Observing migrating birds and researching migration has a long tradition for our volunteers as well as for the Swiss Ornithological Institute. Our goal is to document migration, identify changes and make data available to support conservation efforts. To achieve this, various sections, ringing teams and work groups are involved in projects that are often long-term. Birds that are either stopping over or in active migration make up about 45% of all records submitted by volunteers on ornitho.ch and entered into the Swiss Ornithological Institute’s database. Thanks to these efforts, migration and the occurrence of migrant visitors in Switzerland are better documented than ever before.


Further analyses

When and where a migratory species occurs in Switzerland in the course of the year is indicated in our online database Birds of Switzerland.

The following tables give an overview of the number of records entered into the Swiss Ornithological Institute’s database in 2000–2020:

  • Number of records per species and year 2000–2020 (the same bird may have been recorded several times). An increase in records primarily reflects an increase in observation and recording effort and must not be interpreted as an increase in population size.
  • Number of records per species and month 2000–2020 (sum total of all years).
  • Presence index per species and year 2000–2020. This index accounts for the increase in observer activity and allows for better comparisons between years.


Internet links

  • An overview of all species found in Switzerland and their species categories is available here: www.vogelwarte.ch/id (available in German, French or Italian). Find more on recording at: www.ornitho.ch/instructions.
  • Our recording platform www.ornitho.ch provides information on the occurrence of migrants and their duration of stay in Switzerland and neighbouring regions.
  • The related app “NaturaList” (for Android devices) is available in the Google Play Store. Instructions can be found here.
  • Track bird migration in Europe via EuroBirdPortal.
  • www.migraction.net and www.trektellen.nl give the results from places where actively migrating birds are being counted.
  • Find out more about the situation and occurrence of migrants in Europe and worldwide at BirdLife International.