Alan Dalton post's birding diaries and original artwork from Sweden. Established in 2006, this now long running blog is now a complete overview of my birding experiences. As an artist I greatly enjoy sketching birds in the field and you will find a wide selection of that work here, from fieldwork to finished paintings. I am very passionate about my artwork and try to depict birds in their natural habitat, as I see them in the wild. My artwork is for sale and can be viewed at http://www.alandalton.net/
As regards to my photography, since 2008 I have used a Nikon D90 DSLR camera coupled with a Sigma 150-500mm OS lens for since March 2012 for bird photography, all previous images being digiscoped. Regarding sound recording, I have been usung a Telinga Stereo Dat Mic and parabol to record birds in the field, coupled to a Marrantz 661 digital recorder, a superb piece of kit. Interest in butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies has recently seen the accquisition of a Sigma 150mm macro lens. I hope you enjoy the blog and please feel free to leave comments or contact me at alandltn@gmail.com

Sunday, December 03, 2017

Ural Owl; Stockholm City; 3rd December 2017
























It is impossible to ignore a bird of this calibre when it it so close to home, so when the rain cleared after a miserable morning, I was out the door like a shot with the camera. On arrival I was delighted to find the owl sitting in open area of trances, allowing a clear line of sight. For a while there was even some decent light and I took full advantage and utilized the DSLR in the hope of getting a few decent images. A passing Magpie decided not to pass and the resulting fireworks between the two birds were memorable to say the least. Without a doubt my best shots of this impressive bird to date. The bird is now present for it's sixteenth day...

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Ural Owl; Stockholm City; 26th November 2017


















Now present for it's ninth day at LĂ„ngholmen, the temptation to go and have a second day with the bird proved too much. It was resting beside the school along the water and was, once again, completely oblivious to the passer's by who were gathered to look at the bird. It seems the bird is doing well and finding a good supply of food in the area. I spent a couple of hours watching the bird before moving on. also in the area were 85 Common Redpoll, which I carefully checked, as well as a small group of 12 Waxwing which flew overhead calling. A very nice morning in the city...

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Ural Owl: Stockholm City; 18th November 2018
















Video Footage here...


The discovery of a Ural Owl a couple of days ago within Stockholm City was a rather remarkable event, it has been a very long time since the species has been seen in this area. The last was in Kungsholmen 50 off years ago, and whilst there have been several in Upland, close to the city in the past twenty years, this was clearly an opportunity not to be missed. I have seen the species on just four occasions previously. I have a soft spot for owls and nneded no prompting to go view this bird, which is just four stops on public bus from my apartment!
 I arrived knowing the bird had been relocated this morning and simply walked up to the group of birder's present and there it was. The bird was sitting in a tree just inside the bridge to LĂ„ngholmen, peering down at the assembled gallery, which also contained many curious and often delighted locals. The views were simply stunning through the scope, by far the best I have ever had of this wonderful species. I didgiscoped a few close ups through the scope and shot plenty of video, before simply enjoying the bird in the telescope.
 Hopefully, this bird will stay in the area and gets enough food. I would imagine there are plenty of rats in the area for it to feed on and just hope that there are no issues with poison. Otherwise, this bird may hang around for a bit and become perhaps the most accessible Ural Owl in a very long time with regard to visiting birder's...

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Baltic Gull; 1st Calender; Skeppsbron; Stockholm; 3rd September 2017






































A series of images of 1st kalender Baltic Gulls from Skeppsbron today.....

Greater black backed Gull; Larus marinus; 1st Calender; Skeppsbron; 3rd September 2017


A rather small individual in the field. Note however the heavy build, a deep chested bird with a rather short primary projection and less attentuaed rear than Herring Gull. Bill deep and heavy. The head and underparts are rather whitish.  Note the crisply marked covert's, the greater covert's lacking the saw tooth appearance on Herring Gull in particular, being much more simply marked. Tertial pattern is typical of Larus marinus, with a large ammount of white at te tip and feather fringe. The photo below shows the birds bulk and thickset structure in comparison to a rather pale 2nd calender Argentatus.


Some photos and notes on a rather small Larus marinus at Skeppsbron today.

Argentatus Herring Gulls at Skeppsbron; 3rd September 2017

 A nice 2nd calender Argentatus here, a rather pale type, with dark tipped pinkish bill. A very variable age gruop in this species...

 A very warm plumaged 1st calender Argentatus in flight, showing warm coffee tones throughout the upperparts...

 1st Calender

 1st Calender 
 1st Calender

 1st Calender; A rather pale individual.

 1st Calender in flight...

 1st Calender

1st Calender, a bird leaning towards the darker end of the spectrum...

 1st Calender

 1st Calender

  1st Calender; Another warm toned individual first noticed bt Dirk Van Gansberg last week, a very nicely marked individual...

 The same 1st Calender as above...

 The same 1st Calender bird yet again, this photo shows the remarkable tail pattern on this atypical individual...

  1st Calender in flight...

  1st Calender

 3rd Calender bird here, this bird in actively moulting...

 A long calling 2nd Calender...note the iris is aready becoming lighter.



A selection of images from Skeppsbron, Stockholm today of Argentatus Herring Gulls, mostly in 1st Calender plumage. About 35 birds prenet in this agegroup at the site today..