The Deaf Birder’s Bird and the elusive Lynx

At dawn today it was snowing in the garden, and by the time I was ready to go for my morning walk nearly an inch of snow lay on the ground. I love walking in fresh snow as it gives me a chance to find out what unseen creatures are around. When I reached the edge of a nearby plantation, I could see that a young roe deer had crossed my path only minutes before, leaving a trail of black slots. Further up the track were the distinctive prints of a brown hare, louping up the road. On my return there was nothing new except dozens of tracks, etched in the snow, of a bird more usually obvious at dusk than at dawn. Last week, my wife and I walked this our favourite route just before sunset as dozens and dozens of pheasants were settling in the trees for their night roosts. The winter sun now sets in the southwest and the birds in the leafless birches were outlined against a golden sunset. As we walked, some burst from the branches, others crowed loudly.

Nowadays, the ‘Deaf Birder’s Bird’, as Moira calls them – knowing that I now find it hard to hear the high-pitched calls of small passerines – is the commonest bird in our immediate vicinity, as thousands are reared for hunting. I could try closing my eyes and imagining that the sounds were in fact coming from great trees on beautiful mountain slopes in their native lands of Asia. This morning, though, I reflected on which prints, instead of theirs, I would really like to have seen crossing my morning path. That memory jog always takes me back to the mountain forests of Transylvania, where several times I have followed the tracks of brown bear and wolf, as well as the animal which, in that moment, I realised I would most like to see making tracks in the Scottish snows again: the Lynx. Many of us have talked for years about its reintroduction, ecologically simple but politically, it seems, impossible. We have to be fairer to nature, though: if we can host millions of pheasants, surely we can restore the long-lost lynx? So let’s get on with it and again allow us all the thrill of seeing those exciting paw prints padding along snowy forest tracks in Scotland.

Thanks to Stephane Regazzoni – trail camera shot French Jura

Wintering in Casamance

In our last update we reported that Jules set-off across the vast wilds of the Sahara on 19th October. We now know that he completed his desert crossing just over three days later and is now settled in the Casamanace region of southern Senegal, 30 km WSW of where Blue DF is wintering.

Jules made a superb start to his desert crossing on 19th October, flying 519 km across the spectacular land forms of the north-west Sahara. He crossed the disputed border between Morocco and Western Sahara at 11:00 GMT and then maintained speeds of almost 50 kph during the afternoon, passing into Mauritanian airspace at 15:09 before settling to roost at sunset in remote north-west Mauritania. The Google Earth imagery suggests that Jules would have had to roost on the ground, and it seems that he was disturbed during the night because at 23:00 he took off again and flew 25 km south-west.

He moved a further 22 km south-west before dawn next morning and then resumed his migration at around 08:30. Conditions must have again been in his favour because he flew a further 423 km south-west during the course of the day before roosting close to the southern border between Western Sahara and Mauritania. Next morning he was away before dawn and flew 67 km south-west before pausing again at 08:06. After resting for an hour he resumed his journey and maintained a constant SSW heading for the rest of the day, covering a further 418 km across the Akchar and then Trarza desert regions. By the time he settled to roost at 19:00 he was within 100 km of the Senegal border having flown 485 km from his overnight roost and a total of 1474 km in just three days; a superb Saharan crossing.

Jules flew just under 1500 km across the Sahara in three days

On the morning of 22 October Jules set-off at first light and shortly after 09:30 he reached the Senegal River; his first sight of water for at least four days. Many European ospreys winter in this northern part of Senegal but Jules showed no signs of letting up. After crossing the river just to the west of Richard Toll he headed south along the eastern shore of Lac de Guiers and then onward across the arid north of Senegal. At 16:34 he reached the Atlantic coast at the northern edge of the vast Sine-Saloum delta. He continued flying for a further two hours before settling to roost in one of a myriad of mangrove-lined creeks in the delta, 7 km north-west of the village of Missirah; a place both Roy and I have visited several times.  Having flown 461 km from southern Mauritania, it had been another excellent day’s migration.

Sunset at the Sine-Saloum delta (photo by John Wright)

Jules obviously sensed that he was now close to his winter home because he set-off before first light next morning and at 07:22 was 25 km further south on the north bank of the River Gambia. He was then perched for an hour, perhaps eating a fish, before continuing south across the river and then back in to Senegal at around 11:00. Once in Senegalese airspace he turned to the south-west and flew directly over Blue DF’s wintering site at 13:00 – they would almost certainly have seen each other – before heading another 30 km west and eventually settling in a mangrove- lined creek on the north side of the Casamance River, having flown 153 km during the  course of the day. He was now very close to where another of our satellite-tagged ospreys, Blue XD used to winter.

