Cyprus Birding Tours

Offering guided bird watching tours around Cyprus


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Limassol area today

Spent the morning around Akrotiri where it was quiet with the best birds at least three Little Bittern at Zakaki Marsh, a group of a couple of hundred Greater Flamingo still on the Salt Lake where there were also Little Tern, Black-winged Stilt and Slender-billed Gull.

Akrotiri Salt Lake/Zakaki Run off
Greater Flamingo 300+
Slender-billed Gull 6
Little Tern 6+
Black-winged Stilt 21
Little Egret 2
Grey Heron 2
Little Stint c40
Ruff 8
Yellow Wagtail 1 in flight

Lady’s Mile
Little Egret 6 inc grey morph

Phasouri Reed-beds
Squacco Heron 2
European Turtle Dove 2

But the best part of the day  was the two hours I spent at Prastio Kellakiou in the late afternoon. Full of migrant breeders – Eurasian Hoopoe, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Masked Shrike, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler, European Turtle Dove and Cyprus’ endemic sub-species Coal Tit and Jay. But the star was the hardworking male Black-headed Bunting who was kept busy feeding two fledglings in the shade of some olive trees (see the photo below that was taken at a distance). At least four other Black-headed Bunting males and one female were also in the area.

Black-headed Bunting, Prastio Kellakiou, 29th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Black-headed Bunting, Prastio Kellakiou, 29th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Flamingo, Akrotiri Salt Lake 29th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Flamingo, Akrotiri Salt Lake 29th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear, Germasogeia Dam, 29th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear, Germasogeia Dam, 29th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding on east of the island, 17th May 2017

This year a day out in mid-May means finding very few passerine migrants, the need to concentrate on breeding birds and visiting a wetland to increase the variety of species seen. Luckily Robert had a list of realistic target species which made our day easier although we had to work hard to find the Black-headed Wagtail. The other species Robert hoped to see were Cyprus Warbler, Cyprus Wheatear, Black Francolin, Chukar, Little Owl, Spur-winged Lapwing and Masked Shrike.

Starting at Cape Greco, the first bird we saw was a singing male Cyprus Warbler which was a great start. We explored the area and found another two males and two females together with a couple of juveniles. We soon heard the distinctive call of the Cyprus Wheatear and spotted a singing male on a low bush. Several others were later seen as were a couple of European Turtle Dove, a Spectacled Warbler, a male and female Red-backed Shrike as well as a couple of Sand Martin. A couple of Black-headed Buntings were singing near the Sea Caves area where we also found our only Chukar of the day.

We then headed to Akhna Dam where several Spur-winged Lapwing were found as was a male Garganey, a couple of Ruff and Common Sandpiper, some Little Egret, a Grey Heron and a Glossy Ibis. Several Eurasian Reed Warbler were heard singing and a flock of around 30 Common Swift and seven Alpine Swift were flying over the area and coming down to drink – a great sight. We visited both hides at Oroklini and Robert got great views of another of his targets here – this time a male Black Francolin was out in the open calling for quite a while. We also saw more Spur-winged Lapwing here as well as Black-winged Stilt, Curlew Sandpiper, Ruff, Wood Sandpiper, Little, Whiskered and White-winged Tern and Garganey. There were several recently hatched young Cattle Egret in the colony and we also spotted a Spur-winged Lapwing chick with one of its parents.

We then went inland to Panagia Stazousa to try and find a Masked Shrike and a Little Owl. We found the Little Owl perched outside its nest site but it took a while to find a Masked Shrike until eventually a male flew into view. We also saw more Cyprus Warbler and Cyprus Wheatear as well as Olivaceous Warbler, a European Roller, a fly-over Eurasian Hobby and two Long-legged Buzzard. We heard Cretzschmar’s Bunting but couldn’t get decent views of them.

