If only there was no Covid and I could be guiding overseas birders who want to see some Scandinavian specialities then yesterday would have been a good day…
Well, there is Covid and there is quarantine and there are no tourists but the birds are still there, tourists will hopefully return and every now and then a local birder or photographer wants my services so I try to keep control of all the hard to find birds.
My “Fab Four” have been a bit difficult to find of late with only Hawk Owl being easy (pretty much guaranteed) to find. My Facebook feed recently though has been spammed 😊 by pictures of Hazel Grouse eating alder catkins (thanks Bjørn Einar) and this inspired me to try again yesterday. It transpires I only needed to try an area a few hundred meters away from my previously guaranteed spot. Here there were alder trees with catkins and this is what Hazel Grouse love to eat in winter. I also heard and then later saw a Pygmy Owl (almost certainly the same I regularly saw earlier in the autumn) and with Hawkie in Maridalen in the afternoon I managed a “Terrific Three”.
No Three-toed Woodpecker to make it the Fab Four but you can’t always get what you want. Three Common Buzzards showed themselves in Maridalen including one hunting from perches within thinned out forest in a manner that was very reminiscent of Great Grey Owl. I heard another via via report of GGO today and whilst it is very likely that there are GG in the area I can’t help but think that there might also be some mis-identification going on with Buzzards or Hawk Owls possible confusion species for someone without binoculars.
|male Hazel Grouse (jerpe)|
First an extended video showing feeding and singing:
and here a 10 second video of it singing:
|here taking a catkin|
|I would normally be more than satisfied with this type of picture|
|Pygmy Owl (spurveugle) he sang very intermittently but showed little interest in my attempts to get his attention|
|Hawk Owl in a frame of natures making - their is an artist hidden deep within me :-)|
|just look at how dense the feathering is|
|attempt at art - spot Hawkie|
|back lit but a bit too distant|
|I went looking for GGO at dusk but just found this Hawkie that was still actively hunting|
|another addition to my collection of birds with Oslo landmarks in the background. Here the Common Buzzard (musvåk) that was hunting in the manner of a GGO|
|another Buzzard - one of three I saw in the Dale|
|Great Spotted Woodpecker (flaggspett)|