A day around Paphos with Phil who I had also taken out on his previous trip to Cyprus in 2012. Today was, to be honest, very quiet birdwise and although we found our targets of Greater Sand Plover and Cyprus Wheatear, the birds made us work hard to find them. It seems as if most of the migrants have moved through and/or out and the winter visitors have yet to put in an appearance in any great numbers.
We started at Paphos Headland where we located four Greater Sand Plover, a European Golden Plover and three Common Sandpiper on the rocky shore. Moving on to Agia Varvara we had distant views of a Cyprus Wheatear and better views of two Long-legged Buzzard, a juvenile Masked Shrike, two Common Snipe, two Northern Lapwing and a Eurasian Sparrowhawk. Another Long-legged Buzzard was gaining height over Paphos Sewage Works where we also saw a male Red-footed Falcon and watched several White and Yellow Wagtail on the recently cut alfalfa crop.
Mandria was quiet although it was the only location at which we found a few Barn Swallow. We watched four European Shag on the offshore rocks as we ate our lunch. A single juvenile Red-backed Shrike was also in the area. We made a visit to the water’s edge at Asprokremmos Dam where a flock of Spanish Sparrow landed close to us and in the distance we found a Grey Heron and Little Egret. A Spotted Flycatcher was in the car park area there and another was at Kouklia Soakaways. By now we were wondering where the birds had all gone to. So I decided to head inland to the track leading to the Tsada/Minthis Hills Golf course. We wanted better views of Cyprus Wheatear and luckily there we found two, maybe three and were able to watch them for a while. A male and a female Common Stonechat were also there as were several Corn Bunting and Chukar.
An enjoyable day none-the-less with a day’s total of 43 less than we would have hoped for but well earnt!
List of species seen: Little Grebe, European Shag, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Long-legged Buzzard, Common Kestrel, Red-footed Falcon, Chukar, Common Moorhen, Greater Sand Plover, Eurasian Golden Plover, Spur-winged Lapwing, Northern Lapwing, Common Snipe, Common Sandpiper, Yellow-legged Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Yellow Wagtail, White Wagtail, Common Stonechat, Cyprus Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sardinian Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Great Tit, Red-backed Shrike, Masked Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet, Corn Bunting.