Oct 27, 2013

and crossbills

The afternoon on Herdlevær looking for late autumn birds. Off course lots of Common Crossbills (ca 150) and (the usual) White-winged Crossbills. At least ten birds of the latter and finally some decent pictures. Further a Blackcap, three Willow Tits and some Robins.

fine male White-winged Crossbill

Oct 22, 2013


A short trip to Herdlevær produces some 200 Common Crossbills. I heard a few flyby White-winged Crossbills, but didn't see them. Further the usual suspects with three Tree Sparrows, flyby Grey Wagtail and a Merlin at Blomvåg.

Oct 19, 2013

another YBW in Bergen

Yesterday I found yet another Yellow-browed Warbler in Bergen, as I was on my way to work. I only heard the bird. It was calling more or less frequently near Tveitevannet. But this time I was able to make a sound recording of the call. It pays off to look for migrants in the parks...When does the first Humes Yellow-browed Warbler or Pallas' Warbler turn up? Soundrecording linked below.
For the rest lots of thrushes, Bramblings, some Mealy Redpolls, two Hawfinches at Myrvannet near my house and a Common Snipe at Storetveit.

Call: http://www.xeno-canto.org/153056

Oct 15, 2013

redpolls, redpolls, redpolls...

There are a lot of redpolls around these days, most of them flyby's though. Difficult stuff as they are more or less are lookalikes. One needs to see them quite good to put a name on it. Different species or subspecies are involved; the locally breeding (south-west norwegian) Lesser Redpolls (brown), Mealy Redpolls (grey) from the north and Coues' Arctic Redpolls (white) from further north. These three species are reported widely the last few weeks.
The ringing station on Herdla is ringing them and there is a possibility to study the birds in the hand. That makes identification a bit easier. Last sunday I happened to be on Herdla and paid Nigel and Sissel Goodgame a visit as they were ringing. I was lucky to see some birds in the hand with at least one Coues' Arctic Redpoll (exilipes) and a candidate Greenland Mealy Redpoll (rostrata)

First year Coues' Arctic Redpoll, note buffy wash on the face and broad white rump. In fact, the buff wash on the head is one of the best features to distinguish it from other redpoll-species

and tiny bill with straight culmen

and white undertailcoverts

possible Greenland type redpoll (rostrata) with large bill and boldly striped on the underside

Oct 12, 2013

Turøy with Robin and Hickman

Mid autumn, beautiful weather, so I HAD to go out. But these days I cannot just got out on my own. Anne had things for her own, so I chose to take Robin and Hickman with me to Turøy. Spent one-and-a-half hour searching for (small) birds, but as often with this type of weather, it was quiet with resting birds. Many birds on the move though, for the most finches. Many Mealy Redpolls (could identify some sitting birds), Bramblings and Common Crossbills and two singing and calling White-winged Crossbills.
On the ground only some Robins, Goldcrests and Blackbirds...

young WWC

 adult male WWC

Oct 8, 2013

YBW in Bergen (as expected...)

Today a Yellow-browed Warbler at Fantoft in Bergen. I only heard the bird calling ca 20 times. Didn't  have binoculars or sound recorder with me as I was heading to work. Anyhow, it was a new bird for Bergen municipality for me.
It was still present on 09.10 when I returned to try to tape it. I didn't succeed, because it only called to twice. However, I did see it, albeit short views high up in the trees.

Oct 5, 2013


Twitched the Hoopoe of Askøy successfully today. After almost three hours of searching in the area where it was seen on thursday, I was just about to give up...
Back at the carpark a man was approaching me and asked if I was looking for something special. Well, I was and as it happened to be the Hoopoe was in his garden, hiding from the main road. Lucky me! Took some shots and left the bird alone after that.

Hoopoe at Berland on Askøy

Utsira 2013

Had the traditional week with the family on Utsira. Did a lot of birding with Robin (sleeping) on my belly.
Not a week with the mindfuckers I had hoped for but there were in fact lots of birds around with four Little Buntings (two of which I found myself), Great Snipe, lots of Yellow-browed Warblers and Richard's Pipits and a Red-Throated Pipit. Below a selection of photographs

Little Bunting at Grotlihagen

Little Bunting near the church

Common Redstart at the rubbish tip

Snow Bunting near our house on east

one of the White-tailed Eagles present on the island