Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Hernar 04 October - Another new species for the county!

Sunny with light SE winds, increasing later.


One of the very first birds I saw today was a "strange mistle thrush" which came out of some spruce trees and flew low into another group of trees. It was a large thrush which dwarfed an accompanying Song Thrush måltrost. I glimpsed paler outer tail feathers but it was not yet fully light. Even though I thought the behaviour was off for Mistle Thrush duetrost I thought the odds were too high for anything better. Not long afterwards I glimpsed the same bird in flight again, but this time seeing something of the dark wedge on the inside of the outer tail feathers, a hint of scaly back and together with a repeat of the same low flight into a new dense plantation I really began to suspect that this was in fact a White's Thrush gulltrost.

A couple of hours later I saw it again, once more from behind and knew then that it could not be anything common. I saw where it had landed and planned my line of attack to get the sun behind me. I was rewarded with a few seconds of view from the side in full sunlight - this view clinched it all and a short time afterwards I saw it for the last time on the ground where the scaly body pattern was more obvious. Wicked!

My camera finally gave up the ghost before this last sighting. Damn you Canon! I know I mistreat my photo gear but this was a case of very bad timing. To be honest the views were so short that I probably had not managed to take any kind of record shot anyway.

A page from my notebook - sketched in the field and coloured in later. The wing pattern isn't quite Collin's but the idea/impression is what counts!

I went back to my teenage years when I used to draw and paint a lot. I sketched up what I had seen and later in the evening after adding the colours I compared with Collins and found a reasonable likeness - I have obviously not got the wing quite right - but the impression from a few seconds of viewing still gives the right idea. The tail and the head were spot on - and were the features seen best.

Even without this mega - the second new species of the county in as many days - I would have been happy with the day's result. Multiple Yellow-browed Warbler gulbrynsanger, two Jack Snipe kvartbekkasin, a Water Rail vannrikse (first of the autumn), two Grey Wagtails vintererle, a Lesser Whitethroat møller, at least one Richard's Pipit tartarpiplerke, two Goldfich stillits and a host of other migrants including plenty of Swallow låvesvale, a Willow Warbler løvsanger, a few Chiff-chaff gransanger and at least three Blackcap munk to name but some.

The day was so hectic that I did not make it over to the east side of the island, did not do any watching for visible migration as I normally do and had to ignore a few potentially interesting birds (inlcuding a bird I supected of being a young Moorehen sivhøne which would be a Harnar mega. It was all down to priorities today.

After my "proper" camera died I tried my point and pray superzoom and discovered a couple of things that will really help in the future. I have high hopes of being able to use this camera much more.

First the superzoom pics

Chiff-chaff gransanger

Goldcrest fuglekonge

Robin rødstrupe

Willow Warbler løvsanger

Blue tit blåmeis
On Hernar even Blue tits blåmeis are migrants - and in common witj Sæle yesterday this species is obviously on the move

Chiff-chaff gransanger

And then some DSLR shots from earlier in the day before it died:

Velvet Scoter sjøorre

A few of the day's Yellow-browed Warblers gulbrynsanger

1 comment:

Ola said...

Fantastisk funn, Julian! Gratulerer.