Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Some birds on the sea to see today

I was in two minds as to whether I should sea gaze from Krokstrand today but after my lack of joy yesterday and the fact that the weather forecast was for less strong winds today I decided on a trip to Fornebu today. I had plans of finding Cattle Egret, Hoopoe, Richards’s Pipit or if they eluded me then Shore Lark, Lapland Bunting or Bearded Tit. Before I went looking for those though I had a short gaze at the sea at around 9am and 10 minutes or so confirmed that there was nothing happening. I then walked around the inland areas and found none of the birds on my wish list and very little else otherwise. Just after 1030 Bjørn Olav sent out a message that he was seagazing at Fornebu and over the last hour had seen 15 Kittiwakes and a Fulmar. So, there was something to see on the sea and I decided to head over to him. The wind was not particularly strong but there were clearly birds moving now and especially Kittiwakes which were coming in flocks of upto 30 birds. We had over 150 Kittiwakes!!, 12 Fulmars and  200 Guillemots until 1330. Best of all was a Puffin, a 1 cy Little Gull and a dark juvenile Skua which flew north at some height and didn’t allow itself to be identified other than as an Arctic/Long-tailed. Almost all birds were flying north with very few attempting to fly south out of the inner fjord. Of the birds we followed most went into Lysakerfjord but there were not to be seen there later and we also had a flock of 30 Kittiwakes that started circling over Bygdøy and gained a lot of height, but we didn’t see where they eventually went (we chad even rarer birds to find…).

I left at 1330 and headed for Maridalen thinking there may be some Kittiwakes on the lake (there weren’t) but a Long-tailed Duck was a good find.

I did wonder what I would have seen today had I gone to Krokstrand but a 5 and a half hour seawatch from Brentetangen by 2 observors produced only 6 Kittiwakes!! and only 20 auks. I cannot understand how we had so much more from Fornebu.

I did manage to document some of the birds we saw today but a lot of the pictures were a lot worse than they needed to be after I had pushed up the exposure compensation when taking pictures of the skua and then forgot to adjust it back afterwards.

Fulmar (havhest) - we had a minimum of 12 which was a very high number especially given the relatively weak winds (no white horses) 
flock of Kittiwakes (krykkje)

the same Kittiwakes circlingover Bygdøy. We did not see where they headed to after this

1cy Kittiwake. There were a number of birds that needed a lot of grilling after initial poor views suggested they were something rarer

1cy Little Gull (dvergmåke) with adult Kittiwake. Thi birds small size in comparison to the Kittiwake made ID easy

the unidentified Skua. I reckon it was most likely a Long-tailed but views were not good enough to make a positive ID
This Long-tailed Duck (havelle) was the only duck I saw on Maridalsvannet

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