29. maaliskuuta 2013

Nice but cold day. 29.3.2013

Same weather continues here in Helsinki.
Sarina had some school work and she kicked me out again.
I start from the Hernesaari where i did little sea-watch. I counted about 35 Tufted Ducks, 60 Goldeneyes, 50 Goosanders, and few Mallards. Better birds were Greater Scaup and two Common Eiders.
Also many Gulls flied around, mostly Mew Gulls with Herrings and one Great Black-backed Gull.
Eiders and Scaup were new year-ticks for me, so nice start for the day.

Hernesaari and open water.

Oblique Gull line.

After Hernesaari i drove to Vanhankaupunginlahti where i checked White-throated Dipper and then normal birds places in the area.
Dipper showed well again, but that was mostly all.. Some Great-spotted Woodies, one Black Woodpecker  two Reed Buntings and few Gold Finches were best i think.
Reed Bunting was new tick for the year! Three in a day is luxury.


Dipper again. 

Blackbird in Pornaistenniemi feeding.

Black Woodpeckers work, before i scared it away.

Last place for the day was Maari bird-watching tower. First visit for the year and high hopes.
I knew that the bay is still frozen, but i did know that there was so quiet.. Not even Great or Blue Tits..
I decided to stay and i start to scan the horizon if there´s some movement.
First birds after few Crows were two raptors chasing each others. Distance was about 5km and i could not id them.

About 20 minutes later i found one raptor way closer and it was Common Buzzard. I watched it about 10 minutes when i found another Buzzard looking bird. This second was Rough-legged Buzzard! What a nice surprise!
Just before i decided to leave, i found two Doves flying far away. Maybe Woodpigeons, but can´t be sure.

Now at home waiting my mom´s Easter dinner. Let´s hope it´s good!

Hear you soon.


25. maaliskuuta 2013

Still slow.. 25.3.2013

Winter continues and it´s super slow... Not many birds today, but quality was good. Tree year-ticks!
I started my day at Lauttasaari where i had little sea-watch. Smew, Great Cormorant, Goldeneyes, Tufted Ducks, Mute Swans, Goosanders and one White-tailed Eagle. Sun was shining and everything was great.

Greenfinch take off. 

Mute Swan fighting.

After Lauttasaari i went to Suomenoja witch was almost empty.. Hooded Crows had some spring meeting and i counted over 30 birds in same flock. Loud people..
Best birds were definitely flock of Crossbills. I had at least one Parrot Crossbill male and i think the others were also same specie. Can´t be sure.
Flock moved quite fast and i´m not that good with Crossbill sounds..

Part of the flock.

It´s sad to see how few birds have arrived.. Maybe spring is really cancelled. Next weekend we got more snow..
Year-tick total 89 now.

Hear you soon.


22. maaliskuuta 2013

Winter continues.. 22.3.2013

I had time to watch birds today after long period of work.. over 100 hours work in 10 days.
I met Jari again and we took almost same rout than last time in Viikki and Vanhankaupunginlahti.
First we tried to find Three-toed Woodpecker from Pornaistenniemi. Not many birds.. Only Tits, Blackbirds and three Great-spotted Woodpecker males.
Next place was Vanhankaupunginkoski where we had two White-throated Dippers.
Funny creatures!



Other birds in the area was lonely male Goosander and Crows..


After we got our photos we went to Viikki where we started our long walk to Hakala and after that to Mölylä.
About three hour walking around the are we had: about 6 Great-spotted Woodpeckers, two or three Lesser-spotted Woodpeckers, Goldcrests, Green Finches, Coal, Blue, Great and Willow Tits, Sparrow Hawk, Gold Finches and some other birds..



As you can see, there is not many migratory birds.. It´s still very arctic here. Morning was super cold and when i left home there was -9 degrees. Days are sunny and beautiful, but damn cold!
It seems that there is going to be at least one more week of freezing conditions.
Spring migration is already little bit late, so i guess we can wait another week?

Thanks Jari for company. Let´s see if i have some energy to go out some day soon.



10. maaliskuuta 2013

Sunny day. 10.3.2013

What a nice day i had with Jari and later Kurko. We started at 10am from Viikki. We wanted to check if the first migrants were there already.
Not many birds in first feeding, just some Greenfinches, Sparrows and Blackbirds. We walked to Hakala where is another feeding place. Nice numbers of Great and Blue Tits, one Willow Tit, some Siskins.
Later we found two beautiful Bramblings, but sadly birds left before we could get any good photos..
Also Black Woodpecker voiced few times.


European Siskin.
What a beauty. Brambling.

After second feeding we continued our walk to old water treatment plant where we found many Mallards and lonely male Goldeneye.

First Goldeneye photo for the year. 

After these ducks we decide to go to Pornaistenniemi witch is very good place for Woodpeckers and other birds later in the spring.
We found only Lesser-spotted Woodpecker and another Black woodpecker (only voice). We tried to found the Black but it was gone soon after final calls.. One Sparrow Hawk gave us quick looks after disappeared in to the woods.

Always late with these.. Sparrow Hawk.

Smallest Woodpecker in Finland. Female bird. 

After Pornaistenniemi we went to Vanhankaupunginkoski where we check few places before Kurko came to pick us.
Next destination was Stansvik country house are where we last time saw the Great-grey Owl. Kurko want to see that same bird and of course we went to help him.
When we arrived there, there was huge group of photographers and other people, so it was very easy to find.

Great-grey Owl.

Better photo than last time i think. Maybe because of my new lens!
We did not want to disturb the bird so we took just few (90) photos from the distance and then we leave.
After the Owl Kurko dropped us to Viikki where we had our cars.
Before i go home i check Eurasian Teal from Vallila and just before i get my self home, i had lonely Stock Dove migrating over Ruoholahti! Two year ticks for me and number is 80 now.

Thank you Jari and Kurko for super company. I had very nice day and i hope you had too. The Owl was so great ending for the day.
Next week is mostly working, but let´s see if i have some energy to do some birding, even in one day.
Hear you soon i hope.



9. maaliskuuta 2013

New lens, 9.3.3013

I got my new lens yesterday and i had to go to test it today.
It´s Nikkor AF-S 300mm F4
I did not had much time today, so i went to Seurasaari. Great sunny day and i knew that there is always some birds to photo.
I walked around the island and i must say, not too many birds this time. Only few Great and Blue Tits.. Later few Coal Tits too and of course some Blackbirds.
Also one Great Tit with unusual bill.

Long-billed Tit.

This poor little guy tried to eat peanut, but it was hard with this bill.
Later i walked West-side of the island i noticed pale bird sitting on a branch and after few more steps i saw this great looking Northern Goshawk.

Juvenile bird but still so gorgeous! 

When i check my photos, i found ring around hawks leg. Sadly it was little bit too far away.

When i was walking back, i noticed some Voles around one bird-feeding. I tried to get some photos of those also.


I was really pleased with how the lens works. It´s super quick when compare to my older zoom lens and i think it´s better in every aspect. Maybe some better pics coming soon.
Tomorrow i will go out again, so hear you soon.