Cyprus Birding Tours

Offering guided bird watching tours around Cyprus


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding Akrotiri and Paphos Plain 13th September 2017

A good day out again with Terry and Sarah around Akrotiri and then west to Mandria, Timi Beach and Asprokremmos Dam. Another very warm day with just a trickle of migrating raptors but we pieced together some good species and enjoyed ourselves in any case.

Highlights per location:

Phassouri Reed-beds – Black Francolin 1m and 1f, European Turtle Dove 20+, Pallid Swift 2, European Honey Buzzard 7, Western Marsh Harrier 3, Montagu’s Harrier 3 juv, Black Kite 2, European Bee-eater 200+, European Roller, Common Kingfisher, Lesser Kestrel, Red-backed, Lesser Grey and Masked Shrike, Red-rumped Swallow, Whinchat, Yellow Wagtail

Bishop’s Pool – Black-crowned Night Heron, Purple Heron, Black-winged Stilt, Western Marsh Harrier, Red-rumped Swallow, Sand Martin

Lady’s Mile – Dunlin 3, Kentish Plover, Little Stint

Zakaki Marsh – Common Kingfisher, Great Reed Warbler

Mandria – Chukar, Eleonora’s Falcon, European Roller, Lesser Grey Shrike, Greater Short-toed Lark, Northern & Isabelline Wheatear, Yellow Wagtail, European Shag

Timi Beach – Greater Short-toed Lark c30

Asprokremmos Dam – Spotted Flycatcher, Eleonora’s Falcon

European Honey Buzzard, Phasouri Reed Beds 13th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Honey Buzzard, Phasouri Reed Beds 13th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Kingfisher, Phasouri Reed Beds 13th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Kingfisher, Phasouri Reed Beds 13th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Western Marsh Harrier, Phasouri Reed Beds 13th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Western Marsh Harrier, Phasouri Reed Beds 13th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding Akrotiri and Mandria 12th September 2017

After picking up Carole, John and Philip from Pissouri Bay we headed towards Akrotiri for a day’s birding. Our first stop was at Kensington Cliffs where we had good views of Eleonora’s Falcon and their acrobatics. A ring-tailed Harrier was flying close to the cliffs but we couldn’t get any ID features. As we left we saw an Isabelline Wheatear. At Phasouri Reed-beds we visited the new tower hide and were treated to the wonderful sight of several European Bee-eater coming down to drink at a nearby pool. Two juvenile Montagu’s Harrier were flying around the area as was a female Western Marsh Harrier. We also saw a European Turtle Dove and a couple of Willow Warbler before our attention was drawn to a Eurasian Hobby over us and then a small group of larger raptors gaining height – European Honey Buzzards and a lone Black Kite. We then found a Lesser Grey Shrike, a European Roller and a small flock of Western Yellow Wagtail near the other new hide. A couple of Whinchat and a very smart male Red-backed Shrike were also present.

Driving across Akrotiri Gravel Pits we saw a couple of juvenile Red-backed Shrike and a juvenile Masked Shrike and at the churchyard we found a Common Hoopoe, Spotted Flycatcher and a Northern Wheatear. We then spent some time at Bishop’s Pool. Disappointed not to see any Ferruginous Duck there but we did see a European Honey Buzzard being mobbed by two Eleonora’s Falcon, a Black-winged Stilt, a couple of Little Egret, a Common Redshank, some Northern Shoveler and Common Teal and an immature marsh tern which in the end we ID’d as a Whiskered Tern.

There were plenty of Kentish Plover and Little Stint on Lady’s Mile although we couldn’t see any other waders but there was a juvenile Greater Flamingo there. We spent a while then in the hide at Zakaki Marsh where we could hear several Black-crowned Night Heron – none of which was obliging enough to fly up to let us see them. We did though see a juvenile Western Water Rail and a Common Kingfisher although unfortunately only I saw a Great Reed Warbler sitting on the reeds with a large dragonfly in its bill. Two Western Marsh Harrier were quartering the area.

We ate our lunch back at Phasouri Reed-beds where we watched many Red-rumped Swallow migrating through. We added Lesser Kestrel to our list of species as one flew over head and saw a few more European Honey Buzzard and another juvenile Montagu’s Harrier. We then decided to head to Mandria to see if the Eurasian Dotterel that had been found there yesterday was still present. We were in luck and we spent some time looking at it through the ‘scope. It was surrounded by Greater Short-toed Lark so we had good views of them as well and also the Northern Wheatear and Lesser Grey Shrike nearby. We finished our day with a quick check of the amenities area of Asprokremmos Dam and added Long-legged Buzzard to our day list and also found another European Turtle Dove.

A good selection of species on a very hot September day.

Total number of species: 62

Black Francolin, Northern Shoveler, Mallard, Common Teal, Little Grebe, Greater Flamingo, Rock Dove, Common Woodpigeon, European Turtle Dove, Eurasian Collared Dove, Western Water Rail, Common Moorhen, Common Coot, Black-crowned Night Heron (H), Cattle Egret, Grey Heron, Little Egret, Black-winged Stilt, Common Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Little Stint, Common Redshank, Eurasian Dotterel, Yellow-legged Gull, Whiskered Tern, European Honey Buzzard, Western Marsh Harrier, Montagu’s Harrier, Black Kite, Long-legged Buzzard, Common Hoopoe, European Bee-eater, European Roller, Common Kingfisher, Lesser Kestrel, Common Kestrel, Eleonora’s Falcon, Eurasian Hobby, Red-backed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, Masked Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Eurasian Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, Great Tit, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Red-rumped Swallow, Barn Swallow, Sand Martin, Willow Warbler, Cetti’s Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Whinchat, Northern Wheatear, Isabelline Wheatear, House Sparrow, Western Yellow Wagtail, European Goldfinch.

Bishop's Pool 12 September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Bishop’s Pool 12 September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Days Guiding Paphos, 19th April 2017

This was the second time that I had taken Esther and Marcel out and it was good to see them again. After the numbers of migrants around in the last two weeks it was much quieter today but we still had some good birds including great views of a singing male Cyprus Warbler, a pair of Long-legged Buzzard over our heads, a Great Reed Warbler and a Baillon’s Crake.

Highlights per location:

Timi Beach – Eurasian Stone Curlew, Red-rumped Swallow

Agia Varvara – Black Francolin, Little Crake, Baillon’s Crake, European Turtle Dove, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Tree Pipit, Black-headed Wagtail, Great Reed Warbler (1 seen and another heard only), Cyprus Warbler 1 singing male

Paphos Sewage Plant – Spur-winged Lapwing 8, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Yellow Wagtial, Spotted Flycatcher, Collared Flycatcher 1f

Mandria – Purple Heron, Laughing Dove, Greater Short-toed Lark, Tawny Pipit, Red-throated Pipit, Yellow Wagtail 50+, Whinchat, Olivaceous Warbler, Woodchat Shrike

Anarita Park – Black-crowned Night Heron 1 over village, Long-legged Buzzard, Lesser Kestrel, Little Owl, Whinchat, Black-eared Wheatear, Cyprus Warbler, Common Whitethroat, Collared Flycatcher 1f, Woodchat Shrike

Full list of species:

Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Egret, Purple Heron, Long-legged Buzzard, Lesser Kestrel, Common Kestrel, Chukar, Black Francolin, Little Crake, Baillon’s Crake, Eurasian Stone Curlew, Spur-winged Lapwing, Yellow-legged Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, European Turtle Dove, Laughing Dove, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Little Owl, Common Swift, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Common House Martin, Tawny Pipit, Red-throated Pipit, Yellow Wagtail, Black-headed Wagtail (feldegg), White Wagtail, Whinchat, Northern Wheatear, Black-eared Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Olivaceous Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Cyprus Warbler, Common Whitethroat, Spotted Flycatcher, Collared Flycatcher, Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, bunting spp probably Ortolan, Corn Bunting

Whinchat, Anarita Park 19th April 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Whinchat, Anarita Park 19th April 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding Paphos and Akrotiri 1st April 2017

Although we managed to keep dry, a lot of our day out was spent dodging coming storms until one finally caught up with us at Lady’s Mile on Akrotiri. This definitely affected the species that we saw. However, Stuart, Sue and I did manage to fit in some good birds including male Pallid and female Hen Harrier, Lesser Kestrel including two very smart males, Semi-collared and Collared Flycatchers, a male Ortolan Bunting, several male Common Redstart with one of the samamisicus race and the stars of the day – a Baillon’s and male Little Crake at Zakaki Marsh to end the day.

