It has been quite an interesting week so far. Last Sunday I visited Nólsoy. There I found a stunning Arctic Redpoll. It was very tame and gave views down to 3 meters. Lately my camera has acted weird. The display doesn’t work and it doesn’t really behave as it should– so after shooting lots of photos I came home just to learn that the memory card was empty… Edward Rickson – the icelandic scotsman helped me afterwards by saying on facebook: What a thing to happen when faced with the world’s most beautiful passerine!” Thanks, Ed!
Very strong easterly winds have been dominating during the week. It has led to the biggest arrival of passerines so far this autumn. Two days ago I found 15 Blackcaps in a single garden and in the small village of Kunoy I found 29 Blackcaps, 3 Chiffchaffs (northern), 4 Bramblings and 5 Goldcrests. Quite impressing for that small village.
Tree Sparrow and Chaffinch
I’ve also visited Svínoy, but only for 40 minutes. There were more Bramblings, Chaffinches, Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs – and 9 Tree Sparrows.
At Viðareiði there were even more Blackcaps, Blackcaps and Blackcaps – and a Short-eared Owl flew over as it was chased by corvids.
Hvannasund has also contained some good birds during the last days including this years first Waxwing and a beautiful male Bullfinch – and many Blackcaps.
Today I checked Klaksvík. Hopes were high after Mike (the grand wizard of Unst) found a sycamore-dwelling Cape May Warbler just a few hundred kilometers south-east of the Faroes. Icelanders have also come up with two Parrot Crossbills and a Hoopoe. So I went to check the plantation Grøv in Klaksvík today. In nice sunshine I first heard a call similar to Parrot Crossbill, but could only find a Common Crossbill (and I only saw it for a few seconds). The plantation only has a few walking pads and finding birds is quite hard. But I couldn’t find any Parrots and Klaus Malling Olsen (world class birder) sent me a message this evening that Common Crossbills actually can utter similar calls every now and then.
Besides the Common Crossbill I found a female Bullfinch, Blackcaps, a Chiffchaff, a Mealy Redpoll and a Lesser Redpoll-type in the plantation.
I also checked Àrnafirði briefly today and found a Grey Wagtail along with an interesting Lesser Whitethroat looking very eastern.
“Eastern” Lesser Whitethroat
So to summon it all up: Lots of birds, several scarcities, a few rarities and no megas.