Mandø 2011 (updated)

Kristian and I had been looking forward to a full week of birding on the small island of Mandø. For the preceding months we had read ID papers and gone through endless photos of sibes and yanks. Finally, on the afternoon of the October 16 we arrived with the help of my parents, who drove us from Esbjerg.

The weather was grey and autumnlish - not to bad - but a lot of wind, unfortunately. We set out for birding every morning at 8 am, and didn't return for anything except a quick lunch, until sun set.

We recorded a total of 111 species, to mention a few: Yellow-browed Warbler (2-3), Firecrest, Richard's Pipit, Great White Egret, Sooty Shearwater (!), Pomarina Skua, Great Skua, Arctic Skua, Little Bunting, and

Red-eyed Vireo - a first for Scandinavia! Found by local birder Eva Foss Henriksen moments before Kristian Laustsen and I by chance visited the same site.

Late 1cy Black Tern. Flanks were pure white, so no chance of surinamensis.

Kristian's bins and yet another cup of coffee between some rain showers.

Kristian carrying my scope. In order for us not to carry more than necessary, I went with the camera and we had walkie-talkies.

Quite late Lesser Whitethroat (found on October 19, photos taken October 22). Probably ssp curruca although the head (especially ear coverts) seemed conspicuously dark in most angles of view. Size was as curruca. Underparts buff. Call not heard.

Kristian and me checking the late Lesser Whitethroat. (Photo: Per Poulsen )

Difficult to decipher tail pattern from this record shot.

Little Bunting. Found by Klaus K. Nielsen late afternoon, October 20. We had just walked all the way down to the Vireo (hoping the twitchers had left, allowing another peaceful sunset view of the Vireo) when an SMS reported Little Bunting 1.5km north of us. New lifer, so we ran!

Checking the coastline for wheatears (hoping for Isabeline) yielded 2-6 Northern Wheatears every day.

Peregrin Falcon

Pomarine Skua (digiscoped at quite long range)

And the Vireo - a great find! Photos shot late afternoon on October 19 in poor light (hence ISO1600).

This Richard's Pipit hadn't been seen for 9 days when we relocated it on October 16. Presumably the same bird that THH found here on October 2.

When checking the fields for locustellas and pipits we stumpled upon many Short-eared Owls (including a flock of 8).

This photo, however, shows a Long-eared Owl (as RSN drew my attention to). The bird was flushed and only seen briefly through the camera. Note amongst other things that the wing lacks the broad white trailing edge seen in Short-eared Owls.

 Twitchers at the Vireo (October 20)

Migrating Wood Lark

Yellow Browed Warbler


What a great find !

Punkbirder MEGA   -   Rufous-tailed Robin


Mandø in week 42

In week 42 (the autumn hollidays) Kristian Laustsen (KLa) and I will be staying (that is: birding) on the small island of Mandø, southwestern Denmark. Kristians family has a summer house there, so we'll have the best opportunities for full-time birding.

There's no Internet connection there so I'll not update the blog during our stay.

Fingers crossed !


Buzzard migration!

Today (11:35-13:50) at Stubben, northern Copenhagen:

Common Buzzard 1160 (in just over two hours)
Red Kite 3 flock
Sparrowhawk 3
Hen Harrier 1  (+ 1 puzzling harrier left unidentified)

The buzzards just kept coming in, flocks of varying sizes from 4 to 150+. A lot of the birds came directly over Stubben, whereas other flocks passed just north of, others again just south of. Most birds flew high, but single birds flew very high for my 7x42 Dialyt... Almost like afternoon Honey Buzzards at the Strait of Gibraltar.

A tower of circling Buzzards. 


Sensor dust on Lumix ?!

Since working at the ringing station last year my Panasonic Lumix ZS3 pocket camera has suffered from a terrible amount of dust on the sensor. I use it once in a while for digiscoping I tried to disassemble the camera and remove the dust. I followed this guide and it worked perfectly well.
So that's some sort of recommendation - try it out if your pocket camera has dust on its sensor.