Autumn flowers

There are some characteristic plants that begin to flower in the autumn, with some already present and others beginning to flower now.

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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.

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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

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International Bat Night 2017

The 10th edition of the International Bat Night under the auspices of Eurobats / BatLife Europe was held on Friday 6th October 2017 at the Open Air Theatre at the Gibraltar Botanic Gardens.

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EuroBirdwatch 2017

The first leg of our EuroBirdwatch 2017 events took place on Sunday 1st October at Europa Point. 

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Iberian Chiffchaffs on passage

Iberian Chiffchaffs Phylloscopus ibericus are now passing through the area of the Straits on their way to their winter quarters in Africa.

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Egyptian Vulture Rescued

A juvenile Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus) was handed in to vet Mark Pizarro, having been found in a weakened state around Laguna Estate.

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Kentish Plover recorded again after decades

A juvenile Kentish Plover was seen and photographed on the rocks at the western end of the runway by Trevor Hammond.  This is the first time the species has been recorded again in Gibraltar after several decades.  

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Ravens Return to Gibraltar

Various reports were received over the long weekend concerning sightings of Ravens Corvus corax over the Upper Rock.

There had been a pair of this species in Gibraltar until relatively recently (we need to check our records, although breeding was never recorded).

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Dumping at the Europa Foreshore

The Europa Foreshore is a designated part of the Gibraltar Nature Reserve.  Bart Van Thienen has been working in this area in collaboration with GONHS for the last five years clearing the area of rubble and waste, and clearing invasive species of plants such as the Prickly Pear Opuntia ficus-indica, the Hottentot Fig Carpobrotus edulis and the Century plant Agave americana.  He has done a great job in restoring the area to a natural surrounding, and has begun to restore the Gibraltar Sea Lavender Limonium emarginatum, by planting seedlings in various areas within the site.

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Seabird Migration underway at Europa Point

In the last few weeks seabird migration has got underway at Europa Point, with birds migrating west out of the Mediterranean close inshore.  The best weather conditions are usually westerly winds, although even during easterlies birds will be seen.  The afternoon is the best time to watch from this site as the light is favourable, and the birds pass close providing suitable conditions for good photography opportunities.

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Resident Birds fare well in the heatwave

Over the last few weeks Europe has experienced a severe heatwave named 'Lucifer'.  Gibraltar did not escape the ravages of the high temperatures, but fared better than inland areas in Spain.  Temperatures increased daily with the highest recorded so far 35oC on the 7th August.  

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Aloe Die-back in Gibraltar

A few years ago a disease was proliferating among the Tree Aloes, Aloe arborescens around Gibraltar.  Large stands of the plant around Europa Point and the east side of Gibraltar were badly affected, and several stands were unable to survive, and perished.  Those that did weather the storm, recovered slowly during the winter months and managed to put on the display of their colourful and characteristic flowers; the red pokers.

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EuroBirdwatch 2018

EuroBirdwatch 2018

GONHS celebrated the 25th EuroBirdwatch last weekend, a Europe-wide event organised by BirdLife International to highlight bird migration and conservation.  The event has been celebrated in Gibraltar every year since 1993, when it began.  

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GONHS at BirdFair

GONHS at BirdFair

The Society was represented by our hard-working council member Jill Yeoman, at the Bird Fair held at Egleton Nature Reserve at Rutland Water, Oakham from the 17th - 19th August. 

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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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