Highlights per location:

Timi Beach – Grey Heron, Ruff, Kentish Plover and Common Greenshank all on beach. Eurasian Stone Curlew, Common Nightingale, Corn Bunting, Greater Short-toed Lark,  Isabelline and Northern Wheatear

Anarita Park – Hen Harrier, Lesser Kestrel, Great Spotted Cuckoo h, Alpine Swift, Red-rumped Swallow, Cyprus and Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Whinchat, Tree Pipit. Common Redstart, Ehrenberg’s Redstart

Paphos Sewage Works – Cattle Egret, Spur-winged Lapwing, Collared Flycatcher, Common Redstart

Akrotiri Gravel Pits area – Pallid Harrier, Greater Short-toed Lark, Ruff, Common Nightingale, Common Redstart, Semi-collared Flycatcher 1m, Collared Flycatcher 5m and 1f, Common Whitethroat, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Ortolan Bunting, Cyprus Wheatear

Akrotiri Salt Lake – Greater Flamingo, Eurasian Hoopoe

Lady’s Mile – Black-winged Stilt, Ruff

Zakaki Marsh – Glossy Ibis, Baillon’s Crake, Little Crake, Great Reed Warbler, Eurasian Penduline Tit h, Black Francolin h

Total species and forms seen – 70

Little Grebe, Cattle Egret, Grey Heron, Glossy Ibis, Greater Flamingo, Mallard, Hen Harrier, Pallid Harrier, Lesser Kestrel, Common Kestrel, Chukar, Black Francolin, Little Crake, Baillon’s Crake, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Eurasian Stone Curlew, Kentish Plover, Spur-winged Lapwing, Ruff, Common Greenshank, Common Black-headed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Armenian Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Common Swift, Alpine Swift, Eurasian Hoopoe, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Common House Martin, Tree Pipit, Meadow Pipit, Yellow Wagtail, White Wagtail, Common Nightingale, Common Redstart, Ehrenberg’s Redstart, Whinchat, Isabelline Wheatear, Northern Wheatear, Cyprus Wheatear, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Common Whitethroat, Eurasian Blackcap, Common Chiffchaff, Semi-collared Flycatcher, Collared Flycatcher, Great Tit, Eurasian Penduline Tit h, Eurasian Magpie, Hooded Crow, Western Jackdaw, House Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Ortolan Bunting, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Corn Bunting

Corn Bunting, Anarita Park, 1st April 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Corn Bunting, Anarita Park, 1st April 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Crake, Zakaki Marsh 1st April 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Crake, Zakaki Marsh 1st April 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding Paphos and Akrotiri 6th April 2016

I picked up Martin and his father from their Paphos hotel and we headed to Minthis Hills to try and see one of Martin’s target species – Cretzschmar’s Bunting. We heard a pair calling almost as soon as we arrived and found another pair higher along the track. We also had a female Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, a couple of Cyprus Wheatear, a singing male Cyprus Warbler, two fly over Red-throated Pipit, a Common Cuckoo, a Woodchat Shrike and several Corn Bunting.

I had taken Martin out previously in late 2013 and we had failed to find a Black Francolin so on our way to Akrotiri we headed to Avdimou where we found a male singing on the edge of a small olive grove. At first he was hard to see but with some patience Martin and Herbert got some decent views. In the area we also found a Great Spotted Cuckoo, a couple of singing Common Nightingale and more Cyprus Warbler and Cyprus Wheatear.

A drive around Akrotiri Gravel Pits produced several migrant passerines including more Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Northern and Isabelline Wheatear, Ruppell’s Warbler, Collared and Spotted Flycatcher, Common Redstart, Tawny Pipit, Whinchat, Greater Short-toed Lark and more Woodchat Shrike. On the shore we found six resting Black-crowned Night Heron. At Phasouri Reed-beds we found a Glossy Ibis and a Eurasian Hoopoe.

Along Lady’s Mile there were several Kentish Plover , Little Stint and Dunlin as well as five Greater Flamingo and a Spotted Redshank. Near the port we found Lesser Whitethroat and a Wryneck in a tamarisk.

We finished the day in the hide at Zakaki where the male Little Crake gave us brief views. We also saw Purple Heron, Ferruginous Duck, Little Egret and heard Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler and Sedge Warble. A couple of Black-headed Wagtail flew over as we finished our day and returned to Paphos. Once again a very interesting day out with Martin with a good variety of species.

