Finally I found some time to post these pictures taken when we were harvesting the eiderdown.
I took them with a smartphone and in a hurry so the quality is maby not perfect, but you can well see some of the many impressions of the eidernesting area. Afterwards unfortunately I noticed that my finger was photographed with most of the photos, (well done Heiða.. ) but fortunately I could crop it of most pictures :)
Besides the finger you can for example see the different nesting spots and locations. It is clear that the taste of the eider ducks differs and some of them put extra effort in decorating the nests. In some cases we found big colourful feathers, seashells and spiral shells lying around and inside the nests.
The harvesting went pretty well, except we got a little stalled because of a very annoying wind. The protecting on the other hand has been very difficult and we have had unusually many foxes and other predators, including a mink ! That we hope to never see near the colony again.
Now the seashore is filled with young ducklings and we are carefully protecting the coastline from flying predators who otherwise would eat them, one after the other, directly out of the sea.
The season is not quite over, but fortunately calming down a little bit. It can be a straining time but latest in the fall we start to look forward again to the next season.
The first duck to be harvested from in the row of about 2000 others ..
Nest in a tire, before harvesting the down
Same nest as above
Same nest, the eggs have been taken out ..
.. and here the down has been collected ..
.. finally dry hay has been put insted and the eggs carefully put back.
We had to watch our steps/crawling, because the birds are not always easy to see and can also be very close togther
From the outer part of the nesting area
The oldest birds are turning light grey
Hanný collecting eiderdown
In the middle of the nesting area
Nest close to a small flag
Hardworking down-harvester. This year we tried these yellow bags for the first time and are very fond of them.
They do not make any sound like the black plastic bags that we have been using for the last years and therefore the birds are calmer.
Looking from the nesting area to the "watchtower"
The tires are very popular amongst the ducks
As stubborn as it gets ! nobody is giving in.
We have never seen this before.
Adjusting the down.
This one was very calm :)
The houses are also very popular
same as in the picture above
Baby eiderducks !
Brand new. They got to keep their mothers down :)
I had the impression that the ducks laid more eggs than the last years. They were often 3-4 but now the most had 5-7 eggs.
The houses are good shelter from flying predators and the weather.
About to hatch. There were cracks on all eggs in this nest.
In the nesting area
the ducks are experts in blending in with their surroundings
This could almost be a tire commercial ;)
Some of the ducks had to be lifted of their nests. Unbelieveably tame for wild birds.
Here you can see the flags we made this spring. We got this very nice material from the wool factory in Hvammstangi, Kidka.
New flags :)
In the nesting part down by the ocean
Roger??! (in this case it was Tobbi)
Hanný in an unstoppable harvesting mode. She started at 04 in the morning !
We could hear the youngs chattering :) :)
Shelter made by Hanný
Here a goose has chosen to nest under one of Hanný's shelters
Part of the eiderdown. There we are blowing warm air under it to make it dry.
Above you can watch a very short video of a eiderduck adjusting her down. I recommend that you watch it in the best possible quality.