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The Migration Study Group - Wednesday, October 15th, 2008
The Coal Tit invasion is reaching important proportions, with noticeable concentrations in coastal areas. Impressive day records have been noted in the Netherlands (3646 at De Nolle, Vlissingen on 10/10/2008), in Belgium (1213 at Fonteintjes, Blankenberge on 27/9/2008) and in France (1170 at Banc d'Islette, Somme on 13/10/2008). Invasions of this size are density and/or food dependent (e.g. spruce seeds in northern Europe). Only part of the population may be concerned, most often females and first year birds. 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Monday, October 13th, 2008

In Malta, hunting legislation is still not widely respected. BirdLife Malta is reporting numerous incidents on its website http://www.birdlifemalta.org/conservation/raptorcamp/DailyUpdates/ and even considers that the situation is worsening.
You will find additional information on the website of Komitee gegen den Vogelmord http://www.komitee.de/

At least 3 Black Storks have been killed on 24 September and a Lesser Spotted Eagle on 27 September. The police are trying hard to arrest the poachers and to fine them.

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Sunday, October 12th, 2008
The Great White Pelican in a flock of White Storks, first seen in Germany, Switzerland, France and Cataluña has moved to Lleida. It was last sighted at P.N. Aiguamolls, a well-known wintering site for White Storks on 29 september: http://www.ornitho-emporda.cat/html/noticiaris/notis08/setembre08.htm
On 10 October, it was seen again with White Storks at the pond of the bird recovery centre of Vallcalent, Lleida, at 217,47 km from Aiguamolls as the pelican flies (information: Ricard Gutiérrez).
 

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Friday, October 3rd, 2008
Paco Montoya, one of the coordinators of migration counts in the Straits of Gibraltar, invites us to sign a cyber petition to save a major migration site in southern Spain. The last two years, 4 Moroccan migration sites have been lost through urbanisation and 2 Spanish migration sites are about to disappear forever. 
 
Collectivo Ornitológico Cigüeña Negra an Verdemar Ecologistas en acción  have launched a cyber action to protect the Sierra del Algarrobo in Algeciras.
 
These hills are situated on a major migration corridor with hundreds of thousands of migrants.
 
According to BirdLife, the number of migrants at the Sierra del Algarrobo is already declining.
 
The site has a global and European importance as to the number of migrant birds. 
 
Over 5000 storks and over 3000 raptors and cranes are counted annually.
 
Despite its importance, the site has no legal protection and is exposed to numerous dangers.
 
An urbanisation project, not obiding by the Law - without impact study - is threatening the area. 
 
You can sign the petition on following link : http://www.cocn.eu./algarrobo/form1.html
 
Please, pass on this message to your friends.
 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Monday, September 29th, 2008

Jays and Coal Tits in numbers

An important irruption of Coal Tits and Jays is now reaching northern and central France with the first signs over a week ago. At Banc de l'Ilette, Somme, 2821 Coal Tits and 1125 Jays have been counted during this autumn. Jays have also reached Normandy, with a flock of 32 at Carolles, Manche, on 28/9. Coal Tits are also numerous in Normandy this year (with birds in many gardens). At Les Conches, 1531 Jays have been counted during the autumn. Along the Belgian coast, Coal Tits were particularly numerous during the last few days (with e.g. 1003 and 1213 inds. at Fonteintjes, Blankenberge on 26 and 27/9). 

The most recent important invasion of Coal Tits dates back to 1996, with minor influxes in 2001, 2005 and 2007.

Like in 2008, an invasion of Jays and Coal Tits coincided in 1996. These forest birds originated from the Baltic states and Russia at the time. A major invasion of Jays occurred in 2004.

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Monday, September 15th, 2008
The Great White Pelican in a flock of White Storks, first seen on the roof top of a church in Germany, then in Switzerland and France, has been relocated in north eastern Spain, P.N. d'Aiguamolls de l'Empordà. 

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Sunday, September 14th, 2008
A Great White Pelican in a flock of White Storks has been observed on migration in Germany, Switzerland and France. Pictures of the Pelican can be found here:
http://www.ornitho.ch/index.php?m_id=7&frmSpecies=20

According to a newspaper article http://www.szon.de/lokales/riedlingen/land/200809030192.html , the Great White Pelican and the White Storks were first seen north of lake Constance in southern Germany on 1 September 2008. The latest record was at Gruissan, France, on 12 September 2008.

