Thursday, September 17, 2015

Hernar 16 September 2015 - A national rarity and yet another hole in the list filled.

South easterly winds and largely sunny.

Spent the entire day birding Hernar. Well worth it! Although it felt relatively quiet there was enough going on that the day flew by and we didn't even get to cover all of this tiny island.

One of the first birds was a distant harrier hunting over Sanden / Nordøy. It was seen chasing Kestrels tårnfalk and hunting for around an hour in total but was rather distant and kept disappearing from view. However, the bright orange undersides, size and jizz meant that we kept our patience and never gave up.

Common Buzzard musvåk

One of several Kestrel tårnfalk seen today

"Boomerang" on the carpals, unstreaked orange underparts, narrow hand and four visible primaries say it all....

Obvious "boa", typical underwing pattern and narrow hand obvious here

Pale, irregularly streaked undersides to the primaries, boa and once again the very orange and unstreaked underparts visible here.

Remarkably, during a period where we waiting for the harrier to reappear another raptor turned up in the same place - a Common Buzzard musvåk - a real rarity in Øygarden and another of my local "bogey birds". A real relief to finally nail this species on the local patch! This bird, chased by the local Hooded Crows kråke finally crossed over to Hernar where it gave decent-ish views - and somehow brought the harrier with it.

The harrier showed well but against the light. We managed to clinch all the salient features and can now claim the first Pallid Harrier steppehauk for Øygarden. This is a juvenile bird - possibly the same one seen on Fedje a few days ago. This is incredibly the fourth new species for Øygarden this year - Ortolan Bunting hortulan, Bee-eater bieter and Black-headed Bunting svarthodespurv being the previous ones (and all of which I have missed whilst being at work....).

It was a day of raptors with several Kestrel tårnfalk, a few Sparrowhawk spurvehauk, a Peregrine vandrefalk and at least three White-tailed Eagle havørn in addition to the goodies already
mentioned. There was not much in the way of grounded migrants - just a Blackcap munk and several Chiff-chaff gransanger.

Waders were rather more obvious with Grey Plover tundralo, Knot polarsnipe and Bar-tailed Godwit lappspove among the better Hernar species. I

Other stuff included a Great Northern Diver islom and a couple of vocal Red-throated Diver smålom. Both of these species were the first of the autumn.

Birding selfie of two satisfied birders - smile, its a Pallid!

1 comment:

rixy said...

I don't want to take the wind out of your sails but Pallid is no longer a national rarity since they (apparantly) became as common as shite 😜