Thursday, October 1, 2009

Twitch on - great grey owl

Headed out this morning to bird Klarningen en route to a long-staying great grey owl, relocated recently about one hour from home. Klarningen was really windy with a vicious 10m/s north-westerly leaving little place to hide. I lasted about half an hour, before I got tired of booting buntings whose flight calls were inaudible, whipped away in the wind. Most, if not all, were reed bunting, also plenty of skylark and meadow pipit present. Why was I not sea-watching? Well, the forecast shows a really good day coming up on Sunday...

Drove up into rural Halland next to twitch the owl (I love the patch but it would be churlish not to go and see such a cosmic bird). My rough Swedish translation of the site directions got me close enough. I found a car parked up and tracked its occupants down a side track and found them watching the owl (fieldcraft?). Superb bird, only my second ever, so pretty special.

The news (received in Poland courtesy of Martin Åkesson) of a great grey owl near home, had me hoping for a long-stayer and the bird duly obliged.

Took the kids out to Torekov in the afternoon, still blowing hard and sharp squalls coming in off the sea. The kids had a great half hour, I could not scrape anything off the sea of any interest and the rev was practically submerged.

The guys on site told me that half an hour before I arrived, the bird had flew down to their feet and had caught and eaten a frog. Prepare to gnaw knuckles and moan slightly - they had to put macro lenses on their DSLRs!

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