Probably for the last time this season I went ringing at Ässön today.
The morning started really slow with only one Redpoll ringed during the first one and a half hour. But all of the sudden there was a small explosion of Redpolls and Blue tits. In just one net there was over 40 birds. Since I was alone this morning I got a little bit stressed, but luckily most of the flocks missed the nets and I managed to keep on ringing. And after that net round I dident catch many more birds. So all and all I caught around 60 birds in five nets, which is the best morning since the beginning of October.
After ringing I went home to relax the rest of the day. But shortly after I reached home a Great Northern Loon were discovered just 10 km from home. Of course I went there since I haven't seen this species in the region of Närke. And I didn't get disappointed in the rain. The Loon was fishing quite close to the shore of Lake Hjälmaren.
Back home now and looking forward to a well deserved nap:-)
Went to Ässön again today for some ringing. When I put up the nets the thermometer were only showing 0 degrees, one of the coldest mornings so far this autumn.
Were quite a lot of passerines migrating today, but due to very good weather they were flying quite high.
In five hours I caught a total of 27 birds of 8 different species.
Nicest bird of the day were a really late Reed Warbler with fat 7. This is a new phenology record for the area of Närke.
Other nice species were Long-tailed Tit and Lesser Redpoll.
List of birds caught:
Siskin - 6
Long-tailed Tit - 2
Lesser Redpoll - 1
Reed Warbler - 1
Wren - 6
Brambling - 1
Blue Tit - 3
Great Tit - 7
Today a red-breasted goose showed up in Kvismaren. It's just the second time ever it's observed here. And last time I've missed it so this was a nice rerun:-)
Didn't get any good pictures of the it, but hopefully it will stick around for a few days so I will get some more chanses to photograph this beautiful bird.
Two blog posts in a day.. I must have the flu or something ;-)
For a couple of days now there has been a hoopoe in Örebro, close to were I live. I haven't went there erlier because the weather been quite bad. But yesterday I decide that I would go there today if it was still around. And it was, for five minutes this morning and then it disappeared. I was hoping that someone would find it during the day. But when there was no more reports at one a clock I decided to go there and make an effort to find it myself.
Well, I can't say it was hard, I almost stepped on it when I walked out of the car. But after that it was quite hard to get close to and didn't get the chance take any decent photos (as you can see on the first picture). But after spending two hours trying two sneak up on it I finally got some ok photos.
This autumn I've decided to ring a little bit during the weekends at Ässön, a small island at lake Hjälmaren.
Today I did my first visit. There was quite a lot of migrating passerines, but not so much in the nets. I was by my self today so I only put up four nets and caught around 40 birds. Mostly Goldcrests, but also a few Chiffchaff, Long-tailed tit, Blue tit, Robins and Willow tit. The last one was actually a new ringing tick for me, they aren't that common outside the forests.
The weather actually looks better for tomorrow morning, but I feel that I need to sleep so there will be no more ringing this weekend (if I don't change my mind tonight=).
But next weekend I will try again, and hopefully I will get help from another ringer then.
I live really close Lake Kvismaren witch is Swedens biggest roosting area for geese and cranes in the autumn. The cranes are about to leave the area now but just two weeks ago there were almost 19 000 cranes here. To see them all fly in to the lakes in the sunset is a magnificent spectacle.
But as I said the cranes have started to leave now, but the spectacle isn't over because of that, because now the geese start to show up. Right now there is around 15 000 of them here, but in just a few weeks the number will be around 30 000. We mostly have Been Geese of the subspecies fabalis (around 25 000), but you can also find small flocks of subspecies rossicus. Apart from the Been Geese there's also around 10 000 Greylag Geese, 1500 Barnacle Geese, 500-1000 Pink-footed Geese and small numbers of White-fronted and Lesser White-fronted geese.
If you ever are close to Kvismaren in the autumn you should definitely plan a visit here for at least one evening to see all this birds gathering in the lakes in the sunset.
