Sunday 8 April 2012

Norway: White-wingers

Surprisingly few of these up there, we thought we'd see loads and loads. I think there are more at Rainham. Anyway, always nice to see Iceland and Glaucous Gulls up close - I recently went to the Thames to see a distant blob, what a waste of time that was! That seems to be one of the things about birding abroad vs twitching things in the country. Sure you add a bird to a list, blah-de-blah, but in many cases you don't really see it particularly well, and I'm not talking UTVs either. There are exceptions obviously, the Northern Waterthrush and the White-tailed Plover spring immediately to mind, but often it's fleeting. Abroad you really get to look at things properly, to study them if you're that way inclined. I've seen quite a few Glaucous and Iceland Gulls in the UK now, and if you don't count the injured juv Glauc at Cley which I think was eventually put down, by far the majority of views have been of the distant blob variety. Not so in Norway. In fact, I can't think of a single bird we didn't see really really well, which is one of the reasons birding travel is somewhat addictive. Let's hope I don't win the lottery - you wouldn't see me for dust!

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