19. kesäkuuta 2017

Stroller ticking and year ticks. 19.6.2017

Yesterday I took Vilma with me and together we collected some of the missing species from our stroller list. First target was Brent Goose in Kaivopuisto and after walking an hour in the park I finally managed to see the bird in flight. Someones dog was running around with out leash... idiots.
Next target was Vuosaari where we did short but effective stop. Corncrake was calling we were happy.
Today we visited my mother in law in Vääksy and both of my ladies are now there. I have to work next week so they can have some quality time there. We visited also the beach near by and especially Vilma had good time. I saw a lone Black-throated Diver swimming in the lake.

Vilma.

Later I drove back to Helsinki and wanted to go out when the songbirds start their singing. I choose Vanhankaupunginlahti and I had one nice walk there. Lots of Thrush Nightingales, one Ichterine Warbler, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler and other common stuff. My target bird were Common grasshopper Warbler and surprisingly I managed to find two birds!

Meadow near the parking lot. 

Natures fireworks. 

Reeds and sky.

Here is also a video of singing Grasshopper Warbler.

Grasshopper Warbler

The bird sounds little bit Savi´s Warbler, but from the pictures taken by others you can see that this bird is actually a Common grasshopper Warbler.



-Tom

16. kesäkuuta 2017

Pihlajasaari and twitch 15.6.2017

What a day I had!
All started at nine thirty when our ferry left from Kaivopuisto to Pihlajasaari. I had my family and Vilma´s cousins Aapo and Oona with me. Ferry takes only 15 minutes and you are in beautiful little island just off from Helsinki. There is some sandy beaches with small forests in this island. Barnacle Geese with chicks everywhere and those can be very aggressive when defending their young.
Pihlajasaari holds a possible pair of Firecrests and when I was there today, I had only info of one bird. We went straight to the place and this awesome male was already singing there. I had Vilma in the strollers and tick in my bag! This first time we did not see the bird, but later we fortunately did.
After this tick we went to have picnic and we let the kids play.

Barnacle Goose.

Common Gull with awesome background.

Very noisy flock of Oyster Catchers.

Green-veined White.

Beach.

After food and beverages we continued back to the Firecrest place. I noticed a guy sitting there and same time the bird was singing maybe 2 meters above him. I told the guy that "Nice that the bird is now showing and singing openly" This man stood up and asked "What Firecrest" and then I realized that his hearing ability was weak. Guy was very happy and he thanked me many times.
I really made his day there! Here is my poor set of pics of the bird. It was really hard to photo.

Firecrest.

Firecrest.

Firecrest.

Anyway, you can see the species there!
Later we just walked around the island and kids had great time. I really recommend the place if you are visiting Helsinki. Maybe not in wintertime (can´t get there) but anyway. :)

Female Common Eiders.

Barn Swallow.

Common Tern.

Vilma with the Geese.

We were back at home at one a clock and I noticed that the Great-gray Owl, which was found same morning from Espoo by Pasi Pirinen, was still present. Sanni and Vilma went to have a nap and I drove to Matinkylä for a twitch. After 23 minutes I arrived and Pasi showed me the bird.
It was really amazing to see this species again and in middle of June! Don´t know that the Owl did there, but possibly first record in June ever in this area.

The Owl was hiding very effectively. 

Great-gray Owl.
When I was driving back home I stopped in Laajalahti where I had distant Great-white Egret and Red-backed Shrike to my year list. I tried to take photos of the Egret trough my telescope, but heat ripple made it impossible... Great ending for the day anyway.
Rest of the week still of , so maybe I take Vilma and we will visit vanhankaupunginlahti or some place else.

-Tom

10. kesäkuuta 2017

Haltiala area. 10.6.2017

Working, working and working. That´s my life recently. We had our wedding anniversary, my friends wedding and already in this month so not much time for the birds. On 4th of June I was eating in Jollas with my friends and got Common Rosefinch and Golden Oriole to my year list.
Today I took Vilma and her cousin Oona and together we visited Haltiala arboretum and farm. We had nice picnic and during all the eating and walking I managed to see/hear two Blyth´s Reed Warblers, Ichterine Warber, Greenish Warbler, Garden Warbler and many Thrush Nightingales.
Place was full of birds and without two little girls you could find something interesting there.. This time my other eye was watching the girls and other tried to locate all the singers from the bushes full of leafs. Hard work I´d say.

Singing Blyth´s Reed Warbler.

Same bird.

Robin.

Haltiala Arboretum.

Girls and pigs. 

Great fun! Around noon we came back to our place and it was time to have a nap for the girls.
Tomorrow we are going to try the Firecrest from Pihlajasaari. It would be a nice stroller tick.

-Tom 

29. toukokuuta 2017

Lesser Yellowlegs 28.5.2017

Like I wrote earlier, I dipped the Lesser Yellowlegs last time. Today I got another change for the species when Jan Sördersved found same or different bird from the exact same place!
Saturday was full of everything (when the bird was found) and I had no change to go there, but today I drove to Lohja after first update message which said that bird is still there.
I arrived there just after nine a clock and took about five minutes to walk to the place from my car.
I noticed Paavo Harri and he told me where the bird was just moments a go and soon we found the bird again! Great feeling after being late only ten minutes last time. Bird was showing well, but far a way. Also Broad-billed Sandpipers, Temminck´s Stints, Greenshank, Wood Sandpiper and Lapwings around.

On my way to the spot.

Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser Yellowlegs.

The lake was much smaller than last time. 

Also met Tom Lindroos and his wife Kaija there, and we had nice time watching the bird and eventually we left together. Thanks for the company and good luck for your retirement time! I hope we will meet again somewhere soon! Thanks also Paavo for company, and hope you had luck with the Woodchat Shrike in Urjala!
Later I came home and spent time with Vilma. We are very eager to draw and I made this artistic sketch of the bird. You can´t see any yellow, because Vilma ate most of the yellow crayon, but here is the thing! Vilma gave some red color in my sketch, but that only makes it better!
What can you say, Collins birdguide here I come! 


Great bird and great find by Jan, again. Let´s hope more rarities and other interesting birds for this spring.

-Tom