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Final cleaning & goodbyes

søndag 1. december 2019
af Judith Kloibhofer

Actually this day started already in the night with the christmasdinner of the birders from Northjytland (Julefrokost Nordjyske Birdere) which lasted till the early morning. We had a great time and it was interesting to meet so many birders.

Before we went up Michael was already active to catch some birds in Jennes Sø. Unfortunately the birds were not very active and only three found their way into the nets.  

We woke up in a little bit of chaos and had to clean everything up. After finishing Birders’ Club we continued cleaning upstairs. It was time to do the final cleaning for the closing of the station, that included sorting all the left food and cleaning every little part of the bird observatory. After 5 hours everything is shining and I would say it is impossible now to to find any dust (Nullermand) in the apartment! During the cleaning Jørgen and Igor came by to say goodbye to me as I have my last day today.

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Cleeeeeaning, cleeeeeeeaning and cleeeeeeaning

In the afternoon Laia and me went down to the shop to buy some ‘bird souvenirs’ for bringing home. The have a Christmas sale at the moment and offer many really beautiful things – so we had some difficulties to decide what to buy that it doesn’t get too much. It was also time to say goodbye to Christl and Flemming as they have their day off tomorrow. It was really nice to meet you and we wish you just the best for your future! Flemming even gave us a T-Shirt for free – thanks a lot for that! It will always remind us on you and on the nice time we had up here :)

In the meantime Simon was bringing all the bottles and cans to the supermarket to get the pledge back. But the “pledge-machines” and Simon were not really friends – after the first machine stopped working he had to continue to another supermarket. And even there the machine gave up after some bottles, but with the help of one of the workers he managed to get rid of all of them.

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Simon's best friend ;)

While I am writing this blog entry Laia is making a hairwrap (yarn around a hair strand). I am already curious how it will look like. Thanks for making that for me Laia!

In the evening it was time to pack all my stuff and prepare my journey back home. Thank you Skagen for this amazing time! It was a pleasure to be here and I will never forget all the fun, the knowledge, the love to birds etc. I hope to come back again!

Ringing (Jennes Sø):

Redpoll – Lille Gråsisken – 1
Yellowhammer – Gulspurv – 1
Blue Tit – Blåmejse – 1

Total: 3

People: Simon S. Christiansen, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Michael Ancher, Jørgen and Igor, Nullermand, Nissemand.

Christmas dinner!

lørdag 30. november 2019
af Laia Soler Iglesias

Today has been a different day as yesterday during the evening meeting we agreed to start ringing at Simon's garden due to he saw a flock of Waxwings (Silkehale) flying around the neighbourhood.

So we woke up quite earlier than we did the last days and took all the equipment we needed to ring the birds in that area. We put up a net, we feed the birds and we patiently waited for the Waxwings to come and get caught in our net.

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Anders also came to Simon's home and ringed with us. Unfortunately, only a flock of them was sitting on the top of the tree and were flashed by a Robin (Rødhals). So we were a bit upset about that... But we ringed Great Tits (Musvit) and Blue Tits (Blåmejse).
After the ringing, we went back to the Bird Observatory because of the feeding of the birds that kids could do today at 13:00h.
They really enjoyed putting the food and also had the opportunity to look at the dead birds that we have at the moment.

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Michael Anker was ringing at Jennes Sø and he caught some Mealy Redpoll (Nordlig Gråsisken).

Then we took a look at the Christmas Sale at the Shop and prepared ourselves for the Christmas dinner.

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As you can see, we had a lot of fun during dinner and the quizzes after eating. It was really nice to share the evening with you all.

Ringmærkning (Skagen By, Jennes Sø):

Blåmejse - 2
Musvit - 7
Gransanger - 1
Gærdesmutte - 1
Nordlig Gråsisken - 6
Lille Gråsisken - 10
Grønsisken - 1

Total: 28

People: Simon S. Christiansen, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Michael Ancher and the friends of the Christmas dinner.

