Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Autumn half term

It is autumn half term at the moment and due to Pokémon Go and stops at bakeries and Starbucks (why o why do kids think the place is cool?) I have been able to get the girls out to enjoy the beautiful weather. Yesterday we had a good walk in Maridalen in an area of forest I have never previously been in but which gave fantastic views over the valley and down to Oslo and also looked as though it could be a very good area for owls (in an owl year at least). Bird wise though the trip was a disaster but in Maridalen afterwards I found the Whooper Swan family again after they had evaded me for a few weeks. All seven youngsters are still going strong and size wise I expect they will take their first flight soon.

Today we went to the Pokémon rich Bygdøy. It was almost summery there and people were swimming in the sea. A young Arctic Tern was extremely confiding, allowing close approach but seemingly being in good form as I saw it catch at least three fish during the course of a couple of hours. I also heard a single call from a probable Yellow-browed Warbler and had a small group of Long-tailed Tits of which the only bird I saw in the bins had broad black head stripes exactly as a European race would. I only saw this bird very briefly and got no photos but it was even better marked than the bird I saw a few a times in Maridalen this summer.
Maridalen panorama

Oslofjord/ Bygdøy panorama

Arctic Terns (rødnebbterne) are tiny in comparison to Herring Gulls (gråmåke). It is amazing that some individuals of this species migrates from Arctic water to Antarctic waters and back again each year

after an unsuccessful plunge

but here with a fish

Fornebu in background

the superzoom really struggles with exposure of white birds in strong sunlight

1cy Red-throated Diver (smålom) - a surprisingly unusual sighting offshore Oslo

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