Recent Sightings March 2022
Mar 31: Overcast skies in the morning with sporadic showers. Beginning to clear in the afternoon with sunny spells and westerly cloud. Winds moderate to fresh westerly.
There was a steady passage of raptors during the day with many birds flying along the east side of the Rock and missed. The following were counted together with other species passing north:-
Booted Eagle. C. Finlayson.
Wing tagged Black Kite. T. Finlayson
Also seen from Europa Point were 11 Gannets, 15 Black-headed Gulls, three Lesser Black-backed Gulls and three Sandwich Terns.
Mar 30: Overcast skies with some sunny intervals. Winds moderate westerly.
An early morning visit to North Front Cemetery produced the following:-
In the afternoon there were some more species at this site that included four Hoopoes, a Wryneck, three Kestrels, eight Woodchat Shrikes, two Sardinian Warblers and six Common Redstarts.
Wryneck at North Front Cemetery. R. Perez.
At the Europa foreshore the following were observed:-
|Lesser Black-backed Gull||3|
|Blue Rock Thrush||1|
An afternoon count of raptors produced 1050 Black Kites, 17 Booted Eagles, two Buzzards and 13 Sparrowhawks. also seen were 30 Bee-eaters over the Rock.
Mar 29: Easterly wind with overcast conditions, including low cloud. Some rainfall overnight and early in the morning. In the afternoon some sunshine with high westerly cloud and some distant thunder clouds. Winds light south easterly changing to light north-westerly. A Hoopoe, two Nightingales, a Willow Warbler and a Woodchat Shrike were in the Alameda Gardens. A fall of migrants occurred overnight, with birds seen in most areas with suitable habitat. Montagu Gardens held a Subalpine Warbler and a Chiffchaff.
A morning visit to the North Front Cemetery produced the following:-
|Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush||1|
Male Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush at North Front cemetery. P. Rocca.
An afternoon visit to Windmill Hill produced the following:-
|Blue Rock Thrush||3|
This was followed by a walk around Jacob's Ladder:-
And at Europa Point and Foreshore:-
Two Montagu's Harriers, two Marsh Harriers, a Hen Harrier, two Buzzards, and a Sparrowhawk were over the Rock as well.
Mar 28: Very strong easterly, overcast. A Nightingale called and then sang in the Alameda Gardens.
A morning session of ringing at Jews' Gate produced six Common Chiffchaffs (one a retrap from 18th November 2021), an Iberian Chiffchaff, a Willow Warbler, three Western Bonelli's Warblers, a Whitethroat, a Nightingale and a Common Redstart.
Mar 27: Very strong easterly, overcast. There was some rain overnight. Two Yellow Wagtails were along Europa Road in the morning, with three Willow Warblers along Europa Advance Road. Commonwealth Park held a Subalpine Warbler, three Willow Warblers and a Nightingale.
An hour at Europa Point and Foreshore in the afternoon produced two Subalpine Warblers, six Willow Warblers, two Black Redstarts, a Common Redstart, four Barn Swallows, a Tree Pipit and a Yellow Wagtail, as well as two Shags, a Cormorant, six Gannets, 16 Balearic Shearwaters, a Black-headed Gull, four Mediterranean Gulls, an Audouin's Gull, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls and 11 Sandwich Terns.
Mar 26: Light easterly with some rain in the early morning, overcast and hazy but gradually sunnier. The Europa Point area held five Sandwich Terns, ten Pallid Swifts, five Sardinian Warblers, a Subalpine Warbler, two Whitethroats, six Willow Warblers, five Common Chiffchaffs, a Common Redstart, two Black Redstarts, a Robin, a Blackbird and 12 Spotless Starlings.
