Bonaparte’s Gull

Bonaparte’s Gull

Two days ago I picked up David Lindo aka the Urban Birder at the airport. As his plane was delayed a bit I managed to do a little birding and found the first Yellow-browed Warbler of the year at Sandavágur. Probably the earliest record for the Faroes.

David is visiting for 6 days and yesterday we went to Svínoy. The weather forecast was not ideal nor totally awful. And we did managed to find some bird on this Fair Isle on the Faroes. 2 Willow Warblers, 4 Chiffchaffs, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, Arctic Tern, Goldcrest and 3 Redpolls were the best birds seen. We did use quite some time with a small elusive warbler that sunk into the abyss…

Goldcrest

Today we first checked Klaksvík, where we ticked the long-staying Mandarin Duck before we headed to Fuglafjørð (where I grew up). When we drove into the village we spotted a flock on large gulls on the beach near Gjógvará. So we drown down there and from the car I spotted a small gull roosting with the larger cousins.

We parked the car and started to check the birds without getting out of the car as we wouldn’t disturb the birds. As I got the small gull within view I noticed pink legs, back bill and a neat jizz – bingo! Bonaparte’s Gull!

Bonaparte’s Gull

David had also connected with the bird, but while we were still in the car it took of. But David got the wing pattern and other details down while I rushed to get the camera. But the bird headed south and we lost it around the salmon farming area. We did get some very distant shots, but nothing really usable.

So we drove south and then walked as close as we could to the salmon farming area some hundred meters off shore. And luckily after waiting for some time the bird was relocated and usable though distant record-shots were obtained!

Bonaparte’s Gull

The bird was soon aged as an adult. And it was really quite a beauty with the fine and clear marking on the wings, pale underwing and neat posture. What a bird and what a find!

We then checked Rituvík and Æðuvík. There we found a few Willow Warblers and a Siberian type Lesser Whitethroat.

Then we continued to Eiði, where Tufted Duck, Long-tailed Duck and Brent were seen.

A short stop in Hvalvík produced a Grey Wagtail and a Yellow-browed Warbler and in Tórshavn we saw a few Collared Doves.

We then took the ferry to Suðuroy, where we’re gonna do some birding for the next 3 days. Due to very calm seas we only saw a few Bonxies and a Manx Shearwater from the boat.

As we came ashore we drove straight to Sumba, where we found a Lesser Whitethroat and a Willow Warbler before sunset.

Lesser Whitethroat

Now we’re quite excited to see what the next days bring.

Silas

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