Total species – 77

Little Grebe, Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Egret, Purple Heron, Glossy Ibis, Greater Flamingo, Eurasian Teal, Mallard, Northern Shoveler, Ferruginous Duck, Western Marsh Harrier, Common Kestrel, Chukar, Black Francolin, Common Quail (h), Water Rail (h), Little Crake, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Little Ringed Plover, Common Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Little Stint, Dunlin, Spotted Redshank, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Common Cuckoo, Common Swift, Alpine Swift, Eurasian Hoopoe, Eurasian Wryneck, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Sand Martin, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Tawny Pipit, Tree Pipit, Meadow Pipit, Red-throated Pipit, Black-headed Wagtail, White Wagtail, Common Nightingale, Common Redstart, Whinchat, Isabelline Wheatear, Northern Wheatear, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Cyprus Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sedge Warbler, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Spectacled Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Cyprus Warbler, Ruppell’s Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Common Whitethroat, Eurasian Blackcap, Spotted Flycatcher, Collared Flycatcher, Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, European Serin, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Corn Bunting

Whinchat, Akrotiri, 6th April 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Whinchat, Akrotiri, 6th April 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

 

 


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report: Two Days Guiding Larnaca and Paphos areas 4th & 5th April 2016

Two good days birding out with Mathias and Barbara. We spend Monday around Larnaca, visiting Oroklini Marsh, Larnaca Salt Lake and Sewage Works areas, Pervolia and Panagia Stazousa. On Tuesday we went west and birded around Anarita Park, Agia Varvara, Mandria, Paphos Sewage Works and Asprokremmos Dam. We had a good selection of 99 species (we tried to make it 100 but found Eastern Bonell’s Warblers instead of the promised Wood Warblers at our last location). We had flocks of migrating Grey and Purple Herons and Garganey offshore; a Peregrine Falcon mobbing a Long-legged Buzzard; migrating European Bee-eaters; an early Little Tern; great views of a male Black Francolin chasing a female; a singing Great Reed Warbler in the open in reeds next to us; several flocks of Greater Short-toed Lark and displaying Calandra Lark; good views of both Cretzschmar’s and Ortolan Bunting; and a soaring Bonell’s Eagle.

Highlights per location:

Monday 4th April

Oroklini Marsh – Purple Heron 18, Greater Flamingo, Black Francolin 2m and 1f, Black-winged Stilt, -Spur-winged Lapwing, Black-tailed Godwit, Spanish Sparrow

Oroklini Jumbo Channel – Temminck’s Stint 3, Little Ringed Plover

Larnaca Salt Lake – Little Egret, Kentish Plover, Little Tern, Greater Short-toed Lark, Tawny Pipit, Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler, Slender-billed Gull c10

Larnaca Sewage Works and nearby pools – Ruddy Shelduck, Black-winged Stilt, Spur-winged Lapwing, Whinchat, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear

Pervolia – Black Francolin, Calandra Lark

Panagia Stazousa – Bonelli’s Eagle, Great Spotted Cuckoo 5, European Bee-eater 12, Cyprus Wheatear, Cyprus Warbler, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler, Masked Shrike, Cretzschmar’s Bunting 2.

Tuesday 5th April

Anarita Park – Western Marsh Harrier, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Lesser Kestrel, Eurasian Stone Curlew 3, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Little Owl 3, Red-rumped Swallow 6, Tawny Pipit, Tree Pipit, Whinchat, Woodchat Shrike, Ortolan Bunting

Agia Varvara area – Long-legged Buzzard, Common Buzzard, Little Bittern, Great Reed Warbler, Woodchat Shrike

Mandria – Garganey c20 offshore in bay, Spur-winged Lapwing 1, Eurasian Hoopoe 4+, Greater Short-toed Lark c40, Red-throated Pipit 1 seen others heard, Yellow Wagtail 20+, Common Nightingale 1, Whinchat 3, Northern Wheatear 12+, Woodchat Shrike 2

Asprokremmos Dam area – Common Buzzard 1, Long-legged Buzzard 1 being mobbed by a Peregrine Falcon, Grey Heron 40+, Purple Heron c70, Baltic Gull 3, Common Redstart 1f, Cyprus Wheatear 1, Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler, Willow Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Woodchat Shrike 1