Vinteren er på vej

fredag 29. november 2019
af Esben Elgaard Hansen

I dag var vinden for stærk til at åbne de få net vi har tilbage. Vi prøvede med nogle få fælder, men intet gik i. Det blev en dag uden ringmærkede fugle.

Som dagene går, bliver vi mere og mere klar til at lukke ned for vinteren og afslutte 2019. Judith sorterede i morges billeder til billedarkivet. Laia havde check på fælderne i haven samtidig med at hun gjorde klar til at tage den radio modtager ned som opfanger de fugle mærket med en sender som flyver forbi.

Jeg har gik alt papir med ringmærkningsdata fra 2019 igennem så det er sorteret som det skal.

Om eftermiddagen tog vi alle ud for at afmontere radiomodtageren, det gik som det skulle. De mange dage uden sol på det sidste i Skagen betød dog at batteriet var løbet tør for strøm.

Simon har i dag ordnet kontorarbejdet. Heriblandt registreret de guidede ture han har holdt i løbet af året, 65 er det blevet til.radio

Now we are ready for Christmas

torsdag 28. november 2019
af Laia Soler Iglesias

Today Judith opened the nets in the garden and we both had breakfast together with Esben (that joined a bit later). Then Judith and Esben went for the first round at the same time as I was starting the observations from the beach next to Det Grå Fyr. The morning in the observations started quite busy but after an hour and a half slowed down (with some big flocks of Common Scoters (Sortand) and Eiders (Ederfugl).

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Christian also joined ringing for a while this morning before he left Skagen in his way back home (we hope you a nice and safe trip back home!). Jorgen and Igor also visited us while ringing.

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Simon's morning was bringing Christian to the train station and checking us in the ringing. Also, he was busy with the board meeting Christmas dinner during the noon.

In the ringing, they had mostly Greenfinches (Grønirisk) as the previous days.
I joined ringing after the observations as well and in between the rounds we were sewing nets from the other ringing sites.

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We had a nice Twite (Bjergirisk) in the nets that you can see in the picture below.

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When we closed the nets in the garden, we continued sewing nets during the afternoon. We entered the data of today and Esben helped with the Christmas lights and Christmas trees downstairs.

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After a while, we planned the following day and we started to get ready for dinner.

And now we are starting a movie night!


Ringmærkning (Fyrhavene):

Grønirisk - 21

Bjergirisk - 1

Total: 22


People: Simon S. Christiansen, Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Jorgen Kabel & Igor and the Board of the Friends.

The last days with many volunteers around

onsdag 27. november 2019
af Judith Kloibhofer

We had a surprise when we looked out of the window this morning – it was not raining! Only a little bit of drizzle and Chris decided immediately to open our two nets in the garden. We continued the ringing the whole morning and had some Greenfinches (Grønsisken) and as a highlight a Chiffchaff (Gransanger). It’s already very late for this species, but it had a high fatscore and seems to be ready for migrating further south.


Furthermore we caught an adult male Great Tit (Musvit), which was a recapture.


Over midday we had to close the nets because it was raining to much but we continued with some traps in the garden. Unfortunately they didn’t catch any bird. Chris wanted to enjoy his last day up here with doing as much ringing as possible. Therefore, we opened the nets in the afternoon once more. But only one Greenfinch was following Chris wish.


In the morning we had to say goodbye to Yotam. He was just here for a short time of 10 days but it was nice to have him around and we learnt a lot from his long ringing-experiences. We wish you a good journey home!

During the ringing breaks we used some time to do indoor stuff. That included sewing nets (juhuu more than half of them are done!), cleaning some draws and shelfs in the apartment and counting ring series. This activities shows us that the season is going to the end and the winter is coming. Also the volunteers around the station are getting less and less due to the end of the season. Chris is already leaving tomorrow, for that he had his final evaluation with Simon in the afternoon. Before this meeting Simon was in town to meet with Lene, Kurt and Rie. They are planning to open a family-nature-club in spring and it sounds like families around and tourist families can already look forward to it.

After analysing some night recordings, which was done by Yotam in the last days, Chris was today sitting down to extract some bat-sounds out of the recordings. They are going to be sent to the University in Lund.

