BIRD GUIDING AROUND OSLO

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Oslo Botanisk Garden shines

female Two-barred Crossbill (båndkorsnebb)

male Two-barred Crossbill


Well it would have been silly not to go back to and enjoy the 2BCs again, wouldn't it? The light was marginally better at times (although could be even better as it was still cloudy today) but I was also better with the camera settings so managed some better quality photos today. I was on site close to 4 hours and during that time observed a steady stream of admirers (at least another 10 birders!) as well as a very rich and varied bird life in the gardens.

Biggest surprise was a male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (dvergspett) which suddenly appeared in the same tree as the crossbills. Three separate Goshawks (hønsehauk) including 2 youngsters which flew around together were good at flushing all the birds in the park. I noted at least 12 Hawfinches (kjernebiter), 3 Waxwings (sidensvans), 2 Chaffinch (bokfink), a Brambling (bjørkefink) and 8 Common Crossbills (grankorsnebb). Along with Greenfinch (grønnfink), Bullfinch (dompap), Redpoll (gråsisik) and Siskin (grønnsisik) there were an impressive 9 species of finch in the park today.

The 2BCs followed the same routine as yesterday although today spent longer feeding in the larch tree (always the same one). I watched them feeding high up in the larch where they were incredibly hard to locate and as usual nearly completely silent except before flying off.
not so easy to see high up in a larch tree - note how many cones there are
The birds were the same 5 as yesterday: 3 males and 2 females.  I see now that the males are all 1cy birds but in differing degrees of maturity (although the reddest male does have particularly wide white tips to the (growing) tertials suggesting it may be older although its body plumage shouts 1K). This link shows a fully adult male which has a MUCH redder plumage. Looking at the tertials also suggests that both females are 1K but that one has come much further in moulting its body feathers. Interestingly the "leader" of the flock is the young(est) female who both yesterday and today has been the first bird to move on and bring the others with her. I spent quite a bit of time trying to record the calls but due to their quietness I found this to be a difficult, frustrating and nearly fruitless task.
the three males in the same shot

The Common Crossbills yet again did not mix with their rarer cousins and fed exclusively in another larch tree with the odd visit to the stream to drink. They did once fly towards the berry tree when the 2BCs were in their larch and a couple landed in it but did not stay long and I did not see them feeding on the berries.

So what do you think of today's pictures? They are better I think as I forced down the ISO to 1600. Only problem was that the shutter speed was a lot lower which caused me to suffer when I was taking pictures of the Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers as the shutter speed was too slow for sharp pictures so I didn't get anything like the pictures I should have.

obvious 1cy male with only very narrow white edges to the tertials
The redder male. A close up showing the still growing tertials - the three white tipped feathers growing on the top of the wing. When fully grown then the longest one will cover (and protect) the feathers beneath. This bird is I believe a well advanced 1cy male but could perhaps be a 2cy?

the colourful female which I yesterday assumed to be an adult. Here though we see it lacks the large white tips to the tertials so is also most likely a 1cy that has come a long way in its body moult

splitting open the berry to get to the seeds




eating frost in a flower bead

a 1cy Goshawk (hønsehauk)

an adult Goshawk

a Hawfinch (kjernebiter) coming down for a drink

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (dvergspett)

the sharpest pictures were when it was looking away...

and again,,,

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