September 2019 Sightings

30 Sep:  Clear skies with some high cloud.  Fog in the Strait, drifting south by mid morning.  Winds light variable to light westerly.  Lower numbers of birds at the Observatory this morning due to clear skies. Nevertheless a new European Nightjar was trapped together with Redstarts, Whitethroats, Garden Warblers and plenty of Blackcaps, and a juvenile Ortolan Bunting.  

 

Species Full Grown Retraps Total
European Nightjar 1 0 1
Robin 1 0 1
Nightingale 0 1 1
Redstart 3 0 3
Sardinian Warbler 6 0 6
Whitethroat 2 0 2
Garden Warbler 9 0 9
Blackcap 97 1 98
Pied Flycatcher 1 0 1
Ortolan Bunting 1 0 1
Total 121 2 123

 

Ortolan Bunting ringed at the Observatory.                                                       

 

29 Sep:  Low cloud over the Rock again this morning lifting mid morning but with levanter cloud over the Rock until after midday. Winds light to moderate easterly.  Another good day at the Observatory with over 100 birds processed both European and Red-necked Nightjars in the net at first light, and with mainly Blackcaps and Garden Warblers and a second Short-toed Treecreeper.

 

Species Full Grown Retraps Totals
European Nightjar 1 0 1
Red-necked Nightjar 1 0 1
Robin 1 0 1
Redstart 1 0 1
Blackbird 1 0 1
Sardinian Warbler 2 0 2
Garden Warbler 18 0 18
Blackcap 139 3 142
Pied Flycatcher 1 0 1
Blue Tit 1 0 1
Short-toed Treecreeper 1 0 1
Totals 167 3 170

 

 

The second Short-toed Treecreeper in two days.  A good start to the season.

 

A Whimbrel was observed feeding on the rocky shore at Europa foreshore, and Grey Herons were seen at Sandy Bay beach and at the Marina Bay.  At the North Front Cemetery, there were single Whinchat, Redstart and a Red-necked Nightjar.  A flock of about 40 Crag Martins flew south in the evening at the Observatory.

 

28 Sep:  Heavy fog from the east covering much of the Rock town and harbour, before clearing late morning, but returned in the evening.  Winds a light to moderate easterly.  Another excellent day at the Observatory, with Blackcaps dominating the catch, with some variety of species as well.  Blackcap numbers peak during the second week in October, but this year there seems to be many more on the move earlier than normal.  A Hoopoe was present at the Botanic Gardens, and 

Species Full Grown Retraps Total
Scops Owl 1 0 1
Red-necked Nightjar 1 0 1
Robin 4 0 4
Nightingale 3 0 3
Whinchat 1 0 1
Blackbird 1 0 1
Grasshopper Warbler 1 0 1
Reed Warbler 4 0 4
Sardinian Warbler 4 1 5
Whitethroat 3 0 3
Garden Warbler 21 0 21
Blackcap 107 1 108
Iberian Chiffchaff 1 0 1
Willow Warbler 2 0 2
Spotted Flycatcher 1 0 1
Pied Flycatcher 1 0 1
Blue Tit 3 0 3
Short-toed Treecreeper 1 0 1
Greenfinch 2 0 2
Total 162 2 164

European Nightjar

European Nightjar

Redstart

Redstart

Scops Owl

Scops Owl

Whinchat

Whinchat

 

Kieron Palmer and Andrew Harris very happy with a Bluethroat and an Orphean Warbler, despite the surprised faces.

 

 

27 Sep:  Levanter cloud over the Rock with a light to moderate easterly wind.  A fall of migrants was apparent with large numbers of Blackcaps processed, and a good variety of species. A Hobby was seen from the Observatory.  The first Crag Martin of the season was seen in the morning at Gorham's Cave.

Species Full Grown Retraps Total
Robin 1 0 1
Nightingale 1 0 1
Bluethroat 1 0 1
Redstart 3 0 3
Blackbird 2 0 2
Sardinian Warbler 1 1 2
Orphean Warbler 1 0 1
Whitethroat 1 0 1
Garden Warbler 13 0 13
Blackcap 127 3 130
Iberian Chiffchaff 3 0 3
Willow Warbler 5 0 5
Pied Flycatcher 2 0 2
Blue Tit 1 0 1
Total 162 5 166

 

Redstart male

Redstart male

Short-toed Treecreeper

Short-toed Treecreeper

Pied Flycatcher

Pied Flycatcher

Photos:- Maria Mak

 

 

26 Sep:  Heavy levanter cloud with a light to moderate easterly wind. A good variety of species and high numbers of Blackcaps ringed at the Observatory for a total of 118 birds processed.

