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søndag 10. april 2011

Bird of the year 2011 - Black-headed Gull

That this noisy gull, seen everywhere, is elected bird of the year 2011 here in Norway may surprise many. The reason is their numbers are going down and they are importent to other spieces.  
Black-headed gull colonies have an important function in the wetlands as "umbrella". The colonies provide protection to other species. Birds as Tufted Ducks, Horned Grebe and different species of wading birds have great advantage of black-headed gull colonies. The gulls decline can in other words have great significance for biodiversity.

Hoover over the colony
The lookout
A drink of cool water

I`m sure you heard this before:
Among the water lilies
A youngster

What we like to see. Securing the aftergrowth.
Resting those wings on drifting ice

Further info on spieces:

Videos and pics by others:

torsdag 7. april 2011

Grey heron

When out canoeing it`s always a welcome sight to discover a grey heron fishing among the reed or moving on broad wings along the shoreline.

In streaming water

With its back against the wind

Longlimbed as it is, landing in trees where it nests, isn`t always graceful

This one sat quietly and studied me, and allowed that I came all the way underneath. I guess this is the last thing the fish see .... would not like to get that beak hammered into my body.



Videos and soundfiles of the Grey heron: 

General info:

søndag 26. desember 2010

The fox den

One evening walk outside Henningsvær  (Lofoten, Norway) became a wonderful experience. We were looking for birds to photograph but they were soon forgotten.   A movement in the grass beside the trail caught my attention, and there sat a fox puppy looking at us. After some quick pictures we discovered several more around us.

The heap of stones by the stand for drying fish rack was visited several days that vacation. The puppies eventually got used to us and when we sat motionless they came close and sniffed our legs. The parent couple we barely saw. They were busy fetching food and when they came by, they studied us from a distance, dropped the snack for the puppies and were off. 

lørdag 18. desember 2010

Moose encounter

It's not often we see or encounter moose around where I live, although we often see traces of them. On the way home from downtown by car, we always throw a glance over the fields, for near the edge of the forest deer often graze. What caught my eyes that day were two half-grown moosecalves playing in the middle of the snowcovered field.

I hurried home to retrieve photo equipment and my wife. 5 minutes after we were back and parked by side of the road. The animals seemed to take it easy and the calves were playing and feeding while the cow remained close to the forest 50 to 100 meters away.

The cow must have tought they were too bold, and also some people came along the path in the woods so she called her calves. They obeyed without hesitation and trotted towards their mother.

Some horses in a paddock at the nearest farm caught their interest and the family walked quietly in that direction.

Further info on moose or rather eurasian elk:


fredag 17. desember 2010

Roedeer in my garden

Often we see deer at a distance, as they cross the road or only traces of them in mud and snow. They are sensitive and careful, and flees as here, when smell of people is in the or the siluette of man turns up.

In the winter of 2009/2010 however, the traces around the house were many and the bird feeding area in the garden was visited by deer that munched sunflower seeds and peanuts. Eventually they became fairly confident, or probably so hungry, that they did not care if we were standing nearby. They slept well beneath our hedge that was cut once and for all.

During the summer we saw them at a distance in the vicinity and early one morning in June, we almost stumbled over a goat with twins. The wind was blowing against us so they didn`t get an early warning about what was coming . The goat and one calf disappeared in the thicket. The other calf just snapped at the knees and lay down in the grass. The camera was hanging on my shoulder so I took a picture before we left the area.

When we started feeding birds again in the autumn, it did not take long before the deer stopped by. It is nice to have them here, but found that it was cheaper to buy feed for them too than to renew the hedge and bushes in the garden every spring. So in addition to sunflower seeds and unsalted peanuts I purchased pellets from grains. The deer will visit several times a day and find their grub in my mothers old pot.

On June 11, 2011 one of  "our" deer came strolling through my neighbours grain field and she was clearly pregnant.

Then, two days later, she came out of the bushes by the creek running along our property, rewarding us by showing off her newborn triplets.

I guess  mum will have a tough summer taking care of them and hopefully they will avoid the lynx and the foxes hunting in the woods around here. Maybe that`s why she chose to give birth here.


Link to English info on Roe deer: