Have waited many years to see one of these and was excited today to see the one found by Spyros Spyrou earlier in the week, thanks to directions from Tony Reeves. Great to get this lifer but the bird had no sense of the occasion insisting on posing tantalisingly close to me – always with a few twigs in front 🙄. Anyhow here are the slightly better ones – you can’t have everything it seems!!!
Unfortunately the best bird I saw over the weekend was not very user friendly – a brief glimpse of a male Namaqua Dove on the track at Petounta for a few seconds before it flew away and was not to be refound – despite a couple of hours search in total over the two days. Anyhow, elsewhere there were Lesser Kestrel and Montagu’s Harrier yesterday at Kivisili where today there were also five Red-footed Falcon (see photos). Calandra Lark were displaying at Pervolia where migrating Yellow Wagtail, Red-throated Pipit, Sand Martin, Red-rumped and Barn Swallow and Common Swift were present. Glossy Ibis and Little Egret were seen migrating along the coast and a couple of European Pied Flycatcher were in the trees at Kiti Dam and Spiros Pool.
Not the best photo of this long staying migrant but when you are working then getting yourself the best shot takes second place :p
Great feeling as I rounded the corner at Akrotiri today and this Cream-coloured Courser appeared in front of me. I guess its probably the same bird (that I was unable to get to see) that was at Mandria yesterday as it was last seen heading east from there late in the afternoon. This rare passage migrant to Cyprus was spooked by a Pallid Harrier at Akrotiri and flew off and was not relocated.
Some record shots of the Red-tailed Shrike that I was very surprised to find on the Kiti to Petounta road yesterday morning 19th March 2018. A very scarce passage migrant to Cyprus.
Another year draws to a close and as some of you may know Cyprus Birding Tours will not be offering private guided tours during the first six months of 2018 due to my commitments on other bird related tasks and increased work with UK based tour companies. 2017 was a great year for Cyprus Birding Tours with 56 days of guiding with returning and new birders – thank you all. We saw many great species including the endemic Cyprus Warbler and Cyprus Wheatear and endemic sub-species Scops Owl, Short-toed Treecreeper, Coal Tit and Jay as well as Black Francolin, Chukar, Common Quail, Ruddy Shelduck, Red-crested Pochard, Ferruginous Duck, Greater Flamingo, European Turtle Dove, Laughing Dove, Pallid Swift, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Spotted, Baillon’s and Little Crake, Scopoli’s Shearwater, Black Stork, Common Little Bittern, Great White Pelican, Greater Sandplover, Spur-winged Lapwing, Broad-billed Sandpiper, Temminck’s Stint, Collared Pratincole, Slender-billed Gull, Audouin’s Gull, Caspian Tern, Whiskered and White-winged Tern, European Honey Buzzard, Black Kite, Griffon Vulture, Bonelli’s Eagle, Montagu’s and Pallid Harrier, Northern Goshawk, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Pied Kingfisher, Lesser Kestrel, Red-footed and Elenora’s Falcon, Masked and Woodchat Shrike, Eurasian Penduline Tit, Bar-tailed Lark, Bimaculated and Calandra Lark, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler, Moustached Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Eastern Bonelli’s, Subalpine and Ruppell’s Warbler, Barred Warbler, Bluethroat, Semi-collared Flycatcher, Finsch’s Wheatear, Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush, Red-throated Pipit, Richard’s Pipit, Red Crossbill, Black-headed, Cretzschmar’s and Ortolan Bunting.
A great selection of birds – especially the Bar-tailed Lark which was only the sixth Cyprus record!
I will still have time (I hope) to do some personal birding so this site will act as my Cyprus Birding blog in 2018.
Many thanks to everyone who has supported Cyprus Birding Tours and I wish you all the best in 2018. Hopefully I will bump into many of you making return visits here.
Yesterday I saw a godwit fly from the beach into Larnaca Sewage Works pools and disappear from sight. It was impossible to get good enough views to ID it as the sun was unhelpfully shining into my field of vision. This morning I found this Bar-tailed Godwit on the nearby beach, and I assume it was the same bird as yesterday’s. They are scarce visitors to Cyprus although they seem to becoming more regular. Was able to get a few photos although the sun was yet again in the wrong place!
Came across the first Cyprus record of a White-eyed Gull as I was out and about in Larnaca this morning!! Not much else around 🙂