For about a month now an interesting bird has been around Kvismaren in Sweden (about 200km west of Stockholm). I got a report about an unsure Pallid or Montagu's Harrier. I was close by so i went there to look for it. I found it within halv an hour, but quite far away. Right away I got the feeling of a juvenile Pallid from the jizz of the bird. And shortly afterwards I could see that the tips of the primaries weren't as black as on a Montagu's, so I felt comfortable to put it out on our alarm system for birds as a Pallid. Shortly afterwards I saw two birders that was much closer to the bird, but were looking in the wrong direction, I called them up and told them to turn around and try to take some photos of the bird, witch they managed to do. Later I met up with them to look at the pictures, and when I saw them I got really confused, because on the pictures (that weren't great) it all of sudden looked more like a Hen Harrier. I hadn't even considered that it could be a Hen before that because it was so red and nothing I've seen in the jizz pointed towards that. I looked closer to the pictures and could actually see character for both Hen and Pallid.. could it be a hybrid?
Well I was at least sure now that this wasn't a pure Pallid Harrier, so I ones again put it out on the Bird Alarm and wrote that it could be a hybrid. I shortly afterwards received phone calls from some confused birders that had found the bird a bit away from were I saw it. They had exactly the same impression I first had, that it was a Pallid and couldn't see anything that pointed in any other direction.
I didn't see the bird more that day and decided to report it as an unsure hybrid between Pallid and Hen Harrier.
Luckily I found the bird again the next morning, and this time it was much closer. It stilled looked like a Pallid but now I could see that it actually had five fingers instead of four and that the hand was to broad for a pallid. Now I got some photos of the bird as well and I wasn't unsure any more. It's definitely a hybrid between Pallid and Hen harrier. First time this hybrid has been observed in this part of Sweden.
Last night after I updated the blog I went out with a flashlight and a net to try to catch a Jack Snipe. I located the snipe quite fast, but after that it just went downhill.. Time after another it tricked me. For close to two hours I just ran around in the dark swearing to myself. And when I almost were about to give up, I GOT IT!!
I had mud from top to toe, but it was totally worth it. What a feeling after that effort, and what a wonderful creature!
This morning were our last at Utklippan for this autumn, at ten the boat came and picked us up. But before that we managed to see three new species for the week, a Red-throated Pipit, a Little Grebe and we caught a Grasshopper Warbler. In total we ringed 1500 birds and saw 117 species during the week.
I will try to sum this week up in a longer blog post in a few days. But this is all for now folks.
Now I'm going to have a well deserved shower (there is non at Utklippan)!
Well, we can't complain today either.
Before sunrise we caught two Long-eared Owls. When the sun was on its way up we caught another Yellow-browed Warbler, and minutes later we caught Nr 3 from yesterday.
Other nice things that we caught today were two Red-breasted Flycatcher, 1 Barnacle Goose and one Coal Tit (new for me on Utklippan).
Right now we are trying to catch some Jack Snipes that we have observed earlier today.
Tomorrow we are going home after a fantastic week.
I'm really tired so this blog post is a short one. I let the pictures speak for themselves instead.
What a day!
The day started in the best possible way. Before the sunrise we caught a Woodcock, which was a new ringing tick for me.
As you probably remember I found a Yellow-browed Warbler yesterday that non of my friends here saw. Well, today they got compensation in form of the three(!) Yellow-browed Warblers that we've ringed (second new ringing tick for the day). And as if that wasn't enough we caught the second Firecrest for the week as well (third new ringing tick) and another unringed Firecrest was seen in field in the afternoon.
Apart from those species there was a lot of thrushes in the morning. Mostly Song Thrushes, but also some Redwings and Blackbirds.
And of course there been a lot of Robins and Goldcrests as well.
It's been kind of foggy all day, so we haven't been able to watch for migrating birds over the ocean, but a few flocks of Geese and Cranes have past over our heads.
There's no wind at all today, so tonight I will try to catch some Owls and Snipes again.
See you tomorrow!