As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Sunday, 3 February 2013

500 Million Migrating Birds Can’t Be Wrong

Bird watchers in Israel can never cry fowl 

By Adam Chandler|January 28, 2013 11:17 AM
In case you didn’t know (or perhaps you have such acute ornithophobia that you’ve blocked it out), Israel–at the crossroads of three continents–boasts one of the largest bird migrations IN THE WORLD. 

Each year, one billion birds soar above this tiny stretch of ancient land, where Africa, Europe and Asia meet. Second only to Panama, this geographical intersection is one of the world’s largest bird migration paths, with more than 540 species traversing the airspace each autumn and spring.

Dr Yossi Lesham, director of Israel’s International Centre for the Study of Bird Migration, explained that per square mile, the country has one of the highest concentrations of bird traffic in the world. “In one morning, we can see maybe 10,000 eagles. Just in one morning,” he said.

In other words, bird migration in the Levant would make Alfred Hitchcock blush.

For a spectacular read on birding, I’d highly recommend our own Jonathan Rosen’s book The Life of Skies, which looks at the meaning of observing migrations, which are, in essence, one of the most poignant markers of time.

Where birds know no borders [BBC]

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