Jules (pink line) flew directly over the area where Blue DF (blue) is wintering – they would almost certainly have seen each other

After arriving in Casamance on the afternoon of 23rd October Jules has roosted in the same location every night, but, interestingly, has made almost daily flights to the coast near Boko in an area of 75 km2 – far larger than the usual wintering range of most adult ospreys. It will be fascinating to see if he continues in the same vein over the coming weeks. Whatever the case, we can now be certain that he has reached his winter home.

Since arriving in Casamance on 23 October, Jules has made daily flights to the coast

Jules and Blue DF are wintering just 30 km apart in Casamance

Now that Jules has arrived at his wintering site we know that he flew a total of 5717 km during 17 travelling days. His overall migration, however, took 40 days to complete because he spent 23 days on stop-overs in France and Morocco. This migration strategy contrasts greatly with that of Blue DF who migrated  5494 km in 19 days without stop-overs. A summary of Jules’ flight from Scotland to Senegal is shown below. You can also check out his route on our interactive map.

Migration tracks for Jules (pink) and Blue DF (blue)

Date Distance (km) Location
14 Sept 420 Scotland-England
15 Sept 584 England-France
16 Sept 122 France
17 Sept-2 October Stop-over, Gulf of Morbihan, France
3 Oct 515 France-Spain (Bay of Biscay)
4 Oct 181 Spain
5 Oct 462 Spain
6 Oct 168 Spain
7 Oct 75 Spain
8 Oct 524 Spain-Morocco (Atlantic)
9 Oct 127 Morocco
10-16 Oct Stop-over, Morocco
17 Oct 128 Morocco
18 Oct 323 Morocco
19 Oct 544 Sahara
20 Oct 445 Sahara
21 Oct 485 Sahara
22 Oct 461 Senegal
23 Oct 153 Senegal-Gambia-Senegal


Around the Atlas

In the last update we speculated as to how long Jules would remain in Morocco, or even if he would stay there for the winter, as a small number of European osprey do each year. However we now know that after spending just over a week on the coast between Casablanca and Safi he resumed his journey south at around 12:30 local time on Tuesday afternoon.

After arriving on the Moroccan coast on 9th October Jules initially favoured an area near Ouled Salam, spending his days along the shoreline, and then roosting 8 km inland. Then on 13th October he moved 20 km south to Oualidia where his daily routine was much the same; favouring an area of saltpans to the north-east of the town during the day before roosting a few kilometres inland.

Jules spent a week on the Moroccan coast between Casablanca and Safi

He finally resumed his migration at lunchtime on 17th October, flying 104 km south-west before turning more to the south at 16:21 and continuing onward for another two hours. He settled to roost 40 km north-west of Marrakesh at around 18:15 local time having flown 128 km during the course of the afternoon.

At 08:15 next morning Jules was perched beside a river 5.5 km south of his overnight roost and an hour later he had moved 2 km south-west, and was probably eating a fish. He resumed his migration at around 10:00 passing to the west of Marrakesh and onward towards the Atlas. These imposing mountains are a barrier to migrating birds and as Jules approached he changed his heading to west-south-west to avoid the high peaks. Over the course of the next five hours he flew south-west and then south around the western end of the mountains, flying at a maximum altitude of 2032 m. The video below shows his flight around the mountains.

By 17:00 Jules had flown 184 km and was south of the mountains but he showed no signs of letting up. He continued on a south-east and then south-west course for another five hours, covering another 139 km, before finally setting to roost two hours after sunset at 20:51. He had now reached the northern edge of the Sahara and he roosted at the top of a remote cliff face after a day’s flight of 323 km.

Jules roosted on the top of a cliff face on Wednesday night

Yesterday morning Jules left his roost site more than two hours before dawn and by 07:24 local time he had already flown 65 km. We haven’t received any data since because, as he heads across the Sahara, Jules will be out of the range of mobile phone masts. It will be fascinating to see where he is when the next batch of data comes through. You can check out his flight so far on our interactive map.

