BIRD GUIDING AROUND OSLO

Monday, 25 April 2016

Lapland Bunting and raptors in Maridalen

When I popped in to Maridalen yesterday to see if the Med Gull was still there (and to see how many were twitching it) I thought I heard a Lapland Bunting. A quick scan revealed only Mipits so I dismissed it. I was a little annoyed then when I saw that three birds were discovered there later and a great shot was taken of a male by Eric Roualet. Luckily though the three birds were still present today. They flew up from the pathway and flew to one of the “islands” within the field where there are large rocks that stop the farmer ploughing (these islands are always good for birds). In flight there was one cracking male, a very drab female and a third bird which was reported as a male but could well have been a female in summer plumage. When they landed the drab female showed briefly and the cracking male stayed on view whilst the third bird vanished in the grass. It was a bit long range (50m) but great to see these birds on the deck (I normally only see them in flight in Maridalen).

There wasn’t much else initially although I did have a low overflying Crane when I got out of the car – still no arrival of Wheatears or Willow Warblers but a skein of Pink-footed Geese at 09:17 gave me some hope. Around this time the wind dropped and the sun shone (otherwise it was cold with a continued northerly wind) and suddenly there were raptors. During the course of around 40 minutes I had a Rough-legged Buzzard, an Osprey, 2 Goshawks, a Peregrine, a Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel. It then just dried up again though.

I couldn’t find the Med Gull and there were fewer gulls on the lake and following the plough so she might have moved on (edit: indeed it has as what looks to be the same bird was seen in Hamar 80 km to the north at 1pm today). That these birds can move large distances relatively quickly has been shown with the ringed bird from Østensjøvannet which after last being seen there on 16 April turned up 300km away on the west coast on 21 April.

Deciding that Maridalen had no more to offer me (always a difficult decision to make) I headed for Nordre Øyeren. After my comments about the disastrous increase in water levels last week they have now fallen by 43cm since peaking on Thursday and things are once again looking rosy. I could only find 78 Curlew in Svellet today but I am so excited thinking about what may turn up over the next couple of weeks. Around Øyeren today I had 6 species of waders so things are warming up (Lapwing, Curlew, Snipe, Green Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper and Little Ringed Plover).

The Garganey pair is still on its favoured pond and I had 4 Swallows including one bird with particularly red underparts (no useful pictures though) which I can’t remember having seen in Norway before.

Exciting news has emerged of a pair of Kingfishers that have seemingly gone under the radar of birders and are visiting a nest hole in the centre of Sandvika just west of Oslo. These birds could very well be the ones seen at Fornebu (where both male and female were seen although not together) and will undoubtedly become popular.
 
Crane (trane) low over Maridalen

same bird - an arty shot?
female Lapland Bunting (lappspurv)

male Lapland Bunting

female Lapwing (vipe)

a selection of very poorly photographed . Iraptors from Maridalen. Clockwise from top left: 2cy Peregine (vandrefalk), Rough-legged Buzzard (fjellvåk),  male Sparrowhawk (survehauk), Osprey (fiskeørn) with som strange notches in its feathers, an male Kestrel. I also had Goshawk.
 

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