A visit to Windmill Hill Flats produced nine Barbary Partridges, two Common Kestrels, 13 Hoopoes, a Zitting Cisticola, two Blackcaps, 33 Sardinian Warblers, six Whitethroats, two Spectacled Warblers, nine Willow Warblers, three Iberian Chiffchaffs, five Nightingales, four Common Redstarts, nine Black Redstarts, eight Robins, two Stonechats, two Northern Wheatears (male), two Black-eared Wheatears (male & female), four Blue Rock Thrushes, seven Song Thrushes, 16 Blackbirds, seven Woodchat Shrikes, 16 Spotless Starlings, 25 Meadow Pipits, a Tree Pipit, a White Wagtail, a Wren, 12 Linnets, five Goldfinches, two Chaffinches, five Serins, four Greenfinches and two Corn Buntings, with 53 Barn Swallows, three House Martins, a Sparrowhawk, a male Montagu's Harrier, six Black Kites, a Booted Eagle (light phase) and three Short-toed Eagles overhead.
A Woodchat Shrike was in the Alameda Gardens.
An afternoon visit to North Front Cemetery turned up seven Sardinian Warblers, four Common Chiffchaffs, a Nightingale, five Common Redstarts, four Black Redstarts, a Stonechat, seven Blackbirds, seven Woodchat Shrikes, a White Wagtail and two Spotless Starlings.
Mar 25: A calm morning with few clouds and very clear sky, with good views across the bay and strait. The many murky puddles and deposits of sand were the only evidence of the previous evening's calima.
There was a Subalpine Warbler and a Common Chiffchaff along Europa Road during the early morning, with a Hoopoe in the Alameda Gardens.
Commonwealth Park held two Willow Warblers and there was a Whitethroat in Campion Park.
At North Front Cemetery there were two Hoopoes, seven Common Chiffchaffs, three Willow Warblers, seven Sardinian Warblers, a Subalpine Warbler, two Northern Wheatears, three Common Redstarts, 11 Black Redstarts, a Stonechat, three Robins, two Nightingales, five Blackbirds, two Song Thrushes, seven Woodchat Shrikes, a Yellow Wagtail, a White Wagtail and 10 Greenfinches, with a Barn Swallow and two Common Swifts overhead.
An evening visit to Europa Point produced a Gannet, 16 Black-headed Gulls, nine Audouin's Gulls, five Pallid Swifts, ten Barn Swallows, four Willow Warblers, four Common Chiffchaffs, a Subalpine Warbler, a Whitethroat and five Black Redstarts.
Mar 24: Cloudy and wet, light easterly wind with sustained heavy rainfall overnight. Into the afternoon, the sky turned deep orange in colour, the result of 'claim': Saharan dust laden in the air. When the rain came, it was mud.
There was a Hoopoe at Alameda Gardens.
A morning visit to North Front Cemetery produced three Hoopoes, three Sardinian Warblers, seven Subalpine Warblers, nine Common Chiffchaffs, a Black-eared Wheatear, two Stonechats, two Common Redstarts, 15 Black Redstarts, two Robins, 11 Blackbirds, three Song Thrushes, seven Woodchat Shrikes, two Spotless Starlings and a White Wagtail.
Mar 23: Very strong easterly wind during the morning, easing off in the afternoon and giving way to some rain. There was a Hoopoe in the Alameda Gardens.
A selection of migrants and residents during a morning visit to North Front Cemetery, with two Hoopoes, six Sardinian Warblers, two Common Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, two Stonechats, two Common Redstarts, seven Black Redstarts, 11 Blackbirds, a Song Thrush, five Woodchat Shrikes and a White Wagtail.
Pallid Swifts were conspicuous in their arrival to traditional colonies in Europort and the Gibraltar Museum.
Mar 22: Light to breezy easterly with some drizzle in the afternoon. There was a Hoopoe in the Alameda Gardens and some 20 Pallid Swifts over the westside reclamation.
In the morning, North Front Cemetery held three Common Kestrels, two Common Chiffchaffs, two Blackcaps, six Sardinian Warblers, two Subalpine Warblers, a Common Redstart, three Black Redstarts, two Stonechats, a Northern Wheatear, four Blackbirds and a Woodchat Shrike.
