem. You can best change a lot of money at Incheon Airport if you do not want to visit banks. ATM's for foreign cards I only found in Seoul and Gyeongju (none were to be found in Yeosu), but elsewhere I relied (sometimes in vain) on my credit card for hotels.
Where to stay: I never had trouble finding accommodation, despite warnings that in summer this could be problematic. This is probably true for beach resorts: two million people visited the beaches of Busan... Cheap hotels with private baths (about W30,000/night) are plentiful and easily recognised, but expect them to serve as love hotels as well. In contrast with the more expensive hotels, bottled water is free, and the laundry service (practice your Korean!) may be free as well. The standards of cleaning vary. Credit cards were usually accepted, but the staff in Gunsan did not understand mine. The somewhat more upclass 'Tourist Hotel' in Yeosu did not accept my credit card, not really living up to its name! I camped in Odaesan NP.
Getting around: I only used public transport, which is cheap and efficient, although without knowledge of Korean it is of course impossible to use it effectively. In the 'Intercity' and 'Express' bus terminals, Seoul and Busan are usually indicated in English, while others are only indicated in Korean. The apparent lack of logic in the order of destinations is confusing. The Lonely Planet Guide is quite OK to find directions between the larger cities. I had the distinct impression that bus drivers were hired when they had proven to be suicidal maniacs (and bad accidents do occur). Also you should: always keep your tickets (they often have to be returned at the end of your journey), store your bags in the luggage compartment by yourself, and prepare to be in a bus without a toilet for 4½ hours without stopping (usually they will stop after 3 hours or so).
Of course you could also rent a car, but there are a few disadvantages. Besides costs, traffic jams are common (but these affect the buses as well). Another one is that Korea is densely populated: parking in cities may be a challenge (to your wallet as well). You also have to prepare yourself for bad driving skills. And you should be reading Korean fast when your off the highways – that is too much to ask.
Any park is close to the extensive metro network. I did not even think of taking a city bus in Seoul – there are too many. I saw both Vega and Black-headed Gull over the Han River when coming from the airport.
Riverside park (near the Tancheon Bridge)
This was the only place where I heard Oriental Reed-Warbler.
Jongmyo / Changgyeonggung [Chongmyo / Ch'anggyonggung]
Royal shrines and temples. Mostly of cultural interest; the rain did not help much either. Common birds could be found here, along with Mandarin Ducks and Mallards which were probably feral.
The northern peak of the Bukhansan National Park, immediately north of Seoul. The area is beautiful with forests and white granite cliffs, but the hills are really steep, and you may need all your attention for holding on to chains and ladders on the ridge trail. To enjoy the birds, stay away from there, and start much earlier than me (I was suffering from jetlag for a whole week). Considering Seoul is so close, I did not even think it was that crowded (except for the entrance area).
* A place which I did not visit, but which is well-worth the effort, is Gwangneung [Kwangnung] forest some 50 km from Seoul. A forest reserve has been installed, which is open only on weekdays by prior arrangement. Probably, KNTO (the tourist office) could give more information on this.
This island is the place to be for the 'Korean Sea endemics'. It can be reached from Seoul via the tiny Sinchon bus terminal, which is easily overseen. A ticket has to be bought from a machine (Korean only), which only accepted W1000 bills (a street vendor was kind enough to provide change). The best area to stay on Ganghwado is the south coast, which has all avian attractions. However, I saw mostly 'minbak' (room in a private house) accommodation here, so if you want a hotel, Ganghwa(-si) or Oepo-ri are better options (I stayed in the latter. There seem to be only fish restaurants here – the food from stores was quite basic). The bus ride from Seoul to Oepo-ri took two hours.
The South Coast
A regular bus service from Ganghwa to Dongmak-beach [Tongmak] passes Yeocha-ri and Dongmak-ri. It does not come through Oepo-ri, but you can take a bus back to Ganghwa and change at the first intersection (which is less than 30 minutes walking). I only found out on my way back how easy it could have been – I walked most of the way, and gladly accepted a ride which probably saved me an hour (moreover, most Koreans have air-conditioned cars). Still, during my walk I found Common Cuckoo and Black-capped Kingfisher which otherwise I would have missed.
