Thursday, 6 March 2014


A new day but the same old routine. There isn’t much in the way of news arrivals but it is spring (well nearly) and anything can happen. Spurred on a by a report of 25 Pink-footed Geese (kortnebbgås) on the glomma river 20km south of the Bean Goose (sædgås) staging grounds Per Christian and I set out on a goose chase today. I suspect that the reported Pink-footed were actually Bean as there have been no other reports yet of migrating Pink-feets whilst Beans are turning up at various places but we didn’t find any geese along the Glomma although at Udenes there were a few swans and a single Canada Goose that were able to stand on the sand banks which although still under water are about to be exposed so things are looking promising.

Out in the valley near Bjørkelangen we found the Bean Goose flock but it was very wary and spooked when we were 200 metres away. We did get to see one rossicus well amongst them and a flock of 30 took flight (the same size as the flock on Tuesday) without me being able to see the exact composition although every other goose I saw was a fabalis. They left three fabalis on the deck which are presumably new arrivals. 20 minutes later and a few kilometres further down the valley we had three Bean Geese in flight which may well have been these three exploring the area or further new arrivals. We were unable to locate the flock of thirty although they did not appear to fly far but did find a Great Grey Shrike (varsler) whilst we searched.

There were noticeably fewer Whooper Swans (sangsvane) and Greylag Geese (grågås) today although Canada Geese numbers are the same. The carcass of the Whooper Swan at Kjelle that had collided with power lines was providing food for a couple of Ravens although a White-tailed Eagle would have been preferable. Lapwing (vipe) numbers are increasing but dabbling ducks were nearly completely absent.

We tried to explore a narrow flooded valley called Bergsjø which was flooded for a good 4 km but we found it very difficult to get any sort of overview although we did see that there were both Whooper Swans and Mallard here and it looked an exciting area.
The rossicus Bean Goose is the smaller one on the left with a shorter neck and smaller bill

the rossicis is the third bird from the left and can be seen to be a lot smaller

today's obligatory Whooper Swan picture

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