Recent Sightings September 2022

30 Sept:  Clear skies with a moderate westerly wind.

 

29 Sept:  Clear skies with some westerly cloud.  Winds fresh north-westerly.

 

28 Sept:  Clear skies with a moderate westerly wind.

Single Blackcap, Tree Pipit and Red-spotted Bluethroat Luscinia svecica svecica were ringed at the Observatory.  This is the first record of this subspecies in Gibraltar.  The white-spotted form Luscinia svecica cyanecula occurs in our region as a wintering species.  They are a montane species in Spain, found at altitude in the breeding season.   During the winter, they are usually found along the margins of marshy lakes and waterways, with the La Janda canals a good place to see them. 

Red-spotted Bluethroat

Red-spotted Bluethroat

Tree Pipit

Tree Pipit

 

A flock of 85 Flamingoes were seen flying south-west past the North Mole.

 

 

27 Sept:  Clear skies with a moderate to fresh westerly wind.

Ringing Totals

Species New Retrap Total
Chiffchaff 1   1
Blackcap 29 1 30
Garden Warbler 2   2
Sardinian Warbler 4 3 7
Blackbird 1   1
Pied Flycatcher 2   2
Total 39 4 43

There were two Oystercatchers below Europa Advance Battery.  A trickle of Honey Buzzards, Sparrowhawks and Kestrels were seen all morning.

 

Oystercatcher.                                                                                                            R. Perez

 

 

26 Sept:  Clear skies with a moderate to fresh westerly wind.

Ringing Totals

Species New Retrap Total
Blue Tit 1 1 2
Willow Warbler 1   1
Chiffchaff 1   1
Blackcap 5   5
Garden Warbler 5   5
Sardinian Warbler   1 1
Wren 1   1
Blackbird 1 2 3
Pied Flycatcher 2   2
Yellow Wagtail 1   1
House Bunting 1   1
Total 19 4 23

 

 

House Bunting

House Bunting

House Bunting

House Bunting

 

Botanic Gardens am

Species Total
Blue Tit 7
Great Tit 5
Iberian/ Chiffchaff 2
Blackcap 39
Sardinian Warbler 8
Blackbird 33
Spotted Flycatcher 1
Robin 3
Pied Flycatcher 3
Greenfinch 2

 

 

Windmill Hill pm

Species Total
Barbary Partridge 46
Stone Curlew 1
Kestrel 1
Peregrine 1
House Martin 7
Swallow 6
Iberian/ Chiffchaff 3
Sardinian Warbler 26
Wren 1
Spotless Starling 18
Blackbird 13
Pied Flycatcher 1
Redstart 1
Blue Rock Thrush 9
Stonechat 1
Wheatear 4
Greenfinch 6
Goldfinch 2

 

 

25 Sept:  Cloudy with sunny intervals.  Winds moderate to fresh south-westerly.

A Grey Wagtail was present at Commonwealth Park.

 

24 Sept:  Heavy levanter cloud over the Rock, town and harbour, continuing into the afternoon but clearing later to a clear sky.  Winds moderate easterly becoming light.

Ringing Totals

Species New Retrap Total
Wryneck 1   1
Blue Tit   1 1
Reed Warbler 1   1
Willow Warbler 1   1
Blackcap 72   72
Garden Warbler 10   10
Sardinian Warbler 3   3
Blackbird 2 1 3
Pied Flycatcher 4   4
Whinchat 1   1
Yellow Wagtail 1   1
Greenfinch 1   1
Total 97 2 99

A Kingfisher was seen at Waterport Terraces and an Osprey observed at Europa Point.  Six Grey Herons flew past the east side of the Rock.

 

23 Sept:  Mainly clear skies with some levanter cloud over the Rock, but  in the afternoon a storm cell developed over Spain and heavy dark clouds approached from the north but soon dissipated without giving any rain.  Winds moderate easterly becoming light in the afternoon. 