Some three hours at Europa Point produced two Cormorants, five Shags, two Audouin's Gulls, three Lesser Black-backed Gulls, 19 Sandwich Terns, two Turnstones, a Hoopoe, a Barn Swallow, three Common Chiffchaffs, nine Willow Warblers, four Black Redstarts, a Meadow Pipit, a White Wagtail, 21 Serins, four Goldfinches and four Greenfinches. A short seawatch during the afternoon produced a further eight Gannets, four Cormorants, five Shags, five Black-headed Gulls, eight Audouin's Gulls, a Lesser Black-backed Gull, four Sandwich Terns and a Great Skua.
There was a Grey Heron at Little Bay and a Turnstone on the South Mole.
Windmill Hill Flats was quiet in the afternoon. The only migrants present were two Hoopoes, two Willow Warblers, three Robins, seven Black Redstarts, two Stonechats, a Song Thrush, a Woodchat Shrike, a Tree Pipit, ten Meadow Pipits and a Greenfinch.
Mar 21: Southeasterly breeze becoming calmer throughout the day. Overcast at first, with warm and sunny periods from mid-morning onwards. There was a Hoopoe in the Alameda Gardens, as well as 12 Common Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, nine Blackcaps, six Black Redstarts, two Robins, 13 Blackbirds, 16 Blue Tits and seven Greenfinches.
Europa Point and Foreshore held two Willow Warblers, seven Common Chiffchaffs, a Subalpine Warbler, four Sardinian Warblers, six Black Redstarts, a Blue Rock Thrush, six Yellow Wagtails and a Meadow Pipit. A total four hours and fifteen minutes of seawatching produced 277 Gannets, ten Cormorants, seven Shags, four Balearic Shearwaters, 18 Black-headed Gulls, three Mediterranean Gulls, 16 Audouin's Gulls, a Lesser Black-backed Gull, an Arctic Skua, 14 Sandwich Terns and an unidentified auk.
North Front Cemetery held a selection of migrants during visits in the morning and afternoon, with two Willow Warblers, eight Common Chiffchaffs, two Subalpine Warblers, a Dartford Warbler, two Stonechats, a Common Redstart, 18 Black Redstarts, two Robins, a Woodchat Shrike, a Tree Pipit, a Serin and two Corn Buntings, as well as a Common Kestrel, six Sardinian Warblers and ten Blackbirds.
Also in the afternoon, Windmill Hill Flats held a typical assemblage of resident species - a Kestrel, three Barbary Partridges, 28 Sardinian Warblers, two Blue Rock Thrushes, 14 Blackbirds, a Wren and 29 Spotless Starlings - alongside the following migrants: a Sparrowhawk on the ground, three Hoopoes, five Willow Warblers, a Common Chiffchaff, two Subalpine Warblers, a Nightingale, two Stonechats, four Robins, 21 Black Redstarts, a Common Redstart, ten Meadow Pipits, a Tree Pipit, three Goldfinches and three Greenfinches.
Mar 20: Very strong easterly, overcast with occasional drizzle. There were three Willow Warblers in Commonwealth Park.
Europa Point and Foreshore held a Serin, a Goldfinch, a Black Redstart, two Common Chiffchaffs, two Willow Warblers, a Northern Wheatear, a Barn Swallow and two Pallid Swifts. A Common Kestrel and twelve Black Kites struggled to make it to land. At sea, over an hour and a half, there were five Shags, a Cormorant, 18 Gannets, 13 Scopoli's Shearwaters, 12 Balearic Shearwaters, 23 Black-headed Gulls, eight Audouin's Gulls, nine Mediterranean Gulls, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls, 70 Sandwich Terns, a Great Skua and two Arctic Skuas. The terns were heading into the Mediterranean, with the Arctic Skuas giving chase.
A visit to North Front Cemetery produced three Black Redstarts, a Stonechat, a Black-eared Wheatear, four Blackbirds, three Sardinian Warblers a Subalpine Warbler and four Chiffchaffs.
Mar 19: Strong easterly, mostly clear sky with levanter cloud. A walk along Signal Station Road on the Upper Rock produced three Barbary Partridges, 2 Ravens, a Barn Swallow, two Common Chiffchaffs, a Sardinian Warbler, a Blue Rock Thrush and a Greenfinch. There was a Song Thrush close to Casemates Square in town.
