Tarifa - August 26 2010


Bird migration: Tarifa
August 26 2010

Dear reader,

yesterday we had been at Tarifa again. Well, what shall I say: again a heavy wind was blowing. But the turbulences high up in the air seemed to be less dramatic as on the ground, because several honey buzzards, short-toed- and booted eagles and some Egyptian vultures continued - hardly to be seen with the naked eye - their flight over Tarifa to Africa. We enjoyed the scenery very much together with other birders, whom we met at Cazalla. We also observed three flocks of bee eaters. They flew low and with high speed, having the strong wind in their backs.

Only now and then we saw a bird at eyes level. Yes I know you have to strain your attention to discover the Egyptian vulture at all:

This adult short toed eagle bombed along, coming from the South, above our heads, before it was looking for shelter on the ground. Most likely he was driven back by the wind:

A brave honey buzzard tried the overfly on his own. Sometime it was really dramatic to watch, how the birds suddenly could not continue but had to turn round. Definitely it was a great exertion to cross the Strait of Gibraltar:

In contrast to their fellows the black kites were more careful and waiting on the ground for better weather conditions:

It is questionable if the wind mills directly at the migration route really had to be! Especially on stormy days it caughts your breath seeing the birds (on the photo black kites) nearby:

Look, how many black kites impatiently

are waiting for better weather conditions, to continue their flight to Africa:

"Ghee, as many black kites on one point we have never seen!"

After we spent many hours at Cazalla (Tarifa) we also stopped by at La Janda, were about 300 white storks had gathered, feeding and waiting for better weather conditions:

And to our biggest joy we met this European roller

nearly at the same spot as last Saturday:

At La Janda stayed some Montagu's harriers and we were lucky that this male passed our camo tent car rather close:

The emotions concerning bird migration is just indescribable! And maybe one day we will be lucky enough to be more close to the various raptors. In any case we continue to try!

Birgit Kremer

All photos ©copyright by Birgit Kremer
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