Friday, 1 May 2015

Jæren day 1

1st May is normally a brilliant day to be in Maridalen and indeed today two singing Wrynecks turned up no doubt to the pure delight and pleasure for those who saw them. I on the other hand find myself spirited away to Jæren for an NSKF meeting. For those familiar with Norwegian birding hotspots you are probably thinking luck you! But you can take the boy out of Maridalen but you can’t take Maridalen out of the boy.

 Jæren hasn’t proven that exciting so far although 15 year ticks within the first 24 hours is not something I could have expected in Oslo this weekend. We split into 2 groups this morning (before doing committee work in the afternoon and evening) and the group I was not in experienced a mini fall of passerines including a singing Red-breasted Flycatcher (dvergfluesnapper) whereas my group (group is probably the wrong word as it was just Tor and I – more like a deadly duo) concentrated on seawatching and were rewarded by 3 White-billed Divers (gulnebblom)  alongside over 200 Red-throated Divers (smålom) migrating north, 2 Glaucous Gulls (polarmåke) and the long-staying Surf Scoter (brilleand). I also had a couple of personal birding firsts with displaying Black-tailed Godwits (svarthalespove) plus also for the first time close views of summer plumaged Great Northern Divers (islom).

Buoyed by our couple of Glaucous Gulls Tor and I spent some time looking through a large flock of gulls on some fields and reckoned we should be able to find a Caspian Gull. Seconds later Tor found an interesting bird but its small size and when it flew all dark primaries pointed towards it being a 2cy Lesser Black-backed Gull (sildemåke) but non-the-less a smart gull.

We are staying as usual at Kjell Mjølsnes house which I have said before is undoubtedly the best placed house a birder could dream of having. Best bird for me so far from the house was a singing Grasshopper Warbler (gresshoppesanger) when I walked out but it wouldn’t surprise me if we turned up a national rarity before the weekend is done.

the closest of the migrating White-billed Divers - what a bird!
male Surf Scoter

a very white and large Glaucous Gull, presumed 2cy


summer plumaged Great Northern Diver
ringed female Pied Wagtail (svartryggerle)
Rock Pipit (skjærpiplerke) and Ringed Plover (sandlo)

1st summer / 2cy Lesser Black-backed Gull - an unusual age group in Norway
Video of the Surf Scoter:

Year ticks:
Great Northern Diver, White-billed Diver, Shag, Purple Sandpiper, Dunlin, Black-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Turnstone, Glaucous Gull, Black Guillemot, Razorbill, Rock Pipit, Grasshopper Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Rook  plus a flava Yellow Wagtail from the living room window in the evening whilst doing committee work!

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