Monday, 17 October 2011

Annual Oslofjord boat trip

Sunday was the day for the Bird Club's annual boat trip. We had fantastic weather with blue skies and little wind and over 70 people turned out making it a bit crowded on the boat.
Before the boat had even got underway a bat (vannflaggermus in Norwegian not sure of the english name) was flying up and down the quayside looking a bit like a Crag Martin (I wish!).
No great rarities on the 3 hour trip but a Little Auk was a year tick and 3 Razorbills were the first I've seen in the Oslofjord this autumn alongside around 20 Guillemots. Common Scoters were numerous with around 70 all of which were in female/immature plumage whilst the 9 Velvet Scoters seen were all adult males - sounds like something to be investigated using satellite tracking!
Otherwise 2 Purple Sandpipers on a little rock in the middle of the fjord alongside a seal bobbing in the water. We also had a seal hauled out on a rock on a larger island which gave great views.
As the trip was coming to an end the possible highlight nearly happened. A Red-necked Grebe (which would have been a much overdue Norwegian tick for me) was called but all I could see was a Great Crested. Luckily (?) after a minute or so it appeared that we were all looking at the same bird and it indeed have crests ;-).

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