More than 4000 birders voted for their favourite migratory bird in the Bird Migration Competition that was organized by It was an exciting battle between the common swift and the common crane, but in the end the crane was the clear winner with 1302 votes. Below you can see the Top 10 of the most popular European migratory birds.

 Top 10 Favourite Migratory Birds

1 Common Crane (1302 votes)
2 Common Swift (1081 votes)
3 European Bee-eater (931 votes)
4 Osprey (784 votes)
5 Barn Swallow (732 votes)
6 Short-eared Owl (667 votes)
7 Golden Oriole (523 votes)
8 Common Redstart (515 votes)
9 White Stork (488 votes)
10 Common Cucko (446 votes)

Of the 4026 participants Jalle Hiltunen from Sweden was drawn as the winner of the Leica APO-Televid 82 spotting scope. Jalle was totally surprised that he had won and incredibly happy to win a top end Leica spotting scope. We asked Jalle about his win.

Jalle, why you vote for the crane?

‘My favourite three migratory birds are the bar-tailed godwit, the crane and the European bee-eater. But I voted for the crane because I expected that the crane would be the most popular bird among birdwatchers. I think that most birders can relate to cranes en enjoy observing them. The cranes are very visible on migration with their calls heard from far and their nice V-formations. And it helps that cranes cross many European countries, so they are seen on many places from north to south.’

Why are you a user of Birdingplaces?

‘Information about local birding areas in Europe are often hard to find when you travel out of your own region or abroad. Birdingplaces collects this information and makes it much easier to visit new birding locations. With all the info you need for birding for each location. It is a great idea and initiative! In just a few minutes I can find birding areas in Sweden, but just as easy in the rest of Europe. And I like it that you can also share your own favourite local areas and help other birders discovering new sites. I added my own favourite local patch Stora Amundön, a shallow bay south of Gothenburg that always brings surprising birds.’

Are you happy with your new Leica APO-Televid 82 spotting scope?

‘It is amazing! On the picture you see me with my new scope in the field. Totally happy. I had an old spotting scope that really was due for replacement. And then there was this totally unexpected winning of the Bird Migration Competition. I was so surprised. The Apo Televid really is an excellent spotting scope and perfect for birding! Thank you Leica and Birdingplaces!’

Birdingplaces is the leading online guide for birdwatching in Europe. The use of is free and the website is made by and for birders. Leica is the main supporter of Birdingplaces. Together we have started a nice new winter promotion together with Leica. Anyone who adds birdwatching areas to the Birdingplaces webite this winter has a chance to win a whole range of great Leica binoculars. Click here for more info!

One Comment

  1. Nutty Birdwatcher

    Yes, the crane is also my favorite migratory bird. And there are flamingos too. I simply love seeing the flocks of cranes and flamingos that fly away create very beautiful shapes in the sky. Especially the cry of the crane makes me instantly recognisable. That scene was very beautiful and made me immerse in that peaceful space, and a little sad to think that the birds are struggling to find shelter new. Thanks for your sharing.

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