Sunday, October 02, 2016

Skogsøy 01 October - Weather forecast blunder and camera disaster

The weather forecast was lightish NW and sunny. I had hoped for a good day of migration in pleasant conditions after the recent strong winds. This was not to be the case.

The wind was right and so was sun thing. Until I actually arrived at the lookout point when it started raining. And didn't stop. After 90 minutes I gave up, soaked through my so-called waterproofs.

The seawatching was a wash-out in every sense of the word with the best bird being a lone Great Northern Diver islom heading south. Other than that it was just Gannets havsule, a few auks, small numbers of Red.throated Diver smålom, a couple of White-tailed Eagle havørn and that's about it.

There was something large hunting fish offshore - I strongly suspect it may have been tuna as there was no sign of any cetacea.

Hawk Owl haukugle taken pre.dawn with ridiculously high ISO values and idiotically slow shutter speeds - before the camera gave up the ghost

However, the day was saved before I even parked the car - on the way to Skogsøy I finally connected with a local Hawk Owl haukugle - it wasn't anything like daylight and I had to use hitherto unheard of ISO values to get any kind of shot at all. With an exposure time of 1/10 and an ISO of 4000 I was quite happy.....

I haven't checked yet but I think that the Hawk Owl was my 200th species at Tjeldstø. First member of the "Tjeldstø 200 club" if I am correct.

Other stuff seen today included a Goshawk hønsehauk at Skogsøy, a Whincaht buskskvett at Breivik and a Peregrine vandrefalk at Tjeldstø in the evening.

The Peregrine produced its own set of problems . having returned from the WET seawatch at Skogsøy I found my camera wasn't working. No contact with either battery or memory card. I lit the wood-burning stove, removed card, batteries, opened everything I could and left the camera in front of the fire. After a while it started to respond and I thought all was good, Until I tried to take pictures of the (distant) Peregrine, It then transpired that the autofocus had stopped working. With the bird sitting still I switched to manual focus and did OK. For safety's sake I took a few pics with my point and pray superzoom - something that also gave acceptable images.

First the DLSR images (MASSIVELY cropped):

DSLR version of Juvenile Peregrine vandrefalk

And then the superszoom;

The first of these images was over and above the optical zoom.
All in all not that bad at all....
For more examples using this superzoom see this page

The Northern Lights put on a brief but powerful display in the evening - to the sound track of migrating Redwings rødvingetrost - a common sound after dark the last week or so

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