Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Autumn Garganey

Birding with Rune again, and today we headed for Østfold. I persuaded Rune that we should give sea-watching at Brentatangen a go as the winds were from the south. The hour we spent there proved to be wasted though as the winds were not strong enough and 2 1st winter Arctic Terns (rødnebbterne) and a Red-throated Diver (smålom) were all we had for our efforts.

Hopefully Kurefjorden would be more productive. We arrived at Rosnesbukta, as planned, just before high tide with just a small patch of mud remaining but where were all the waders?? Not a single Dunlin (myrsnipe) or Ringed Plover (sandlo) which had been so numerous earlier in the month (although interestingly there were a number of both species seen later in the day after it had rained). Instead just a handful of Greenshank (gluttsnipe) , Redshank (rødstilk), Ruff (brushane), Curlew (storspove) and singles of Bar-tailed Godwit (lappspove) and Grey Plover (tundralo). There were 150 Teal (krikkand) though which are far more numerous that earlier and I went through them as I have previously done hoping for something more exciting. Finally, some payback – a Garganey (knekkand). Never a common bird in the autumn probably because they are far less obvious, this was an eclipse male due to the grey forewing it showed whilst preening and also generally richer coloured plumage than a female would show.

No great pictures but for the record:

Garganey (right) withTeal (left)
closer picture of the Garganey
 Amongst the large numbers of Greylag Geese (grågås) was a white individual which had us thinking Snow Goose for a second or two.

A few raptors in the area with seven different Ospreys (fisekørn) including 4 together, 2 Honey Buzzards (vepsevåk), a Marsh Harrier (sivhauk) and a Merlin (dvergfalk).

We decided to give Lysakermoa a try. This site, which is part of the Glomma river system (the same as Nordre Øyeren) has nevr had the pleasure of my company before but definitely will again. We arrived just before the heavens opened and were met by literally thousands of birds. Mostly Greylag Geese but also many waders. Snipe (enkeltbekkasin) were flying around continually and many were feeding out in the open. We estimated 200 but there could have been more. Also Ruff, Dunlin, Ringed Plover, Wood Sandpipers (grønnstilk) and 2 Temminck’s Stints. Eight Cranes (trane) were resting among the geese and a couple of Marsh Harriers were also in the area. This truly was a bird rich area and definitely looks like it has the potential to turn up something outstanding.

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