29. joulukuuta 2016

Last of 2016

My December has been lazy with birding.. I have been out maybe once with Vilma and that is all.
First of December I had early release from work and I wen to Kaivopuisto to look if I could find the long staying Hawk Owl from there. I saw a photographer and finding the Owl was over in one minute. I grab my telescope and scoped few pics and left. Great bird, and it seems that this species is annual in Helsinki with one to five birds each year.

Northern Hawk Owl.

At 10th of December Sanni went out with her friends and they started very early. I took Vilma and we went to twitch Black-throated Thrush from Munkkisaari. Bird was originally found in Lauttasaari, but it disappeared very quickly after it was found and few days later it was found about 3km from there!
It was new stroller tick for me so we had to go there!
Lots of people waited the bird when we arrived and there was also big flock of Waxwings in the area.
We waited about 20minutes when Vilma started to be noisy and bored. I started to walk away, but Matias Castren yelled that the bird is here! We moved back and I got short but good eye contact with the bird. I tried to take some photos, but too many photographers and a fence between me and the bird. Here is worst photo of the bird, even with my standards.

Nice job! 

There has been some discussion about the ID of the bird, but let´s see what happens.

We continued walking along the shore and I checked Kaivopuisto, but nothing there.. After that we went to Uuniaari and there I had flock of Redpolls, Snow Bunting, big flock of Long-tailed Ducks, Mergansers, two Wite-tailed Eagles and flock of migrating Whooper Swans.
Snow Bunting and Long-tailed Ducks were both new stroller ticks of me!
We walked back to my car and because Thrush was still hiding, we left back home.


More Waxwings.

View from Uunisaari.

Great morning and good birds.
Thanks Matias for company!

I think this will be my last post this year. I´m still thinking about quitting the blog, because I don´t have enough time to write it and even less time for birds...
Let´s see what happens.
Happy new year and best wishes for the year of 2017


13. joulukuuta 2016

Seurasaari with Vilma 14.11.2016

We started pretty early with Vilma and headed to Seurasaari. Few days earlier there was a Great-grey Owl, so I was hoping to refind it. We walked around the island but nothing really interesting this time. Lots of Tits, Blackbirds, Squirrels around. Few Robins still hanging around and because the Southern tip of the island had open water, there was flock of Canada Geese, Mallards and few Tudted Duck. Vilma had fun watching the flock and she was laughing all the time. When we walked back I noticed a juvenile Goshawk quite near and two Greater-spotted Woodpeckers near the bridge to the island.

Goshawk hiding in a tree.

Same bird? This was different location.

Geese flock and nice background.


3. joulukuuta 2016

Local twitching with Vilma 8.11.2016

I had a day off and time for some local birding. Long staying Crested Lark was still present at Kamppi and with Vilma we saw it quikckly before it took off and disappeared behind the building.
After the Lark we went to Tähtitorninmäki to see very very late Ortolan Bunting. When we arrived there was some other twitchers around and I was happy to see my friend Hannu Palojärvi there. Hannu showed me the bird and I ticked second stroller tick for the day.
After the bunting I let Vilma play in the snow and we had great time. Shame it was so cold and windy that we had only half an hour there.
Also lots of Waxwings eating some berries and I had little flock of Whooper Swans migrating South.

One of many feeders around the Tähtitorninmäki.



Great few hours with my girl. Vilma was tired again after many hous outside, so we headed back home.


24. marraskuuta 2016

Taiga Flycather 3.11.2016

On 3rd of November I made new visit to Seurasaari to see Taiga Flycatcher and this time I had my camera with me. I was with Vilma, so I had to be quick to get my photos.
Lots of birders around the area where the bird was and our main target was showing very well. Bird was sitting on one same branch almost the whole time and it was easy to watch. Vilma wanted to move constantly, so I had only short periods time to take photos.

Taiga Flycatcher.

Taiga Flycatcher.

Pretty son we left and we had nice little walk around the island. We found Pygmy Owl and Boreal Owl in same place and lots of common winter birds. Crested Tit was nice and two species of Woodpeckers. (Black and Great-spotted). Boreal Owl was new stroller tick for me! Shame that the bird was sitting so deep in the clump of spruces so I didn´t get an photos.

Pygmy Owl.

Great two hours in the island and then back home for Vilmas nap.


20. marraskuuta 2016

Two times MEGA 2.11.2016

Something amazing happened at first of November. First ever Upland Sandpiper was found in Nakkila, W-Finland and same day Possible Taiga Flycatcher in Helsinki, also first for Finland. 
Next day I took Jände and my family and together we drove to Nakkila to see that North-American miracle. Almost three hour drive and we arrived to Lestilänjärvi, where the bird was found. Bird was showing well and first lifer of the day was there. I also got stroller tick of it because Vilma was with us. 

Upland Sandpiper.

And again.

Me and Vilma in Nakkila.

Vilma walks everywhere these days. 

