OspreyNormally this is quite a dry month with high pressure maintaining plenty of sunshine, but this is sometimes accompanied by thick mists during the mornings. Once the sun burns off the mist there is exciting birding on offer. The air is still cool - around 10° but maybe as high as 20° - and the sunshine in the clean air makes it feel warm,even on cool days! Spring is beginning to show itself, with Corn Bunting, Hoopoe and various finches beginning to sing.
Most of the wintering birds are still around in good numbers. In the olive groves, large number of Blackcap are active, with some singing. Many will move north shortly. Cirl Bunting, Rock Bunting show well and Hawfinch may be found in small numbers.
Spring is getting under way. This month sees the early trickle of hirundines building into a stream. The first Black Kite and Lesser Kestrel arrive around mid-month, along with the first Black Stork and Egyptian Vultures. Bonelli's Eagle and Eagle Owl may well be incubating already. Osprey may be seen on passage.
The cranes are showing signs of restlessness but no significant decrease in numbers is apparent until mid-month when groups start to head north. By the end of the month some will be left, but many will have departed. The density of waterfowl on the reservoirs starts to decrease.
White Stork are doing nest maintenance, and are heard making their loud bill-clapping. There are thousands of waders in the rice fields on their migration northwards and hundreds of Water Pipit. Bluethroat overwinter in the dense vegetation around the irrigated plains. The populations of Purple Gallinule and Glossy Ibis have been increasing in recent years, but are still localised.