03 May, 2008

The Battle Of Towers 2008

In Finland, we have every May "Tornien Taisto", in english "The Battle Of Towers". It is organized by Birdlife Finland, and it is a playful competition, where participants try to observe from bird tower as many birds as possible during eight hours. At the same time the goal is to make bird watching well know to public and whip round for bird conservation.

This year the Battle was held on 3rd of May and about 1000 birders participated to Battle in 270
towers. I was once again in the old tower of Ahtialanjärvi in Lempäälä, with Ville Työppönen and Tom Eklund. The Battle started in 5 a.m. and like always, the first hours were the most busy. This year the weather was warmer than ever, during the day the temperature rose over 20 deg. Celcius. After 6 or 7 hours our backs and eyes were tired, but still we tried to find new species until the end. The last species, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, was observed at 12:15 a.m. - 45 minutes before the end. In total we saw 63 species, but the official number was 61, as the rules say that at least two team members must observe and identify the bird, before it can be ticked. Our result was close to the average, which was 67. The minimum was 18 species (somewhere far in the north), maximum 115 (all 100 species towers were on the coast).

Below is the full list of all the species we saw:

1. Taiga Bean Goose Anser fabalis
2. Greylag Goose Anser anser
3. Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus
4. Eurasian Wigeon Anas penelope
5. Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
6. Northern Shoveler Anas clypeata
7. Eurasian Teal Anas crecca
8. Common Pochard Aythya ferina
9. Tufted Duck Aythya fuligula
10. Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula
11. Common Merganser Mergus merganser
(12. Red-breasted Merganser Mergus serrator ) - only seen by 1 person
13. Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus
14. Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris
15. Common Kestrel Falco tinnunculus
16. Osprey Pandion haliaetus
17. Western Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus
18. Common Buzzard Buteo buteo
19. Eurasian Coot Fulica atra
20 Common Crane Grus grus
21. Common Snipe Gallinago gallinago
22. Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata
23. Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
24. Nothern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus
25. Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus
26. Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia
27. Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola
28. Mew Gull Larus canus
29. European Herring Gull Larus argentatus
30. Common Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus
31. Little Gull Larus minutus
32. Common Tern Sterna hirundo
33. Common Pigeon Columba livia
34. Common Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus
35. Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos minor
36. Great Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos major
37. Black Woodpecker Dryocopus martius
38. Eurasian Magpie Pica pica
39. Western Jackdaw Corvus monedula
40. Hooded Crow Corvus cornix
41. Northern Raven Corvus corax
42. Willow Tit Parus montana
43. Great Tit Parus major
44. Blue Tit Parus caeruleus
45. Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
46. Eurasian Skylark Alauda arvensis
47. Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus
48. Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca
49. Common Starling Sturnus vulgaris
50. Common Blackbird Turdus merula
51. Fieldfare Turdus pilaris
52. Redwing Turdus iliacus
53. Song Thrush Turdus philomelos
54. European Robin Erithacus rubecula
55. Dunnock Prunella modularis
56. White Wagtail Motacilla alba
(57. Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava) - only seen by 1 person
58. Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis
59. Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis
60. Common Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs
61. European Greenfinch Carduelis chloris
62. Eurasian Siskin Carduelis spinus
63. Common Reed Bunting Emberiza schoeniclus

Common Cranes (Grus grus) over the tower

1 comment:

  1. Can I 'borrow' your list?? lol, pretty impressive!