The fishponds in the southwest of the island, easily seen from the main road, are accessible. They held Black-faced Spoonbill, Japanese Cormorant, and an unseasonal Eurasian Wigeon. It is also a good tidal roost (but I was there at low tide).
A bit further to the east in Dongmak-ri, a small stream surrounded by reed flows into the tidal flats. This proved a nice place, providing me my only Grey Starling and Eurasian Hoopoe. Far Eastern Curlews were common.
Just east of Dongmak-beach (a small strip of sand, large mud flats, and lots of black mud-covered children), there is a boat launch from which the mudflats and rocky islets off Sagi-ri could be scanned. These islets are a roosting site for Black-faced Spoonbills, which were distant but conspicuous. The mud flats held a few Chinese Egrets, some close by. The biggest surprise were the large numbers of Saunders's Gulls present. They were mixed with Black-headed Gulls, but the adults could easily be differentiated by the clearly cut-off black patches on the underside of their wing tips and their jizz, which reminded me of Little Gull. At least one juvenile, with a rufous brownish back, was present! The total number of 'black-headed gulls' was 150, but I could not identify all of them because of the distance: at least 25 were Saunders's. Terek Sandpipers were abundant, with smaller numbers of Black-tailed Godwit, Greenshank, Spotted and Common Redshank. I took the bus back from Dongmak-beach.
Oepo-ri: No essential birds here, but if you have some time to kill – Common Kingfisher and Little Grebe were present in the rice fields just south of Oepo-ri. Seokmodo [called Songmodo in the Lonely Planet], off Oepo-ri, is home to a popular temple (Bomunsa). Forest birds occurring on 'Haemaengsan' included Black-capped Kingfisher (heard), Varied Tit, and Yellow-throated Bunting. A marked trail starts at the highest point of the island road (the bus may stop here). It may be more interesting in spring.
Odaesan National Park, Sogeumgang
This National Park is less popular than Seoraksan [Soraksan], which is a bit further north. It does not offer a large array of hiking trails, and is less spectacular. Probably, this is true for the bird life as well. However, the promise of 'jumbo crowds' by the Lonely Planet discouraged me (but I am quite sure now these will only be found in the parking lots and entrance areas). I chose the Sogeumgang Area of Odaesan, which appeared to have a good campsite (with food stalls nearby), for W3000 a night. Note that the showers are communal. Toilets come in western and eastern varieties. I saw Yellow-throated Bunting on the grounds.
Getting there from Gangneung [Kangnung] turned out to be complicated: the bus should leave from the road next to the intercity/express bus station (as was indicated on the bus stop). However, I was told I should take a taxi to the right bus stop, a bit further into town. In the end, a guy from the information booth kindly gave me a ride there (after I confirmed I really did mean 'Sogeumgang' – I knew how to write it). On the way back the bus luckily did stop at the bus station.
The only trail into the park from the east side. I was afraid it would get crowded (so I started at 5.00 h), but I saw very few people beyond the 'first waterfall'. Noinbong, one of the peaks in the park, is reached after about 11 km. There is a shelter up there where you can spend the night. For the first 5 km (until Nagyeongpokpo), it follows a roaring stream, where Brown Dipper is common. Also found along this stretch was a Tawny Owl (ssp ma, a potential split).
The second part of the trail, along a ridge, was great. Good finds were a single Asian Brown and some Blue-and-white Flycatchers. The star bird was Tristram's Bunting, which has only recently been known to breed in Korea (in Seoraksan). Probably it breeds in Odaesan as well, as I saw four, all near the peak (one of them right behind the shelter). I could not identify all warblers I heard (most were Eastern Crowned Warblers). On Noinbong peak, reached after 5½ hours, three White-throated Spinetails flashed by. I continued an hour further into the park (towards Jingogae) on a path that stayed quite level. The forest here was good for Pale and White's Thrushes, but more exciting were Siberian Blue Robin, Asian Stubtail, and Pale-legged Warbler. A huge bird flying off (which reminded me at first of a bittern: what was I thinking?) was probably a Eurasian Eagle-Owl.