Mar 18: Light southeasterly becoming breezy during the afternoon. Mainly overcast with some sunny spells. A Hoopoe was near Tovey Cottage on the Upper Rock and the local pair of Ravens was seen carrying what looked like nesting material.
North Front Cemetery was quiet, with a Song Thrush, a Stonechat and five Black Redstarts. Europa Point and Foreshore held five Willow Warblers, three Back Redstarts and a White Wagtail, with an Audouin's Gull, five Black-headed Gulls and a Shag offshore.
A Nightingale sang at Jacob's Ladder, the first of the year. A visit to Windmill Hill Flats produced another Nightingale, as well as ten Barbary Partridges, a Common Kestrel, a Hoopoe, 30 Sardinian Warblers, a Dartford Warbler, 26 Black Redstarts, four Robins, three Stonechats, two Blue Rock Thrushes, 19 Blackbirds, three Song Thrushes, two Woodchat Shrikes, two Wrens, ten Spotless Starlings, 15 Meadow Pipits, two Goldfinches and two Greenfinches.
Mar 17: Overcast with light to moderate southwesterly wind. Some drizzle in the morning. There was a Hoopoe in the Alameda Gardens and some 50 Crag Martins were along Europa Advance Road. 30 Black Kites crossed the Strait in the morning and about fifteen Pallid Swifts were over Europort.
North Front Cemetery was quiet in the afternoon, with five Black Redstarts and a White Wagtail, but Europa Foreshore produced two Common Chiffchaffs, a Dartford Warbler, two Sardinian Warblers and three Black Redstarts, with two Balearic Shearwaters, 17 Gannets, a Great Skua, a Cormorant and a Shag offshore.
Mar 16: Overcast skies to the north of Gibraltar, with clearer skies over the Strait and Morocco early in the morning, with cloud increasing mid morning to bring some light rain. Winds light westerly to light variable, becoming light westerly in the afternoon.
As weather cleared in the Strait early in the morning, raptors crossed on a broad front, with some birds reaching Gibraltar from the bay. These included five Black Kites, 14 Marsh Harriers and two Ospreys before 10am, after which passage stopped when cloudy skies over the Strait and Morocco, and light variable winds set in.
An early morning visit to North Front Cemetery produced two Chiffchaffs, nine Blackbirds, three Robins, 17 Black Redstarts, a Stonechat, a White Wagtail, two Chaffinches and four Greenfinches.
There were two Hoopoes in the Botanic Gardens, and a flock of five Swallows hawking around there.
An afternoon visit to Europa Point & Foreshore produced 12 Common Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, four Black Redstarts and the first Common Redstart (male) of the year, whilst a seawatch from the point produced four Shags, 12 Gannets, two Sandwich Terns, ten Black-headed Gulls and a Mediterranean Gull.
Windmill Hill Flats held a selection of native and migrant species in the evening, with five Alpine Swifts and 14 Barn Swallows overhead, four Barbary Partridges, five Hoopoes, nine Sardinian Warblers, 31 Black Redstarts, four Northern Wheatears, seven Stonechats, two Blue Rock Thrushes, one Song Thrush, nine Blackbirds, two Woodchat Shrikes, 46 Spotless Starlings, 14 Meadow Pipits, seven Goldfinches and one Chaffinch.
In the afternoon, a one and a half hour watch produced 836 Black Kites, an Egyptian Vulture, three Marsh Harriers, four Booted Eagles, four Sparrowhawks, a Kestrel, seven Pallid Swifts and four Swallows. There was also a trickle of soaring bird migration into the evening, with two Sparrowhawks, 121 Black Kites, a Booted Eagle and a Marsh Harrier. Close to sunset, another 38 Alpine Swifts flew in under O’Hara’s Battery, joining a Pallid Swift and one or two hundred Crag Martins that were circling there.
Mar 15: Overcast skies with light drizzle and a light variable to light southerly breeze in the morning, but in the afternoon low cloud increasing with showers in the late afternoon.
A Pallid Swift was seen over Europort. Single Hoopoes were present at the Botanic Gardens and at Transport Lane.
