I started off by playing a visit to Snekkervika and Svellet in Nordre Øyeren where there were suddenly a lot more birds. Svellet now held 23 Curlew and Lapwings besides Friday’s Oystercatchers and there were also some dabbling ducks now with 35 Teal and 3 Wigeon. These numbers should increase every day over the next two weeks. The pool at Merkja is now ice free (covered in ice on Friday) but will need a bit more time before it is also full of birds.
There were a number of ducks at Snekkervika/Fautoya with 250 Teal and 5 Gadwall which is a scarce species in these parts. There were quite a few finches flying over (6 species) and my first Green Sandpiper of the year. I was sure that a very distant perched bird was a White-tailed Eagle but couldn’t ascertain any plumage characters however when I crow landed next to it then its huge size and identity were confirmed.
Maridalen was a complete revelation compared to the last two days. MY first Wheatear was on the fields at Kirkeby where there were also additional Skylarks. 7 Cranes flew low over, 49 Greylags had stopped off on the lake, and there were Mistle Thrushes all over the place. A Peregrine flew over the car, 2 Goshawks were hunting and a small patch of snow on a field held an amazing 45 White Wagtails and 3 Twite. These birds were presumably looking for small insects that occur on snow. On the lake Mallards (and possibly Crows) also seem to be finding insects to eat on the ice. I also had my first Snipe of the year in the valley.
The Great Grey Shrike was also still present.
I am still limited to the old 70-300mm lens but must admit that I enjoyed its small size and found flight shots easier to take – I really didn’t miss the old bazooka ;-)
|I had a pleasant shock when I saw these four Cranes (trane) flying right towards me at low level|
|they then banked off to the left like synchronised swimmers|
|they stalled but I'm not sure if this was due to uncertainty as to where they should go or if they were thinking of landing|
|took far too many pictures and can't decide which I like best.............|
|25 minutes before I had the group of 4 I had this group of 3. Looking for feather damage in the primaries present on 2 birds within the group of 4 I am quite sure that this group of 3 did not join up with another bird to make the group of 4...|
|there is still very little open water (just where stream flow in) but Goosanders (laksand) have increased to 7|
|this adult Goshawk (hønsehauk) had I assume just eaten|
|my first Wheatear (steinskvett) of the year was a very early Oslo bird|
|a White Wagtila (linerle) sitting on the model of the church (before it became a ruin) in Maridalen|
|adult Whooper Swan (sangsvane) Maridalen|
|female Yellowhammer (gulspurv)|
|5 phone scoped Gadwall (snadderand)|
|and some of the45 distant White Wagtails feeding on a remaining patch of snow|
|and this believe it or not is a White-tailed Eagle and a Crow at a distance of ca.2km|