Ringing Totals

Species New Retrap Total
Wryneck 1   1
Willow Warbler 2   2
Iberian Chiffchaff 1   1
Blackcap 52 1 53
Garden Warbler 9   9
Sardinian Warbler 2 3 5
Blackbird 1   1
Spotted Flycatcher 1   1
Robin 1   1
Pied Flycatcher 6   6
Redstart 1   1
Total 77 4 81

Many Cory's Shearwaters feeding offshore with a few Balearic Shearwaters, and two Arctic Skuas.  Only two Booted Eagles seen.  A Wheatear and two Pied Flycatchers were seen around Douglas Path.

Grey Herons are now present along Gibraltar's coastline, with two at Seven Sisters and another two seen at dusk at the Small Boats Marina.  A Red-necked Nightjar was heard and recorded from Admiral's Place. A Sanderling was present at Eastern Beach.

 

22 Sept:  Mainly clear skies with some wisps of levanter cloud.  Winds light easterly to light variable.

Ringing Totals

Species New Retrap Total
Blue Tit 1   1
Blackcap 31   31
Garden Warbler 4   4
Sardinian Warbler 3 1 4
Blackbird 1   1
Total 40 1 41

Over 100 Cory's Shearwaters and a Sooty Shearwater were seen offshore at Europa Point.  A two Turnstones, a Kingfisher and a Grey Heron was seen at the rocks at Seven Sisters. Two Oystercatchers and a Common Sandpiper were present at Governor's Beach.

 

 

21 Sept:  Overcast skies with westerly stratus and slight levanter cloud over the Rock.  Winds light to moderate easterly.

Ringing Totals

Species New Retrap Total
Blue Tit 2   2
Willow Warbler 2   2
Iberian Chiffchaff 2   2
Chiffchaff 1   1
Blackcap 37 1 38
Garden Warbler 6   6
Sardinian Warbler 6 3 9
Blackbird 1   1
Pied Flycatcher 7   7
Total 64 4 68

 

Mid morning approximately 60 Booted Eagles, a Short-toed Eagle and two Sparrowhawks flew in over town and over the Rock with most returning north or crossing the Bay around midday.

At least three Grey Herons were in the vicinity of Camp/Rosia Bays.  Ten Yellow Wagtails flew south over the South District, with one seen at Europa foreshore together with a Whimbrel and three Turnstones.  A Common Sandpiper was present at Sandy Bay.

 

 

20 Sept: Clear skies during the morning, but levanter cloud developing around midday.  Winds light to moderate easterly.

Mid morning around 40 Booted Eagles flew in over town and over the Rock with most returning north or crossing the Bay around midday.  There were single Willow Warbler and Stonechat at North Front Cemetery, and two Yellow Wagtails were observed at Rosia Bay.

There was a Grey Heron seen on the rock revetment along Europlaza.

 

 

 

19 Sept:  Overcast during the morning with some levanter cloud over the Rock, clearing after midday to give hazy sun.  Slight drizzle early morning.  Winds moderate easterly.

Over the last few days migrant Blackcaps have begun to arrive with wing length of over 73mm, whereas the local ssp. heineken has a wing length of around 66mm-71mm.

Ringing Totals.

Species New Retrap Total
Blue Tit 1   1
Swallow 1   1
Willow Warbler 3   3
Blackcap 9 4 13
Garden Warbler 1   1
Sardinian Warbler 8 3 11
Blackbird 1 1 2
Pied Flycatcher 4   4
Redstart 2   2
Nightingale 1   1
Total 31 8 39

 

Nineteen Shags were seen on the Rocks at Little Bay.  Two Grey Herons and a Kingfisher were observed at Rosia bay this morning. There was another Kingfisher seen at the Bathing Pavilion.  A Stonechat and a Whitethroat were present at North Front Cemetery.

At least 20 Booted Eagles, an Egyptian Vulture and a Sparrowhawk seen flying over the Rock in the morning, but in the early afternoon at least 100 Booted Eagles flew in from the bay.

 

 

18 Sept:  Overcast skies with some sunny periods away from the Rock.  Levanter cloud over the Rock, town and harbour.  Winds moderate south-easterly.

 

Ringing Totals.

