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Great Northern Diver - IslomGavia immer
Svartnäbbad Islom  - Islom - Amerikanjääkuikka - Plongeon imbrin

Adult Great Northern Diver in flight
Adult Great Northern Diver heading north at Skogsøy, May 2016

Great Northern Diver is a regular migrant in both spring and autumn at Skogsøy, and is one of the main "target" species for seawatches at all times of year with the exception of the summer months. It is the second commonest of the diver species on an annual basis. Birds can be seen passing or on the sea during the winter months; during the spring the vast majority are seen heading north with only occasional individuals on the sea.  Great Northern Diver are at their most numerous during October and November when the majority logged heading south. Usually only one or two are seen and double figure day counts have yet to be experienced.

There are some indications that this species, in common with White-billed Diver, is on the increase.

The diagram below shows the maximum counts per 3-day period using my own sporadic and non-systematic counts. The blue line shows the number of visits and the orange the number of days Great Northern Diver have occured. The green line shows the maximum count per three day period.

Maximum counts of Great Northern Diver at Skogsøy

Occurrence of Great Northern Diver at Skogsøy by week number
Occurrence of Great Northern Diver at Skogsøy by week number
Note that this histogram also includes stationary birds, not just those migrating

Numbers of Great Northern Diver at Skogsøy far exceed those at Utsira with day counts at Skogsøy exceeding seasonal counts at Utsira (8 in an autumn is the best Utsira total)
. For directly migrating birds Skogsøy would appear to be one of the better localities in Europe.

Maximum: 9, 05 November 2005

Great Northern Diver, Skogsøy, May 2018
Great Northern Diver with three Red-throated Diver, Skogsøy, May 2018

Great Northern Diver in flight, Skogsøy, May 2014

Link to pictures in gallery

Tveit, B.O., Mobakken, G. og Bryne, O. 2004 Fugler og fuglafolk på Utsira. Utsira Fuglestasjon
Ellis,P., Harvey, P.,Heubeck,M.,Okill, D., Osborn, K.,Pennington,M.,Riddington, R. Birds of Shetland. 2004.

Diver / Loon Specialist Group

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