At the end of May there is small passage of Brent Geese (ringgås) from Denmark up the Oslo fjord. I have never witnessed this movement before and after reports of the first flocks following the normal route up the west coast of Norway yesterday I thought today would be a good chance to try to see if any birds were migrating past Brentetangen.
I gave it 4 hours from 0525 to 0925 without any Brent Geese but I did have some compensation in the form of a summer plumaged White-billed Diver (gulnebblom) flying north at 0625. It was on my side of the fjord but too far away for picture. This is actually the first time I have seen one of the large divers in summer plumage and what a smart bird it was especially with that enormous white bill! A single dark phase Arctic Skua (tyvjo) flew close by and chased a Common Terne (makrellterne), 54 Red-throated Divers (smålom) flew north, 5 Little Gulls (dvergmåke) lingered in the middle of the fjord, 10 Arctic Terns (rødnebbterne) flew north in a flock, a single male Scaup flew north and a flock of 80 Common Scoter (svartand) sat offshore (I scrutinised them for something rarer with no joy). A flock of 15 Parrot Crossbills (furukorsnebb) migrated north and landed briefly in the pine trees where I was singing with one even singing – it appears that a small movement of crossbills is just starting.
|Arctic Skua chasing Common Tern|
Continuing around Kurefjorden it was clear that spring wader passage is nearly over with just 9 Greenshank (gluttsnipe). Passerines were decent though with two male Red-backed Shrikes (tornskate) and single singing Marsh Warbler (myrsanger) and Thrush Nightingale (nattergal). Four local Buzzards were also in the air.
A whistle stop trip around Maridalen revealed the male Red-backed Shrike and a single Wryneck (vendehals) and alarm calling thrushes enticed me into the small wood with the Tawny Owl (kattugle) nestbox. When I entered the wood a bird started calling and it was sat right out in the open until I lifted the camera when it moved higher up. I assume the young are ready to leave the nest soon and the adults are nervous (the young have also recently been ringed which may have caused them some anxiety).
|concerned Tawny Owl|
|Wryneck in a new pose|