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Red-necked Nightjar 1   1
Hoopoe 1   1
Blue Tit 2   2
Reed Warbler 2   2
Willow Warbler 4   4
Iberian Chiffchaff 1 1 2
Blackcap 8 2 10
Garden Warbler 8   8
Sardinian Warbler 8   8
Subalpine Warbler 1   1
Blackbird 2 2 4
Pied Flycatcher 4   4
Robin   1 1
Nightingale 1   1
Redstart 1   1
Tree Pipit 1   1
Grey Wagtail 1   1
Greenfinch 2 1 3
Total 48 7 55

 

A Wheatear was seen at North Front Cemetery and a Kingfisher was present at Rosia Bay.  A Whimbrel and five Shags present at Camp Bay.

In the late afternoon four Swallows and a Crag Martin were seen feeding low over Jews' Gate, and a Sparrowhawk flew up to Spur battery.  A Red-necked Nightjar was seen on Signal Station Road.

 

 

17 Sept:  Clear skies with some high cloud.  Winds light westerly early in the morning turning to light variable and then light to moderate easterly in the afternoon.

Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Hoopoe 1   1
Reed Warbler 1   1
Willow Warbler 1   1
Iberian Chiffchaff   1 1
Blackcap 4 5 9
Garden Warbler 2   2
Sardinian Warbler 5 1 6
Blackbird 1 2 3
Pied Flycatcher 3   3
Redstart 1   1
Greenfinch 1   1
Total 20 9 29

 

 

A Black-headed Village Weaver was seen at Europa Point.  there is a resident population of this species around the Seville area.   The Sanderling was present at Eastern Beach.

 

16 Sept:  Clear skies with a moderate westerly wind.

Morning watch from Princess Caroline's Battery produced three Black Storks, 104 Honey Buzzards, eight Black Kites, five Booted Eagles, six Sparrowhawks, a Common Buzzard, two Ospreys, a Peregrine, Hoopoe, and a Pied Flycatcher.  A Sanderling was present at Eastern Beach.

In the afternoon at Europa Point there were Two Honey Buzzards, a Kestrel, an Osprey, a Common Sandpiper, two Black-headed Gulls, two Audouin's Gulls and two Yellow Wagtails.

 

 

15 Sept:  Cloudy with showers in the early morning remaining cloudy with some sunny periods increasing towards the afternoon.  Winds light westerly becoming moderate.

Some raptors crossed over the Rock in light winds in the morning, but none were seen later in the afternoon.  Total of 154 Honey Buzzards, three Black Kites and three Sparrowhawks were seen.  In the afternoon an Osprey was seen from Europa Point. A flock of 40 Bee-eaters were seen heading north.

Three Collared Pratincoles were observed flying south-west over Peninsular Heights.

 

 

14 Sept:  Overcast skies with rain showers during the morning, and remaining cloudy in the afternoon with sunny spells.  Winds light to moderate south-westerly.

Two Kingfishers were observed on the rocks by Europlaza.

A Sparrowhawk and a Booted Eagle were seen from Europa Point, and a Common Sandpiper was present at the Europa foreshore.

A Spotted Flycatcher was observed by Transport Lane.

 

 

13 Sept:  Overcast skies with light drizzle earlier in the morning followed by light rain showers in a light to moderate south-westerly wind.

Two Marsh Harriers were seen along the east side of the Rock, and a Little Egret was observed from Europa Point.

After the rain showers a Montagu's Harrier, two Marsh Harriers and 40 Black Kites were seen from the Observatory.  A  Honey Buzzard and five Booted Eagles were seen over the Rock later in the morning. 

 

 

 

12 Sept:  Overcast skies with early fog along the airport and Europa Point, and levanter cloud over the Rock, with alto-stratus above.  Winds moderate easterly.  In the afternoon some insignificant scattering of rain.

Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Red-necked Nightjar 1   1
Blue Tit 1 1 2
Great Tit 1   1
Reed Warbler 2   2
Willow Warbler 2   2
Iberian Chiffchaff 1   1
Blackcap 4 2 6
Garden Warbler 11   11
Orphean Warbler 1   1
Sardinian Warbler 4 1 5
Subalpine Warbler 1   1
Blackbird 1   1
Bluethroat 1   1
Nightingale 1   1
Total 32 4 36

 

Bluethroat.                                                                                      D Gruar. 

