Osservazioni sulle modalità della migrazione primaveriledei rapaci a Capo d’Otranto

Premuda G., Mellone U., Cocchi L.

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Spring raptor migration routes at Capo d’Otranto (Apulia, Southern Italy). Capo d’Otranto is one of the most important sites for monitoring spring raptor migration in Italy. Despite this, migratory routes over the Otranto Channel are not completely clarified. During a preliminary survey in April 2002, we detected a new watch-point for monitoring raptors migrating both northwards, up the Italian peninsula, and north-eastwards, across the Adriatic Sea towards the Balkans. This point also allowed us to check for possible migration routes over the Otranto Channel, from the Balkans towards Italy. Between 20 and 29 April 2003, 441 raptors were recorded: 17.2% of them (76 individuals) crossed the Adriatic Sea, while the others (82.8%) migrated up the coast. We did not observe any bird coming from the Balkans. The observations reported do not confirm hypotheses of migrating raptors coming from Balkans and of migration pathways from Albania and Greece. The new watch-point allows for closer views of migrating raptors and easier species identification, particularly the lesser kestrel Falco naumanni. As such, it has emerged as a very important site for monitoring the spring migration of this species.