* Additional species you could expect in Odaesan are Common (or Japanese) Buzzard, which has bred (if I understood the Korean information panel correctly) and Mandarin Duck (in more remote parts of the park?). As Dusky Warbler and Pallas's Leaf Warbler have recently been found breeding in Seoraksan, they could also occur. Interesting mammals occur (I was most surprised by Goral), but I only saw Siberian Ground-Squirrel (which will beg for scraps on Noinbong peak) and a mole...
Pohang, Gyeongju [Kyongju]
Not really worth a visit, unless you want to go to Ulleungdo [Ullungdo], a remote island with really exciting birds. Unfortunately, I lacked time for a visit... The peninsula east of Pohang may offer interesting birds (more so in winter), but I did not manage to find the bus from Guryo-po [Kuryo-po]. I had to settle for a few Grey-tailed Tattlers.
The place in Korea where western tourists are most obvious, looking for cultural heritage. Of course, avid birdwatchers will avoid such places, but I needed some rest... and I found some nice birds too (though the river beds did not provide Long-billed Plover). Black-naped Oriole is common in Banwolseong Park (near the National Museum), and Oriental Greenfinch was abundant in town. I was less charmed by the presence of Red-eared Sliders and Bull Frogs (both American introductions).
Yeosu [Yosu], Dolsando [Tolsando]
Travel from Pohang to Yeosu was terrible, because the roads around Busan [Pusan] (where I had to change buses) had come to a standstill. The bus from Busan to Yeosu took winding backroads to avoid the gridlock. Checking the wires along the roads finally paid off with my only Bull-headed Shrike.
This well-vegetated hill topped with antennae is on the south-west side of the city. Entry to this area was difficult to find, and I walked around it at first (a very long walk). Along the seaside, I saw two Blue (or rather Red-bellied) Rock-Thrushes. Finally I found that a path above the Hanjae Tunnel provided access. It would probably be easier to ask a taxi to take you to Hansansa (a temple), which is on the south slope. The hill to the east of the tunnel is mostly inaccessible, but to the west is an area full of trails. It is possible to walk all the way up to the antennae for a nice panoramic view. My target species, Japanese White-eye, was common in the woods; I later found one in town next to the Dolsando-gyo (bridge).
Hyang-iram (also transcribed as Hyang-ilam)
This popular hermitage on the southern tip of Dolsando, an island south of Yeosu, can be reached by bus 101 or 111 (twice an hour). The buses are most easily found at Dolsando-gyo (the access bridge). I got out early and walked along the access road for about an hour, finding a Brown Shrike on my way. South of the tourist village at Hyang-iram, two Fork-tailed Swifts flew over the army post. I had no time to explore the area thoroughly.
* You may choose to visit Geoje-do [Koje Island] instead, which is known to hold Fairy Pitta.
Gunsan [Kunsan], Geumgang [Kum River] estuary
This town, like the whole province, certainly looked poorer than other places I visited. To stimulate the economy, a massive industrial complex is being developed, which unfortunately includes a huge reclamation project (Saemangeum) west of the city. Being from the Netherlands, a country that prides itself in centuries of wetland destruction, I don't think I have any right to say they cannot do that... I did not go to this area that could probably be reached with one of the local buses.
A report on the Internet stated that accommodation was impossible to find in Gunsan, but there was plenty around the bus station (do not expect anything stylish – such accommodation is available near the barrage). From the bus station, it was only a short walk to the Geumgang estuary. Luckily, my motel provided the Yellow Pages, containing a city map that was almost accurate. Apparently there are plans to build a road all along the estuary. In Gunsan itself, a small stream was popular with herons, wagtails, and some waders.
