31 Jan 2012

13 October: Fridtjof airborne over Lindisfarne

Thursday 13 October Bryan Galloway, Peter Fawcett and some other local birders walked out to Beal Point to watch birds, where Bryan Galloway suddenly spotted a flying goose with a satellite transmitter. The day after we received an email with this stunning picture of Fridtjof in flight with his satellite transmitter – and the message “Please find some photographs of a Brent Goose which I saw at Lindisfarne yesterday. I think it must be Steve or Ebbe. We had a great day watching the hundreds of Brent geese resting and flying over the sands at Lindisfarne. Suddenly, out of the blue, out popped this one with a transmitter on its back. It looked in good shape”. We could, however, identify the bird as Fridtjof from the barely visible combination of a red above white ring on the birds right foot. Photo courtesy of Peter Fawcett (c)

8-9 October: Steve observed by Steve in Lindisfarne

 In the week-end Steve Percival went on a field-trip to Lindisfarne. Steve studied the Light-bellied Brent Geese intensively at Lindisfarne from 1990 through 2000, and have caught and ringed 333 birds on the site. He found a pair of ringed birds – and realized that one of them had a transmitter. Although he could not read the letter on the yellow ring, the combination of a pair where both birds had white over green on their right leg, the male had a transmitter, and the female Yellow S on its left leg, make it possible to identify this as being gander Steve named after Steve! 

14-24 September: Niels flies south with a distinctly different behavior

In contrast to the other birds, that all flew almost non-stop and fairly directly to Lindisfarne, Niels had a distinctly different behavior – where he gradually moved south with a lot of small jumps. His exact departure from Svalbard is unknown. On 14 September he was located northeast of Hitra and from there he gradually and slowly moved south along the west coast of Norway to Skoltafjorden north of the island Stolmen.  No signals have been received from the PTT after 24 September.

18 September: All birds with known final destiny now in Lindisfarne

We so far managed to follow four individuals successfully to their first autumn staging area. With the arrival of Fridtjof in Lindisfarne on 18 September in the evening, all these birds surprisingly flew into Northeast England. Lindisfarne is a well-known wintering site which since the mid-1980s typically has been used by half of the flyway-population from October through December. The other half fly to wintering sites in Denmark – mostly in the northeastern parts of the mainland Jutland. Hence it is a bit surprising that all bird managed to follow through to the wintering areas all went west.  

12 September: Contact with Caretaker lost in southwestern Norway

Caretaker was still on Svalbard 3 September. Next locations we have are from his passage over the Barents Sea from Svalbard towards mainland Norway, where he on 9 September at 6:00 in the morning were southwest of Bjørnøya and at 17:00 reached Andøya in Lofoten. During 10-12 September he gradually moved south along the west coast of Norway to the coastline between Revtangen and Hå 25 km southwest of Stavanger. No signals have been received from the PTT after 12 September.