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Aves, 39/1 | 2002 | 31-48

  Centrale Ornithologique Aves -Observations : september to december 2000
Centrale Ornithologique Aves

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Article summary

The year ends with a windy and particularly rainy fall, although this is compensated by an almost complete absence of frost. Temperatures become negative only after the 22nd of December , while the normal time for this is November 8th. High winds (> 100 km/h) occur on October 30th (storm) and December 10th (thunderstorm). While summer migrants, notably sylvidae and waders, disappear progressively in September, fall migration develops itself, in an exceptional fashion for some species, and due to the mild weather, lasts for an unusually long period. Most remarkably, the migration of Cranes was even more important and lasted longer than in 1994. The three main waves amounted to at least 24,000 birds and the last one occurred only end of December. During the first wave, many groups of cranes were blocked by adverse weather over France and had to stop in Luxembourg. Another unusual event, although at a local scale, was the arrival and stay from end November to early December of several hundred thousands Bramblings in the forested areas of southern Luxembourg. Less numerous and more widespread, Siskins were also in high numbers from November in alder and larch woods in all regions, while Crossbills were only found in moderate numbers. Greylag Geese movements were found to be important in western Hainaut. Migration of Lapwings was intense in November (outstanding at Honnay) and they stayed in large numbers in December, as did Snipes. Equally remarkable were high numbers of Ring Ouzels. The mild weather conditions induced in December quite many attempts of wintering by Common and Green Sandpipers, Chiffchaffs and Black Redstarts. Winter visitors were rather scarce as Pochards, Sawbills and Goldeneyes were in low numbers until the first frosts of the end of December. Species diversity during this fall was unusually high as many rare or uncommon species were reported. Among the most remarkable were Pigmy Cormorant (first for Wallonia), Squacco Heron, Cattle Egrets, Spoonbills, American Widgeon, Ring-necked Duck, Black-winged Kite, Short-toed Eagle, Red-necked Phalarope, Ring-billed Gull, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Red-throated Pipit, Barred Warbler, Yellow browed and Pallas's Warbler, Little Bunting... (PLe)

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