Thursday, 11 April 2013

Raptor Migration at Cape Tenaro

Small numbers of raptors make their first land fall at Cape Tenaro in the spring after crossing the Mediterraean from North Africa. The table below summarises the number of apparent migrant raptors seen this spring over a period of 13 days. In addition to these species there were also sightings of Short-toed Eagle, Buzzard and Peregrine however these were all considered to be locally breeding birds. 

Raptor Migration at Cape Tenaro 

28 March to 9 April 2013  

Number Seen
Montagu’s / Pallid Harrier
Marsh Harrier
Lesser Kestrel
Kestrel Sp.
Falcon Sp.

In previous years a number of other migrant raptor species have also been seen: Honey Buzzard, Black Kite, Pallid Harrier, Montagu's Harrier, Sparrowhawk, Red-footed Falcon and Eleonora's Falcon. Numbers are generally small however occasionally larger movements do occur such as 13 Montagu's Harriers and 25 Marsh Harriers on 30th April 2006.

Sightings betwen the Cape Tenaro headland and Gerolimenas, at Gerolimenas and on the plateau area north-west of there suggest that other raptors make their first land fall between Cape Tenaro and Cape Pounda.

Based on our own observations over the last 10+ years it would not be unreasonable to suppose that for the whole of the Mani peninsula spring raptor migration involves some 500 to 1000 birds each year. This however is a 'guesstimate' and it would be great to have the time to do a more systematic survey. Anyone want to volunteer? 

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