Monday 16 May 2011

Passerines and a few flakes of snow in the Varanger area

 Below are a selection of images of passerines in and around Varanger Fjord. The only plentiful species was Snow Bunting, especially as the heavy snow drove them down off the high tundra to lower ground. I don't normally post landscape images but the shots below backup what I have mentioned in previous posts.  This is real snow.

In addition, other top passerines on the trip included Pine Grosbeak, Waxwings, Siberian Tit and Arctic Redpolls (including two gorgeous snow white males).

Willow Tit - a pair were seen at Varjjat
Female Snow Bunting - common in suitable areas.  Large flocks of up to 200 in the far north.

Male Lapland Bunting - just started arriving; we saw about ten individuals.

Male Snow Bunting at Kongsfjord - part of a flock of 120+ birds.

High tundra near Kongsfjord, a site for Dotterel, but they haven't arrived yet! The darker patch is a frozen lake.

Holiday cottage at Kongsfjord.  This area is good for Temminck's Stint and Purple Sandpiper, but not right now!

The road from Siltefjord to Batsfjord, specially cleared for our party!  When exactly does all this lot melt...

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