Damian and I started at Paphos Sewage Works where the first bird we saw was a European Roller which flew into some conifers. Nearby a male Red-backed Shrike and a juvenile Lesser Grey Shrike were both perched. A good start and as we continued past the plant buildings we found three Spur-winged Lapwing, a male and female Black Francolin and a Hoopoe feeding on a track. We saw the first of the many Whinchat and Willow Warbler that we were to find wherever we went. There were also five Tree Pipit, many Zitting Cisticola, a few hundred Yellow Wagtail and a couple of Isabelline and Northern Wheatear. Six Honey Buzzard suddenly arose from the trees at the back of the fields where they must have been roosting and flew over us and straight out to sea. We had good views of a male Sardinian Warbler but the most unexpected bird was seen as we left – a juvenile Common Cuckoo.
Mandria was relatively quiet when we were there. An Eleonora’s Falcon flew out to sea and we also saw a female Marsh Harrier and a juvenile Montagu’s Harrier. We got good views of several Stone Curlew roosting in the olive grove and in the ploughed fields were several Isabelline and Northern Wheatear as well as seven Greater Short-toed Lark and two Tawny Pipit. Many Barn Swallow were flying over and out to sea and again there were plenty of Yellow Wagtail. Oh and of course Whinchat and Willow Warbler!
Approaching Asprokremmos Dam there were many European Bee-eater flying around the canal area. We spent a while watching them and also two Honey Buzzards as they moved south and a Black Kite which was floating around the area. In the car park we picked out three Spotted Flycatcher and a Marsh Harrier in the distance which put some Mallards to flight on the water. Two Golden Oriole were flying around the woods but were not co-operative when we tried to watch them through binoculars. Bee-eaters continued to pass over all the time we were there.
We then decided to head for Phassouri Reed Beds where we hoped to see more raptors and maybe some herons. We found hundreds more Bee-eaters and ate our lunch as they hunted for insects all around us. A couple of Honey Buzzard drifted over as did several Marsh Harrier. In the distance we could see many hirundines mainly Barn Swallow but we also picked out a single Common Swift and then two House and several Sand Martin. As we drove along the road we found several Cattle Egret and about six Little Egret. A lone Glossy Ibis was spooked by one of the Marsh Harrier quartering the area. They also disturbed the local Hooded Crow population and the migrating Yellow Wagtail. A male Marsh Harrier stood out and then a juvenile Pallid Harrier floated over. We saw a couple of Common Kestrel and then one of our targets – three Red-footed Falcon were flying over heading south while a lone male circled up gaining height. Damian missed out on the Hoopoe I spotted on a roadside track but caught up with the two Turtle Dove racing across the reeds.
Our final stop was a Kensington Cliffs. We were greeted by a falcon flying westwards and into the sun. We identified that as a Peregrine Falcon and searched further for the Eleonora’s Falcons we had come to find. Soon three of them rose up over the cliff edge towards us and then we spotted another four in the distance. Two great species to end our day and we headed back to Paphos where Damian was staying.
Total species – 51
Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Glossy Ibis, Mallard, European Honey Buzzard, Black Kite, Western Marsh Harrier, Pallid Harrier, Montagu’s Harrier, Common Kestrel, Red-footed Falcon, Eleonora’s Falcon, Peregrine Falcon, Black Francolin, Eurasian Stone Curlew, Spur-winged Lapwing, Yellow-legged Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Eurasian Turtle Dove, Common Cuckoo, Common Swift, Common Kingfisher, European Bee-eater, European Roller, Eurasian Hoopoe, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Sand Martin, Barn Swallow, Common House Martin, Tawny Pipit, Tree Pipit, Yellow Wagtail, Whinchat, Isabelline Wheatear, Northern Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sardinian Warbler, Willow Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Great Tit, Eurasian Golden Oriole, Red-backed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch