May 2011

16th–31st May

Our Constitution Day, still on the 17th of May, was not severely celebrated by the field birders on Utsira, the closest we came to music on parade was a singing Mr Tveit (also known as Twite) in your narrator´s garden.

Rather, the day was used looking for seabirds, something that produced five Red-throated Loons, two Pomarine Skuas and 22 Parasitic Jaegers (a high score for Utsira).

The Hoopoe stayed put until at least the 19th, also reported by the residents (naming it as ´owl´ (!) and ´woodpecker´). 

Hoopoe

A confiding Lapland Longspur could be caught by hand in one of the northern fields.

Wind from west gave up to eight Manx Shearwaters and five Great Skuas in a day passing the north headland.

A Hobby was seen on the 20th. Icterine Warbler and Common Rosefinch appeared for the first time this year on the 21st.

altThe next day started with a Greater Short-toed Lark (Sveinung Larsen, Rune G. Bosy), an unaged Iceland Gull was seen, and it ended with a Red Kite (Geir Mobakken) fast past mid-isle.

It was present until the 24th. As has happened several times before, species not previously recorded on the island show a tendency to re-appear shortly after; Utsira´s first Red Kite is from April 2010.

In heavy weather from the west on the 24th two Golden Orioles appeared in one of the northern gardens.

Other goodies this day was Northern Harrier, Corn Crake and not to forget a Thrush Nightingale. The latter has recently had two blank years on Utsira. The interconnection weather–birds is still unpredictable.

Easterly winds on the 26th gave results despite being on the cold side: Grasshopper Warbler, Icterine Warbler, Wood Warbler, Red-breasted Flycatcher and Common Rosefinch were among the species found trapped on this day.

Rustic BuntingAway from the trapping area, the year´s first Red-backed Shrike showed up, and Golden Oriole was seen.

Four Canada Geese in the lake did not shake anyone.

More exciting and colourful then with a European Bee-eater (Rune G. Bosy et al.) found on the 28th, and as last year´s bird it was eventually trapped, to the ringer´s great pleasure.

The same day had new-in birds of Turtle Dove and Bluethroat.

A good record on the 29th was a Rustic Bunting flying around in the north of the island.

Otherwise, typical birds of the period was Spotted Flycatcher (almost everywhere, in good numbers) and Rosefinch (daily with up to four birds).

May´s last day produced 60 Brant Geese and a Manx Shearwater in the fjord.

Below more photos from the period, and as you may see not only the ringer was pleased with the Bee-eater:

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Cuckoo

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At least two Golden Orioles appeared in the period under review, though this one is from the previous period but we never get tired of this species:

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