Tuesday, 20 July 2010


Lesser Black-backed Gull ssp.Graellsii
Female King Eider
Spending a few days on the island of Værøy which is one of the outer Lofoten islands. Birdlife is scarce here (if you don’t count the seabird colonies which are only accessible by boat). Around the harbour were numerous Herring and Common Gulls with smaller numbers of Great Black backed Gulls. Amongst them were 2 Lesser Black Backed Gulls which were of the British race Graellsii. Birds of this race apparantly breed in Lofoten alongside fuscus. A couple of Kittiwakes were year ticks as were a couple of Gannets seen distantly over the sea. A few Common Terns were fishing in the harbour to add to a couple of Arctic Terns seen yesterday on the ferry ride over (this was a very very choppy ride with much vomiting!!). Eider ducks, Greylag Geese and Red Breasted Mergansers were common and all had young along with a a handful of Mallards including a female with 3 young. Best duck though was a female King Eider which gave great views and was even heard calling. This bird had a large amount of fishing line around its body which probably explains why it was here at this time of the year.Waders were represent by a pair of Runged Pover, Redshank and Oystecatcher. Passerines were represented by numerous Redpolls pluss maller numbers of Meadow Pipit, Wheatear, House Sparrow, Starling and Willow Warbler.
A scan of the sea at the north of the island had close in Black Guillemot, Razorbill and Shag and distant groups of Puffins flying past.

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