Hello everyone! Does anyone know where to look for the Northern Hawk Owls or any other winter birds in November in and around Abisko? Also, what are the chances of spotting these birds considering the cold weather in November.
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I would say that you would actually have more luck with Hawk Owl further south than Abisko in the winter. Somewhere with a few more trees.
Again, trees are the key for other specialities too. You will have a good chance of finding things like Siberian Tits and Siberian Jays in more forested areas, especially if there are gardens with bird feeders. Three-toed Woodpecker is also possible.
Don't forget that you're not going to have a lot of daylight and even when the sun is up, November is notorious for its cloud cover in Sweden.
I was in Abisko a very long time ago, in October 2009 and it is still the only place I have ever seen Pine Grosbeak, around one of the trails leading up to the NP from the railway. It was thus one of the few birds we already had when we started birding for real in 2012 and I was quite surprised when I went back to the Lapland 10 years later and all the reports were raving about specific places for Pine Grosbeak, as if it were somehow difficult to see November may be a different story, this is is high tundra and the winter comes very quickly and does not give way until spring.
I don't know about winter, but I was there in summer last year and found Hawk Owls very easily. Walking on the Karsfallen trail to a waterfall (marked trail number four on the park's leaflet: http://www.nationalparksofsweden.se/globalassets/abisko/filer/abisko-nationalpark-folder-en.pdf) I heard them calling but didn't see them. On the way back, in the same area, there was a fledged chick sitting low down in a tree right next to the trail. A nearby adult was alarm calling nearby and swooped down at me a couple of times as I passed the chick (scary! I moved a safe distance away pretty quickly). The adult then perched at the top of a tree allowing excellent views.
On a different day I was walking back from the park headquarters and tourist station area to my accommodation in Abisko village at 'night' (still broad daylight) and saw a different adult at the top of a tree in a large, lightly-wooded paddock just outside the village.
Other birds included plenty of Bluethroats and abundant singing Bramblings in the forests, and Ptarmigan, Dotterel and a few Long-tailed Skuas on the higher ground accessible by cable car. Of course, only the Ptarmigan will still be there in winter.
Lots of Elk (Moose) poop around but I didn't see any here.