Swedish migration and music


In mid-September this year, I was lucky enough to have the chance to spend a week at Falsterbo, southern Sweden. Billed as one of Europe’s greatest visible migration destinations; in favourable conditions it’s not hard to notch up six-figure totals of birds flying south towards Denmark. During my visit, a combination of low cloud, rain, and winds blowing in the wrong direction put the brakes on much of the passage. Two Honey Buzzards over the week was, by Falsterbo standards, a pathetic total; finch migration was better though with just short of 100,000 Chaffinch and a record-count of 27,290 Siskin passing over in a single morning. On the ground, two Marsh Warblers, a Barred Warbler, a Thrush Nightingale, and a Red-breasted Flycatcher provided plenty of interest.

In a brief break from birding, I had the chance to do something quite different. I met up with Thomas Jonnson, a Swedish indie-folk musician, to talk about his new album Arctic, his intriguing new stage name, and the driving force behind the inspiration for his music: his passion for birds.

Written by: Stephen Menzie