This can be birded from the road that runs from Gunsan to a barrage a few kilometres upstream. The sidewalk/bicycle path is very convenient. In the middle of the estuary, there was a large sandbar that I found just too far away for good views (at 20 X magnification), but still sufficiently close for identification. However, at low tide, many birds may be hidden on the far side of the sandbar. The best place to watch the waders was the north-end of the barrage, where the birds came very close at high tide. On the south side, most tidal flats have been destroyed to build a park. Best species were Eurasian Oystercatcher (osculans), for which this is the location, Great Knot, and Kentish and Mongolian Plovers. A thorough search of the area east of the barrage finally yielded a group of Azure-winged Magpies (in the hamlet reached from the first turn-off to the right east of the barrage). The lake is great for waterfowl in winter, with a visitor's centre quite close to a bus stop – but it was desolate in summer.
Itinerary and weather
|Wed. July 17.||Flight Amsterdam–Incheon Airport.|
|Thu. July 18.||Partly cloudy||Bus Incheon Airport–Seoul; Riverside (near Tancheon Bridge)|
|Fri. July 19.||Rain||Seoul: Jongmyo/Changgyeonggung.|
|Sat. July 20.||Partly cloudy||Seoul: Dobongsan.|
|Sun. July 21.||Cloudy/rain||Seoul.|
|Mon. July 22.||Cloudy/rain||Seoul.|
|Tue. July 23.||Cloudy/rain||Seoul.|
|Wed. July 24.||Cloudy||Seoul.|
|Thu. July 25.||Partly cloudy||Seoul; Bus Seoul (Sinchon)–Ganghwa–Oepo-ri.|
|Fri. July 26.||Sunny||Oepo-ri–Hwado–Yeocha-ri–Dongmak-ri–Sagi-ri mudflats.|
|Sat. July 27.||Sunny||Seokmodo–Bomunsa/Haemaengsan.|
|Sun. July 28.||Sunny/partly cloudy||Bus Oepo-ri–Seoul/metro Dong Seoul/bus Dong Seoul–Gangneung – Sogeumgang.|
|Mon. July 29.||Partly cloudy||Sogeumgang–Noinbong.|
|Tue. July 30.||Sunny||Bus Sogeumgang–Gangneung–Pohang; Pohang–Guryopo.|
|Wed. July 31.||Sunny||Gyeongju.|
|Thu. August 1.||Sunny||Bus Gyeongju–Busan–Yeosu.|
|Fri. August 2.||Sunny||Yeosu–Gubongsan; Dolsando-gyo–Dolsando–Hyangiram.|
|Sat. August 3.||Partly cloudy||Bus Yeosu–Jeonju–Gunsan; Geumgang estuary.|
|Sun. August 4.||Cloudy/sunny||Geumgang estuary & environs.|
|Mon. August 5.||Cloudy/rain||Bus Gunsan–Seoul.|
|Tue. August 6.||Heavy rain||Seoul.|
|Wed. August 7.||Rain||Bus Seoul–Incheon Airport; flight Incheon Airport–Amsterdam.|
List of Species
(Sibley & Monroe order; birds marked with an asterisk * may be candidates for splitting)
Common Pheasant Phasianus colchicus karpowi, Ganghwado, Hail (female), Oepo-ri; Seokmodo; Yeosu (female, imm); Gunsan (male)
Mandarin Duck Aix galericulata, Seoul (2 male, feral)
Eurasian Wigeon Anas penelope, Yeocha-ri (1 male)
Mallard Anas platyrhynchos, Seoul (feral); Geumgang (2–4)
Eastern Spot-billed Duck* Anas (poecilorhyncha) zonorhyncha, throughout
Pygmy Woodpecker Dendrocopos kizuki, Seokmodo (1); Odaesan NP; Yeosu; Gunsan
Greater Spotted Woodpecker* Dendrocopos major japonicus, Bukhansan NP; Ganghwado; Seokmodo
Grey-faced Woodpecker Picus canus, Odaesan NP (2)
Eurasian Hoopoe Upupa epops, Dongmak-ri (1)