 

At the Observatory two Tree Pipits and a Yellow Wagtail were seen and heard, and a Nightjar sp. was flushed from the top net rides.

Two Honey Buzzards were observed over town, a Grey Heron flew west high over the Rock and there was a Kingfisher seen along Westview Promenade rocks.

 

 

11 Sept: Fog at dawn coming in from the east side, but clearing earlier on, when easterly winds increased to moderate, resulting in levanter cloud forming over the Rock mid morning.

A flock of 14 Yellow Wagtails flew up from Windmill Hill towards the Observatory.

Ringing Totals 

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Great Tit   1 1
Iberian Chiffchaff 3   3
Blackcap 8 4 12
Garden Warbler 17   17
Sardinian Warbler 2   2
Blackbird 1   1
Nightingale 1   1
Pied Flycatcher 1   1
Total 33 5 38

 

10 Sept:  Clear skies with a light variable wind becoming light easterly at dusk with fog forming overnight.

Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Blue Tit 1   1
Reed Warbler 1   1
Willow Warbler 1   1
Blackcap 3 2 5
Garden Warbler 8   8
Sardinian Warbler 9 4 13
Blackbird 1 1 2
Redstart 1   1
Total 25 7 32

 

A visit to Windmill Hill in the afternoon produced the following:-

Windmill Hill

Species Total
Barbary Partridge 31
Hoopoe 2
Kestrel 1
Woodchat Shrike 1
Swallow 3
Willow Warbler 1
Iberian/ Chiffchaff 5
Orphean Warbler  1
Sardinian Warbler 55
Whitethroat 1
Wren 1
Spotless Starling 21
Blackbird 24
Blue Rock Thrush 4
Wheatear 1
Greenfinch 2

 

09 Sept:  Clear skies with a light westerly increasing to moderate south-westerly in the Strait.

Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Blue Tit 1   1
Willow Warbler 2   2
Blackcap 3 1 4
Garden Warbler 1   1
Sardinian Warbler 4 2 6
Blackbird   1 1
Pied Flycatcher 1   1
Greenfinch 2   2
Total 14 4 18

A visit to North Front Cemetery in the morning produced a Kestrel, Willow Warbler, three Iberian Chiffchaff/ Chiffchaffs, five Sardinian Warblers, seven Blackbirds, two Spotted Flycatchers and a Greenfinch.

A visit to Windmill Hill in the afternoon produced the following:-

Windmill Hill

Species Total
Barbary Partridge 42
Peregrine 2
Woodchat Shrike 1
Willow Warbler 1
Iberian/ Chiffchaff 3
Sardinian Warbler 36
Wren 3
Spotless Starling 28
Blackbird 14
Spotted Flycatcher 1
Pied Flycatcher 2
Blue Rock Thrush 5
Wheatear 1
Greenfinch 3

 

08 Sept:  Clear skies with a light westerly becoming light to moderate south-westerly in the Strait in the afternoon.

No significant raptor passage in light winds, but only six Egyptian Vultures, two Marsh Harriers and three Sparrowhawks were seen in the morning.

A Quail was picked up unhurt in the morning, and was subsequently released.

 

07 Sept:  Clear skies with a light westerly and a moderate south-westerly in the Strait.

Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Blue Tit   1 1
Willow Warbler 1   1
Iberian Chiffchaff 1   1
Garden Warbler 1   1
Sardinian Warbler 3   3
Blackbird 1 1 2
Nightingale 2   2
Pied Flycatcher 2   2
Total 11 2 13

 

Just after midday 31 Honey Buzzards, five Black Kites and five Sparrowhawks were seen from the Observatory.  A morning visit to Europa Point produced approximately 15 Cory's Shearwaters, a Grey Heron, an Oystercatcher, two Mediterranean Gulls, two Audouin's Gulls, two Sandwich Terns. 

Also seen were five Yellow Wagtails and single Black Kite past Europa Point and a Honey Buzzard overhead.

