A short trip to the south-west

After ten freezing cold days with loads of snow, we took off for a long weekend at Jæren – the south-westrn corner of Norway – that tempted with temperatures above zero and snow-free conditions. Despite quite heavy winds and frequent showers, it offered some great birding.

One of our first encounters was a beautiful great egret – an uncommon visitor to Norway, and a rare guest in the winter.

At Kvassheim lighthouse a good number of ducks were feeding along the seashore. A drake gadwall was feeding with wigeons – an uncommon bird in winter. 

The shelduck is normally a short distance migrant, but a few individuals may stay in Norway over winter.

Almost no shorebirds to see; a couple of redshanks were the exception.

The ponds in the town Bryne holds a good number of waterfowl – among the goosanders.

A few moorhens spend the winter here.

A drake mandarin duck was the most colourful feature.

Jæren has probably the highest concentration of rooks in Norway.

The carrion crow is rare in Norway, and Jæren is among the few safe places to find them.

There were a lot of raptors around Jæren. At Orrevann an adult white-tailed eagle was chasing ducks.

At the same site, a young golden eagle was eating a newly killed greylag goose.

The two eagles had an arial argument over the territory.

A common buzzard flew by, and later inspected the prey from the golden eagle.

We also did a stop at Lista in the very south, where a couple of Tundra swans was a nice surprise.

A few meadow pipits stay behind and challenge the winter in southern Norway.

The diving ducks are still around in Lista harbour, even if most of the surface is frozen. Female common scoter

Female scaup

Female goldeneyes