Black-capped Kingfisher Halcyon pileata, Ganghwado, Hail (1); Seokmodo (1)
Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis, Oepo-ri (2)
Dollarbird Eurystomus orientalis, Bukhansan (1); others from buses: near Gangneung (2); Gyeon-sang-buk-do (2); Chungcheongbuk-do (3)
Eurasian Cuckoo Cuculus canorus, Oepo-ri (2)
White-throated Needletail Hirundapus caudacutus, Odaesan NP, Noinbong (3)
Fork-tailed Swift Apus pacificus, Dolsando, Hyangiram (2)
Tawny Owl* Strix aluco ma, Odaesan NP (1)
Eurasian Eagle-Owl Bubo bubo, Odaesan NP, Noinbong (possibly 1)
Feral Pigeon Columba livia, throughout
Oriental Turtle-Dove Streptopelia orientalis, throughout
Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus, Gyeongju; Gyeonsangnam-do
Red-necked Stint Calidris ruficollis, Geumgang
Dunlin Calidris alpina, Geumgang
Great Knot Calidris tenuirostris, Geumgang (2–4)
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres, Geumgang (ca. 5)
Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus, Dongmak-beach
Common Redshank Tringa totanus, Dongmak-beach; Geumgang (5)
Greenshank Tringa nebularia, Dongmak-beach; Gyeongju; Geumgang
Terek Sandpiper Tringa cinerea, Dongmak-beach; Geumgang
Grey-tailed Tattler Tringa brevipes, Guryopo (3–5); Geumgang (1–2)
Common Sandpiper Tringa hypoleuca, Gyeongju (1); Geumgang
Black-tailed Godwit* Limosa limosa melanuroides, Dongmak-beach (50); Geumgang (many)
Bar-tailed Godwit* Limosa lapponica baueri, Geumgang
Far Eastern Curlew Numenius madagascariensis, Dongmak-ri; Dongmak-beach; Geumgang
Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata, Geumgang
Mongolian Plover Charadrius mongolus, Geumgang (> 10)
Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus ssp, Geumgang (2)
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola, Geumgang
Eurasian Oystercatcher* Haematopus ostralegus osculans, Geumgang (31)
Black-tailed Gull Larus crassirostris, coastal areas/large rivers throughout
Vega Gull Larus vegae, Seoul (1); Dongmak-beach; Geumgang
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus, Seoul (1); Dongmak-beach; Pohang; Geum-gang
Saunders's Gull Larus saundersi, Dongmak-beach (scores)
Chinese Goshawk Accipiter soloensis, throughout
Eurasian Hobby Falco subbuteo, Ganghwado, Hail; Seokmodo
Common Kestrel Falco tinnunculus, Bukhansan; Yeosu; Geumgang
Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis, Oepo-ri (1 ad/1 imm/5 juv); Gyeonsangnam-do (from bus)
Japanese Cormorant Phalacrocorax capillatus, Yeocha-ri (5)
Eastern Cattle-Egret* Bubulcus ibis coromanda, fields throughout
Little Egret Egretta garzetta, fields, coasts, rivers throughout
Chinese Egret Egretta eulophotes, Dongmak-beach (ca. 5)
Intermediate Egret Egretta intermedia, fields, rivers (common in the west, not recognized in the east)
Great Egret Ardea alba, fields, rivers, estuaries throughout
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea, rivers, coasts throughout
Striated Heron Butorides striatus, fields, rivers, mountain streams throughout
Black-crowned Night-Heron Nycticorax nycticorax, Incheon; Seoul; Ganghwado; Gyeongju; Geumgang; Gunsan
