GALLERY: Finland’s colourful winter birds

These woodpeckers, jays, magpies and tits bring a splash of brightly coloured feathers to the snowy forest landscape.

Eurasian Jay / Credit: Paul Stevens

It might be the warmest winter for a decade in Finland, but there’s still been some record snowfalls in Lapland, and plenty of winter wildlife to spot.

Kuusamo in north-east Finland has some of the best examples of old growth natural forest
in Finland. Those forests, with their diverse habitat, provide a home to many organisms, including birds that depend on forests with trees of various ages.

Some of the birds that live there are threatened by habitat loss elsewhere in Finland. For example the Siberian jay, classified in Finland as near threatened, used to be abundant in southern Finland but is now rare there because of habitat destruction due to forestry.

Luckily it is still a common sight in the forests of the north where it often joins hikers at rest spots to pick up any scraps of food the hikers drop.

The Siberian tit is another bird whose status is near threatened in Finland and its cousin the willow tit is classified as endangered in Finland as its population has decreased quite severely. This is again due to its diminishing old growth forest habitat.

The magpie, despite being seen almost everywhere, is also classified as near threatened
and is the only bird in this gallery that is not fully protected. In fact, of the eight bird species in this gallery only the three woodpeckers – grey-headed woodpecker, great-spotted woodpecker; and black woodpecker are not on the red list of species for Finland.

These colourful birds really stand out against the snow, and add a splash of black, red and green to the forest landscape.

This gallery of birds in Lapland comes from the lens of Espoo-based wildlife photographer Paul Stevens and were taken from a bird photography hide run by Kuusamo Nature