Friday, 22 August 2014


Time to try finding something myself rather than feeding at someone else’s table today. Not a gull but hopefully a wader or raptor. I chose Kurefjorden in Østfold which is at its best at this time of the year. Just before the fjord there is an area of turf fields which in the spring hold Dotterel (boltit) and in the autumn can hold a surprising selection of waders especially if turf has recently been removed leaving exposed mud. Today there were 22 Golden Plover (heilo), 19 Ruff (brushane), 24 Ringed Plover (sandlot), 6 Dunlin (myrsnipe), 4 Lapwing (vipe), a Snipe (enkeltbekkasin) and most surprising a single Little Stint (dvergsnipe). Looked like there may be a few waders around today!

At Kurefjorden the tide was on its way out and the exposed mudflats clearly had waders. In fact there was just shy of 200 Dunlin which is a good count here but annoyingly little else or at least to start with. Then a few different species started to show themselves. Six Knot (polarsnipe) were easy to pick out as were 2 Turnstones (steinvender). Amongst 20 or so Redshank (rødstilk) there were 3 each of Greenshank (gluttsnipe) and Spotted Redshank (sotsnipe). I regularly heard a call I couldn’t quite place but couldn’t locate the bird making it but eventually heard the call and located a flying wader. It landed and revealed a super smart Broad-billed Sandpiper (fjellmyrløper) – my third of the year and all in different counties! As the tide was out the distances were too large for any meaningful photos but I tried...

In a field behind the mudflats a late Quail (vaktel) was singing regularly until the heavens opened. The rain kept raptors grounded except for a single Osprey (fiskeørn). Out over the water there were at least 40 Common Terns (Makrellterne) feeding the majority of which were very vocal youngsters suggesting that here at least there has been a good although late breeding season for a bird which is declining alarmingly fast.
can you see what it is?

...juvenile Broad-billed Sandpiper

some of the Dunlin flock

here a couple of Knot with the Dunlin, an adult (right) and a juvenile

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