Thursday, 26 August 2010

Tak og vi ses!

The Danish telecommunications company, TDC, today cut off my phone and internet connection a day early (grr..) so I am writing this from Mojo coffee shop on Gothersgade in central Copenhagen. I have checked us in for the BA flight, via London, to Beijing tomorrow and we are just about packed. We plan to spend our last evening in Copenhagen with a take away and a beer on the harbour at Nyhavn.

With our packing surprisingly (and uncharacteristically) ahead of schedule, I couldn't resist a final visit to my favourite patch at Sydvestpynten this morning. There was a distinctly autumnal feel to the air with a cool, fresh south-westerly breeze and the air full of migrants - mostly Tree Pipits and Yellow Wagtails but also a few waders including Ruff, Golden and Grey Plovers. Along the sheltered hedgerow a Spotted Flycatcher competed with two Pied Flycatchers for the small swarms of flying insects that danced in the lee of the hedge and a moulting adult male Common Redstart claimed the lower ground, preferring to catch insects on the ground from a low perch. A lone Swift made me realise that I hadn't heard these brief summer visitors for a few days now - they always seem to disappear all at once - and it mingled with a mixed group of hirundines including adult and juvenile Swallows, House Martins and Sand Martins. The bushes were alive with Willow Warblers, Chiffchaffs, Blackcaps, Garden Warblers, Lesser and Common Whitethroats. It was a good reminder of just how good this patch has been for migration - the numbers of birds passing through has eclipsed anything I have seen in the UK. On a clear October day, especially after the first frost further north in Scandinavia, the sky can be full of finches - mostly Chaffinches and Bramblings - larks and buntings and it is a spectacle I will miss this year.

The hoped for rarity on my last full day in Denmark did not materialise but that did not take away the joy of a typically rich morning's birding at this special site. With my bike already packed and on its way back to London for storage, I caught the bus back to the city with a heavy heart. I hope I will be back one day!

Thanks to everyone who has read this blog over the last 3 years - your comments and support have made it a lot of fun and it is also a great record for me of my time here in Copenhagen.

As soon as I can I will post details of my new blog from Beijing - it promises to be a different, but I am sure just as bird-rich, experience!

1 comment:

Phil Benstead said...

A moving eulogy, I hope Scandinavian birders appreciate just how good their birding is.

Bon voyage and good luck to you! I hope you will be back to thrash Sweden again someday, enjoyed the blog immensely and look forward to the next incarnation 'Birding Beijing'?