Iceland welcomes first migratory birds of the year

The year’s first migratory birds have arrived in Iceland, giving the country’s land dwellers their first glimpse (and sound) of spring.

A group of lesser black backed gulls were seen over Seltjarnarnes (a suburb municipality of Reykjavík) on the 10th February and another such bird was spotted this morning at Þinganes by Hornafjörður, in the south east of Iceland, according to the birding website Fuglar.is.

The birds’ arrival this year is very yearly, as over recent decades the first individuals usually arrive much later in February – and into March.

Kittiwakes have started coming ashore again, as is usual for February; but some have been coming ashore all winter long – especially in the south west.

RÚV reports that gannets usually completely leave Iceland in December each year, but that over a hundred have been seen since then off Stokkanes and some 3,000 in Breiðafjörður.

Finally, black headed gulls have begun to gather around the town of Höfn í Hornafirði in south east Iceland – but it is hard to say whether they are migratory or if they were in Iceland all winter.