After a hot morning at Kensington Cliffs helping with the BirdLife Cyprus vulture census I was pleased to hear that a Rose-coloured Starling had been seen an hour or so before at Akrotiri Gravel Pits. Luckily it was still around and although it wasn’t exactly photo friendly I did manage a record shot.
Found a very flighty Red-tailed (Turkestan) Shrike at Larnaca yesterday morning. Best photos I could manage….
Out for an hour before sunset in the Meneou/Spiros Pool area. A few birds seem to have been put down by the heavy storms in the area during the afternoon. Interesting species seen were:
Larnaca Airport Pools South
Little Tern 2
Squacco Heron 1 (see photo)
Little Bittern 1m
Northern Pintail 1m
Eurasian Wryneck 1
Little Tern 4
Common Redstart 1f
Black-tailed Godwit 1
Common Whitethroat 2
Little Stint c40 (See photo)
Eurasian Stone Curlew 2 (See photo)
Kentish Plover c30
Common Ringed Plover 3
Northern Wheatear 1m and 1f
Out around Larnaca counting the waterbirds today. The depth of the water on the Sewage Pools means they hold very few birds but the surrounding Salt Lake area still had Greater Flamingo as well as Black-winged Stilt (see photo), Spur-winged Lapwing, Black-tailed Godwit, Curlew Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Ruff, Little Stint, Common and Little Ringed Plover, Garganey and single Mediterranean Gull. Whiskered Tern and Grey Plover.
Out again guiding for Birdwatching Breaks – today trying to dodge the heavy rain around Paphos with some success. Good views of a very mobile flock of Greater Short-toed Lark at Mandria with Eurasian Turtle Dove, Tawny Pipit, Western Yellow Wagtail and Squacco Heron also seen there. Several Collared Flycatcher seen at Timi as were a couple of Laughing Dove at Kouklia. Ending the day at Lady’s Mile and Zakaki Marsh we saw several Spotted Flycatcher, three Eurasian Spoonbill (see photo), a male Little Bittern and a Great Reed Warbler.
A great day out around Paphos guiding for Birdwatching Breaks. Starting with Little Bittern and Baillon’s Crake at Agia Varvara we then saw a singing male Cyprus Warbler and at least seven Great Spotted Cuckoo (one photographed). We had European Bee-eater over our heads in off the sea at Mandria, while we were searching for the female Caspian Plover seen there earlier. We caught up with the Caspian Plover after lunch and then moved onto Timi where we found two male and a female Citrine Wagtail. The day finished with good views of a Scops Owl.
Second day out guiding for Birdwatching Breaks and we visited the Akamas area. Highlights were a tree full of warblers including this Wood Warbler (photo), two adult Bonelli’s Eagles one of which flew right over our heads, a female Pallid Harrier, lots of Cyprus Wheatear setting up territories, at least two calling Cyprus Scops Owl, a small flock of Tree Pipit, more than 100 migrating Red-rumped Swallow, two Ortolan Bunting, Collared and Pied Flycatcher and a Eurasian Wryneck.
Final full day of guiding for the Travelling Naturalist Cyprus group today which we spent in Paphos. We visited Paphos Sewage Works, Timi beach, Mandria, Asprokremmos Dam and Paphos Headland and throughout the day it got windier which hampered our birding. But even so we had great views of two Bimaculated Lark, Greater Short-toed Lark, a Eurasian Stone Curlew and Western Yellow Wagtail at Mandria; at least ten Spur-winged Lapwing at Paphos Sewage Works and a bush full of feeding and resting warblers at the Headland which included several Eastern Subalpine and Ruppell’s Warbler. As we left the Headland we saw a lovely male Whinchat – one of the first of spring.
Today the Travelling Naturalist group visited Akrotiri starting at Kensington Cliffs where we saw a Griffon Vulture and a male Cyprus Warbler. During the day we found many migrants in the area including Black-winged Stilt, Spur-winged Lapwing, Western Yellow Wagtail, Common Redstart, Ruppell’s and Subalpine Warbler, Little Ringed Plover, Eurasian Bittern, Common Hoopoe (photo). Black-eared Wheatear, Red-throated & Tree Pipit and ‘Steppe’ Buzzard.
Good start this morning out guiding for the Travelling Naturalist group with a showy male Cyprus Warbler to keep us entertained at Anarita Park. Other good birds included Spotted Crake and Peregrine Falcon at Agia Varvara; Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Long-legged Buzzard and Red-rumped Swallow at Anarita Park; and an Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler at Asprokremmos Dam. Plenty of Corn Buntings (photo) at all locations visited.
Another good day out with the Travelling Naturalist Cyprus group. Today we visited Cape Drepanum, Arodes and Smygies and we had the luck to witness first hand the amazing numbers of Painted Lady butterflies currently migrating through Cyprus. We estimate we saw at least 200,000 through the day. We also saw some good birds including more Cyprus Wheatear, migrating flocks of Grey Heron and Little Egret, Blue-headed Wagtail, Chukar, Hen Harrier, Black-eared Wheatear and a Great Spotted Cuckoo pair. We rounded the day off finding several new orchid species.
Second day guiding for Travelling Naturalist group in Cyprus travelling up to Troodos via Kouklia, Archimandrita, Agios Nikolaos and Platres. Highlights were good views of the endemic subspecies Coal Tit, Short-toed Treecreeper and Jay as well as Red Crossbill and low flying Pallid Swift. Also seen were several Cyprus Wheatear, European Serin, Corn Bunting and Laughing Dove at lower levels. Good collection of orchid species also seen as well as this crocus at Troodos.