Sunshine Coast Birds

Birding and other wildlife experiences from the Sunshine Coast and elsewhere in Australia - and from overseas - with scribblings about travel, environmental issues, kayaking, hiking and camping.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Europe Part 6 - Copenhagen & Oslo

Barnacle Goose
Following our stay in Berlin (see following post) we took the bus north to the Danish capital of Copenhagen. It was an entirely relaxing mode of transit after our extensive travels in the hire car. We crossed the Baltic Sea on the ferry from the German port of Rostock.

Amalienborg Palace
In Copenhagen we had an Airbnb homestay in the district of Norrebro for 3 nights. We wandered the city centre and suburban streets, taking an on-off touring bus again, and were delighted by the beauty and general ambience of this place. We were told we were fortunate to be there for rarely warm summer weather; thousands of scantily clad (some naked) Danes were sunbaking by the numerous waterways.

Copenhagen canal

Copenhagen inner harbour
We took a ferry ride through the maze of canals and harbours.

City Library

Little Mermaid statue

Stock Exchange tower
We saw the Amalienborg Palace where the royal family lives; the imposing Christianborg Palace complex that includes the Parliament; the iconic Statue of the Living Mermaid along with City Hall; and other sites including the Opera House, Tivoli, Rosenberg Castle and the Botanic Gardens.

Hans Christian Anderson grave
In Norrebro we admired how the Danes have turned a cemetery into a fine suburban park. Here we saw the grave of Hans Christian Anderson.

Jackdaw was abundant in the city streets.

Oresund Bridge
 After Copenhagen we took another bus north, crossing the Oresund Bridge to Sweden, the 10th state to be visited since arriving in Europe a month ago. We crossed southern Sweden into Norway, arriving in the capital of Oslo and the home of our friends Ketil Knudsen and Bente Mjomen Knudsen.

Barnacle Goose
After Ketil picked us up at the bus depot, we stopped at the quaintly named Middle Aged Park in Oslo for the third lifer of the trip - Barnacle Goose. I've seen this species in many European parks but not ticked it previously. The Norway birds evidently have established a large and permanent breeding population; the extent to which this is an entirely natural phenomenon is impossible to determine but climate change is affecting other waterbird breeding behaviour. In any event, the Norway population is a mix of wild and birds originally introduced but is now accepted as wild.

Lesser Black-backed Gull

Common Gull
Common, Lesser Black-backed, European Herring and Black-headed Gulls were all numerous.

In Oslo we visited the Vigeland Park with its famous sculptures and the adjoining Western Graveyard - together creating a vast area of wonderful parkland in the city's heart.

Vigeland Park sculptures
 Common Goldeneye and Tufted Duck were among the waterbirds on the lakes.

Tufted Duck & Common Goldeneye

Viking Ship Museum
We enjoyed a visit to the Viking Ship Museum.

Common Eider family
We had a look at the Holmenkollen ski jump and the woods and coastal coves around the Nesodden Peninsula. Here were several Common Eiders with ducklings in tow.

Common Tern
Common Tern was feeding in the shallows.

Eurasian Oystercatcher
Eurasian Oystercatchers were about.

European Robin
European Robin, always a nice bird to see.

In a field nearby I finally connected with Redwing - my fourth lifer for the trip.

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