A flock of four Yellow Wagtails flew south past Peninsular Heights in the morning. A Little Egret was observed at Little bay in the morning, and a Hoopoe was spotted along the east side of the Rock.  The Booted Eagle continues to linger on on the Rock.

 

06 Sept:  Clear skies with a light northerly wind but moderate to fresh in the entrance of the Bay and the Strait.  Winds became light mid morning, but remained fresh south-westerly in the Strait.

 Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Reed Warbler 1   1
Willow Warbler 2   2
Blackcap 4   4
Garden Warbler 1   1
Sardinian Warbler 4 2 6
Nightingale 1   1
Greenfinch   1 1
Total 13 3 16

Very few raptors this morning due to light winds.  Total seen so far are 78 Honey Buzzards 10 Black Kites four Marsh Harriers and two Sparrowhawks.  No raptor passage was noted in the afternoon.

A morning visit to Europa Point produced approximately 50 Cory's Shearwaters, an adult Gannet, 11 Avocets, two Black-headed Gulls eight Audouin's Gulls, five Caspian Terns and 10 Sandwich Terns.  Also seen were two Yellow Wagtails.

 

 

05 Sept:  Clear skies in the morning but some high cirrus cloud in the afternoon.  Winds moderate north-west, with south westerlies picking up by midday and becoming fresh in the afternoon, with winds continuing north west inland.

 Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Reed Warbler   1 1
Iberian Chiffchaff 1   1
Garden Warbler 2   2
Sardinian Warbler 4 3 7
Blackbird 1   1
Nightingale 1 1 2
Redstart 2   2
Greenfinch 1 1 2
Total 12 6 18

 

Again a flurry of Marsh Harriers at dawn and before sunrise when 12 Marsh Harriers, a Montagu's Harrier and a juvenile Egyptian Vulture flew in over the Rock.  This was followed by passage of Honey Buzzards which flew around the east side of the Rock.  Raptor passage resumed by 10:00hrs in the morning with Honey Buzzards and Black Kites the dominant species.

In the afternoon passage increased to the east of the Rock with Honey Buzzards very high to the east of the Rock.  passage continued till sundown.

In total there were 1665 Honey Buzzards, 225 Black Kites, three Egyptian Vultures, a Black Vulture, 43 Marsh Harriers, three Montagu's Harriers, 26 Booted Eagles, 14 Sparrowhawks, two Ospreys, a Lesser Kestrel and five Kestrels.  Also seen were single Grey Heron, a Tree Pipit and 130 Bee-eaters.

An afternoon visit to Europa Point in blustery south westerlies produced at least 50 Cory's Shearwaters, a flock of 35 Flamingoes, with other flocks reported from the east side of the Rock, a Whimbrel, a Common Sandpiper, a Black-headed Gull and 12 Audouin's Gulls.

 

04 Sept:  Clear skies with a light northerly, and a moderate south-westerly in the Strait.  Becoming fresher north-westerly after midday and then decreasing to moderate westerly.

 Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Blue Tit   1 1
Reed Warbler   1 1
Iberian Chiffchaff 2   2
Blackcap 1 1 2
Sardinian Warbler 4 3 7
Blackbird 2   2
Pied Flycatcher 2   2
Redstart 1   1
Greenfinch 1   1
Total 13 6 19

At dawn nine Marsh Harrier's flew north over the Rock. and a flock of five Yellow Wagtails flew past Peninsular Heights.  Another Yellow Wagtail was heard at the Observatory.

Raptors then proceeded to fly over the airfield and across the Bay from mid morning until midday, when northerly winds freshened, and a good passage of mainly Honey Buzzards flew over the Rock and along the east of the Rock.  Approximately 1500 Honey Buzzards, 250 Black Kites, a Red Kite, an Egyptian Vulture, 12 Marsh Harriers,  two Booted Eagles, five Sparrowhawks, a juvenile Goshawk, two Ospreys and two Kestrels were seen during the day but no systematic counts were made.

A flock of 30 Flamingoes were seen in the Bay.  The light phase Booted Eagle that has been present for several weeks was seen hunting over Windmill Hill and the southern end of the Rock.

