This morning I got an e-mail from fellow birder Ola Moen with a picture of a drake Ring-necked Duck. The e-mail was sent from his mobile phone, and he said "this is a Ring-Necked Duck, right?". I replied "yes, where is it?". This Nearctic species has never been recorded in Hordaland county before, so I was refreshing my e-mail continously during the next half hour. Eventually, Ola called me and could tell that the bird was feeding in a small ice-free patch in a lake north of Bergen. Ka-pow!
Ring-necked Duck is a true rarity in Norway, with only 33 records up to and including 2014. It was an awaited species in Hordaland county. We have been scanning for the species in Tufted Duck groups for ages. The star of the day did not have to share any attention with other birds. It was all by itself, and not in a party of other Aythya's as expected.
View from the bridge (see photo above). The site is a slow-floating stream between two lakes, and both lakes are completely frozen. The narrow stream is the only ice-free spot, forcing the bird to stay rather close to the road. Birders were encouraged to stay on the road, and most did. If the bird lifts, the possibility of never seeing it again is obvious.
November 2018: Fieldwork in three IBA's in Nepal (EN)