A similar association has been noted previously in southern Germany in April 2008 (http://www.theresia-gerhardinger-haus.de/berichte/Storch%20und%20Pelikan/storch_und_pelikan.htm) and April 2007 (http://www.sueddeutsche.de/,ra8l2/panorama/artikel/527/110417/)
 

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Friday, June 20th, 2008

Threat to the Amazon’s birds greater than ever, Red List update reveals

The risk of extinction has increased substantially for nearly 100 species of Amazonian birds, reveals the 2012 IUCN Red List update for birds released today by BirdLife International. The new assessment is based on models projecting the extent and pattern of deforestation across the Amazon.

“We have previously underestimated the risk of extinction that many of Amazonia’s bird species are facing”, said Dr Leon Bennun, BirdLife’s Director of Science, Policy and Information. “However, given recent weakening of Brazilian forest law, the situation may be even worse than recent studies have predicted.”

Of particular concern are longer-lived species, such as Rio Branco Antbird Cercomacra carbonaria, for which even moderate rates of deforestation can be important. Some species, such as Hoary-throated Spinetail Synallaxis kollari, appear likely to lose more than 80% of their habitat over the coming decades and have been placed in the highest category of extinction risk – Critically Endangered.

The 2012 update is a comprehensive review, undertaken every four years, of all the world’s over 10,000 bird species. The update shows worrying news not just from the tropics but in Northern Europe too, where over a million Long-tailed Ducks Clangula hyemalis have disappeared from the Baltic Sea over the last 20 years, resulting in the species being uplisted to Vulnerable. The reasons for this decline are still not clear but the fortunes of another sea duck, Velvet Scoter Melanitta fusca are even worse, with the species now being listed as Endangered.

“These figures are frightening. We’re pretty sure that the birds haven’t moved elsewhere, and the numbers represent a genuine population crash. The widespread nature of the declines point to the likelihood of environmental change across much of the arctic and sub-arctic regions where these species breed”, said Andy Symes, BirdLife’s Global Species Programme Officer.

In Africa, the White-backed and Rueppell's Vultures, Gyps africanus and G. rueppellii, are mirroring the fate of their Asian cousins, with rapid declines linked to poisoning, persecution and habitat loss. Both species have been reclassified as Endangered. Their declines have much wider impacts, since vultures play a key role in food webs by feeding on dead animals.

However, not all the news is bad. Restinga Antwren Formicivora littoralis, a small bird from coastal, south-east Brazil, has been downlisted from Critically Endangered, as new surveys have found it to be more widely distributed than previously thought. Its future also looks more secure now owing to the creation of a new protected area covering its core distribution.

There are also examples of a species’ fate being turned around, despite almost insurmountable odds. In the Cook Islands of the Pacific, the sustained recovery Raratonga Monarch Pomarea dimidiata, once one of the world’s rarest birds, has led to it being downlisted to Vulnerable. Intensive conservation action, particularly through control of alien invasive predators like black rats, has saved the species from extinction. The bird’s population is now about 380 individuals, over ten times bigger than at its low point, although continued conservation efforts are required.

“Such successes show the remarkable achievements that are possible where effort and dedication by conservationists and local communities are backed up with political support and adequate resources,” said Dr Stuart Butchart, BirdLife’s Global Research Coordinator.

“But the worrying projections for the Amazon emphasise the urgent need for governments to meet their international commitments by establishing comprehensive protected area networks that are adequately funded and effectively managed.”

For more information, images or interviews please contact:

Martin Fowlie Tel +44 (0)1223 279813   email: martin.fowlie@birdlife.org

 

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Friday, February 20th, 2004

The beauty of Organbidexka - a sea of clouds, image by image

A short film by Adrien Brun using time-lapse photography shows the beauty of Organbidexka in the western Pyrenees.

Because of a copyright problem with one of the pieces of music used in the background, the link is no longer available. We will solve this as soon as possible. Sorry for the inconvenience.

 

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
The Migration Study Group - Tuesday, February 20th, 2001

Breath-taking landscapes of Organbidexka - a sea of clouds, image by image...

Migration watchpoints can be beautiful. Enjoy these images of Organbidexka in the western Pyrenees using time-lapse photography : click here

Adrien Brun

 

 
posted by Gunter De Smet, edited by Anonyme
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