Thursday, 1 July 2010


We went up to Valdresflya today one of the most accesible areas in southern norway for mountain specialities. This area is one of the most reliable for Long Tailed Skua in Norway but their abundance along with many other species is dependent on the rodent population and this year appears to be at the bottom of the cycle with no sign of lemmings at all. Correspondingly there was little to see today. We did find one Dotterel though - a male that was acting as though we had disturbed it from its nest. Dotterel is one of my very favourite birds and a trip to the mountains does not feel complete without seeing one.
Otherwise there were a few Wheatear and Meadow Pipits, three singing Shorelarks, a fine singing Lapland Bunting, a single Rough Legged Buzzard, just one Ringed Plover and most surprisingly only one Golden Plover. Normally I would have expected to see many tens of Golden Plovers along with Dunlin and maybe Purple Sandpipers aswell as Skuas.
Driving back along Vinstre lake there were more Ducks visible than previously and one flock contained 3 Scaup alongside 13 Tufted and 13 Goldeneye.

Yesterday evening I was out from 2130 until 0130 (which involved getting locked out of the hotel) in a quest to find lekking Great Snipe. Despite is being virtually windless and this perfect listening conditions, and despite the habitat looking good I was unable to find any. I did have 2 Woodcock in an area of birch trees and an Elk above the tree line but the only Snipe were 2 singing Common Snipe one of which was at the hotel.

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