Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Two-barred Crossbill

Today I decided that there was no point in waiting for a Two-barred Crossbill to come to me so I went to it. An hours drive from the house and I was by Tyrifjorden, one of Norways most renowned birding areas but an area that has received virtually zero attention from me. Upto 6 Two-barred Crossbills have been reported from here for over 5 weeks, seemingly from a very confined area, although seem to have attracted no interest other than from the initial observer.
On the drive along the fjord I noted a few waterbirds in the shallow bays: Mute Swans, Canada Geese, Wigeon, Mallard, Tufted Duck and Coot although in only small numbers.
Coming to the area where I expected to see the 2BC there was an obvious line of ornamental spruce trees by a farm which were laden with cones. This seemed to be a good place to look. There were very vocal Coal Tits feeding in the trees but no sign of Crossbills although I thought I had heard a crossbill like call I could not see any. Then a lady came out of the farmhouse in her dressing gown to put some rubbish in the bin (which was right by the trees) aswell as to give me a very inquisitive look. 3 Crossbills then flew from low down in the trees close to the bin and landed at the top of the furthest tree. Fantastic! 3 Two-barred Crossbills. An adult male, an adult female and one other female coloured bird (possibly a 1K). Unfortunately I only managed a poor picture of the adult female before they flew off (not far but to an innacessible area) and did not return in the next half an hour.
Female Two-barred Crossbill
Also here a Twite flew over and Green and Great Spotted Woodpecker were heard.

Back in Oslo I popped into Smestaddammen and saw the Little Grebe that has been present for over a week. This is a small lake and views were good of this local rarity although the light was so poor that I didn't manage a decent picture
Little Grebe

Also on the lake 2 Wigeon, one of which is a tame male that has been around Oslo for a few years and the other a wild female that hang around the Mute Swan family and took vegetation they displaced from the lake bottom rather than hang around with the Mallards and eat bread.


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