Ringing (Fyrhaven):

Greenfinches – Grønsisken - 6
Chiffchaff – Gransanger - 1

Total: 7

People: Simon S. Christiansen, Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Yotam Lehnardt.

Grey Lighthouse getting slowly ready for Christmas!!!

tirsdag 26. november 2019

Yotam was opening the garden nets today and we ringed subsequently in the morning hours. Next to the usual greenfinches (grønirisk), we ringed a yellowhammer (gulspurv) and a chaffinch (bogfinke). When the rain got heavier during the later morning, we had to close the nets again.



Judith and me were doing observations from the Grey Lighthouse at the same time, but a constant drizzle prevented us from having a good seawatch. Nonetheless were two male long-tailed ducks (havlit) seen and some very close red-breasted mergansers (toppet skallesluger).

The rain progressed and the rest of the day we stayed inside. Yotam started packing as he will leave tomorrow, but found the time to listen to and analyse more of our night recordings. Esben and Judith were fixing the old nests for most of the day. Laia was studying Catalan and Spanish bird names. I was entering our colour-ring readings of different gulls into the database.

In other news, the Grey Lighthouse is changing its appearance into a christmas-outfit. See it here:

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In the evening Knud, Inge, Jørgen and Simon came by for a collective dinner.

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Ringing (Fyrhavene):

European greenfinch - grønirisk - 7
Common chaffinch - bogfinke - 1
Yellowhammer - gulspurv - 1

Total: 9

People: Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Yotam Lehnardt, Knud & Inge Pedersen, Jørgen Kabel and Simon S. Christiansen.

Winter vibes

mandag 25. november 2019
af Yotam Lehnardt

Despite the warm(ish) weather today and the relatively calm winds things are slowing down, we are still ringing around the Grey Lighthouse garden, Esben and Laia opened the nets in the hope to catch more of the Greenfinches (Grønirisken) hanging around the lighthouse garden and few familiar recaptures that already settled in their favourite spots.

Judith joined Knud for seawatching in Nordstrand, which yielded low numbers of birds but a few specialties in the form of 2 Black Guillemots (Tejst) and a Red-necked Grebe (gråstrubede lappedykker).

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After ringing today, which included a pretty female Fieldfare (Sjagger) and 11 Greenfinches (Grønirisken) we decided to take down the last of the nets after a short look in the forecast and the fact most of the team leaves soon made us understand today was our last chance to do that while it’s not raining.

Fieldfare 1

We had our heart warmed by a visit from our resident volunteer Rita Pate who kindly brought us all a personal Christmas present (I got a Hanukkah present).

Toda raba Rita!

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The afternoon was calm indoor affair, with much net fixing: each net’s holes are sewed before being put in storage until spring.

I continued with more night recording analysis, hearing many Redwings and few Song Thrushes that migrated over Skagen during october.


Ringing (Fyrhaven):

Greenfinches – Grønirisken – 11

Fieldfare – Sjagger – 1

Total: 12

People: Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Yotam Lehnardt and Knud Pedersen.


søndag 24. november 2019
af Judith Kloibhofer

The weather forecast said a whole day without raining. So we were very motivated for doing ringing and opened the nets in the garden. It went pretty well with 38 Greenfinches (Grønirisken) out of 39 new ringed birds. The other one was a Redwing (Vindrossel). We also had some recaptures of Great Tits (Musvit), a Blackbird (Solsort) and a Robin (Rødhals). The Greenfinches were really interesting because they have a variable moult, so we had some challenges to find the moult limits. Males are often moulting more than female, because this species doesn’t have a moult in winter. So they are already preparing their plumage for spring.


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In the afternoon we went to town to do some shopping. After finding everything we needed we started to prepare the dinner, because we invited Christel and Flemming for dinner today. Yotam prepared an awesome Israeli dish, called Shakshuka and Mugaddara. For dessert I prepared a yogurt cream with berries. We had a really nice evening together with Flemming and Christel – thanks for coming!

