12 August 2012

Birdwatching and other stuff

August 2012

Spent last few days of summer holiday walking on some Nature Reserve areas. Although this was quite  a silent season in them, there's always something interesting to see.

There was still a few interesting birds to watch, worth carrying binoculars. Shot some photos, all handheld.

Visited Nature Reserve areas:

Viikki, Helsinki

Partly sunny day. Viikki Nature Reserve is located around the oldest part of Helsinki. Went first via duckboards to Lammassaari island. There's a popular birdwatching tower. All birds were in too distant to take any interesting photos there.

Headed next to Pornaistenniemi peninsula. There's a small birdwatching hut near water level. Spotted a few Coot there. They didn't scare my camera too much, thanks!

Next walked to Gardenia to see a small photo exhibition plus had a lunch there. One of my fav places.

On a returning route stopped to see life of Mallards while they had their bathing time. Splish splash!

A nice walk but visually a bit too silent and dead in nature. You see, I'm an amateur.

Walking on duckboards

A Coot looking for something to eat

A shady avenue

A Mallard taking a bath

Laajalahti, Espoo

Partly sunny day again. Laajalahti Nature Reserve is located near Ring Road 1. One has to deny constant noise coming from there.

There was a new photo exhibition opened in Villa Elfvik Nature House, a Spring in Archipelago. Spent an hour there with really beautiful photos from Jungfruskär island!

Headed next to birdwatching tower near by. Multiple species of different Waders were walking and hopping on wasteland. Then saw a big white spot in distance. Took binoculars. It did look like a white Common Crane. Thanks to smartphones and network coverage, browsed and identified it to be a Great Egret. Finally saw something rare. Cool!  Unfortunately it was in such a long distance that it wasn't possible to capture by a camera, not even with a 300mm zoom lens.

Continued walking via duckboards to south side birdwatching tower. Lots of Dragonflies. South side tower was full of Birdwatchers, professional ones. Some one told me he had identified some 30 different species of birds while staying there. That's about quiet season!

Worth visiting Laajalahti. Enjoyable photo exhibition.

A Wood Pigeon landing

Waders searching lunch

Birdwatchers having other interest

Lizards having a family meeting

A Dragonfly captured lunch

An old hayfield

I just like these duckboards

Mallards competing who can stand longest time on one foot

Villa Elfvik

Mustavuori, Helsinki

No major change in weather, partly sunny day, temperature above +15C but under +20C.

Mustavuori Nature Reserve is one of the most important Nature Reserve areas in Helsinki, located in east of Helsinki.

Right after start noticed a fairly big, black bird on a tree. Didn't identify it. Hands started to shake, can I make some photos? It was on a shade, of course. Took few shots and then it flew off. Thanks for a couple of shots I later identified it to be a Spotted Nutcracker. Not seen too often. Hip Hurray!

Continued walking on an Old Gun Road. It was an old cobble stone road made by the time of Russian Emperor, about some 100 years ago.

Heard very light beeping sound coming from trees near the road. At first didn't see anything. Stood still some minutes then saw many small birds hopping from one branch to another. Took a camera. They all disappeared at once. Stood still another 5min. They appeared again. This time was lucky to take some photos of them. They were Goldcrests. Boy I was proud.

Next took a longer walk to Vuosaari hill, an artificial hill made near peninsula. A few birdwatchers were there. Several different species of birds live on the slopes of the hill. Took few shots with full zoom.

Walked down to peninsula. Dragonflies circled here and there. Took some photos of them. Then came butterflies. Beautiful indeed. It was about time to return.

Really worth visiting there.

A Spotted Nutcracker

Old Gun Road

A Goldcrest

A Red-backed Shrike

A Brown Hawker Dragonfly had captured its lunch, a Wasp

A Common Spreadwing Dragonfly

Hey, we both eat Raspberries!

Really nice butterfly, a European Peacock

Tammisto, Vantaa

I may repeat but the weather was partly cloudy, although mostly sunny.

Tammisto Nature Reserve is located near Vantaa river along the border of Helsinki.

The Nature Reserve is one low hill covered by many old oak trees and some other noble trees, a thick forest. Thus birds living there were a bit different than in other (spruce and pine) forests.

Heard lots of different species of birds. However, they were very difficult to capture by camera. At least my patience wasn't enough. A Woodpecker was so busy on its task that it didn't mind me taking some shots.

Otherwise, shades of old noble trees were nice. Grand old trees, wish they could talk.

Didn't regret visiting there although spotted results were not so great.

A monster insect

A young Anglophone Robin, I presume

They never fear cameras

Mouth full of food

A Spotted Woodpecker on the fly


  1. Very nice pictures. I did some slightly more serious birdwatching some 10-15 years ago, but then basically gave it up due to it depending so much on using a car.

    1. Thanks!

      That's one reason why I haven't done it either so seriously. Luckily living near the sea gives good opportunities alone in Finland.

  2. Loved getting a chance to see the spotted nutcracker. We have a joke (you can always find a coot everywhere you go) but it almost made us miss a lifer in Peru, where they have a giant coot species that is somewhat different. Nice pictures.