The golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) is one of the primary goals of winter bird photography in Finland. The dramatic light and snow make an excellent background.
Although the landscape can appear bleak and intimidating in winter
There are many scenes of great beauty to be found
And the opportunity to photograph the birds makes up for the cold (-33 C) sometimes
The Eurasian jays (Garrulus glandarius) were plentiful everywhere we went
Siberian Jays (Perisoreus infaustus) were less commonly seen, but made the appearance
The great spotted woodpecker ( Dendrocopos major) was a frequent visitor to each of the areas we photographed.
The black woodpecker (Dryocopus martius) was much shier, but still made an appearance.
The grey headed woodpecker (Picus canus) only appeared at the very end each day. He seemed to be waiting till he saw us packing up our gear to head out.
The grey headed chickadee (Parus cinctus) was quite common everywhere.
The crested tits (Parus cristatus) were also common jumping from log to bush to ground and back in search of seeds or other food.
The Eurasian blue tit (Parus caeruleus) was right there with the others looking for food.
The great tit (Parus major) was also a common sight
But even when no birds were in our view the scenery was spectacular
And the golden eagles made their appearance on schedule each day
Magnificent in flght
Much of what makes any photographic opportunity is the light
There are many lakes and rivers in Northern Finland making for delightful scenes
And there were fish otters (Lutra lutra) to be found enjoying the area as well
They seemed to have no trouble finding fish in the mostly frozen over lake
And clearly enjoyed drying off in the snow after each dip
That looks like another fish for lunch
Finland in winter is a worthwhile visit for the birds and other wildlife as well as the beautiful scenery, but be prepared for the cold and snow