17 December 2011

Mapping Arctic Norway - birds and sites in Eastern Finnmark

For almost three years we have been travelling around the eastern parts of Finnmark, or ´Arctic Norway´ - the birder term for this region. We are mapping and registrating the birdlife, the bird sites and the infrastructure, the guest houses and towns, etc. In short - we are mapping everything.. Allways with focus on nature and birds.

It is a very rewarding more-then-full-time job. We have covered a lot of ground in this time, allways with an open eye for new and interesting places. Arctic Norway really gives you a sense of wilderness and intact nature, at the same time it is very easily accessible. There are two basic combined reasons for this: The Gulf Stream (simply making it livable this far north), and Norwegian district policy (the will to support living this far north - with almost every modern commodity available). Roughly speaking, this is. 

We started in 2007, on a study trip to Vardø island. For a long time (being birders..) we had been aware of Varangers status as a premium birding destination

03 December 2011

The bird cliff web camera story

-Adventures in destination development

For us as architects destination development is more then just building. It is very much about beiing involved all the way. The hornøya wind shelter (below) and bird hide has been in place for a year. It has sheltered both visiting birders and locals, and it has survived the test of heavy arctic storms. We are now working on a scheme to further develop Hornøya as a fantastic bird and birding place. This includes improving the nature trail / path, improving the lighthouse accomodation fascilities and making new and better information folders for the nature reserve. In addition we are now setting up a wireless bird cliff web camera.

Birding to the wwworld! 
We have spent quite some time finding the funding for this project, and in collaboration with Eivind Bøhn from Cloudware(moment.team) we have researched and developed a high speed wireless web cam solution.

Hornøya bird cliff has for more then 30 years been a reseachers heaven. The very close proximity to Vardø, with all necesarry amenities and infrastructure, and the easily accesible birdcliff with a wide variety of species, is the key. The result of these studies can be found in many publications. Our aim for this web cam project is to give everyone the possibility to tune in to the Hornøya bird cliff, and perhaps follow the birds trough a whole breeding season. From the birds arrive in mid march in snowy blizzards to when they leave in early August.

 Incoming Puffins, fratercula arctica