Sunday, 5 June 2011

Blyth's Reed Warbler

At 11pm last night I had a choice between going to bed or going birding. Birding won. Inspired by a the sightings (or more precisely hearings) of a group who were out last night and found Blyth's Reed Warbler, Bittern, River Warbler, Spotted Crake, Corncrake and Quail) I thought I would find my own "night singers".
First stop was Maridalen where I drew a complete blank although did have 4 Woodcock. Next stop was Nittedal which is the next valley to the east and here again I drew a blank. It was now approaching 1am and I felt I had to salvage the night so headed for the Blyth's Reed site. On the way I made frequent stops to listen but I didn't need to stop to hear a Thrush Nightingale singing his heart out right by the road. After enjoying this master singer I continued to Lillestrøm for the BRW. As soon as I opened the car door it was singing in some bushes just 20 yards away. I got to within only a few feet of the bird in the near darkness (at this time of the year it doesn't get completely dark) and glimpsed the bird including its white throat as it sang. This video at least allows you to hear the song.

With renewed vigour I thought I would continue along the east side of Nordre Øyeren as far as Fetsund to see if there were anymore birds to hear. Leaving Lillestrøm another Thrush Nightingale was singing by the road and at Tuentangen there was yet another Thrush Nightingale plus a singing Marsh Warbler which allowed me to compare how different the song of BRW is.
Final bird of the night was a singing Quail by Fetsund which was a Norwegian tick to add to the BRW which was also a lifer. The time was now 2am and already at 2.30am the dawn chorus was starting with thrushes and Yellowhammers most vocal. This makes hearing the nocturnal singers difficult so it was time to head home.

I had only three hours sleep before being woken by the girls and then heading out for a 55km bike ride during which I heard Wood and Icterine Warblers.

I am now ready for a good nights sleep!

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