Quiet first half of July

In July I wasn’t birding much. On the first days there were still Red-breasted Flycatchers feeding their youngsters to nest and In Joukio there were already more than 100 Barnacle Geese gathering.

On the 2nd of July we had SSP-ringing and we caught a Common Snipe, a Blackbird, a Fieldfare, a Redwing, 2+1c Sedge Warblers, 3 Common Whitethroats, 2+1c Garden and 2 Willow Warblers, 18 Blue and 8 Great Tits, 2 Chaffinches, a Yellowhammer and 3+1c Reed Buntings. In the afternoon I was jogging in Tarvaslampi and surprisingly saw a family of White-backed Woodpeckers and heard a couple of young Grey-headed Woodpeckers.

On the 3rd day we first went to photograph birds from the hide in Tarvaslampi. Then we did a trip to Saari and heard a Golden Oriole in Akonpohja, saw a Garganey and a Spotted Redshank in Pohjanranta, found a few Whimbrels, a Black-tailed Godwit and a Hen Harrier in Suurenjärvenliete and then went to check one pond where we had been told that there had been Red-throated Diver couple breeding in some years and again there had been a pair in spring. Unfortunately the pond was empty but we heard a couple of Golden Orioles and saw Long-tailed Tits nearby.

In Jyrkilä we saw 4 Stock Doves, in Karinmäki we heard a Corn Crake, an Icterine Warbler and young Long-eared Owls and then on the way back we saw a Black Kite soaring on the sky in Akonpohja. Then we still went to ring 9 Wryneck that were in tiny Blue Tit nest-box in Tarvaslampi. Then in Kangaskylä we saw a Nutcracker flying across the road. We stopped the car and found 2 or 3 birds which at least one was young fledling. They had been breeding somewhere nearby and still only now I got a year-tick!

On the 8th day I heard the Red-breasted Flycatcher last time. It seemed that fledlings were already quite far from the nest. On the same evening Harri Partanen called that he had got a call that there was an owl on the ground in Satumäki and Magpies were attacking it. We were soon there and found a young Long-eared Owl on the ground. We ringed it and hid it to a thick tree. There were at least two more young owls calling nearby so for sure their parent were soon coming to feed them.

On the 9th day we saw the first 2 Great Egrets of the season in Siikalahti. In Tetrisuo we saw 10 Stock Doves which some of them were young birds, so finally the breeding of this species was sure in Parikkala! In the evening we saw a family of Canada Geese in Kirkkoranta.

On the 10th day we had SSP again and caught a Common Snipe, a Whinchat, a Fieldfare, 3 Sedge Warblers, a Willow Warbler, a Pied Flycatcher, a Blue and 2 Great Tits and 1+1c Reed Buntings. We also saw a couple of Golden Orioles and 25 Common Crossbills. In the evening we did a quick trip to Saari but saw nothing interesting – only 4 Stock Doves in Pohjasuo.

On the 13th day I heard Nutcrackers calling and a Golden Oriole singing in Kangaskylä and a Golden Oriole calling in Siikalahti. On the 14th of July we drove to Helsinki. We stopped on the way in Hamina Tervasaari just to make sure that we are not missing Arctic Tern as a year-tick. It would have been ridiculous! Then we continued to Helsinki-Vantaa airport hotel where we stayed the next night. On the 15th of July we finally would start a long and long-waited trip together!