Monday, 27 October 2014


After Friday’s excitement on the seawatching front it was with excitement that I saw others recording good birds through the weekend and that the weather forecast showed that winds would get even stronger on Sunday night. I could really hear the wind outside the house during the night so it was with great excitement that I met Per B at Krokstrand at dawn this morning. With som good sized waves we chose to watch from the higher look point as this would make it easier to find Grey Phalaropes of which 4 were seen yesterday although you do run the risk of more easily missing birds that go by too close or too high which nearly happened to us.

First bird of the day was a young Pomarine Skua (polarjo) heading purposefully south which if it was lighter and the camera had been taken out of the bay would have made a nice photo subject. After this though things failed to really take off. There were a few Kittiwakes (kryykje) in the area and three Little Gulls were feeding and slowly moving south. Auks were scarce though with only about 30 Guillemot (lomvi) in contrast to the 1000 reported from Brentetangen at the weekend. We also worked hard with the Kittiwakes but failed to turn any into Sabines Gulls although did have a few adrenilin scares – from behind it can be easy to confuse these species if you try too hard.

Pomarine Skuas showed twice more both at range. The first one was off to the south and spent a long time chasing a young Common Gull (fiskemåke) seemingly to take the gull rather than any food it had. Eventually an adult Great Black-backed Gull (svartbak) started chasing the skua and all three birds were wheeling around performing arial acrobatics before the skua gave.

The bird that nearly evaded us due to our viewing position was a Great Northern Diver (islom) which was relatively close and nearly went unseen as both Per and I were looking at birds further out. If we had picked it up earlier then it would have been close enough for decent shots.

I gave up after 4 hours and checked out a couple of bays on the way back towards Oslo with the (invane) hope of finding a feeding phalarope before realising it wouldn’t be much of a detour to look for the Kingfisher (isfugl) again. I got out of the car and walked down to the water line and immediately heard a singleKingfisher call. I wasn’t sure where it came from and then heard a similar sound from the brakes of a lorry on the road and started doubting myself before again hearing what was definitely a Kingfisher call. I scanned the bushes on the other side of the bay and amongst the orange autumn leaves was a richer orange colour. I couldn’t be sure through the binoculars whether it was a Kingfisher but a couple of pictures and a look at the back of the camera revealed it was! I walked around to the otherside of the bay but along the way heard the bird call a couple of times as it presumably flew off to a new fishing post and that was the end of my encounter with the beautiful bird.

In Maridalen no windblown seabirds but the 2 Common Scoter (svartand) are still present.

Kingfisher (isfugl) at long range but the light was good enough such that the enlarged picture leaves no doubt as to species

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