At Europa Point there were six Gannets, two Cormorants, five Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, a Dartford Warbler, three Sardinian Warblers, three Black Redstarts and a Blue Rock Thrush.
North Front Cemetery held a Sardinian Warbler, a Robin, 12 Black Redstarts, a Stonechat, two Blackbirds, a Woodchat Shrike and a White Wagtail.
A visit to Windmill Hill produced the following:-
The Yellowhammers, a male and female in winter plumage, were only the second record for Gibraltar. The first was seen on 8th March 1984 also on Windmill Hill.
Mar 14: Overcast skies with heavy rain overnight and some showers early in the morning. Winds light westerly early in the morning but becoming light easterly and later light variable in the afternoon with light drizzle.
Europa Point and the foreshore held eight Gannets, a Grey Heron, four Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, two Whitethroats, a Dartford Warbler, 11 Black Redstarts, four Stonechats, a Blue Rock Thrush and a Woodchat Shrike. A Woodchat Shrike was also seen around Nun's Well.
Rosia Bay held two Cormorants, a Shag, two Common Sandpipers and a Chiffchaff. A Ring Ouzel was present at Windmill Hill.
At North Front Cemetery there were four Hoopoes, three Wheatears, two Chiffchaffs, an Iberian Chiffchaff, two Song Thrush, a Dartford Warbler, three Sardinian Warblers, seven Stonechats, five Robins,40 Black Redstarts, and a Woodchat Shrike. A Song Thrush was also present at the Botanic Gardens.
Mar 13: Cloudy with rain showers in the morning becoming clearer in the afternoon with sunny spells. Winds light westerly, becoming moderate in the afternoon.
A flock of three Spoonbills flew west past Europa Point, and a flock of Bee-eaters flew north. This is the earliest record for the species which usually turns up around the 20th of the month.
Spoonbills D. Parody
Spoonbills D. Parody
Very few raptors crossing the Strait with only two Black Kites, eight Short-toed Eagles, a Booted Eagle, two Sparrowhawks and three Ospreys seen in the afternoon. Also seen were two Black Storks.
Two Pallid Swifts were seen over Windmill Hill, and another two were sighted over Ocean Views.
A Hoopoe was present in the Botanic Gardens, 10 Gannets were seen off Sandy Bay, and seven Cormorants were observed on the rocks at Little Bay.
Mar 12: Mainly clear skies but with high cloud increasing from the west. Winds light northerly but becoming moderate to light north-westerly at midday.
Light winds in the morning provided a few raptors that consisted of seven Black Kites, two Short-toed Eagles and 18 Sparrowhawks. Also seen were a flock of 86 White Storks, four Swallows, and 15 Serins.
A Subalpine Warbler was observed in the Vineyards area.
At Europa Point there were 41 Gannets, three Cormorants, a Grey Heron, four Turnstones and a Sandwich Tern. Also seen four Chiffchaffs, two Sardinian Warblers, a White Wagtail and seven Spotless Starlings.
11 Mar: Cloudy in the morning with some sunny spells, with cloud increasing in the afternoon as a frontal system with rain approaches. Winds light variable to light westerly.
A Hoopoe was present in the Botanic Gardens, and a flock of Swallows headed north over Rosia bay.
A visit to North Front Cemetery produced six Chiffchaffs, a Stonechat, five Black Redstarts, two Blackbirds, four Sardinian Warblers and three Subalpine Warblers.
A visit to Windmill Hill produced four Barbary Partridges, two Sparrowhawks, a Hoopoe, a Chiffchaff, 12 Swallows, three Wrens, six Sardinian Warblers, 24 Meadow Pipits, a Serin, two Greenfinches and five Goldfinches.
10 Mar: Levanter cloud over the Rock, town and harbour in a moderate easterly wind.
Wintering Sparrowhawk flying down towards Windmill Hill.
09 Mar: Mainly clear skies with some levanter cloud developing in the morning, and increasing in the afternoon. Winds moderate to fresh easterly.
The Jackdaw was seen in Laguna Estate.
