Thursday, 5 November 2015

Quite a few geese

South east Norway at this time of the year has a limited birdlife but there can be some concentrations of geese and swans with a chance of finding something scarcer amongst them. One good place is Hærsetsjøen just over the border in Østfold. I left the house early to get there for dawn and on the drive had a Pygmy Owl on a roadside wire. When I arrived the small lake was overflowing with geese. 2500 Greylags was a huge number! I was convinced there would White-fronted or Bean Geese amongst them or even a Lesser White-front but apart from 210 Pink-feets there were no other species - unbelievable!  It would be very interesting to know the origin of these Greylags. I saw no neck rings which I have seen amongst flocks of moulting Greylags around Oslo which suggests these are not local birds. A few Teal were the only ducks and 82 Whooper Swans held no smaller cousins.

I continued by returning into Akershus and checking out Hemnessjøen which was quiet and Hellesjøvsannet which apart from a good count of 5 Smew was also very quiet. I had hoped to find Bearded Tits at the extensive reedbeds at both these sites but heard none.

Raptors were very scarce today with just single Buzzard and Goshawk and surprisingly I had only a single Great Grey Shrike. With so few concentrations of birds to see I ended up back in Oslo with time to spare and went to Fornebu. Here the Kingfisher was again present in Storøykilen but this time I nailed it down and watched it for over an hour during which it caught fish at least three times and looked to be very happy with its lot - if we have a mild winter it may even survive although chances of that are slim.


some of the Greylag Geese (grågjess)

a few Whooper Swans (sangsvane) today but no Bewick's

Kingfisher (isfugl) again. Still always a long way off

the turquoise back casting a reflection in the water

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