Tuesday, October 17, 2017

News from the Strait of Messina

Few days ago the fieldwork season at the Strait of Messina ended. This year we decided to extend the monitoring season to detect some late migrants. In october we observed hundreds of Kestrels/Lesser Kestrel as well as interesting numbers of Short-toed Snake Eagles, Booted Eagles, some Pallid Harriers and Red Kites.
Our next appointment will be in spring 2018. Let's meet then!





Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Stop hunting at migratory bottlenecks

Two days ago it was shot a juvenile Black Stork close to our watchpoint at the Strait of Messina. We already don't know if it will be possible to release the stork in the field. This beautiful bird was shot in area  outside  Natura 2000 site and outside the border of the National Park. Therefore it was shot in an area where hunting is allowed. We believe the problem is that one and the solution should be to forbid hunting activity in the whole bottle-neck area of the Strait of Messina. Here below a picture of the unlucky stork. 


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

News from the Strait of Messina

In the last two days about 2000 birds were counted at our watchsite at the Strait of Messina. Most of them were Honey Buzzards but we observed also about 100  Marsh Harriers, about 50 Black Kites, 4 Ospreys, 12 Black Storks one Roller and many more. Take a look to our count here.


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

News from the Strait of Messina

In the last two days there was a good passage of raptors with more than one thousand individuals counted yesterday. Lot of Honey Buzzards but also a beautiful adult Egyptian vulture. Black kites moved slowly in the study area flying through very circuitous paths. Also the day before in the evening. Fortunately we tracked them by eye (and also by radar) to avoid double count. We are testing a new radar software and we tracked several flocks of raptors  migrating both on the highland and over the slopes of the mountain. Follow our raptor count here: http://www.straitobservatory.com/raptor-count/



Monday, August 21, 2017

Migrating tagged kites in Sicily

Both tagged kites are now in western Sicily. They started the migratory journey around mid-august, three days distance from each other. Both passed the Strait of Messina where they have been observed by our raptor counters on the Aspromonte mountain. Now the two kites are roosting together and during the day they feed at agricultural fields, garbage dumps and lakes, together with several hundreds of other kites, waiting to undertake the crossing of the Channel of Sicily and reaching Africa. Here below a map with the tracks of the two kites and a detailed map of their passage through the Aspromonte mountain close to our watchpoint (the red star).




Monday, August 14, 2017

Migrating Black Kites

This summer we tagged two Black Kites  born in Decima Malafede Natural Reserve in the surrounding of Rome. Now the first of those birds is moving southward and this morning at 6 o clock it crossed the Strait of Messina reaching Sicily. The bird was observed by our raptor counters on the Aspromonte mountain flying in a flock of 19 birds. Here below two maps and a picture of the bird with the GPS tag. The bird has also a red coloured ring with a white code.
The project is run by Ornis italica with the support of Medraptors, the University of Pavia and RomaNatura.







Monday, August 7, 2017

Black Kites' nest

This is a video realized (by Michele Panuccio) few days ago in the Natural Reserve of Decima Malafede of two beautiful chicks. An adult individual is bringing them some food (a dead pigeon). This pair is in delay. The migration of Black Kites has already started and in the same moment of the video, tens of individuals have grouped together in the same area in a communal pre-migratory roost.