A Huge Kettle Of Migrating Griffon Vultures

I was sat enjoying my 2nd cup of coffee this morning when a call from the garden came, it was Emma shouting “VULTURES!!!!…… LOTS OF THEM!!!!”. I stepped outside to a cloud filled sky of a large kettle (the collective name of Vultures in flight) of Griffon Vultures.

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These large birds with a wingspan of up to 2.8 metres kept coming, lots of them, soaring high in the sky heading South-West. I estimated there to be at least 200 of them!

Griffon Vultures are one of the last to migrate hence why they can be seen this late into October and many of them will be juveniles. Unfortunatly, Griffon Vulture numbers are down in Portugal due to the government strictly following the EU directive of removing/burying dead cattle to eliminate the risk of Mad Cow disease. Spain does not follow this directive hence the larger numbers found across the border.

I scrambled to the studio to grab a camera….


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A Pair Of Bonelli’s Eagles Around The Quinta

Just wow, sometimes we are gifted a show by Bonelli’s Eagles soaring past, however, a pair have spotted a rather tasty flock of Pigeons that a neighbouring Quinta keeps. The pair of Bonelli’s have been here all day doing their best to grab an easy meal. I’ve not actually seen one catch a Pigeon but I have seen them diving and the Pigeon numbers have also decreased.

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Red Kites On The Alentejo Plains

When you think of raptors on the Alentejo plains during autumn it’s easy to think of the ones that leave for the winter. However, Red Kites arrive in large numbers to spend the winter here.

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Yesterday I was near Entradas for a family and friends picnic at an amazing picnic site, I smuggled a camera along…….

Here are a few of the many Red Kites that appeared throughout the day.


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The Acorn Harvesters Are Busy

There are lots and I mean lots of Jays locally collecting food from the rich source of Acorns available.

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Although you can only see one Acorn, this Jay probably has a few inside its gullet too. Ever wondered why an Oak tree starts to grown in a strange place where there are no Oak trees close by? It probably came from a “cached” Acorn that was forgotten about.


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As If By Magic…..

Yesterday I posted to keep an eye out for Flycatchers During Migration here in Portugal, this morning a Pied Flycatcher came to the garden. It’s difficult to tell if it’s a male or female because the male moults his black and white breeding colours before he leaves for Africa.

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Another Migratory Passerine…..Garden Warbler

As an addition to my last post regarding Flycatchers During Migration, another small bird to keep a watch for during the autumn migration in Portugal is the Garden Warbler. It’s not a resident and can only be spotted as it passes through during migration. The Garden Warbler has no real features to identify it, therefore, if you spot an “LBJ” (Little Brown Job, the term given to many small birds difficult to ID) during the migration period then it maybe a Garden Warbler. They are quite shy and like to keep in the cover of branches so spotting them is quite difficult.

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All of the content displayed on this website (unless otherwise stated) remains the copyright of Craig Rogers. It is illegal to download, copy (including copy by reference) or distribute any content without prior permission and/or licensing. Please read my Copyright Statement.