Our next stop was on the eastern side of Larnaca Salt Lake where there was still some water and I was hoping may be a suitable location for the feldegg race of the Yellow Wagtail – Black-headed Wagtail. We found some water and the bonus of three Broad-billed Sandpiper (a regular but scarce passage migrant to Cyprus) feeding with Black-winged Stilt, Spur-winged Lapwing, Little Stint, Ruff, Wood Sandpiper and some stunning Curlew Sandpiper. A Squacco Heron was also present and we heard the call of a Yellow Wagtail and saw a couple fly over but were unable to see which race they were. Finally, a male Blue-headed was spotted feeding next to some reeds and then to its right there was a male Black-headed. All of the target species seen we went south of the airport to see what was on the Sewage Pools there. There were several Little Tern and a couple of White-winged Tern as well as two Yellow-legged Gull, some Spur-winged Lapwing and several Ruff. New birds for the day were a single Gull-billed Tern feeding over the water and a Collared Pratincole which we saw head out towards the coast.

We finished our day there pleased with our efforts.

Total species seen 66

Chukar, Black Francolin, Garganey, Northern Shoveler, Mallard, Common Teal, Little Grebe, Common Woodpigeon, European Turtle Dove, Eurasian Collared Dove, Laughing Dove, Alpine Swift, Common Swift, Common Moorhen, Common Coot, Glossy Ibis, Squacco Heron, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Black-winged Stilt, Kentish Plover, Spur-winged Lapwing, Ruff, Broad-billed Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Little Stint, Common Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Collared Pratincole, Yellow-legged Gull, Little Tern, Gull-billed Tern, Whiskered Tern, White-winged Tern, Little Owl, Long-legged Buzzard, European Roller, Common Kestrel, Eurasian Hobby, Red-backed Shrike, Masked Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Eurasian Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, Great Tit, Crested Lark, Zitting Cisticola, Olivaceous Warbler, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Northern House Martin, Barn Swallow, Collared Sand Martin, Cetti’s Warbler, Cyprus Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Spectacled Warbler, Cyprus Wheatear, House Sparrow, Blue-headed Wagtail, Black-headed Wagtail, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Black-headed Bunting, Cretzschmar’s Bunting

Whiskered Tern, Oroklini Marsh 17th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Whiskered Tern, Oroklini Marsh 17th May 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Athalassa Dam, Nicosia this morning 9th June 2016

A walk around the dam at Athalassa today which still has plenty of water. A couple of pairs of Black-winged Stilt were present as were four Ferruginous Duck, an adult Little Bittern, two Squacco Heron, two Black-crowned Night Heron, four Little Egret and several European Turtle Dove. Eastern Olivaceous and Eurasian Reed Warbler could be heard and seen flitting in the trees and reeds and there were several Cetti’s Warbler. Several Mallard had large duckling with them and Eurasian Coot were feeding young – ranging from recently hatched to larger birds. Plenty of Common Moorhen and Little Grebe but no young seen of either species. As usual the area was full of Common Woodpigeon and Hooded Crow.

Black-winged Stilt, Athalassa 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Black-winged Stilt, Athalassa 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Turtle Dove, Athalassa Dam, 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Turtle Dove, Athalassa Dam, 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Coot with young, Athalassa 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Coot with young, Athalassa 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Woodpigeon, Athalassa 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Woodpigeon, Athalassa 9th June 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Troodos 31st May 2016

Had a great day around Troodos today – relaxing birding! Found two Red-rumped Swallow collecting mud from near the stream in the Platania picnic site. They would fly in together and one would sit on a nearby stem or bush while the other collected the mud and then they flew off together – presumably to make a nest or repair one they have already used. Spent some time watching a male Masked Shrike feeding a downy recently fledged youngster at Livadi tou Pashia and was pleased to see a Grey Wagtail at the Troodos end of the Caledonia Trail. Lots of Coal Tit, Short-toed Tree-creeper, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler and Common Chaffinch around.
 