Jules’ flight through Morrocco 9-19 October

Into Africa

The previous data had shown that Jules crossed the Bay of Biscay from Brittany to northern Spain on 3rd October. Next morning he resumed his migration shortly before midday and set off south through the mountains of Asturias passing peaks of over 2000 m. By 15:59 he was south of the highest mountains, and he continued flying until almost 20:00 when he settled to roost among scattered trees near Une de Quintana after a day’s flight of 181 km.

Jules flew through the mountains of Asturias in northern Spain on 4th October

At 09:20 he was perched beside a large reservoir 9 km to the south and an hour later had moved 2.5 km south and was probably eating a fish. By 11:18 he was migrating again and he made excellent progress south, passing into Extremadura soon after 16:00 at an altitude of more than 2000 m. By 21:00 he had flown 325 km from his overnight roost and was perched at the northern end of the appropriately named Embalse de la Pena del Aguila. However with a full moon and favourable winds Jules took the opportunity to press on, flying a further 137 km by moonlight before finally settling to roost for the night on a hillside in north-west Andalusia after a day’s flight of 462 km.

At 08:10 next morning he had flown another 9 km south but he didn’t resume migration proper until just before 11:00. He maintained a south-westerly heading and three hours later he was perched beside the Rio Tinto at Heulva, close to one of sites where Scottish ospreys were released as part of the successful osprey translocation project in southern Spain. He continued south-east an hour later, passing over the world famous Coto Donana, before roosting for the night on the banks of the Guadalquivir River after a day’s flight of 168 km.

Jules spent the night of 6th October beside the River Guadalquivir

Next morning Jules followed the river to the coast before turning south and heading towards Cadiz. The fish rich waters of the harbour and surrounding area support an increasing number of wintering ospreys and Jules is likely to have encountered some of them while fishing just to the north of Puerto Real during the afternoon. He spent the night in a forested area 5 km east of Puerto Real having flown 75 km during the course of the day.

When migrating through Spain most migrating raptors head for the short crossing to Morocco across the Strait of Gibraltar, but ospreys are well capable of much longer ocean crossings and after two relatively easy days Jules set off from Cadiz before 06:00 and headed out across the Atlantic. By 07:30 he had already flown 113 km and was flying south-west across the sea at an altitude of 110 m. This initial bearing would have caused him to miss the Morocco coast, but over the course of the next eight hours he flew in a wide arc across the Atlantic at relatively low altitude (all positions less than 90 m) before making landfall at Casablanca at 14:17 local time having flown 398 km across the sea. After crossing Casablanca Jules turned to the south-west and flew another 113 km before eventually settling to roost for the night at 19:09 among olive trees having flown 524 km from Cadiz at an average speed of around 37 km/hour. A superb day of migration.

Jules flew 398 km across the Atlantic between Cadiz and Casablanca

Rather than continuing south on 9th October, Jules headed almost due east. At 13:02 he had reached the coast at Oualidia and then, during the course of the afternoon, completed a loop of some 57 km just to the south. He eventually settled to roost in an area of scattered trees near the village of Abde Laaziz Ben Yeffou having flown 127 km during the course of the day. However his afternoon wanderings means that, in fact, he was just 75 km south-west of his position the previous evening.

Yesterday morning Jules left his roost site at 10:00 and this time headed due north. At 11:10 he had flown 33 km and was at the coast near Ouled Salem. An hour later he was perched on the beach 6 km north-east and he remained there for the rest of the afternoon. With an hour between each GPS fix, there is every chance that Jules caught a fish in the sea at some point during the afternoon and then returned to the same spot on the beach to eat it. Eventually he flew 8 km inland to roost and he was still there at 08:07 this morning.

Jules has spent the last two days on the Morocco coast to the south of Casablanca

It will be very interesting to see how long Jules remains on the Morocco coast. His behaviour over the past two days is typical of an osprey during a stop-over, but there is a slim chance that he could winter here. Most European ospreys either winter in sub-Saharan Africa or in southern Europe but a small number winter in Morocco. The chances are, however, that he’ll continue south across the Sahara in the next few days. Don’t forget that you can check out his latest flight on our interactive map.

Jules’ flight through Spain and Morocco, 4-10 October

Settled in Casamance

As we expected last week, Blue DF is now settled in Casamance in southern Senegal and is spending most of his time in a o.5 km² section of creeks 5 km south-west of Baila. The only notable exceptions were on  Saturday when he flew 16 km north and then on Sunday when he followed the river 25 km north-west. There must be other ospreys arriving all the time, and it is very likely that Blue DF was flying around with other birds each day.

