We spent the New Year in England where I had singing Firecrest (rødtopfuglekonge) along a busy street, a Little Egret (silkehegre) flying over wooded farmland and Red Kite (glente) but not a single House Sparrow (gråspurv).
Whilst I was away it blew a gale in Southern Norway which resulted in a few seabirds for the lucky few who were out looking. A Sooty Shearwater close to land and photographed near Drøbak looks like the best bird - it was particularly gauling to receive a phone scoped picture of it. There were also a rash of records of Sabines Gulls but as usual none were photographed and mid winter records this far north are so unusual that they should be unheard of....
My first outing of 2014 was with Mrs. Oslo Birder today. We first went on a cross country run that turned into a walk as we had to circumnavigate flooded muddy paths. There is still no snow here and temperatures were +5C on an overcast damp day. The only bird of note on the run was a calling Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers (dvergspett).
After a shower we had a walk around the Botanical Gardens but this was rather disappointing with no exciting large finches of any description and only a young Goshawk (hønsehauk) that alternated between chasing and being chased by some Crows. A species of viburnum (vår korsved) was already in blossom which must surely be extreme although it wasn't the only organism with a spring feeling as Great Tits, Nuthatches, Greenfinches and Fieldfares were all singing.