Main sightings:
 
Platania Picnic Site
 
Red-rumped Swallow 2 coming down to take mud
Masked Shrike 2m and 1f
European Serin 6+
Eurasian Blackbird 1m and 1f
Eurasian Hoopoe 2
Winter Wren 1
Eurasian Jay 1
 
Livadi tou Pashia
Spotte Flycatcher 3
Eurasian Hoopoe 2
Eurasian Blackbird 2m, 1f and one juvenile
Eurasian Jay h
Masked Shrike 2m – one feeding a downy fledgling
European Serin 4+
Winter Wren 2 plus family party of 6+
Cyprus Wheatear 2m
 
Start of Artemis trail
Common Swift c70
Pallid Swift 3+
Eurasian Hoopoe 1h
Cyprus Wheatear 3m
European Serin h
Eurasian Blackbird 1 singing male
Eurasian Jay 1
 
Platania Old Road
European Turtle Dove 2
Cyprus Wheatear 1
 
Caledonia Trail (Troodos end)
Grey Wagtail 1 ad
Winter Wren 10+ and young in family parties
Eurasian Blackbird 3m and 2f
Common Nightingale 1h singing
Spotted Flycatcher 1
 
Troodos Environment Centre area
Eurasian Blackbird 1m
Common House Martin c30
Common Swift c200 with at least 30 probable Pallids
 
Kampos tou Livadiou
Winter Wren 1
 
Troodos Botanical Gardens – Amiandos
Cyprus Wheatear 1m, 1f and 1 fledgling
Masked Shrike 1m
Eurasian Jay 2
European Serin 2+
Eurasian Blackbird 2+m
Red-rumped Swallow 30+
Common House Martin c40
European Turtle Dove 1

Red-rumped Swallow, Platania, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Red-rumped Swallow, Platania, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear fledgling, Amiandos, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear fledgling, Amiandos, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear, Amiandos, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear, Amiandos, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Winter Wren, Caledonia Trail, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Winter Wren, Caledonia Trail, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Chaffinch, Livadi tou Pashia, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Chaffinch, Livadi tou Pashia, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Blackbird, Caledonia Trail, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Blackbird, Caledonia Trail, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Greenfinch Platania, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Greenfinch Platania, 31st May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding Paphos area 26th May 2016

Knowing that migration was now virtually over, this day out with Steve and Mary concentrated on finding migrant breeders and allowed them to see several lifers which included Black Francolin, Chukar, European Stone Curlew, Spur-winged Lapwing, Cyprus Wheatear, Laughing Dove, Alpine Swift, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler and Cretzschmar’s and Black-headed Bunting. The bird of the day was a male Black-headed Bunting singing perched on a large cow-parsley flower head!

Highlights per location:

Paphos Sewage Works – Black Francolin 2m and 1f, Spur-winged Lapwing 6+

Petra tou Romiou – Eleonora’s Falcon 2, Peregrine Falcon 1, Alpine Swift 10+

Kouklia – Laughing Dove 2

Anarita Park – Eastern Black-eared Wheatear 1 pale throated male, Spanish Sparrow, Little Owl, Cetti’s Warbler – 1 fledgling, European Roller 3, Cyprus Wheatear 1 male with two fledglings, Chukar 2 ad and 12 young

Road to Episkopi – European Roller 2, Cyprus Wheatear 6+

Ezousas Valley, Episkopi – European Roller 2, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler 1 seen well, European Turtle Dove 2

Minthis Hills – European Roller 1, Cyprus Wheatear 2, Cretzschmar’s Bunting 1 singing male and another adult with a young bird

Arodes – Black Francolin 1h, Eleonora’s Falcon 1, European Roller 4, Cyprus Wheatear 4+, Red-rumped Swallow 1, Black-headed Bunting 1 singing male

Androlikou – Cyprus Wheatear 6 plus one young bird, European Roller 1, Eurasian Scops Owl 1 h, Little Owl 1h

All species seen: Common Kestrel, Eleonora’s Falcon, Peregrine Falcon, Chukar, Black Francolin, Eurasian Stone Curlew, Spur-winged Lapwing, Yellow-legged Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, European Turtle Dove, Laughing Dove, Eurasian Scops Owl, Little Owl, Common Swift, Alpine Swift, European Roller, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Common House Martin, Cyprus Wheatear, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Great Tit, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Black-headed Bunting, Corn Bunting

Akamas, 26th May 2016

Akamas, 26th May 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours