Catch up on the season

This year’s autumn migration season has been underway for 21 days now, and so far everything points to another great experience for all participants.

Numbers of migrating Honey Buzzard, Black Kite, Booted Eagle, Marsh Harrier and Montagu’s Harrier have been steadily rising over the course of the last 15 days. These “core species” of our count form the majority of passing birds (among Bee-Eaters) at the first half of the autumn migration. At the same time less abundant species like storks and Pallid Harrier have also begun their migration and show up in smaller numbers. As well as these expected species, there were also sightings of species one hopes to see so early in the season, including Greater SpottedSteppe and White-tailed Eagle and a couple of Crested Honey Buzzard.

So far numbers for Honey Buzzard are lower than they were at this time in BRC’s record-breaking 2012 season (2012: 593.830; 2013: 344.603). But still many individuals are expected to come in the next days. Due to heavy rains, high cloud cover in the entire Caucasus mixed with heavy storms, the numbers of migrants in general were quite low in the last days. During peak migration this rises the hope of incredible unblocked migration after the weather clears up. Watching out of the window - the clouds have gone – what can be happen tomorrow then?


As every year the day-offs are seldom used to hang around but to go birding in the very attractive delta of the Chorokhi river just near Batumi. With its dynamic wetlands and the ponds the delta produce high diversity of migrating passerines and raptors usually coming there for feeding and resting. Read the article of a team of BRC counters who went to the Delta on a rainy day and made incredible observations.

The BRC’s team is daily reinforced by new counters from all over Europe and is preparing itself for the coming Honey Buzzard and Montagu’s Harrier peak days. The team now consists of people from all over Europe: Belgium, France, Finland, Sweden, Germany, the Netherlands, Croatia, United Kingdom, and Spain. We are happy to not only have the diversity in birds but also in count-volunteers, team-members, sponsors and supporters.

Thanks to all – realizing together with us this tremendous autumn migration raptor count!

>> Watch the recent counts here

2013Jasper Wehrmann