At sea

At sea
Andreas Trepte

At sea

Every year, thousands of seabirds pass off the coast of Sagres, some on epic journeys from pole to pole. To witness part of that odissey, all you have to do is head out to Cabo de S. Vicente, but to see some species you’ll have to take to the sea.

Birds you can spot from Cabo de S. Vicente

Most frequently seen

In October, thousands of Northern Gannets (Morus bassanus) can fly past Cabo de S. Vicente in just one hour. Cory’s and Balearic Shearwaters (Calonectris borealis and Puffinus mauretanicus, respectively), Lesser Black-Backed Gulls (Larus fuscus) and Great Skuas (Catharacta skua) are also easily spotted from this vantage point.

Regular occurrences

In early Autumn, Sooty Shearwaters (Ardenna grisea) are regularly seen here, on their way to their breeding grounds in Tierra del Fuego. Audouin’s Gulls (Larus audouinnii) and Pomarine Jaegers (Stercorarius pomarinus) are also spotted here every year. After breeding in the North Atlantic, they are heading south for the Winter. The Pomarine Jaegers you spot here are on an epic journey from the Arctic seas all the way to the South Atlantic.


Birds that require a boat trip

To see some of the seabirds that fly past here, the best option is to head out to sea. In Autumn, European Storm Petrels can be seen bobbing on the waves while they wait for the wind, or flying south when it blows.

Great Shearwaters (Ardenna gravis) and Wilson’s Storm Petrels (Oceanites oceanicus) are also quite common in this region, especially in August and September. In Autumn, they head to the South Atlantic to breed.  

Rare sights

Rare birds such as Sabine’s Gull (Xema sabini) or the Long-tailed Jaeger (Stercorarius longicaudus) have been spotted in the area.


Other birds to see in Sagres: in the air and on  land

More about the European Storm Petrel

More about migration in Sagres