Species Full Grown Retraps Total
Robin 1 0 1
Nightingale 1 0 1
Redstart 3 0 3
Blackbird 1 1 2
Grasshopper Warbler 1 0 1
Reed Warbler 5 0 5
Subalpine Warbler 1 0 1
Sardinian Warbler 10 2 12
Whitethroat 6 0 6
Garden Warbler 15 0 15
Blackcap 53 2 55
Willow Warbler 8 0 8
Pied Flycatcher 1 0 1
Blue Tit 6 0 6
Greenfinch 1 0 1
Total 113 5 118

 There were 2 Kingfishers and a Common Sandpiper at the Western end of the runway.

25 Sep:  Cloudy in the morning with clear skies later on.  Winds light to moderate south westerly.  The Observatory started the autumn ringing campaign with a late afternoon stint putting up nets and catching and ringing a few birds.

Species Full Grown Retraps Total
Robin 1 0 1
Sardinian Warbler 1 0 1
Blackcap 5 0 5
Total 7 0 7

 A number of raptors were seen and consisted of 11 Honey Buzzards, a female Marsh Harrier, 2 Short-toed Eagles, 11 Booted Eagles, and a Sparrowhawk.

23 Sep: A Pied Flycatcher was in the Alameda Botanic Gardens.

 

22 Sep: A dolphin-viewing trip into the bay produced six Sandwich Terns, ten Mediterranean Gulls, three Black-headed Gulls, two Audouin’s Gulls, a Gannet, some thirty Cory’s Shearwaters at the mouth of the bay, a constant passage of Barn Swallows, two Common Kestrels, two Sparrowhawks and a Common Sandpiper along the edge of the runway.

A Cormorant was present sitting on the lamp post at the extension jetty.

 

21 Sep:  Overcast with high cloud, with some clear patches later in the afternoon.  Winds light variable to light south-westerly.  A half an hour watch at Europa Point produced a feeding frenzy of over 500 Cory's Shearwaters feeding on flying fish as Tuna forced the fish to take flight. A Great Skua was off Europa Point in the afternoon.  Also seen were single Black-headed Gull, 2 Audouin's Gulls and 2 Turnstones on the rocks at the foreshore.  Four Grey Herons flew south over the small boats marina in the evening, with one settling to roost there.  A Whitethroat was present at North Front Cemetery.

 

20 Sep:  There has been some Grey Herons in the vicinity of the Harbour recently, with this one settling for the evening at the Marina at Ocean Village.

 

19 Sep: A Common Crossbill was seen flying over the Alameda Gardens in the morning.  A Pied Flycatcher also in the Gardens.

 

17 Sep: A Grey Wagtail and Spotted Flycatcher in the Alameda Gardens.  A Moorhen that was found on flotsam in the bay was recovered and released at one of the Ponds in the Alameda Gardens.  A Tawny Owl was heard calling from the Alameda Gardens 9.30pm.

 

16 Sep: A Grey Wagtail over Grand Parade. A Whimbrel was photographed at Rosia Bay. A Tawny Owl was heard calling from the large Eucalyptus tree in Governor's parade 11pm onwards.  Ten Black Kites and 2 Booted Eagles flew in from the Bay in the late evening.  An Iberian Chiffchaff was heard and seen at Westview Promenade in the morning.

 

12 Sep: Two Pied Flycatchers were seen in the Alameda Gardens.

 

11 Sep: A Common Redstart in the Alameda Gardens.

 

10 Sep:  Three Black Storks were seen over the Rock.

 

7 Sep: A male Black-eared Wheatear and a Hoopoe at North Front Cemetery, with a Booted Eagle overhead.

 

6 Sep: A Pied Flycatcher in the Alameda Gardens and a Hoopoe at Montagu Gardens.

 

5 Sep: A Pied Flycatcher in the Alameda Gardens.

 

3 Sep: A male and female Common Redstart in the Alameda Gardens.

 

2 Sep: A Robin was at Trafalgar Cemetery, where a bird has been seen on a daily basis throughout the summer.  A Booted Eagle was seen flying low over the Alameda Gardens.

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