Total species seen: 99

Little Grebe, Little Bittern, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Purple Heron, Grey Heron, Greater Flamingo, Ruddy Shelduck, Eurasian WIgeon, Eurasian Teal, Mallard, Garganey, Nothern Shoveler, Western Marsh Harrier, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Common Buzzard, Long-legged Buzzard, Bonelli’s Eagle, Lesser Kestrel, Common Kestrel, Peregrine Falcon, Chukar, Black Francolin, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Eurasian Stone Curlew, Little Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Spur-winged Lapwing, Little Stint, Temminck’s Stint, Dunlin, Ruff, Black-tailed Godwit, Common Redshank, Common Sandpiper, Common Black-headed Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Baltic Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Little Tern, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Little Owl, Common Swift, European Bee-eater, Eurasian Hoopoe, Calandra Lark, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Common House Martin, Tawny Pipit, Tree Pipit, Red-throated Pipit, Blue-headed Wagtail, Black-headed Wagtail, White Wagtail, Common Nightingale, Common Redstart, Whinchat, Common Stonechat, Isabelline Wheatear, Northern Wheatear, Cyprus Wheatear, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sedge Warbler, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Eastern Olivaceous Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Common Whitethroat, Eurasian Blackcap, Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike, Masked Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, European Serin, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet, Ortolan Bunting, Cretzschmar’s Bunting, Corn Bunting

Greater Short-toed Lark, Larnaca 4th April 2016

Greater Short-toed Lark, Larnaca 4th April 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

 


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report: Day’s Guiding Akrotiri area 31st March 2016

It was good to see Brian again who I had first taken out in late 2013. We spent the day around Akrotiri and managed several lifers for him plus a Cyprus rarity – a shrike from the Southern Grey complex which on first thoughts would appear to be of the elegans race.

We started at the channel opposite the port where we found a Squacco Heron, two Little Egret, a Common Kingfisher, several Eurasian Reed and Cetti’s Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat. We searched the area for one of the Laughing Doves that seem to be colonizing the port area but with no joy. Moving onto the hide at Zakaki Marsh, Brian immediately picked out a male Little Crake in the reeds near the hide. It dashed back into the dense reeds and refused to come back out. Two Ferruginous Duck were on the water and a couple of Sedge Warbler were in front of the hide. Eurasian Reed and Cetti’s Warbler were also here. On Lady’s Mile we found our only Greater Flamingo – a juvenile bird. There were several Kentish Plover on the mud flats there as well as a couple of Little Ringed Plover, Little Stint, Dunlin, a Curlew Sandpiper, six Common Redshank, an unexpected Greater Sand Plover and a single Greater Short-toed Lark . Near the football ground we found four Tawny Pipit and several Eastern Black-eared and Northern Wheatear.

Moving to the east side of the Salt Lake behind Lady’s Mile we found Isabelline and Cyprus Wheatear as well as several more Eastern Black-eared Wheatear. While Brian was taking photos of the wheatears I spotted a grey shrike nearby. Realising that it was a bit early for a migrating Lesser Grey Shrike I spent some time watching it through the scope and both of us got several photos as did local birder Tony who was also birding in the area. The bird was from the Southern Grey Shrike group and first indications are that it is of the elegans race, although subsequent checking of photos may change this!

We then headed over to Akrotiri Gravel Pits and ate our lunch near the church there. We were joined by several Lesser Whitethroat, a Common Whitethroat, a couple of male Eurasian Blackcap and some Chiffchaffs. A male Cyprus Warbler was seen in display flight and singing behind the garden there. Travelling across the Gravel Pits we saw more wheatears and added Whinchat, Eurasian Pied Flycatcher, Woodchat and Masked Shrike, Eurasian Hoopoe , Common Nightingale, Black-winged Stilt and oddly a single Corn Bunting resting in a tamarisk, to the day’s ever growing list. A ring-tailed harrier was too distant to identify but we did see Western Marsh Harrier and Common Buzzard at closer quarters.

We drove past the burnt Phasouri Reed-beds. We heard a calling Black Francolin but it would not come out in the open for us to get better views. Singing Common Chaffinch and European Serin were heard near the Cat Sanctuary. We moved over to Kensington Cliffs where Brian had hoped to see and photograph Alpine Swift. At first we thought he would be unlucky but then we were treated to an aerial display by five of them. On the distant cliff face I found a Eurasian Griffon Vulture but no others were seen flying. A flock of nearly fifty migrating Great Cormorant flew east over the bay. A lone Cyprus Wheatear was at the nearby Stadium.