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In the evening also Esben came back from his weekend off and finished the rest of the dinner. And he was also very happy about the chocolate-balls that Laia made for him for his birthday. She made a lot of them so we can enjoy them the next days.

Ringing (Fyrhaven):

Greenfinches – Grønirisken – 38
Redwing – Vindrossel – 1

Total: 39

People: Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Esben Hansen, Yotam Lehnardt, Flemming & Christel, Jørgen Kabel & Igor, Erik Christophersen.

Goodbye Kabeltrommelkrattet!

lørdag 23. november 2019
af Laia Soler Iglesias

Today Judith and I went to open the nets at Kabeltrommelkrattet. Christian and Yotam joined for the first round. There were not a lot of birds in the nets so we closed early and started to shut down the ringing site. We also did some observations while ringing. The highlights were Waxwings (Silkehale), Great Grey Shrikes (Stor Tornskade) and over 100 Crossbills (Lille & Stor Korsnæb).

We managed to take them down and also, we carried all the poles, ropes, nets, chairs, and the stuff we usually have out at Kabeltrommelkrattet by bike to the Bird Observatory.

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When we arrived at the Observatory we put everything in its place and we eat lunch. After that, Yotam and I opened the nets in the garden while Christian was talking with Pål from Lista and showing him around the Bird Observatory. When he finished, he joined us and we ringed some birds, mostly Greenfinches (Grønirisk) and also we had 2 Yellowhammers (Gullspurv). Judith joined the ringing a bit later. And Knud visited us with two friends. We closed the nets at 15:00h.

Yellowhammer (Gullspurv)


Greenfinch (Grønirisk)

So then, Judith started to sew the nets while Yotam was listening to some recordings of night migration calls and I was starting to write the blog of today.

After a while, I joined Judith and together we sewed some nets (3 in total).

Christian made a really nice dinner that tasted really good!


Ringmaærkning (Kabeltrommelkrattet, Fyrhaven):

Gærdesmutte - 1

Rødhals - 1

Blåmejse - 3

Grønirisk - 13

Skovspurv - 1

Musvit - 2

Total: 21


People: Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Yotam Lehnardt.

The sound of silence

fredag 22. november 2019
af Yotam Lehnardt

Today was another weather-limited day, Chris braved the wind and rain for a very wet 3-hour Seawatch session, highlights were two Little Gulls (Dværgmåge) and a fulmar (Mallemuk)!

We used our time indoors to update and organize the picture archive with many detailed photos of our recent catching’s, mostly woodcocks spotlighted during the last nights and to dive into a new project that was started this autumn at Skagen Bird Observatory: night sound recording!

Don’t be alarmed by the title, while for most of us birding is a primarily a visual experience darkness doesn’t mean the end for bird activity. Not only owls and nightjars begin their activity but also diurnal birds are very active as most songbirds migrate during night time and out aim is to also “observe” them migrating over-head in total darkness.

lighthouse laiasolerLook at all the birds! Det Grå Fyr at night. Photo: Laia Soler


The recording process is pretty straight-forward, using a specialized microphone aimed at the sky and placed at our ringing site we recorded all sounds from dusk till dawn, and after collecting it in the morning we can download all the data gathered to the station’s computer and start with the analyses process.

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Prepering the sound recorder and the Microphone at Kabeltromlekrattet.

Using a software designed for wildlife recordings made by Cornell Lab of Ornithology we analyse the whole night; the program also turns the sound into a visual form called spectrogram or sonographs making the calls birds make in the darkness “visible” for us.


The visual form of a Redshank (Rødben) calls during the night in September

Our processed observations are then catalogued on our database and the totals for the night are entered on Trektellen, you can follow them here: https://www.trektellen.org/count/view/2601/20191010 as we will continue with our analysis over the next weeks.

We are hoping this new and exciting project will help us better understand what birds are doing over Grenen together with the data we already collect through ringing and observations.


Folk: Christian Stolz, Judith Kloibhofer, Laia Soler Iglesias, Yotam Lehnardt.

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