09 March, 2011

Migrating birds stopped at coast

Jackdaw in feeder today
Spring has started, no doubt about it. First Rooks, Stock Doves, Wood Pigeons, Northern Lapwings and Skylarks have arrived to Finland but almost all of them have stopped to southern coast. Only some waterfowls, gulls and Snow Buntings have continued to inland. Too much snow everywhere, only some open water in streams and rivers.

This means that we will probably have to wait for them still for weeks. But after that there will be a huge rush, and big flocks of birds in all those places where snow has melted away. I'm really looking for "a good old birding spring", like we had when I was a kid. During last 10 or even more years, the birds have disappeared to forests almost immediately after they arrived. Now we may have a chance to see them again in big flocks in fields!

Today I went birding with my younger son Roni. Highlight of the trip was 3 adult White-tailed Eagles on the ice of lake Rauttunselkä, south from Valkeakoski. There was also 3 Herring Gulls stalking at fishermen in Viidennumero. I hope they got something to eat, otherwise they have to return to Baltic Sea soon. Later we saw also a beatiful old male Goshawk. Shame that I didn't get a photo of it, it was so close and so gorgeous.

While waiting for migrating birds, I think I'll concentrate next on nocturnal birding and get out late in the evenings to listen for owls...

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