Gullfest 2 - The Gullining

I was back in Tampere dump last week for a bit more early summer gulling.

A few more Heuglini/LBB (or even pale Baltic) types around this time, of the adult variety.

This age group is more problematic when it comes to confidently putting a name to them.

 Distinctive primary pattern. Black almost complete across P4 and small black spot on P 3.
Baltic of course are always on the menu. The 3 ages of Elvis here.

This is the time juv gulls start to make their appearance. Black Headed are always the first to arrive. A few dozen were loafing around, with hundreds of adults. Numbers will increase as juvs leave the breeding lakes.

Black Headed Gull - Juvenile. Beautiful things which we tend to take for granted.

I found this bird interesting, but heat haze and his persistence at remaining on the roof of this foul smell cesspool building (incredible to see trucks pulling up and dumping semi liquid stuff) made things difficult.

That snouty, long bill, what appeared to be plain, retained greater c…

Seeing Red

With Lyra's 1st birthday imminent, my parents arrived in town for a week of festivities and Juhannus relaxation.

After feasting and celebrating the first joyous year of our little birder girl being with us, I snuck my old man out at points during the past week for various goodies that Irish birders don't get enough of.
We started with Laajalahti, where the Caspian Terns, Cranes and various waders put on a good show.

Common Cranes - always a treat for the discerning Irish birder.

Caspian Terns - midsummer monsters

A number of full summer Spotted Redshank, Wood Sandpiper, Little Ringed Plover and Ruff were also on show.
We then moved on in search of the scarcer summer warblers. A short way down the road, not far from our old place in Koivu-Mankka, we encountered Marsh, Blyth's Reed and River Warbler all singing in close proximity.

River Warbler - the creme de la creme of summer Nightsingers.

Blyth's Reed Warbler showed amazingly well.

Again, the oft quoted supercilium e…

Into The Trees

June and pretty much everything that should be back is back. It was time for me to hit some old forest in search of Red Breasted Flycatcher and Greenish Warbler.

I headed south to Porkkala, and an hour or so strolling through the woods produced several of each singing.

Being old forest meant that these birds were generally high overhead and flitting actively, but one immature male RB Fly did give good phone-scoping opportunities.

2 CY Red Breasted Flycatcher - RB fly breeds in it's second year, before they have obtained their full adult plumage. You can just about make out a buff colouration on the throat of this bird.

It's a pretty little song too.

After the early start, and having skipped my morning coffee, I was crashing somewhat, so I made my way to a nearby seaside Cafe and enjoyed a late breakfast watching Caspian Tern and eider. 

I don't function without caffeine anymore. I make no excuses for the sugar. The Finnish "Rinkkimunkki" is a delicacy, laced wit…