Friday, 6 February 2015


Just a dose of the normal Oslo city birding today. Yet again no rare gulls although by the Opera amongst ca.500 Herring Gulls (gråmåke) were a couple of the pale Glaucous hybrid look alikes. The recent colder weather has left a thin layer of ice over much of the fjord and a constantly moving dense flock of around 450 Goldeneyes (kvinand) were keeping a small area ice free although could have flown just a couple of hundred metres to open water.

In Frognerpark the gulls were very nervous and although I never saw the culprit I assume a Goshawk was nearby. A ringed Common Gull (fiskemåke) got me a bit interested as I didn’t recognise the ring as being one of the local sort. However it was and the bird JYAO had been ringed as an adult female exactly where I saw it nearly 5 years ago to the day (4 Feb 2010). It has been seen many times in Oslo, and primarily in Frognerpark, every winter since but there are no records outside of the winter period so we do not know where it breeds. I have also recorded the birds before (so should have recognised the type of ring) on 23 Feb 2014 and 4 Dec 2013.

Normally it is Herring Gulls that dominate here but today there were only 3 birds and there were far more Common and Black-headed Gulls (hettemåke) which flew in from the direction of Marienlyst Park and were more interested in drinking that eating the bread I was chucking out.

mixed flock of Common and Black-headed Gulls drinking in Frognerpark

Adult Common Gull JYAO which has been seen in Frognerpark every winter since being ringed here in 2010
 This evening an owling trip with Per Christian beckons – maybe we will hear something close to the Ural Owl box and Great Grey Owl platform we put up earlier in the winter. It is still very early in the year but this evening has a full moon and is forecast to be cloudless which is supposedly perfect owling conditions so the opportunity shouldn’t be overlooked.

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