Why is the Wryneck so called?

The Wryneck gets its name from the ability to turn its head from side to side and back and forth in the manner of a snake.  This ability is thought to imitate a snake, to deter predators from their nest.  They will also assume this habit when held in the hand.  See our video

The Wryneck Jynx torquilla is a member of the Woodpecker family of birds.  It has a large head, compared to its body, and a very long tongue, used to extract insect prey from crevices.  Like all Woodpeckers, it has the curiosity of having two front forward-pointing toes and two backward pointing ones; unlike all birds with three forward and one back.

 

This one was trapped at the Gibraltar Bird Observatory where it was measured, ringed and released; not before exhibiting its characteristic head-twisting feature.

Gibraltar Bird Report 2021

Gibraltar Bird Report 2021

Welcome to the Gibraltar Bird Report 2021.

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OS 35 Incident

OS 35 Incident

OS 35 Incident 

The Bulk Carrier OS 35 was involved in a collision with the Adam LNG south of Europa Point on the evening of the 29th August. The OS 35 started to sink, and was directed by the Port Authorities to the East Side of the Rock, where it was decided to beach the vessel to prevent it sinking altogether.

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Birdlife Eurobirdwatch 22.  30th Anniversary

Birdlife Eurobirdwatch 22. 30th Anniversary

Birdlife Eurobirdwatch 22.  30th Anniversary

 

The Gibraltar Ornithological & Natural History Society will be celebrating the 22 edition of the Birdlife EuroBirdwatch on Saturday the 1st of October.

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Raptor Rescue

Raptor Rescue

The 25th May was specially hectic for the number of raptors that fell into the sea.  Most of these are young non-breeding and inexperienced birds that fall foul of windy conditions in the Strait.

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Sierra De Las Nieves Outing

Sierra De Las Nieves Outing


The Sierra de las Nieves outing was held on Saturday 21st May.  A good group of people attended and the weather was magnificent.

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Field Marshal Sir John Chapple, 1931-2022

Field Marshal Sir John Chapple, 1931-2022

Field Marshal Sir John Chapple, 1931-2022

 

GONHS notes with much sadness the passing of Field Marshal Sir John Chapple, Governor of Gibraltar 1993-1995 and Honorary Life Patron of the Society.

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Gibraltar Bird Report 2020

Gibraltar Bird Report 2020

Welcome to the 2020 issue of the Gibraltar Bird Report.

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The Remarkable Lives of Gibraltar's Swifts Uncovered

The Remarkable Lives of Gibraltar's Swifts Uncovered

 A paper has just been published by the journal PLOS ONE which reveals the remarkable lives of pallid swifts that nest in the attic of The Gibraltar National Museum. ‘Birds with multiple homes. The annual cycle of the pallid swift (Apus pallidus brehmorum)’ details the incredible exploits of these birds, from when they leave for Africa after breeding until their return the following spring.

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