 

03 Sept:  A plume of cloud from across the Strait covered the Rock until mid afternoon when it cleared.  Winds were moderate northerlies in the morning becoming light to moderate westerly in the afternoon but south-westerly in the Strait.

 Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Woodchat Shrike 1   1
Great Tit 1   1
Melodious Warbler   1 1
Reed Warbler 3   3
Willow Warbler 2   2
Iberian Chiffchaff 1   1
Garden Warbler 2   2
Sardinian Warbler 4 3 7
Whitethroat 1   1
Blackbird   1 1
Greenfinch 2   2
Total 17 5 22

 

 Raptor passage was limited to the northern end of the Rock as raptors passed over the harbour and headed west to Algeciras.  In the afternoon no passage of raptors was seen.  Totals for the morning were 615 Honey Buzzards, 336 Black Kites, two Egyptian Vultures, a Marsh Harrier, two Booted Eagles, two Sparrowhawks, two Ospreys an Eleonora's Falcon, two Lesser Kestrels and a Kestrel.  In the vicinity of Princess Caroline's Battery there were single Willow Warbler and Redstart. Five Grey Herons were also seen, and three Ravens were present over the Rock.

Two Yellow Wagtails and a flock of Bee-eaters were heard from the Observatory at Jews' Gate.

 

 

02 Sept:  Another day with overcast skies with high stratus westerly cloud throughout the day.  Winds light to moderate northerly during the morning with a light westerly in the afternoon.

 Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Melodious Warbler 1   1
Blackcap 3 1 4
Sardinian Warbler 3 1 4
Whitethroat 1   1
Blackbird 1   1
Pied Flycatcher 3   3
Greenfinch 1   1
Total 13 2 15

The morning at Europa Point was dire with the smell of diesel fuel and plumes of fuel spreading along the coastline and out into the Strait.  Offshore there were some Cory's and Balearic Shearwaters heading west, but of concern was the first Cormorant of the season fishing below the Point in the vicinity of patches of fuel.  A Common Sandpiper was heard and seen foraging on the low tide mark on rocks along the foreshore, and a Grey Heron was also eyeing fish below the Point.  A further two Grey Herons were seen on rocks below Parson's Lodge, and a lone Audouin's Gull flew west.

Several hundred Honey Buzzards and Black Kites headed south over the Rock, with some Honey Buzzards well to the east of the Rock in the morning.  Two male Marsh Harriers were the early raptors in the morning, with a Booted Eagle seen mid afternoon, when some more Honey Buzzards and Black Kites flew low over town in the light winds.  in total there were 450 Honey Buzzards, 150 Black Kites, two Egyptian Vultures, two Short-toed Eagles, a Marsh Harrier, two Montagu's Harriers, a Booted Eagle  and two Lesser Kestrels.  Also seen were 112 Bee-eaters and two Ravens.

 

 

01 Sept:  Overcast skies with high stratus westerly cloud throughout the day.  Winds light westerly.

A slow mornings ringing with windy conditions.                         Ringing Totals

Species Full Grown Retrap Total
Great Tit 2   2
Reed Warbler 1   1
Willow Warbler 1   1
Iberian Chiffchaff 1   1
Blackcap   1 1
Garden Warbler 3   3
Sardinian Warbler 5 1 6
Wren 1   1
Blackbird 3   3
Spotted Flycatcher 1   1
Nightingale 1   1
Greenfinch 1   1
Total 20 2 22

Some raptors were seen in the light winds, mainly Honey Buzzards and Black Kites, but there were two male Marsh Harriers seen over Windmill.

An afternoon visit to Windmill Hill produced the following:-

Species Total
Barbary Partridge 9
Turtle Dove 1
Honey Buzzard 2
Marsh Harrier 2
Black Kite 1
Bee-eater heard
Kestrel 1
Woodchat Shrike 2
Raven 3
Melodious Warbler 2
Swallow 4
Iberian/Chiff 2
Willow Warbler 1
Sardinian Warbler 36
Spotless Starling 21
Wren 2
Blackbird 12
Blue Rock Thrush 1
Greenfinch 9

 

 

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