Blue DF’s favoured spot is 5 km south-west of the town of Baila

Blue DF made longer flights on Sat 30th Sept and Sun 1st Oct

Don’t forget that you can check out Blue DF’s latest movements on our interactive map.

Biscay crossing

Having spent 17 days stopping-over a few kilometres to the north-west of the Gulf of Morbihan in Brittany, Jules (Blue JV3) resumed his migration yesterday and flew direct across the Bay of Biscay to Asturias in northern Spain.

Jules spent most of his 17 day stop-over in Brittany to the north-west of Gulf of Morbihan, favouring two locations near Auray (red circles indicate areas with 50% of GPS fixes)

During his stop-over in Brittany Jules spent long periods perched in marshes beside the River Auray

Over the past week Jules had continued to frequent his favoured spots along the River Auray, but when yesterday dawned bright and sunny he took the opportunity to resume his migration. A gap in the satellite data means that we do not know the exact time of his departure from Gulf of Morbihan but it must have been fairly early because at 13:23 local time he had flown 149 km and was flying south-west across the Bay of Biscay at an altitude of 250 m. At 14:35 he was crossing the Saint-Nazarie Canyon where the sea bed drops from a depth of around 100 m to over 4000 m. Interestingly at this point he had climbed to an altitude of 1051 m, suggesting that he was able to exploit some kind of lift; perhaps weak sea thermals which sometimes develop over the Bay of Biscay in autumn. You can read more about this in chapters 2 and 3 of my PhD thesis here. Unfortunately the GPS fixes are not of sufficient temporal resolution to determine whether Jules was soaring over the sea, but the change in altitude certainly suggests it.

Jules climbed to an altitude of 1051 m during his Bay of Biscay crossing, suggesting he may have been able to exploit some form of lift over the sea

Jules was flying with a light east-north-east tailwind and during the course of the afternoon this turned almost due east. Such winds have the potential to cause migrating ospreys to miss the north coast of Spain, but Jules compensated by changing his heading at 15:28 and flying almost due south for 67 km. At 17:12 he turned back to the south-west and continued on a constant bearing to the Spanish coast, flying at altitudes of between 194 m and 76 m. He finally reached land at Aviles in Asturias in northern Spain an hour after sunset at 22:07 local time having flown 515 km from Gulf of Morbihan, 500 km of which was over the Bay of Biscay. Having arrived in the dark he settled to roost in trees on the outskirts of Aviles.

Jules flew 500 km across the Bay of Biscay from Brittany to Asturias

This morning Jules was still at his overnight roost at 08:13 local time but an hour later was perched near Embalse de la Grande. He remained there until at least 11:30, suggesting he may well have caught a fish. By 13:04, the final GPS fix in this batch, he had resumed his migration and was 31 km south of Aviles heading towards the Cantabrian mountains.

You can check out Jules’ latest locations on our interactive map.

Arrived in Casamance

In our previous update Blue DF was flying south through northern Senegal, and we wondered how far south he would continue. Would he winter somewhere in Senegal or The Gambia, or continue further south into Guinea-Bissau? As an experienced adult osprey – Blue DF is seven years old – he will have an established wintering site in West Africa, and the latest batch of data suggests that his is likely a creek on the north side of the Casamance River in southern Senegal. Having arrived there on Tuesday afternoon he has made only local movements since, suggesting that he has reached his winter home.

The previous data had shown that Blue DF roosted near Louga in northern Senegal on Sunday evening (24th September). He resumed his migration at approximately 10:15 next morning and made fairly leisurely progress south, passing over Touba at 14:50 at an altitude of 404 m having flown 86 km. He continued on a southerly heading until 17:48 when he stopped just to the north of the town of Guinguineo after a day’s flight of 157 km.

Blue DF was perchded beside the Saloum River near Kaolack for two hours on Tuesday morning, presumably eating a fish

Next morning he almost certainly fished in the Saloum River a few kilometres east of Kaolack because he was perched beside the river for almost two hours from 08:13, presumably eating his catch. He resumed his migration at around 10:00 and by 12:44 he had flown 77 km and was crossing the River Gambia at Tendaba at an altitude of 478 m.

