BIRD GUIDING AROUND OSLO

Monday, 21 November 2016

A northern redpoll and some hairy tits


Today was nice and sunny after a night of rain (which had fallen as snow on the higher valley sides in Maridalen) and I thought I would try to make use of the sun for some better photos of some of last weeks birds. Photographing birds though is of course reliant on the birds being present at the same time as the light is good. I went up into Sørkedalen to see the Pintail but here there was a layer of fog that always seemed to be between the bird and the sun so the photos weren’t as good as I had hoped for.

At Fornebu though I had luck with the Bearded Tits and managed to see the birds with the sun behind me but now the problem was getting photos without a reed stem getting in the way. There were some good photos in the end J I only had a single pair today so it could be that the other birds have moved on or just that the flock has split up and the other birds were feeding quietly in other parts of the reedbed.

A small flock of Redpolls feeding on weeds on the edge of the reedbed were of the Common/Mealy kind but one individual was very pale and really tested the limit of where a Common ends and an Arctic starts. I got a few photos which show the under tail coverts (I managed none of the rump which when seen briefly seemed large and pure white) and these show more streaking than is accepted to be OK for Arctic. The bird was very pale and frosty but perhaps lacked the straw colouring that is typical of classic Arctic Redpolls.With new genetic research showing that all redpolls (Lesser, Mealy and Arctic) are the same species where different plumages and physical features (morphological features) reflect the areas (latitudes) where they breed then it is fair to say that this individual was a northern Redpoll…

I finished my last blog post wondering whether the Scaup would turn up again in Maridalen after I failed to see them on Friday. Well the answer is yes! There were four present today along with the 3 Tufted Duck. I doubt that they are leaving Maridalen the times when I don’t see them so they must be in one of the bays that I can’t see from my normal watchpoints.
spot the bird

I initially had the beardies with back lighting at some range but it can cause nice images


when I did manage to get close to the birds then I had better light but those reeds kept getting in the way!


I like this one



bloody reed again!



a vert frosty 1cy Redpoll. Possibly an arctic but not necessarily. Very frosty and broad white edges to the tertials and flight feathers as well as wingbars. I would have liked to see it being more straw coloured around the head though



here in comparison to a normal Common Redpoll (gråsisik) it is clear how much paler this bird is and it is also small billed
but that is probably too much streaking on the undertail coverts

another view of the undertail coverts

I never got a photo of the rump but here one gets an idea that it was largely white
the lower bird is probably the same Arctic candidate and a bit more the white rump can be glimpsed. Note that the normal Common Redpoll (upper bird) is ringed

a normal (dark) Common Redpoll with streaked rump and off white wing bars and tertial fringes
this is bird is also a bit pale but not have so white tertial edges or wingbars
4 Scaup (bergand) were suddenly to be seen on Maridalsvannet again. Here are two with a Tufted Duck (toppand)
a fine male Hawfinch, one of four seen at Fornebu

the male Pintail (stjertand)



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