During our drive to Nakkila, the ID of the flycatcher was almost clear and we decided to drive back to Helsinki and twitch it too. Days are short in November so we had to be quick with the flycatcher. 
It was snowing and sun was setting when we arrived to the place where the bird was found. Thank god bird was showing well, but Vilma and Sanni were behind us and I had to get that important stroller tick. So I ran back and we met in halfway, and I carried our strollers and Vilma to the place and in last lights I got that stroller tick. I was sweated like crazy, but it was really a worth of every drop! 

Happy stroller ticker! 

Poor document photo of the Taiga Flycatcher.

So, what a day! Two new species for Finland and saw them both in a single day. Not gonna happen again! Special thanks to Sanni and Vilma, it is hard to stay long periods in car and listen birding mambojambo from front seat. Love you guys so much, and I hope you stand with me with this great hobby. Also thanks Jände for great company. This was one of those days you remember forever. 


Black-throated Accentor in Helsinki 23.10.2016

During the massive migration of Siberian Accentor an alarm of Black-throated Accentor came at 23th of October. I was working but luckily I had chadnge to twitch after my shift.
Sanni and Vilma joined me and we picked Tyron to see this bird with us. He has already seen the bird but joined us anyway.
When we arrived to the site there was about 30 to 40 people waiting the bird. It was found from small pile of wood and it showed only few seconds every time and then hide to the pile again.
We waited and I noticed that I left my to the first place where we watched the pile. I walked and took my scope and at the same time people yelled "there, there" I was at the wrong side of the pile!!
I ran and saw the bird, but not good enough... Shit! Possibly the only change and I dipped it.
So I said to Sanni that we had to stay for little bit longer and it was fine for her and Vilma.
About 30 minuted later I spotted the bird from the pile and after few seconds it flew to the nearest reeds and disappeared there. Phooh! Thnak god I found it again!

The pile where the bird was.

Some twitchers. 

Tyron and I after seeing the bird properly! 

Great species and only 11th for Finland. Black-throated Accentor is also super rarity in Europe, so it was great to see this one of my dream come true bird!
Thanks for the company Ty, Sanni, Vilma and others.


Turtle Dove 20.10.2016

On 20th I took Vilma with me and we drove to Haltiala to see quite late Turtle Dove. My goal was of course to get stroller tick and being outside is always good for Vilma.
I parked my car near where I saw other birders and then I took wrong path and suddenly we were wrong side of a little stream. First I carried Vilma and strollers to the other side and I asked a elderly lady to keep her eye on Vilma for one second so I could get my telescope to the right side. All went well and bird was still showing, though it was hiding in a tree and clearly had sleeping in its mind.
I took some photos and very son Vilma stated to be tired, so we left. Good species these days in Finland and sadly Turtle Doves are getting more and more harder to see every year.

Phonescope photo.


16. marraskuuta 2016

Suomenoja with Vilma 19.10.2016

I had a day off from work, so I decided to take Vilma and together we went to look some Siberian Accentors from Suomenoja, Espoo. I was hoping to find my own bird of course.
We arrived to the carpark and I noticed big numbers of Bohemian Waxwings flying around. That is really a sign of late Autumn and early winter. Soon after we started to walk I spotted small flock of Redpolls and in this flock I had one beautiful Arctic Redpoll! What a start. Stroller tick and year tick for me.

Some Waxwings.

Some ducks were still present feeding in the lake when we walk around the area. Gadwalls, Tufted Ducks, Mute Swans, Coots and Mallards mostly with few Goldeneyes. Lots of Robins were calling and few Dunnocks here and there.
I made few longer stops and played some Sibe Accentor tape, but no luck. Tree Sparrows, Long-tailed Tits, more Dunnocks, more Robins, Bullfinches etc. Common stuff!

Suomenoja Lake.

Long-tailed Tit.


Because I didn´t find my own siberian Accentor I had time to photograph common species. Clser to the carpark I found three Chiffchaffs, some Redwings, Song Thrush and more Robins.

Male Blackbird.

Common Chiffchaff.

Closest to Siberian Accentor today, Dunnock.

Great way to spend time with my daughter. She got lots of fresh air and I had time to watch birds. At the end Vilma starter to be so tired that she was already sleeping before I got back home.


Dusky Warbler in Helsinki 18.10.2016

I was still working when I got message of Dusky Warbler in Kivikko and found by my friend Janne Koskinen! I cycled back home and checked the alarm system. Because the bird was still present, I took Sanni and Vilma with me and together we drove to Kivikko.
We were super lucky because when we arrived to the place bird was moving and I managed to see it. I was pushing our strollers and Saw the bird quickly, but close enough before it flew to the woods near by.
More people came and we watched the little area where the bird was found. About an hour later Kari Lindblom found the bird again and again very quickly bird showed to us before it disappeared to the woods. The whole time I was thinking that "shit, I didn´t get that stroller tick" but the I noticed that I was really pushing the thing when I saw the bird in first place. Great twitch! Finally we had leave because Vilma started to be tired and she had number two in her diaper.
Thanks Sanni, Kari, Vilma and other for company and congrats Janne for great find! This bird was lifer for me of course a stroller tick!

