Every autumn about 500 million migratory birds pass over southern Sweden. Some species move during the day and some at night while others can move both day and night. Migrating birds have to complete their journey as quickly, safely and efficiently as possible. Therefore, they avoid flying over unknown or dangerous areas. For many birds the Baltic Sea is the first serious obstacle on the way south so they follow the coast as long as possible. Finally they reach the southwest tip of Sweden – Falsterbo. Hence arises the large concentration of migratory birds at Falsterbo in the autumn. Most spectacular are the raptor migrations. Nowhere else in Sweden are more birds seen than on a good day at Falsterbo.
On 11th October 2010 10,071 migrating Common Buzzards were counted at Falsterbo. Photo: David Erterius.
Between one and three million birds of about 150 species are counted each autumn. The raptors number around 40,000 per autumn. Among these are Eurasian Sparrowhawks, Common Buzzards and Honey Buzzards the most common. In total, more than 350 species have been observed at Falsterbo. Every autumn new intriguing rarities turn up – be it eagles from Southeastern Europe or small warblers from the Siberian tundra.
Dunlins and Little Stints on autumn migration. Photo: P-G Bentz.