Alan Dalton post's birding diaries and original artwork from Sweden. Established in 2006, this now long running blog is now a complete overview of my birding experiences. As an artist I greatly enjoy sketching birds in the field and you will find a wide selection of that work here, from fieldwork to finished paintings. I am very passionate about my artwork and try to depict birds in their natural habitat, as I see them in the wild. My artwork is for sale and can be viewed at http://www.alandalton.net/
As regards to my photography, since 2008 I have used a Nikon D90 DSLR camera coupled with a Sigma 150-500mm OS lens for since March 2012 for bird photography, all previous images being digiscoped. Regarding sound recording, I have been usung a Telinga Stereo Dat Mic and parabol to record birds in the field, coupled to a Marrantz 661 digital recorder, a superb piece of kit. Interest in butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies has recently seen the accquisition of a Sigma 150mm macro lens. I hope you enjoy the blog and please feel free to leave comments or contact me at alandltn@gmail.com

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Sandemar; 4th July 2012

 Gulls roosting on the brigg at Sandemar. A look through them reveals four Caspian Terns, two adults with two young, their size alowing them to mingle with large gulls...




 A juvenile Caspian Tern. It is always nice to see these huge terns, Sandemar is a superb site for the species. These birds were learning to dive and catch fish for themselves, great to watch them crashing into the water offshore..




 Grey Plovers, a record shot digiscoped with the iPhone. Stunning birds in summer garb..


















 In the five images above, two of six Curlew Sandpipers, my first of the year and I was happy to get some shots, my first of the species in Sweden. These were the first birds of the calender year for me, so most welcome. Two juveniles were present amongst four moulting adult birds. The long legged appearance and long, evenly decurved bill are the best way to identify these birds in all plumages..






 Wood Sandpiper, at least 16 birds present, by far the commonest wader in the area at the moment. Earlier in the summer hundreds fed here in the flooded meadows...




 Marsh Harrier, the classic view of thi species as it floats past hunting..




 A fresh juvenile bird, note the fully feathered wing with pale, creamy tips to the greater covert's, secondaries and tail feathers..










 Above; One of europe's finest looking passerines, this stunning adult male Red Backed Shrike showed well at Hoggarn. The blue/grey head, dark mask, red back and tail and salmon flused underparts make this a bird to savour. The adult female was also seen briefly, as well as four of this pairs young, which have now fledged...






A 1st calender Red Backed Shrike here, far less gaudy than it's father. Soon these birds will be heading south, a much sought rarity in Britain and Ireland!


An early morning trip to Sandemar to mop up on utumn waders was rather successful. On arrival I went straight to the observation tower and soon had the target species in the bag. In front of me were Grey Plover and Knot, whilst further down were 6 Curlew Sandpipers, Ruff, Snipe, as well as 4 Caspian Terns a family party. I spent the next few hours enjoying all of the above and trying to get a few record shots...
 Later I checked Hoggarn carefully and enjoyed suderb view of Red Backed Shrike, including a stonking adult male. A Wryneck was flushed and seen well briefly, a nice addition to the day. Marsh Harriers were about, two juveniles quartered the long grass in the area, making a nice backdrop. A single Common Rosefinch was dug out in the early afternoon, Marsh Warbler was heard, though avoided showing itself. Lots of common species about right now, particularily Goldfinch and Swallow right now. A thoroughly enjoyable mornings birding...




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