BirdLife & GONHS celebrate EuroBirdwatch 2018: 25 years for migratory birds and their habitats
For the 25th time, BirdLife International is inviting people throughout Europe and Central Asia to discover the fascinating world of bird migration on the 6th October. At this time of the year, millions of migratory birds leave Europe and fly to their wintering grounds in Africa.
This is the biggest event of the BirdLife Partnership in Europe and it has been held annually since 1993, including in Gibraltar via the local BirdLife Partner, GONHS. During these 25 years, EuroBirdwatch has attracted more than 1.1 million people who observed more than 73 million birds.
The overall aim of this 25-year long tradition is to raise awareness of the needs of migratory birds in their breeding areas, migratory routes and wintering grounds in the Mediterranean and Africa. Gibraltar is particularly suited to an event that celebrates bird migration, lying as it does on one of Europe’s main migratory routes.
As always, GONHS will be celebrating the event with a number of activities that aim to raise awareness of the Rock’s birds.
The morning of Saturday 6th October will begin with a walk from the bottom of Engineer Road (the old Casino site), starting at 8am. Experienced birders will be guiding attendees towards GONHS’ Field Centre at Jews’ Gate, highlighting resident and migratory birds along the route.
We will then view the important work carried out by the bird ringing programme that operates from Jews’ Gate. If the winds are favourable, we will be able to watch birds of prey as they soar over us, ready to cross the Strait.
At 3pm, we will reconvene at Europa Point, where we will watch seabirds. This is often the highlight of the event in Gibraltar, with large numbers of feeding Cory’s Shearwaters often providing a spectacular show.
All are invited to participate in the event and participation is free.
BirdLife Europe is encouraging the public to participate in this 25th anniversary, including on its ‘EuroBirdwatch’ Facebook page, where it asks people to share information and post photos. BirdLife says “From Azerbaijan via Norway to Gibraltar you can show the diversity of many events many different birds and many people in nature.”
At the end of the weekend the numbers of all observed birds and participating people are counted and reported to BirdLife via each national partner. In 2018, natur&ëmwelt/BirdLife Luxembourg is acting as the European Centre to process data. The results will be available on Facebook and www.eurobirdwatch.eu