2 days to Christmas

Krossnefur – Common Crossbill – Loxia curvirostra

We found this Common Crossbill, or Red Crossbill as they are called in USA,  in the top a Pine tree, silhouetted against a beautifully bright blue sky. There is nothing common about its bright orange colour  but the Crossbill comes in colours ranging from yellow to red.

The Crossbill’s favourite food is seeds from Spruce and Pine cones. In the latter part of the last century Spruce and Pine trees have been planted and are now in full growth in many places throughout the country.

4 days to Christmas

Fjallafinka – Brambling – Fringilla montifringilla

Only 4 days to Christmas and December greats us with lots of snow and short days that only last about 4 hours from sunrise to sunset. Today we bring you this Brambling  that was with us in October’s snowy weather. The Brambling is a vagrant in Iceland and as such always a treat.

It has been a difficult December and different from what we are used to, blizzards day after day and closed roads. Hopefully we will get nicer weather during the holidays so family and friends will be able to visit their loved ones.

5 days to Christmas

This Chaffinch has been with us since October and seems to be quite up to the Icelandic climate.

Bókfinka – Chaffinch – Fringilla coelebs

At last we have a beautiful day with bright skies and no blizzards in this part of the country. Tomorrow it will not be so bright. There is a lot of snow everywhere so it’s not easy for the birds to find food but a lot of people set out food for them. This Chaffinch in our garden has her bill full of sunflower seeds. Picture taken today  🙂

The Long-Tailed Duck is a threatened species

The Long-Tailed Duck is a noticable duck because of its beautiful colours and long tail. Global warming is probably a threat to its existence.  It is on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, with the status vulnerable. In the wintertime it stays in the ocean around Iceland but in the summer it is a breeding bird in the interior where the climate  is colder, more arctic.

Hávella – Long-Tailed Duck – Clangula hyemalis

This picture is taken in Veiðivötn, Fishing Lakes, in the interior of Iceland. The male bird is at the front, the female behind.