The official diary of the Gould mission to Lhasa sent by the British government. Read more about the mission diary.
The snow still lies deep in the hills. The Tibetans say it is unusual to have snow so early in the year. The sky is continually overcast and it is bitterly cold; but we expect another warm spell before the severe frosts and icy winds which usually accompany the first few months of the New Year.
The harsh-voiced cranes which fomerly collected in hundreds on the stubble fields are now moving South, Fisheagles, kites, and some of the smaller birds have already gone. But in their place many species previously absent from Lhasa, or seen only in small numbers, have come down from the North to enjoy the comparative warmth of this sheltered valley. Vast flocks of Brahminy, Teal, Gadwall, and other ducks are to be seen on the Potala ponds; Harriers and Buzzards beat the open country for unsuspecting mouse-hares and small birds and by the river side the more hardy Cormorant and Tibetan gull have taken the place of the Tern and Swallow.
Author: Frederick Spencer Chapman [see handwritten annotations in Diary by Hugh Richardson in MS. Or. Richardson 2, Bodleian Libary, Department of Oriental Collections, University of Oxford]
Page Reference: Pt VIII p.2