Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Iceland - The birds

We saw a total of 40 species of bird in Iceland and I've decided to write a mini trip report about them here...

Whooper Swan: Relatively common, seen on a number of rivers including a group of 30+ on the River Ölfusá. One individual at Tjörnin (Reykjavik) throughout our stay.

Pink-footed Goose: One at Tjörnin Lake (Reykjavik) on 25th.

Greylag Goose: Common.

Mallard: Common on coastal lakes.

Wigeon: One at Tjörnin Lake (Reykjavik) on 25th.

Tufted Duck: Breeding on Tjörnin Lake (Reykjavik).

Scaup: Several females with young on Tjörnin Lake (Reykjavik) along with a few other adults.

Eider: Three seen in Reykjavik old harbour on 25th and common on the coast between the city and Keflavík.

Harlequin Duck: Female with four chicks on the River Sog near Steingrímsstöo power station on 27th.

Red-breasted Merganser: Females with young seen on Tjörnin Lake (Reykjavik) as well as Lake Pingvallavatn.

Great Northern Diver: Numerous adults including some with young seen on the River Sog (27th) and Lake Pingvallavatn.

I think the adults were one of the best looking birds I've ever seen.
Fulmar: Numerous offshore and a few seen around high cliffs a few miles inland. One 'Blue' Fulmar seen on the whale watching trip out of Reykjavik on 25th.

'Blue' Fulmar

'Light' Fulmar
Gannet: A few offshore in Faxaflói Bay from the whale watching boat on 25th.

Cormorant: One in Flaxaflói Bay from the whale watching boat on 25th.

Merlin: Four seen around the River Sog on 27th; a lone adult male followed by three juveniles later in the day.

Ringed Plover: One at Vatnsmyri (Reykjavik) on 25th.

Golden Plover: Common around inland moors.

Dunlin: One at Vatnsmyri (Reykjavik) on 25th.

Redshank: Common on coastal pools.

Black-tailed Godwit: Two near Lake Pingvallavatn on 26th and flying over the lake in 27th.

Whimbrel: Common away from the coast. One even seen sitting on a lamp post!

Snipe: Several drumming at Vatnsmyri (Reykjavik) on 25th.

Red-necked Phalarope: Seen on several roadside pools including a group of 25+. Seven at Pingvellir National Park on 26th.

Arctic Skua: Three seen in Faxaflói Bay from the whale watching boat on 25th. Also four inland around the River Sog on 27th.

Black-headed Gull: Common.

Kittiwake: Common around the coast.

Herring Gull: One near Keflavík on 24th and one over the Blue Lagoon on 28th.

Lesser Black-backed Gull: Common.

Arctic Tern: Very common, frequently breeding around people.

Sat in the local park in Reykjavik
Puffin: Common offshore.

Guillemot: Two in Faxaflói Bay from the whale watching boat on 25th.

Feral Pigeon: Common in Reykjavik.

Meadow Pipit: Common.

White Wagtail: Common in Reykjavik.

Icelandic Redwing: Common around any area of vegetation.

We found that the Icelandic race was notably darker underneath than the race we get in Britain.
Blackbird: One in Reykjavik on 26th.

Wheatear: Two near Lake Pingvallavatn on 26th.

Raven: Common away from coast.

Starling: Common.

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