Blue DF crossed the River Gambia at Tendaba, a famous birding destination

Having crossed the river he made a distinct turn to the south-west. He crossed back in Senegal at 14:15 and at 15:32 he was flying over a series of creeks on the north side of the Casamance River. By 18:24 he had continued south and was over the north shore of the main river, but he then double-backed and settled to roost for the night in a forested area beside a creek 15 km north of the town of Ziguinchor after a day’s flight of  261 km.

Blue DF roosted in a wooded area on the north side of the Casamance River on Tuesday evening

At dawn on Wednesday morning Blue DF flew 15 km north, back to the creek near the village of Diegoun. Later in the morning he set-off on a 61 km, 5 hour circuit of the north side of the creek, perhaps checking out which other ospreys had returned. By 15:51 he was back in the creek near Diegoum before morving 8 km north to roost in another part of the creek near Baila.

Yesterday Blue DF made shorter local movements around the creek and at 18:44 was perched on the mud 2.5 km from Baila, where he settled to roost for the night. It certainly seems likely that he has reached his winter home.

Blue DF has made two long exploratory flights since arriving in Casamance on Tuesday afternoon

Blue DF made only short local movments yesterday and has roosted in the creek near the village of Baila for the past two nights (roost sites 5 km apart)

Assuming that Blue DF has now arrived at his wintering site his migration from Scotland took a total of 19 days, during which period he covered a total of 5494 km. He covered an average of 268 km per day through Europe, and 313 km per day in Africa. You can check out Blue DF’s complete migration on our interactive map. 

The final leg of Blue DF’s migration to the Casamance region of southern Senegal

Blue DF flew 5494 km from Scotland to Senegal in 19 days

Blue JV3 still in Brittany

While Blue DF flies south through Senegal, Blue JV3 is continuing to stop over near the Gulf of Morbihan on the Brittany coast. Blue JV3 refers to the bird’s colour ring on his left leg, but those of you who follow our Facebook page  will know that we asked for suggestions for a name for Blue JV3 to use in our updates. We very much enjoyed reading all your suggestions but in the end by far the most popular name was ‘Jules’ after the French novelist Jules Verne (i.e. JV), most famous for his adventure novels including Around the World in Eighty Days.  It seems fitting therefore that Blue JV3, or Jules as we will now refer to him, is stopping-over in France. Thanks to Janine Pannett for the great suggestion.

Having arrived on Saturday 16th September Jules has spent most of his time in a 40 km² area stretching from the west end of Gulf of Morbihan north to a short section of the River Auray, north of the town of Auray, and then across to his favoured roosting area in the forested banks of the River Bono north of Plougoumelen.

Blue JV3 has tended to favour two areas to the north-west of Gulf of Morbihan since arriving on 16th September. The red shaded areas include 50% of GPS fixes since he arrived

Blue JV3 often roosts beside the River Bono

In recent days Blue JV3 has spent most afternoons beside the River Auray

It will be interesting to see how long Jules remains at Gulf of Morbihan. Another of our satellite tagged birds, Nimrod, stopped-over on Ile d’Oleron, a small island situated just to the south of La Rochelle in autumn 2008, 2009 and 2010. In each year he favoured the same forested area in the south of the island and fished along the coast once or twice a day. In 2010 he spent a total of nineteen days on the island, thereby constituting almost half of the total days (40) it took to migrate to its wintering site in Guinea-Bissau. Don’t forget that you can check out all of Jules’ recent movements on our interactive map.

Blue DF reaches Senegal

He’s made it. Last night Blue DF roosted 40 km to the east of Louga in northern Sengeal having completed his crossing of the Sahara in four days.

On Thursday night last week (21 September) Blue DF has roosted close to the Morocco-Western Sahara border in the Sahara and he left his roost at 09:20. Conditions were obviously perfect for migration because four hours after leaving his overnight roost he had already flown 197 km and crossed into Mauritania. He continued to make excellent progress during the afternoon, flying at altitudes of up to 1174 m, and by the time he stopped to roost at 18:49 he had flown 503 km on a constant south-westerly heading.

Blue DF’s was flying through Western Sahara on 21st September

Next morning Blue DF left his overnight roost in the desert fairly early, at 08:25. Like the previous day, conditions must have been in his favour because he made good progress, passing to the east of the vast Fderik iron ore mine at 11:02 and then onwards through the Akchar desert at altitudes of up to 1170 m. He continued flying until 19:20 when he finally settled to roost among sparse vegetation having flown a further 432 km through the desert.