A visit to North Front cemetery produced four Chiffchaffs, three Stonechats, 17 Black Redstarts, three Robins, eight Sardinian Warblers, two Song Thrushes, five Blackbirds and two White Wagtails.
A visit to the Europa foreshore found a Hoopoe, three Stonechats, three Black Redstarts, a Sardinian Warbler, two Meadow Pipits and four Turnstones.
08 Mar: Sunny spells with westerly cloud in the morning increasing at midday to give light showers. Winds moderate to fresh westerly.
A visit to Windmill Hill produced a seven Barbary Partridges, Hoopoe, three Chiffchaffs, nine Stonechats, two Wrens, two Song Thrushes, four Blackbirds, two Blue Rock Thrushes, three Sardinian Warblers, 13 Meadow Pipits, 15 Spotless Starlings, five Serins and a Linnet.
A sporadic watch produced 45 Black Kites and two Sparrowhawks. A Hoopoe was present in the Botanic Gardens and a Northern Wheatear was seen at Europa foreshore
07 Mar: Mainly clear skies with some westerly cloud. Winds westerly to north-westerly.
A visit to North Front Cemetery produced a Hoopoe, two Chiffchaffs, a Stonechat, two Blackbirds, four Sardinian Warblers and a Chaffinch.
In the afternoon three Short-toed Eagles, two Sparrowhawks, Raven, and four Barbary Partridges were seen.
06 Mar: Cloudy with sunny spells throughout the day. Winds light variable to light easterly.
A visit to North Front Cemetery produced a Hoopoe, a Sardinian Warbler and seven Black Redstarts.
At Europa point there were 26 Gannets, two Shags, 76 Black-headed Gulls, three Mediterranean Gulls, two Audouin's Gulls and a Serin.
05 Mar: Clear skies with a fresh northerly wind.
A sporadic watch produced 47 Black Storks, 22 Black Kites, and a Short-toed Eagle.
An afternoon watch from Europa point produced a Scopoli's Shearwater, three Black Storks, a Grey Heron, 10 Flamingoes, 32 Gannets, three Cormorants, three Shags, two Great Skuas, two Mediterranean Gulls, four Audouin's Gulls, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls, three Sandwich Terns, four Black Kites, five Short-toed Eagles, three Marsh Harriers, a White Wagtail, and two Linnets.
04 Mar: Mainly clear skies with some high westerly cloud. Winds fresh north-westerly.
A flock of 21 Black Storks flew north over the Rock at midday. A couple of Sparrowhawks and two Short-toed Eagles were seen in the morning. Later in the afternoon 23 White Storks, 13 Black Storks, 159 Black Kites, two Egyptian Vultures, 45 Short-toed Eagles, 11 Sparrowhawks, seven Marsh Harriers and a Montagu's Harrier were observed heading north. Also seen were 38 Swallows.
A Stone Curlew and two Cormorants were seen from Europa point.
Three Hoopoes were seen at the Botanic gardens.
03 Mar: Mainly clear skies in the morning progressively becoming cloudier in the afternoon with overcast skies and rain showers mid afternoon and evening. Winds light south westerly becoming fresh westerly in the afternoon.
Some Black Kites early in the morning but few raptors until winds picked up after midday. Totals were 35 Black Storks, 44 Black Kites, 815 Short-toed Eagles, a male Hen Harrier, three Booted Eagles and two Sparrowhawks.
One of many Short-toed Eagles on migration today. C. Finlayson.
The first four Pallid Swifts of the year were seen together with a flock of six Crag Martins looking for shelter in the rain in the late afternoon.
02 Mar: Clear skies with a light variable to light westerly wind in the afternoon.
A Hoopoe was present at the Botanic Gardens. Forty-five Swallows were counted in flocks of Crag Martins as they went to roost.
01 Mar: Levanter cloud over the Rock, town and harbour with sunny spells in the afternoon. Winds moderate to fresh easterly.
Two Hoopoes were seen in the Botanic Gardens, and another seen by Tovey Cottage. Two Red-rumped Swallows were observed at Grand Parade.
A Jackdaw was photographed on a balcony at Brympton estate.
Jackdaw on balcony at Brympton estate.