The first night herons are already in the Sahel

24 Sep 2020 | News

September is the time when night herons travel. Due to the fact that the night herons from the Upper Vistula Valley have been equipped by ornithologists with GPS / GSM transmitters, we can follow the route of their migration.

Several birds are still in southern Poland, but most of them are already migrating. On September 6, the first specimen arrived at the Sahel wintering grounds. This area is one of the most important wintering places for European birds, it is located on the southern outskirts of the Sahara. This first bird in Sahel is now staying in the western part of Niger near the border with Burkina Faso in the Niger River Valley. This bird covered almost 5,000 km in six days without stopping for longer, several days’ rests.

Most of the birds fly a bit slower, stopping in several places on the way for a few or several days’ rest, gathering energy for further travel. Some birds are now in the North Africa where they may spend the winter.

Birds migrate mainly at night and rest during the day. The main route of our night herons’ migration runs through the Balkans and the Apennine Peninsula. Two birds have broken out of this pattern and are wandering through Western Europe. One of the them is located in central France and the other in the southern part of the country, in the mouth of the Rhone, in the Camarque National Park.

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