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kaktusvråk

A Harris’s Hawk (Parabuteo unicinctus), photographed in Lanzarote

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sävsparv

A male Reed Bunting (Emberiza schoeniclus), photographed in wetlands outside Amsterdam yesterday

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gaai

Eurasian Jay (Garrulus glandarius)

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skrattmås

A Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus), photographed outside St Petersburg, Russia a few weeks ago

It got its scientific name “rudibundus” which means “laughing” even though its cry doesn’t sound like laughing. The background story to the name is that when Linné named it, he used information from Ornithologia (written by Brisson in 1760) because the Black-headed gull didn’t breed in Sweden at the time so Linné wasn’t very familiar with it. In Ornithologia, Brisson described the Black-headed gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) and the Laughing Gull (Leucophaeus atricilla) as sub-species of the same art (Gavis ridibunda). Unlike the Black-headed gull though, the Laughing gull’s cry does sound like laughing- despite missing “rudibundus” in its scientific name.

If you only get a quick look at one of these gulls and want to know which one you saw, it might help you to know that the Black-headed Gull lives in Europe and Asia and the Laughing Gull in North and South America.

skrattmås

lapwing

A Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) standing on one foot.

This bird is also known as the Peewit or Pewit (imitative of its cry), Green Plover (emphasizing the color of the plumage) or (in the British Isles) just Lapwing (which refers to its peculiar, erratic way of flying).

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branches

Dealing with tree branches is a ‘nice’ challenge for a bird photographer! Here are three photographs of various branches….. and some birds ;)

1. Dunnock (Prunella modularis). Could’ve been a nice photo if he had posed elsewhere-

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2. European Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis). A very shy bird, photographed from afar-

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3. Long-tailed Bushtit (Aegithalos caudatus). One of my favorite birds but I’ve never managed to get a good, sharp photo of any-

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bluethroat

A Bluethroat (Luscinia svecica), photographed in Amsterdam today :) A rare sight as they’re usually quite secretive, flicking into the cover of low bushes with a flash of their chestnut tail patches.

Even though the white isn’t clearly visible, this one is of the race L. svecica cyanecula (white-spotted bluethroat)

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koltrast

Since 1962 the Eurasian Blackbird (Turdus merula) is the national bird of Sweden, but that might change this year- there’s a voting process going on and on the 31st of August this year the new national bird will be announced. There are currently 30 species left in the competition, and the Blackbird is still in the race :)

koltrast

PS. I’m taking a break from blogging, but I’ll be back ;)

kite

A Black Kite (Milvus migrans), photographed in Lanzarote

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gull

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