Lokasjon: Nordland
Sesong: All year
The UNESCO world herritage Vega is an arcipelago consisting of 6500 small islands and skerries just south of the Polar Circle. More than 230 species are recorded on the islands. White-billed Diver, King Eider, Willow and Rock Ptarmigan, Black grouse, White-tailed and Golden Eagle, Arctic Skua and Eagle Owl can all be expected just to mention a few.

Vega is an archipelago off the coast of Helgeland, consisting of the 127 squarekilometer main island and 6500 smaller islands and skerries. Vega is reckoned as a core area in Norway for Graylag Goose and it also support the largest colony in Europe of Cormorant of the nominate race carbo. Eagle Owl breed as well as both White-tailed and Golden Eagle. The archipelago is very important for moulting, resting and wintering seaducks, and also for auks. Vega was in 2004 put on the UNESCO World Herritage List, mainly based on the thousand-year old, now unique, practice of Common Eider down harvesting. You still get to buy expensive eiderdown products such as pillows from the few down harvesters still active.

The population of Eider actually declined when the industrial-scale eiderdown harvesting stopped. Now, only a few hundred pairs of eiders breed, although as many as 12000 moulting Eiders have been counted during summer the recent years, and up to 31.000 during winter. Hundreds of King Eider can winter in Vega as well, mainly in deeper waters than Common Eider.

King and Common Eider
White-tailed Eagle


Lesser Black-backed Gull of the northern race fuscus breeds here, although its population has declined from about 500 pairs in 1977 to less than 10 pairs today. Curlew is also a very common breeding bird all over the island, and its beautyful song can be heard almost anywhere.

More than 230 species of birds are found on Vega. There are several interesting birdwatching sites on the main island, particulary for wetland species. A few pairs Red-throated Diver and Shoveler breed regulary in the lakes, and Black grouse, Willow Grouse and Rock ptarmigan all breed common on the island.

Vega is also an important stopover site for migrants. Large numbers of Barnacle Geese arrive around April 20thand stay here until late May. Black-tailed Godwit is seen almost every year, and Red-necked Phalarope andSpotted Redshank are common in late July and August. The Eidemsliene slopes are covered in deciduous woodland and coastal pine forest where Grey-headed Woodpecker use to breed.

Vega is also good for rare birds during migration. Rose-colared Starling, Barred Warbler, Blue-winged Teal, Pallid harrier, Yellow-browed Warbler, Richard`s Pipit and Red-breasted Goose are all confirming the islands potential as a rarity spot.


Black-throated Diver (5-10), Red-throated Diver (1-12), White-billed Diver (10-5), Great Northern Diver (10-5), Shag (1-12), Whooper Swan (9-5), Greylag Goose (3-11), Barnacle Goose (5/9), Velvet Scoter (9-6), Black Scoter (9-6), Goldeneye (1-12), Long-tailed Duck (9-6), Eider (1-12), King Eider (11-4), White-tailed Eagle (1-12), Golden Eagle (1-12), Northern Goshawk (1-12), Gyr Falcon (10-4), Willow Grouse (1-12), Rock Ptarmigan (1-12), Black Grouse (1-12), Golden Plover (4-10), Purple Sandpiper (9-4), Common Snipe (5-10), Arctic Skua (5-9), Mew Gull (3-11), Kittiwake (1-12), Arctic Tern (5-9), Great Eagle Owl (1-12), Short-eared Owl (1-12), Grey-headed Woodpecker (1-12), Rock Pipit (1-12), Bluethroat (5-9), Common Redstart (5-9), Ring Ouzel (5-9), Fieldfare (4-11), Redwing (4-10), Sedge Warbler (6-8), Willow Warbler (5-9), Common Chiffchaff (4-10), Pied Flycatcher (5-9), Willow Tit (1-12), Brambling (1-12), Twite (1-12), Bullfinch (1-12), Parrot Crossbill (1-12), Snow Bunting (5-11)


Winter (november - march)

Winter can be very good on Vega, and now is the best time to find some of the most exclusive birds. King Eider and White-billed Diver winter in good numbers, and can be seen in any shallow water around the island - though especially on the westernmost side. Long-tailed Duck and Velvet Scoter are common this time of year as well. White-tailed and Golden Eagles are numberous this time of year and can be seen anywhere. Eagle Owl sing, espacially in cold and calm nights, from february. Grey-headed Woodpecker can be found on any feeding site on the island. A few Gyr Falcons overwinter every year. Jack Snipe and Water Rail can be found in small creeks or rivers - especially in cold periods.

Spring (march - may)

Wintering birds are still there, and the first migrants such as Greylag Goose and Oystercatcher will appear in early March. Eagles are establishing couples and start their breeding, and they can be heard everywhere on the island. April and May are the best months for the grouses, and both Willow and Black Grouse can be seen in good numbers driving around at late evenings or early mornings. Waders and ducks will show up in the wetlands and mudflats from mid-April. Barnacle Goose roost in huge numbers in May.

Summer (may-august)

A busy time for all the seabirds. Arctic Terns, Arctic Skuas, Gulls, Shag, Cormorant, Eider, Red-breasted Merganser, Red-throated Diver, Black Guillemot, Greylag Goose and White-tailed Eagles are all common breeders on the western part of the island. On the Gullsvåg mountain Ring Ouzel, Snow Bunting and Rock Ptarmigan are possible, and several Bluethroats breed - usually in the Husvatnet-area. Curlews, lapwings, greater ringed plover, redshanks and Common Snipes breed everywhere. Coockoo is very common in the Saltstein/Vallsjø-area. Driving around at nights can be productive for nocturnal singers, such as Sedge Warbler, Quail or Corncrake.

Autumn (september - november)

From late september the Barnacle Geese will again show up in huge numbers. Eagles are once again gathering in small flocks, and the first juvenile Gyr Falcons show up in mid-september. Anything can show up this time of year, and especially the gardens on the west side of the island can host rare birds such as Yellow-browed or Barred Warbler, Turtle Dove or Richards Pipits. Seawatching can be rewarding during westerly winds.


selfguidingsystem All the holiday houses on this destination are connected to our self-guiding system. Your host will introduse you to the GPS and the information folder.



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