Tuesday, 29 November 2016

And now Hawky baby!

So, I finished yesterday’s post saying how nice it would be to see the Hawk Owl in Sørkedalen today. I was asking for trouble, wasn’t I? I arrived in the favoured area soon after 9am when the sun was just coming over the horizon and the cold air (-5C) was filled with the lovely smell of burning plastic (some farmer thought that would be the best way to quit himself with his rubbish). A couple of drive bys didn’t reveal the bird so I parked up and went on a thorough search of the area. I did turn up a Great Grey Shrike which is the first record in Sørkedalen this year but no owl which is par for the course when I go twitching. I retreated to Fornebu but despite the sun, no wind and minus temperatures there were no Bearded Tits to see or hear and little else with the bays now being frozen.

I then made tracks for Maridalen but at the last minute decided to give Sørkedalen another go and I am glad I did because this time I found Hawkie. He was a few hundred metres from where I had concentrated my earlier efforts but was sat on top of the highest tree in the area clearly visible from the road I reckon I would have noticed him earlier…. Even though he was high up, the light was fantastic so I am happy with the pictures I got and reckon he will be worth further visits as yesterday he was hunting from wires right by the road.

So Piney one day and Hawkie the next - it doesn't get much better for a Brit Birder!

A quick trip to Maridalen revealed a single Great Grey Shrike but no owls of either the pygmy or hawk variety. Interestingly Maridalsvannet was only just starting to ice over in a couple of bays, whilst Bogstadvannet in Sørkedalen is completely frozen and the bays in the salt water fjord at Fornebu are also already frozen.
Hawk Owl in Sørkedalen. It was only a couple of hundred metres from the local primary school and seemed to be enjoying the sun

Sørkedalen's Great Grey Shrike (varsler)

and Maridalen's but I guess you'll have to take my word for it ;-)

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