Blue DF passed the vast Fderik iron ore mine on Friday morning (22nd Sept)

On Saturday morning Blue DF left his overnight roost just before 9:30, again on on a south-westerly heading. He made slower progress than the previous two days and by 14:11, when he was migrating at an altitude of 1500 m, he had flown 124 km. He eventually settled to roost for the evening at 18:30 having flown 252 km during the course of the day and was now just 80 km east of the Mauritanian capital, Nouakchott and nearing the end of his desert crossing.

Blue DF’s roost in the Sahara on Saturday evening

Blue DF must have sensed that he was close to completing his crossing of the Sahara because he left his roost early at 08:16. He appeared to be heading towards the coast, but at 10:22 he turned to a southerly heading for the next four hours, crossing the Senegal River at Richard Toll at 14:15 – his first sight of water for at least four days – before continuing south along the east shore of Lac de Guiers during the course of the afternoon. By 16:29 he was at the southern end of the vast lake, but it seems that he did not stop to catch a fish, and instead continued another 34 km south-west before settling to roost 20 km east of Louga in the arid north of Senegal.

Blue DF crossed the Senegal River on Sunday and then continued south along the east shore of Lac de Guiers

With the desert crossing behind him it will be fascinating to see where Blue DF migrates to. As an adult osprey he will have a regular wintering site in West Africa, but the question is where? On his current course he may be heading for the Sine-Saloum delta in Senegal, or he could head further south to The Gambia, the Casamance region of southern Senegal, or perhaps, Guinea-Bissau. Watch this space! In the meantime, you can check out his migration so far on our interactive map.

Blue DF flew 1500 km across the Sahara in four days between 21 and 24 September

Into the Sahara

After arriving in Africa on Sunday evening Blue DF has flown the length of Morocco over the past three days and at 11:09 this morning was heading south through Western Sahara.

The previous data had shown that at 11:13 on Monday morning Blue DF was at Barrage Oued El Makhazine in northern Morocco. It is possible he caught a fish because he was then perched 8 km to the south for almost an hour. Once he resumed his migration he made good progress on a  constant south-westerly heading at altitudes of up to 1350 m. At 19:41 local time he arrived at another reservoir, Barrage Al Massira having flown 307 km since 12:45. He arrived at sunset and so it is unlikely that he caught a fish; instead he settled to roost 9 km south-west of the reservoir after a day’s flight of 380 km.

Blue DF roosted to the south of Barrage Al Massira on Monday evening, with the Atlas Mountains in the distance

By dawn next morning Blue DF had moved location several times during the night and was 56 km further south-west. He continued to make stuttering progress during the morning and at 12:10 and 12:34 he was perched beside another reservoir, 60 km north-west of Marrakesh, perhaps eating a fish. By 12:59 he was migrating again and he flew strongly south-west during the course of the afternoon, pausing briefly at Barrage Prince Moulay Abdellah and then continuing onward towards Agadir. At 17:01 reached the coast and headed south-south-east for 60 km over the sea at altitudes of between 150 and 170 m, perhaps to avoid the city. He reached land again at 18:13 and eventually settled to roost half an hour later, 58 km south of Agadir after a day’s flight of 328 km.

Blue DF flew 60 km over the sea rather than keeping to the coast over Agadir

After a slow start on Wednesday morning, when he may have caught a fish in the Massa River, Blue DF set-off again soon after 11:00, passing just to the west of Tiznit at 12:00 and then out into the Sahara, flying over some spectacular landforms in the process. By 17:11 he had flown 197 km and was migrating at an altitude of 1179 m and approaching the spectacular ridge that runs for 350 south-west across the northern edge of the desert. Many ospreys follow this ridge on their migration by Blue DF crossed it and then maintained the same southerly heading for a further 67 km before settling to roost on the desert floor on the Morocco-Western Sahara border just before 19:00. He had covered a total of 264 km during his day’s flight.

Blue DF flew over some incredible landforms as he headed into the Sahara

By 09:32 (local time) this morning Blue DF had moved 3 km to the south-west and he resume his migration soon after 10:00. At 11:09 the last GPS fix in this batch of data he was 29 km further on migrating south-south-west at an altitude of 857 m, with the vast expanse of the Sahara ahead.

Blue DF crossed Morocco in three days and is now flying south through Western

Don’t forget that you can also check out Blue DF’s migration on our interactive map.