Black-faced Spoonbill Platalea minor, Yeocha-ri (9); Dongmak-beach (ca. 20)
Bull-headed Shrike Lanius bucephalus, near Jinju (1 female) (from bus)
Brown Shrike* Lanius cristatus lucionensis, Dolsando (1 imm)
Eurasian Jay* Garrulus glandarius bambergi, Odaesan NP (3); Yeosu
Azure-winged Magpie Cyanopica cyana, Gunsan (10); ? Seoul (1) (from bus)
Eurasian Magpie Pica pica sericea, throughout (the call of these magpies was slower and lower than that of European birds: “chak..chak..chak” instead of “shesheshesheshek”)
Large-billed Crow* Corvus macrorhynchos mandschuricus, forest areas throughout (may belong to a separate species, Northern Large-billed Crow C. japonicus)
Black-naped Oriole Oriolus chinensis, Seoul, Jongmyo; Gyeongju, Banwolseong (10)
Brown Dipper Cinclus pallasii, Odaesan NP
Red-bellied Rock-Thrush* Monticola (solitarius) philippensis, Yeosu (2)
White's Thrush* Zoothera (dauma) aurea, Odaesan NP
Pale Thrush Turdus pallidus, Odaesan NP (many)
Asian Brown Flycatcher Muscicapa dauurica, Odaesan NP (1)
Blue-and-white Flycatcher Cyanoptila cyanomelana, Odaesan NP (1 male, ± 3 female, 2 juv.)
Siberian Blue Robin Luscinia cyane, Odaesan NP, Noinbong (1 juv)
Daurian Redstart Phoenicurus auroreus, Odaesan NP, Sogeumgang/Noinbong (> 4)
White-cheeked Starling Sturnus cineraceus, Dongmak-ri (1)
Eurasian Nuthatch Sitta europaea, Bukhansan; Seokmodo; Odaesan NP; Gyeongju; Yeosu
Coal Tit Periparus ater ssp, Bukhansan (1); Odaesan NP (in Clements, 2000, treated as ssp ater, but looked more tufted than birds in the Netherlands)
Japanese Tit* Parus (major) minor, throughout
Marsh Tit Poecile palustris hellmayri, Seoul; Bukhansan; Seokmodo; Odaesan NP (may belong to a separate species, Asian Marsh-Tit P. brevirostris)
Varied Tit Sittiparus varius, Seokmodo (1–2); Odaesan NP (2)
Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus, Bukhansan; Gyeongju, Tumuli Park; Yeosu
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica, throughout
Lesser Striated Swallow* Hirundo daurica, Ganghwado; Gyeongju; Yeosu; Jeollanam-do (from bus) (may be a separate species from Red-rumped Swallow, H. (daurica) rufula )
Brown-eared Bulbul Ixos amaurotis, agricultural/urban areas throughout
Asian Stubtail Urosphena squameiceps, Odaesan NP, Noinbong
Oriental Reed-Warbler Acrocephalus orientalis, Seoul, Tancheon Bridge
Arctic Warbler Phylloscopus borealis, ? Odaesan NP, Noinbong
Pale-legged Leaf-Warbler Phylloscopus tenellipes, Odaesan NP, Noinbong (2)
Eastern Crowned Warbler Phylloscopus coronatus, Odaesan NP; Yeosu
Vinous-throated Parrotbill Paradoxornis webbianus, throughout
Japanese White-eye Zosterops japonicus, Yeosu
Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus, throughout
Amur Wagtail* Motacilla (alba/lugensis) leucopsis, Oepo-ri; Yeosu; Gunsan; Geumgang
Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea, Oepo-ri; Dongmak-ri; Odaesan NP; Yeosu
Oriental Greenfinch Carduelis sinica, Pohang (5); Gyeongju (100)
Yellow-throated Bunting Emberiza elegans, Seokmodo (1); Odaesan NP, Sogeumgang (2); Yeosu
Tristram's Bunting Emberiza tristrami, Odaesan NP, Noinbong (4)