Friday, January 26, 2018

Italian raptor biologists in Patagonia

Thanks to the 4th CUIA call for inter-universities projects, the University of Urbino has  carried out a project on the impact of human activities on Patagonian's ecosystems. Professor Riccardo Santolini coordinated the project with the collaboration of prof. A. Catorci from the University of Camerino and M. Berteloti from CENPAT-CONICET (Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas Centro Nacional Patagónico). The fieldwork was carried out in the Valdez Peninsula (Argentina) across 451 km in november 2012 and april 2013. 95 raptors were observed (43 in 2012 and 52 in 2013) belonging to 9 different species. The commonest observed raptors were  Turkey vulture (Cathartes aura) and Chimango caracara (Milvago chimango). The results of this project are published here:

  • Pruscini F., Morelli F., Perna P., Mazzeo R., Cavitolo P., Bertellotti M., Catorci A. & Santolini R. 2016. Roadside raptor surveys in Valdes Peninsula (Patagonia, Argentina). Hornero 31: 7-11.
Here below a picture of the field team (from the left P. Perna, F. Pruscini, R. Santolini, F. Tardella, A. Catorci e S. Cesaretti) and a picture of a female Variable hawk (Geranoaetus polyosoma).

Monday, December 25, 2017

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Griffon vultures and water

Usually we think that raptors don't like water (and it is true!). However our friends Alan Pittana and Elisa Moretti from Trieste took amazing pictures of Griffon Vultures swimming in a river in Western Spain (here below). It is really impressive to see pictures of griffons freely going into the deep water! This behaviour is probably linked to the necessity of vultures to clean themselves from parasites taken when feeding on carcasses.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Migrating Oriental honey buzzards at Khao Dinsor

The migration of European honey buzzards finished weeks ago since the peak of the migration was, as usual, between the end of August and early September. On the other hand Oriental honey buzzards are still moving southward in Asia and at Khao Dinsor (Thailand) in these days thousands of them are migrating together with several other raptor species. The raptor count there is promoted by the Flyway Foundation. Here below some shots of Oriental honey buzzards there.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

News from the Strait of Messina

Few days ago the fieldwork season at the Strait of Messina ended. This year we decided to extend the monitoring season to detect some late migrants. In october we observed hundreds of Kestrels/Lesser Kestrel as well as interesting numbers of Short-toed Snake Eagles, Booted Eagles, some Pallid Harriers and Red Kites.
Our next appointment will be in spring 2018. Let's meet then!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Stop hunting at migratory bottlenecks

Two days ago it was shot a juvenile Black Stork close to our watchpoint at the Strait of Messina. We already don't know if it will be possible to release the stork in the field. This beautiful bird was shot in area  outside  Natura 2000 site and outside the border of the National Park. Therefore it was shot in an area where hunting is allowed. We believe the problem is that one and the solution should be to forbid hunting activity in the whole bottle-neck area of the Strait of Messina. Here below a picture of the unlucky stork. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

News from the Strait of Messina

In the last two days about 2000 birds were counted at our watchsite at the Strait of Messina. Most of them were Honey Buzzards but we observed also about 100  Marsh Harriers, about 50 Black Kites, 4 Ospreys, 12 Black Storks one Roller and many more. Take a look to our count here.