We returned to the hide at Zakaki to see if the Little Crake would appear and we were not disappointed as this time a female was seen albeit briefly. A Great Reed Warbler was also seen as was a Green Sandpiper. As earlier we heard Water Rail but it didn’t come into view. Neither did either of the two calling Black Francolin. Three Eurasian Hoopoe flew over the area and the last new species for the day was Grey Heron as fly flew east in the distance.

A very enjoyable day’s birding with the good variety of species that Akrotiri can often provide.

Total species seen: 83

Little Grebe, Great Cormorant, Squacco Heron, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Greater Flamingo, Mallard, Northern Shoveler, Ferruginous Duck, Eurasian Griffon Vulture, Western Marsh Harrier, ring-tailed Harrier, Common Buzzard, Common Kestrel, Chukar, Black Francolin h, Water Rail h, Little Crake, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Little Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Greater Sand Plover, Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Dunlin, Common Redshank, Green Sandpiper, Common Black-headed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Common Kingfisher, Common Swift, Alpine Swift, Eurasian Hoopoe, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Common House Martin, Tawny Pipit, Tree Pipit, Meadow Pipit, White Wagtail, Common Nightingale, Common Redstart, Whinchat, Common Stonechat, Isabelline Wheatear, Northern Wheatear, Cyprus Wheatear, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, Song Thrush, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sedge Warbler, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Spectacled Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Cyprus Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Common Whitethroat, Eurasian Blackcap, Common Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Eurasian Pied Flycatcher, Great Tit, Southern Grey Shrike, Woodchat Shrike, Masked Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, Common Chaffinch, European Serin, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet, Corn Bunting.

Greater Sand Plover, Lady's Mile 31st March 2016(c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Sand Plover, Lady’s Mile 31st March 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

 

 


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report: Day’s Guiding around Akrotiri and Kouklia 23rd September 2015

The first of two day’s out with Julia and Pete was spent mainly around the Akrotiri Peninsula but the surprise of the day was found during a spur of the moment visit to Kouklia Soakways.

As we drove into Phassouri Reed Beds Julia noticed two birds at the edge of the field – a male and female Black Francolin. Moving on to the soundtrack of the day –  the call of migrating European Bee-eaters – we saw several European Honey Buzzard fly over , a couple of Western Marsh Harrier and a female Red-footed Falcon. A male and a female Golden Oriole flew into a tall tree and we had brief glimpses of them. There were also several Eurasian Turtle Dove flying around together with several Yellow Wagtail. A lone Cattle Egret was present but the only waders we saw were two Common Snipe that flew over the area.

On the Gravel Pits we stopped near the church to watch a kettle of around fifty European Honey Buzzard on the thermalling up and disappearing into the clouds. We also had a Tree Pipit fly over calling and on one of the pools we found several Dunlin, Kentish Plover and a Common Sandpiper. We saw a couple of Whinchat and a Northern Wheatear as well as several juvenile Red-backed Shrike. We also had a single Lesser Grey Shrike on the road past Bishop’s Pool.

Lady’s Mile had Kentish Plover, a single Common Ringed Plover, several Dunlin and plenty of Little Stint. A Western Marsh Harrier flew over and then a juvenile Montagu’s Harrier. We were able to get great views of two Great Reed Warbler and several juvenile Yellow Wagtail (feldegg) from the hide at Zakaki Marsh due to the recent clearing work done by a BirdLife Cyprus volunteer. A hunting Western Marsh Harrier put a Northern Pintail, Garganey, Mallard, two Little Egret and a Grey Heron to flight.

After lunch we went to Kensington Cliffs where we were treated to a great flying display by around twenty Eleonora’s Falcon who were joined by seven Eurasian Griffon Vulture soaring over the cliffs and a single Long-legged Buzzard.  We finally left as the Griffon Vultures headed inland and then back again behind the cliffs and out of sight.

We decided to pop into Kouklia Soakaways on the way back to Paphos on the off chance of a Bonelli’s Eagle. No luck with that but we had two, maybe three, Long-legged Buzzard, another Western Marsh Harrier and a Peregrine Falcon. Again there were many European Bee-eater and we thought at first we were looking at another one on the wires over the road as we were leaving. Suddenly it dawned that we had a Cyprus rarity in front of us – a White-throated Kingfisher – recorded less than annually. Unfortunately before we were able to even get a quick photo for the record it flew off into the nearby orchard. We had no luck relocating it but the views we had were unmistakable.  A quick visit to Asprokremmos Dam added Spotted Flycatcher and Black-crowned Night Heron to the day’s list which contained some quality birds.

