EuroBirdwatch 2017 (part 2)

The second part of EuroBirdwatch took place on Saturday 7th October during the morning.  Ringer in residence, Ray Marsh, was at the event ringing birds caught at the Gibraltar Botanic Gardens to show to members of the public.

EuroBirdwatch is BirdLife International’s biggest birdwatching event in Europe and Central Asia and works to raise awareness of issues relating to bird migration and promotes efforts to save threatened bird species and their habitats. It is an opportunity for the public to explore birds and see bird migration in action. 

On display was a Red-necked Nightjar which has been ringed up at Jew's Gate the night before and brought to the Gardens to show to members of the public. The ringing session was affected by blustery conditions with 13 birds ringed including two Eurasian Reed Warblers, a Pied Flycatcher, two Blackcaps, two Blackbirds, a Sardinian Warbler and 5 House Sparrows. During the morning we saw an impressive flock of hirundines over the Rock with an estimate count of at least over 1000 birds that included Barn Swallows, Red-rumped Swallows, House Martins and Crag Martins.

Also present was the team from the GONHS Raptor Rehabilitation Unit with various birds of prey on display.

 

Members of GONHS had also set up a moth trap with live moths that had been captured during the night.  Some lovely moths were present including the Pine Processionary (Thaumetopoea pityocampa) and a stunning Discrete Chaperon (Cymbalophora pudica), a member of the family Erebidae. The moth display proved popular with the children who also got to hold some of the moths before they flew off.      

The Minister for Education, Heritage, the Environment, Energy and Climate Change and GONHS member Dr John Cortes was also there to lend his support to the event.  The event was well attended with many families with young children turning up to watch the bird ringing and raptors.

 

Pied Flycatcher in the hand (photo Franz Josef Odinius)
Pied Flycatcher in the hand (photo Franz Josef Odinius)
Reed Warbler in the hand (Photo Franz Josef Odinius)
Reed Warbler in the hand (Photo Franz Josef Odinius)
Red-necked Nightjar
Red-necked Nightjar
Ray Marsh with Red-necked Nightjar
Ray Marsh with Red-necked Nightjar
Vincent Robba with the Eagle Owl
The Raptor Unit's Vincent Robba with the Eagle Owl
Cymbalophora pudica
The Discrete Chaperon Cymbalophora pudica
Thaumetopoea pityocampa
The Pine Processionary Thaumetopoea pityocampa
Charlie Perez showing moths to the children
Charlie Perez showing moths to the children

Rare Plants of Inglis Way

Rare Plants of Inglis Way

By this time of the year (June) many plant species on the Rock are already going to seed and everything seems to be drying up, but there are still some interesting plants which are fully in bloom. A number of these can be found along Inglis Way, and some only here and nowhere else in the Upper Rock.

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Sierra Crestellina Outing

Sierra Crestellina Outing

April's GONHS outing took place at the beautiful mountains of Sierra Crestellina, near the town of Casares, Spain.

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Brazo del Este Outing

Brazo del Este Outing

May's GONHS outing took place last weekend on a birding bonanza to Brazo del Este, Seville.  Those who attended were in for a treat!

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African Chaffinch recorded again in Gibraltar.

African Chaffinch recorded again in Gibraltar.

An African Chaffinch was present in the Nature Reserve at the end of last month.  The bird, an African subspecies of the nominate race of European Chaffinch, found in north Africa, has rarely been recorded in Europe.

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Gibraltar Swallow found in Angola

Gibraltar Swallow found in Angola

A Barn Swallow, ringed at the Field Centre at Jews' Gate, was found in Chibia, Angola.  The Swallow, ringed on the 16th October 2017, flew into the window of a house in the town of Chibia in Angola on the 20th March 2018.

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Spring Flowers

Spring Flowers

Spring is now well underway, and with it comes a spectacular display of flowering plants on the Rock.

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Hawk and Owl Rescued and Released

Hawk and Owl Rescued and Released

With the Spring passage in full flight (pun not intended), our Raptor Unit has been kept very busy over the past few weeks.

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La Janda Outing

La Janda Outing

It was a glorious day as we set off towards La Janda a convoy of 4 cars with 12 eager birders and hopeful photographers.

First stop was breakfast at the convenient last stop Apollo X1  Venta before the huge expanse of flooded rice fields and ditches that was our destination.

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