Snow bunting

SNOW BUNTING   The snow bunting is the most common passerine species in Svalbard. It is often found close to settlements but ts is also breeding among auks in the bird cliffs around Spitsbergen. Like many Arctic species it has a perfectly adapted plumage in white and black. For many people in Longyearbyen, the arrival of the snow bunting is ...

Waterfowl

WATERFOWL   There are six breeding species of waterfowl in Svalbard. This includes the three ducks: the long-tailed duck, the common eider and the king eider. The common eider is most easily seen, since it is the most abundant and often nests in easily observed colonies. Eiders may also nest close to houses, like tame birds. The most spectacular of ...

Northern fulmar

THE NORTHERN FULMAR   The northern fulmar is one of the most numerous seabirds on Svalbard, and nests on steep cliffs along the coast. They often return to the same nesting sites each year, and may also visit the nest site during the winter. The northern fulmar is a faithful companion for boaters, as it glides effortlessly across the ocean ...

Seagulls, terns and skuas

SEAGULLS, TERNS AND SKUAS   Kittiwakes and glaucous gulls are the main gulls nesting on Svalbard. You can also see ivory gulls and sabine gulls, but they are not as numerous. The ivory gull is one of the most beautiful birds on Svalbard, with chalk-white plumage, black legs and yellowish bill. This gull is usually found near sea ice, and ...

Auks – penguins of the north

AUKS - penguins of the north   The most numerous birds on Svalbard are auks, represented by the little auk, brünnich’s guillemot, black guillemot and the Atlantic puffin. They nest in the hundreds of thousands and can be seen in many of the imposing bird cliffs along the coast of the archipelago, or far out at sea. Auks are important ...

Ptarmigan

THE SVALBARD PTARMIGAN   The Svalbard ptarmigan is a subspecies of the smaller ptarmigan found in mainland Norway and mountainous areas of Europe, and is found only on Svalbard and Franz Josef Land in Arctic Russia. This bird is the toughest and most loyal bird on Svalbard, where it spends the winter in the Arctic cold. Svalbard ptarmigans are especially ...

Birds of Svalbard

BIRDS OF SVALBARD   Svalbard has an abundance of birds, despite its northern location. There are not many bird species that nest on Svalbard, but they can be impressive in numbers, especially seabirds and geese. A total of 126 bird species are recorded in Svalbard. Most of the birds migrating to the archipelago in summer exploit the rich food sources ...