After yesterday’s signs of spring I thought that a visit to Kurefjorden today might turn up something. Initially I found very little with a light mist not helping things but eventually it brightened up a bit and a few birds showed themselves.
Four Shelduck were my first of the year and a quite an early record. Greylag Geese numbered 106 and such a high number so early is I think a sign of the ever increasing feral population and the competition for breeding sites. There were quite a few Great Crested Grebes and Velvet Scoters on the water and amongst them were five Red-throated Divers but I found no scarcer grebes, divers or ducks. Highlight was a flock of six Purple Sandpipers on a distant rock. The rock was small but the sandpipers managed to be out of sight more than they were in so it was luck that I found them.
On the way home I scored with three Great Grey Shrikes in the Golden Shrike Triangle but surprisingly this was not the three birds I have though were wintering here but actually confirmation that there are four territories in such a small area. There have been sightings of a bird at Årungen which is less than 1km from the northern territory so I have assumed this related to one and the same bird. Today however I saw birds at both sites within 2 minutes of each other confirming that there actually two different territories. I have updated my map over these territories showing how small the territories are and how close they come to each other.
A Great Grey Owl was found today near Larvik about an hour and a half drive from Oslo and with a Hawk Owl along the way I think I know where I may be heading tomorrow....
|Distant Purple Sandpipers (fjæreplytt). The island is 650m away|
|my first Red-throated Diver (smålom) of 2016|
|and my first Shelduck (gravand) here together with Eiders (ærfugl)|
|the small rock in the middle of the picture is where the Purple Sands were|