Species seen – 58

Little Grebe, European Shag, Black-crowned Night Heron, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Grey Heron, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Garganey, European Honey Buzzard, Eurasian Griffon Vulture, Western Marsh Harrier, Montagu’s Harrier, Long-legged Buzzard, Common  Kestrel, Red-footed Falcon, Eleonora’s Falcon, Peregrine Falcon, Black Francolin, Common Moorhen, Common Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Little Stint, Dunlin, Common Snipe, Common Sandpiper, Yellow-legged Gull, Rock Dove, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Eurasian Turtle Dove, White-throated Kingfisher, European Bee-eater, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Sand Martin, Common House Martin, Tree Pipit, Black-headed Wagtail, Whinchat, Northern Wheatear, Cetti’s Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Willow Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Great Tit, Eurasian Golden Oriole, Red-backed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet

 

 


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding Paphos 17th April 2014

Michael had already seen some of his Cyprus target birds out birding before we met but we still had several to try and find on our day out. We visited Kouklia Soakaways, Asprokremmos Dam, Mandria, Agia Varvara and Anarita Park. We saw some interesting birds and had especially good views of an obliging male Cyprus Warbler near the Asprokremmos Dam who can and sang on bushes near us and a Great Spotted Cuckoo (one of at least seven in the area) at Anarita Park that walked along the track towards the car which we were standing next too.

We also found a Spectacled Warbler family at Asprokremmos; saw a pair of Stone Curlew at Kouklia where there were also at least two Great Reed Warbler and we had a fly past from a Long-legged Buzzard. A singing male Eurasian Blackbird was an unusual find. There were two Ortolan Bunting there and then another three at Asprokremmos Dam where we also found a Collared, Pied and Spotted Flycatcher and two European Bee-eater. On the water’s edge was a Purple Heron, a Black-winged Stilt and a couple of Great Cormorant.

Michael had hoped to see an Isabelline Wheatear and after finding a couple of female Northern Wheatear we were pleased to find a lone Isabelline Wheatear. We also found some Greater Short-toed Lark and a male and female Eastern Black-eared Wheatear. A male Black Francolin was very obliging, sitting on a small building out in the open and calling. As with everywhere else we visited there was at least one Woodchat Shrike and many Whinchat.

Although one of the soakaways at Agia Varvara had water we only managed to find a Wood Sandpiper so we moved on to Anarita Park. We were treated to at least twelve Lesser Kestrel and a male Montagu’s Harrier as soon as we arrived and moving into the area we also found a Little Owl, a couple of European Roller, a female Red-footed Falcon and a Wryneck. Our last target bird for the day was a Great Spotted Cuckoo and we were in for a treat. Not only did we find at least seven (and definitely no double counting!) in the fields near the rubbish tip but one of them decided to feed on the track where we were parked moving slowly towards us completely oblivious of our present. A really great end to a good day’s birding.

Species seen – 63

Little Grebe, Great Cormorant, Purple Heron, Mallard, Montagu’s Harrier, Common Buzzard, Long-legged Buzzard, Lesser Kestrel, Common Kestrel, Red-footed Falcon, Chukar, Black Francolin, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Eurasian Stone Curlew, Wood Sandpiper, Yellow-legged Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Little Owl, Common Swift, European Bee-eater, European Roller, Eurasian Wryneck, Greater Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Common House Martin, Tree Pipit, Yellow Wagtail feldegg race, Whinchat, Isabelline Wheatear, Northern Wheatear, Cyprus Wheatear, Eastern Black-eared Wheatear, European Blackcap, Cetti’s Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Sedge Warbler, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Spectacled Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Cyprus Warbler, Common Whitethroat, Eurasian Blackcap, Spotted Flycatcher, Collared Flycatcher, Pied Flycatcher, Great Tit, Woodchat Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Western Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Common Linnet, Ortolan Bunting, Corn Bunting

Great Spotted Cuckoo Anarita Park 17th April 2014 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Great Spotted Cuckoo Anarita Park 17th April 2014 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours