The Autumn Bird Migration

The autumn migration: hundreds of white storks dropped by for a visit

The autumn migration has begun: Hundreds of white storks were observed today at the Ein Yahav Ein Yahav Craters Reserve. The Israel Nature and Parks Authority stated, "Over half a million storks are expected to pass through the country's skies." Alongside them, hundreds of thousands of waterfowl and songbirds migrate every night

(Photo: Anat Harmoni/Flash 90)

Although the weather is still warm, cold winds are blowing at night, and autumn knocks on its doors. Following the blossoming of the squill and the appearance of the flamingos in our nature reserves, it is now the turn of the white stork's tour. Today (Monday) in the morning, hundreds of individuals of this unique bird were documented at the Ein Yehav Nature Reserve.

"We are at the peak of the white stork migration season that began in July from Europe and Asia and continues until October. This marks the peak of the white stork migration," explains Dotan Rotem, an ecologist from the Israel Nature and Parks Authority.

According to him, "Over half a million white storks are expected to pass through the skies of the country. Most of them will enter Israel between the Jordan Valley and the Dead Sea, and from there they will roam along the cliffs of HaaTakim and the plateau Judean Desert, Negev, and Sinai."

Hundreds of thousands of birds in Israel

Ecologist Dotan Rotem provides a glimpse into the phenomenon of migration and discusses additional species that the Israeli nature will embrace in the coming weeks. "During the autumn season, the migration season occurs from Europe-Asia to Africa and to Israel, where they spend the winter of the northern hemisphere. Every night, hundreds of thousands of birds, mainly songbirds and waterfowl such as ducks, charadriiformes, and herons, flood the skies of Israel. During daylight hours, migratory birds, which depend on warm air currents for soaring, roam."

And these are the main birds that the public sees and is impressed by. Alongside them, various raptors migrate. In contrast, pelicans and raptors, like honey buzzard and black kites, enter the country in the Upper Galilee (north of the Hula Valley and the Galilee Ridge) and migrate southwest towards Afula – Ramot Menashe, and from there along western Samaria through Rosh HaAyin-Ben Shemen, heading south towards northern Sinai.

In conclusion, he said, "In any place where there are water sources, especially fish ponds and, of course, in the Hula Valley/Agmon Reserve, there are a great many waterfowl during this season. Along the seashores, there are many gulls, and above the sea, at times you can also observe flocks of herons. On the beach, charadriiformess scuttle about. In many areas, almost in every open area, numerous songbirds appear, including various species of shrikes, wheatears, chats, and the dazzlingly colorful - yellow wagtails."


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