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Herring fishing in Øygarden
sild - Clupea harengus

Great Black-backed Gull stealing herring
Great Black-backed Gull stealing herring

In Øygarden there is often some activity associated with the Herring fisheries during March; after capture herring are kept in holding pens for a period of time. These pens are moored in sheltered waters and are left ungaurded. The one thing I really don't understand about this is why the herring don't just jump out of these pens. Perhaps they can't jump in the same way many other fish do.

Sometimes, but not always, these holding pens attract the attention of gulls and other fish eating birds. Large numbers of gulls can gather at these feeding frenzies - and large numbers of gulls often attract other predators such as White-tailed Eagles. In other words - a great place to take photos.

In Øygarden, Norway the second half of March is the most predictable time to see Orcas (Killer Whales) which often follow the shoals of herring close into the coast. These fantastic animals can be seen anywhere in Øygarden - both out at sea and in the fjords.

Herring Gull with herring
Herring Gull with herring

White-tailed Eagle hunting gulls
White-tailed Eagle hunting gulls.....

White-tailed Eagle hunting gulls

Gulls in Herring frenzy

Above pictures taken with a Canon EOS400D with a 400mm telephoto lens

Herring Fishing vesselHerring Fishing vessels
Herring fishing vessels, Skogsøy, March 2007

Two Orcas digiscoped off Skogsøy, March 2006

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