People waiting the bird in Kivikko.



23. lokakuuta 2016

Siberian Accentors in Helsinki 17.10.2016

Because I did not get any photos of the Siberian Accentor earlier in Naantali, I had to twitch another bird to get one.
On 17th we visited my friend Tyron and his first lady Sanni to see their 5 weeks old baby girl Ella. While we were there I got alarm message of Sibe Accentor in Vuosaari Hill and because they are living near of it, we went to twitch it. Unfortunately no luck with that bird.
Later same day when Vilma went to bed I drove to Viikki where I knew that two birds were present earlier that day.
It was early afternoon and lots of people around. I had to wait about 10 minutes and first bird showed up nicely semi close to us. Shame the place was dark and day was cloudy, pictures were mess..
I waited and soon both birds were there together and very close to us. Even my 300mm was too long to get both birds properly to the same photo. Anyway, it was really weird feeling to see two of these rare birds in same place.
Here is some photos.

Siberian Accentor!

Bird was feeding openly on the ground.


And again.

Shitty photo, but both birds in same picture. 

Beautiful bird.


Nice day again!


22. lokakuuta 2016

Twitching around with my family 10.10-14.10.2016

This October has been very good for rare birds in Finland. Amazing influx of Siberia Accentors and other goodies made me drive around southern Finland.

On 10th of October we made family trip to Naantali to twitch Siberian Accentor. Quite long drive but really was worth of it! We arrived early afternoon and still lots of birders around. Bird was hiding in very bad place with lots of vegetation and bushes. We climbed to the hill where the bird was and something amazing happened. It took only few minutes and I found the bird from the nearest bush. I yelled that "there it is" and people started to panic. Luckily bird showed quite well so everybody who was there at the moment saw it! I even had time to put Vilma on the stroller and tick the most amaing stroller tick! Some people waited there like four hours and we came there and it took only minutes!
I was hoping to see it again and get some photos, but bird didn´t show up anymore when we were there.
Still I was super happy to see this one of my dream birds and even with the strollers and my family!

Sanni and Vilma jsut before the Accentor was found again.

Tricky place to see small brown bird.

After the twitch we visited Turku and we had nice sushi buffet meal in the city center.

Next day I was lying on our sofa when I noticed an alarm of Great-grey Owl in Herttoniemi, Helsinki! Shiit! I took Vilma and together we drove there.I also informed my pall Tyron who had this bird on his want to see list. Bird was resting in a park quite near the road.
When I arrived there with Vilma there was already some twitchers, including Tyron.
We got nice views of the bird, little bit behind the leafs. Very rare bird in Helsinki and very good stroller tick.

Great-grey Owl!

Vilma was happy too!

After the Great-grey Owl we checked the Tawny owl from near by and left back home, because we had some drive ahead to Vääksy to see my mother in law.

Tawny Owl.

One reason to go Vääksy was birds again. On our way there I knew that Marhs Tit was spending time in Hollola and because I haven´t seen any in Finland ever, now was good time to fix that problem.
About an hour drive and we arrived to Hollola where the bird was seen.
Vilma was sleeping so I didn´t took her out, but at least I saw the bird and got lifer! Thanks for the company Jari and Anu!

Marsh Tit.

We had great time in Vääksy and we arrived back home later that night.

On 13th We were on the road again! This time our destination was Janakkala and Isabelline Shrike. Bird was seen at same morning and we arrived there at 10.30. Bird was gone and it was not seen in few hours.
We spend almost two hours there but no luck... I walked around the area but nothing..
You can´t be lucky everytime...

Nothing there..

Family selfie!

After Janakkala we went to see Sannis friend Riina in Tampere and again we had amazing Sushi buffet there. Sushi is one of our favorite things by the way.
Later same day we drove back home. Long but fun day.


Haltiala with Vilma 6.10.2016

On 6th of October I had free time with Vilma again, and this time we chose Haltiala. Nothing special in my mind, but place has good potential to find almost anything.
only 10 minute drive from home and when we arrived I noticed big flock of Mistle Thrushes flyin around with some Fieldfares. We walked around about an hour and all foud basic Thrush species around with Great Grey Shrike, Yellowhammers, Goshawk, Woodpigeons, Skylarks and so on.
Vilma had fun crawling around and I had full job to keep her out of spiny bushes.

I guess here is some kind of fertilizing machine on the field.

Mistly Thrush.

Quite soon Vilma started to be tired and cranky, so we headed back home for a nap.


Pallas´s Leaf Warbler in Helsinki 3.10.2016

Pallas´s Leaf Warbler was found on 2nd of October from Lapinlahti, Helsinki. I was working that day, but next one was off. I took Sanni and Vilma with me and we had great stroller twitch again!
Bird was lost about an hour before it was found again by Pekka Rusanen. Lots of people was ticking this semi rare sibe!
Here is possibly the worst record shot of the bird.

Pallas´s Leaf Warbler.

Thanks for your patience Sanni and Vilma, I really appreciate that!
Very good stroller tick again!