Tuesday, October 2, 2012

1,000 raptors!

First big raptor day for Kihnu island with 1 000 migrating raptors!. This kind of raptor migration can be seen in very few places in Estonia and for our observation team it has been best raptor day ever in this country. Fabolous day for Sparrowhawk/ raudkull Accipiter nisus with 954 migrating individuals. It is the second biggest daily count for this species, being only 50 individuals less than best day in Sõrve bird observatory! The importance of Kihnu island for Sparrowhawk migration shows also bird counts done today at Lao (mainland spit straight up north-east from Kihnu) there "only" 300 migrating Sparrowhawk has been counted. Also very good day for Merlin/ väikepistrik Falco columbarius - 17m, which is exactly the same number as current best daily count done in Estonia. Best day of the autumn season for Hen Harrier/ välja-loorkull Circus cyaneus - 10m. Signs of the late autumn has been 1 migrating Honey Buzzard/ herilaseviu Pernis apivorus and 3 Hobbies/ lõopistrik Falco subbuteo. Today also first Rough-legged Buzzard/ karvasjalg-viu Buteo lagopus has been encountered.
Passerine migration has been rather quiet today - seems that Chaffinches/ metsvint Fringilla coelebs migration is slightly ending for this autumn. The most interesting observation among passerines has been very late Sand Martin/ kaldapääsuke Riparia riparia - the second latest record for the country. Also first Serin/ koldvint Serinus serinus were observed today. Local birds today nearby field station - Willow Warbler/ salu-lehelind Phylloscopus trochilus and Redstart/ lepalind Phoenicurus phoenicurus
In the late evening Mati put up raptor nets. Today is very calm night and hopefully we manage to catch for the ringing purposes some Owls and of course tommorrow some Sparrowhawks. Radar also detecting big movement of nocturnal migration today - most probably passing Robins/ punarind Erithacus rubecula and Song Thrushes / lauluräsyas Turdus philomelos


The raptors migration started already before the sunrise in the first morning light

Sparrowhawk - the hero of the day

Sometimes the air was too crowded of hawks

The mighty and bulky juvenile Goshawk going off to the migration

Huge flock of Wood Pigeons taking some circling flight for reaching ti the higher altitude before the sea crossing

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