Winter is coming. At Revtangen bird observatory south of Stavanger that means time for action, but fortunately of a peaceful nature. Autumn is high season for bird ringing when it comes to migratory species like waders.

The Common Ringed Plover is a small plover. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Common Ringed Plover is a small plover. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Sanderling is a small wader, similar in size to a Dunlin. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
A flock of Sanderling’s taking to the air. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

The first building at the observatory was built in 1937, and it was officially opened in November the same year. The observatory is run by Stavanger Museum, and the main task is catching and ringing of wading birds and passerines. Stavanger Museum is also organizing all other scientific bird ringing in Norway.

The Little Stint is a very small wader. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Little Stint is a very small wader. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

The observatory had some troubled times during WW2 as the German occupants fortified the area and destroyed parts of the buildings. And early in the 1950s the Norwegian Air Force set up a firing and bombing field within the catching area at Revtangen. The observatory cabin was therefore moved closer to the main road, where it is located today. This is also the main area for catching and ringing of passerines.

Traps for catching and bird ringing in the background. A flock of Sanderling's in the foreground. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
Traps for catching birds for ringing in the background. A flock of Sanderling’s in the foreground. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

Catching and ringing of waders take place on Revtangen itself, a small shoal extending into the sea at the westernmost point on Jaeren. At low tide this is a rich food source. Between 1000 and 5000 migratory birds are tagged here each year, and almost 300 different species have been observed in the area.

Some other photos I shot there this autumn:

The Wood Sandpiper is a small wader and the smallest of the shanks. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Wood Sandpiper is a small wader and the smallest of the shanks. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Sanderling is a small wader, similar in size to a Dunlin. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Sanderling is a small wader, similar in size to a Dunlin. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Bar-tailed Godwit is a large wader. In argument with a Sanderling. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Bar-tailed Godwit is a large wader. In argument with a Sanderling. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Dunlin is one of the most common and best-known waders. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Dunlin is one of the most common and best-known waders. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Eurasian Oystercatcher, or  just Oystercatcher, is a wader in the oystercatcher bird family. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
The Eurasian Oystercatcher, or just Oystercatcher, is a wader in the oystercatcher bird family. At Revtangen on Jaeren, south west Norway. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)
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  1. stock photography

    You have shared some amazing pics , This will surely help those people who want to learn about the photography and your photography surely help them. i like the angles you made to capture these pics

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Bjørn Grøtting

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Photographer based in Norway. See a collection of my best photos in the portfolio. Licensing of images is done through Photoshelter or alamy.
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