I"m going to take a break from castles and take a look at some of the birds I saw on my trip. I was seeking out a youth hostel on Lake Biwa but alas it was full up. I did manage to land a cabin in Otsu later.
Some hawks floating around Hikone Castle.
A few ducks swimming in the moat surrounding Hikone.
A cormorant fishing before the junk shows up. (Click link for tons of cormorant photos.)
I spent two nights in Otsu outside of Kyoto and travelled around using it as my focal point. I stayed in a beach-side cabin off Lake Biwa and enjoyed kicking back on the beach in the early morn watching the various seabirds flocking around.
Be it ever so humble, my room in the cabin.
The following morning on the beach.
A few days later at Nagoya Castle, a crow was scamming rope from a fence while his spouse looked on approvingly.
A few more days later, some swans at Matsumoto Castle.
Finally, a crow picking away at a garbage bag.
(Full disclosure: this is not a real crow, rather a prize from a capsule machine.)