Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Turtle Dove

Today was windless and a heavy fog hung over the Oslo area which only started to lift in the afternoon when blue skies and the sun could be glimpsed and created some very exciting lighting and landscapes in Maridalen.

I started the morning at Fornebu where I hoped that the quiet windless conditions would help me locate birds but the fog seemed to cause the birds to be quiet and there was really very little activity. Four Bearded Tits showed at very close range in the reeds but the lighting was so poor and there was no chance of any better photos than those I managed on Friday which really weren’t so bad anyway J

I tried to look for any interesting seaducks in the fjord but the visibility made it a hopeless task and I started thinking that maybe I could try for Zaks Turtle Dove again (which I dipped on 1 Nov just after he found it). It has only been reported once since although I don’t think that many have tried (despite its rarity). I discounted the idea though as I hate failed twitches and I especially dislike wandering around peering into peoples gardens and having people staring back suspiciously and nervously at me. But then as I drove out of Fornebu I found the car taking me on a twitch…

It wasn’t a long drive and after I parked up I walked the streets trying to look as innocent as possible. The visibility here was quite good and at times the sun even threatened to burn through. I found a couple of Collared Doves and after only 10 minutes I saw another dove distantly on a wire and even before I raised my bins had a good feeling. Indeed, it was the Turtle Dove and perched right outside the garden where Zak had found it. I walked closer and saw a lady walk right under the bird. Before I got particularly close though it flew down into a garden. Here I took some quick photos but quickly felt so uncomfortable that I went back to the car. As I got to the car though I heard the count down siren for an explosion at a nearby building site and thought that this would be bound to cause the bird to fly up. I jumped into the car and drove the short distance back and sure enough the bird was back on the wire with a Collared Dove. I was able to get some rather good photos especially when the fog lifted and the sun shone for a couple of minutes.

With this Akershus County tick in the bag I then headed to Maridalen. Here the fog was still thick but by 2pm the sun was shining through and it became majestically spectacular although my photos don’t really capture it properly. The 5 Scaup and 3 Tufted were still there and were briefly joined by a Common Scoter.
Turtle Dove (turteldue) with Collared Dove (tyrkerdue)

even in silhouette the smaller size of the Turtle vs. the Collared can be seen

female Bearded Tit (skjeggmeis) in the mist

and a male

Common Scoter (svartand) on Maridalsvannet
and the 5 Scaup (bergand) and 3 Tufted Ducks (toppand)

sun and fog in Maridalen

the sun was just behind the trees which were causing shadows in the fog

here the sun can be seen

the sun and fog combined very well with the church ruins in Maridalen

and this is how it looked only 6 days ago

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