Last Thursday the first Barn Swallows of the year were seen at Zakaki Marsh and Phassouri Reed Beds with another at Paphos Sewage Works on Friday – which was an unusually early record for the west of the island. Two House Martins were seen at the Finikaria end of the Germasogeia Dam the same day. Most January records of hirundines are usually from the east of the island and more will be expected from now on, with both species being regularly seen from mid-February onwards. The first Common Swift are usually seen in January as well – again most likely to be recorded in the east first.
Wetlands such as those around Limassol and Larnaca are good places to visit to catch the first hirundines of the spring and the first reports of these migrants whet the appetite for the other early spring migrants that will follow – usually Eurasian Hoopoe, Great Spotted Cuckoo and then Isabelline, Northern and Cyprus Wheatear.