Long-tailed Duck, Vadsø
We notched up more or less the same species as before along the shore of the fjord. White-tailed Eagle numbers were down to just 15 in the spot from yesterday but nearby 2 gorgeous Otters entertained us just offshore. We couldn't resist another stop in Skallelv village where the feeders now hosted 4+ Arctic Redolls, just 1 Mealy Redpoll and presumably the same male Brambling as yesterday. Our long drive gave us another Shorelark, c300 Snow Buntings, 3 Rough-legged Buzzards, a close-up Red Fox and loads of Reindeer before a couple of unsuccessful searches for Hawk Owl in the Tana valley as we headed north towards Kongsfjord.
birding in the Tana Valley
Arctic Redpoll, Skallelv
Red Fox, Varanger
After checking into the lovely Kongsfjord Guesthouse http://www.kongsfjord-gjestehus.no/html/welcome.html and having a very late lunch of reindeer meatballs we all headed back to the bus and made the 30 minute drive west to Kjølnes Lighthouse for some seawatching. This area was the furthest north we ventured and truly felt like it was on the edge of the world! Nothing stood between us and the North Pole except miles of icy sea. Seawatching in the lea of the lighthouse was excellent. Not necessarily for variety but certainly quality and volume - 1000+ Fulmars of which c70% were 'blue' phase birds, 4 Arctic Skuas, 6 White-billed Divers, 2 Glaucous Gulls, c6 Brunnich's Guillemots, several Puffins, a Gannet and many Black Guillemots.
Glaucous Gull, Kjølnes Lighthouse
near Kjølnes Lighthouse
Oystercatcher, Kjølnes Lighthouse
Tormod enjoying his dried fish! Kjølnes Lighthouse
Seawatching, Kjølnes Lighthouse
Back in the welcoming warmth of the guesthouse we were warmly welcomed by Asa and treated to a superb dinner of cod followed by baked apples and plenty of wine.