Cyprus Birding Tours

Offering guided bird watching tours around Cyprus


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report: Day’s Guiding Paphos Plain and Kidasi, 14th November 2017

For their second day out I took Peter and Jean to Paphos Sewage Plant, Timi Beach and Mandria and then inland to Kidasi. We finished the day at Kouklia village and then watching hundreds of Eurasian Jackdaw and Hooded Crow come into roost at Secret Valley where thirty plus Greater Cormorant also flew in and added to the spectacle.

Although we failed to see the Bimaculated Lark at Mandria despite checking through a lot of Eurasian Skylark we did find a lone Calandra Lark there as well as seeing a flyby Audouin’s Gull, a very late male Pallid Harrier and both a male and female Hen Harrier. We also enjoyed a male Finsch’s Wheatear at Kidasi.

Highlights per locations:

Paphos Sewage Plant – Spur-winged Lapwing 4, Eurasian Sparrowhawk 2, Common Buzzard, Red-throated Pipit 2+, Black Redstart

Timi Beach – Common Kingfisher

Mandria – Yellow-legged Gull c200, Audouin’s Gull 1, Hen Harrier 1m and 1f, Pallid Harrier 1m, Eurasian Skylark 100+, Calandra Lark 1, Black Redstart, Spanish Sparrow, White Wagtail

Kidasi – Finsch’s Wheatear 1m

Mamonia – Corn Bunting

Kouklia Village – Laughing Dove 5+

Secret Valley – Chukar, Great Cormorant 35+, Eurasian Jackdaw 300+, Common Kingfisher

Pallid Harrier, Mandria 14th November 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Pallid Harrier, Mandria 14th November 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Paphos Sewage Plant 14th November 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Paphos Sewage Plant 14th November 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Day’s Guiding North of Paphos 10th November 2017

This was the third year that I had taken Peter and Jean out and we started the first of two days out this autumn at Mavrokolympos Dam, continued through Akoursos to Kathikas, spent a couple of hours in the valley behind Arodes before driving to Kannaviou Dam. We finished the day as light was fading at Evretou Dam after a drive through the Saramas Valley.

Highlights per location:
Mavrokolympos Dam – Chukar h, Rock Dove, Grey Heron, Woodlark, Cyprus Warbler 1m and 1f, Blue Rock Thrush 1f, Meadow Pipit 37 over in one group

Kathikas – Long-legged Buzzard

Arodes – Common Quail 1 flushed from under our feet, Great Cormorant c30 seen migrating in a flock heading S, Hen Harrier 1f, Bonelli’s Eagle 2 ad (pair), Northern Goshawk 1 (prob this species), Woodlark, Black Redstart, Corn Bunting

Kannaviou – Chukar, Coal Tit (Cyprus endemic sub-species), Common Chaffinch, European Serin

Saramas Valley – Song Thrush, Black Redstart, Spanish Sparrow, Common Chiffchaff c20, Corn Bunting 30+, White Wagtail

Evretou Dam – Western Marsh Harrier 1f hunting, Long-legged Buzzard 1 perched in tree overlooking village, Black Redstart

Bonelli's Eagle, 10th November 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Bonelli’s Eagle, 10th November 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – A day and a half around Paphos 25th & 27th October 2017

I spent Wednesday morning and all day Friday taking Katrin and Volker around several of the main Paphos birding locations. On Wednesday morning we concentrated on finding the two endemics – Cyprus Warbler and Cyprus Wheatear. To maximise our chances we spent a couple of hours at Mavrokolymbos Dam. Luckily we found two Cyprus Wheatear that have still not headed south for the winter. We heard a couple of Cyprus Warbler too in an area where I have found them in the past. They were not as obliging as the wheatears – we can say that we definitely saw them but only briefly as they flitted between bushes, usually diving quickly out of sight again. A Long-legged Buzzard perched on a low rock also kept us entertained until finally the local Hooded Crows forced it to leave the area. Two Eurasian Hobby flew briefly into view and we heard many newly arrived European Robin, saw some Spanish Sparrow, found many Sardinian Warbler, a female Black Redstart and a late migrant Spotted Flycatcher. The only water bird in the area was a Grey Heron.

We checked the road to Akoursos for Cyprus Warbler as well and again we were made to struggle for good views. A male played very hard to get and while a female was also around. Driving towards Kathikas we found a good number of Corn Bunting and a Lesser Whitethroat. A surprise near Pegeia was a female Merlin that flew in front of the car.

On Friday the aim was to have a general bird watch and see what was around. We started at Paphos Headland where we were pleased to find three Greater Sandplover in their usual location on the beach despite being warned by a local birder that they weren’t present. We also found a Common Sandpiper and four Ruddy Turnstone which late migrant Whinchat and Northern Wheatear were also present together with some of the numerous European Stonechat and Crested Lark that we would see during the day. At Paphos Sewage Plant we also found our target species quite quickly – Spur-winged Lapwing – although behind the fences today and not feeding in the fields as we had hoped. We spent some time watching a mixed flock of Meadow and Red-throated Pipit in an unploughed field together with a good number of White Wagtail and a few Western Yellow Wagtail. Six Eurasian Skylark flew over – all these species highlighting the fact that winter visitors are well and truly here.

We then visited Anarita Park where we failed to find our target species – a Finsch’s Wheatear. One had been reported back on territory in mid week but we had no joy today even after trying several areas where they usually winter. We did find some compensation in a very smart male Blue Rock Thrush. We also found Chukar, a Little Owl, four Northern Wheatear, two Whinchat and a Cyprus Wheatear. Moving down to the coast we drove around the fields at Mandria and were pleased to finally see a raptor – a ringtail Hen Harrier that flew over the western part of the area being chased by Hooded Crows. Here we also found two juvenile Red-backed Shrike.

Over looking Asprokremmos Dam from near Anarita Mast we were treated to a fly over from an Eleonora’s Falcon and then a young Osprey fishing in the Dam itself. Also trying to feed over the water was an immature Whiskered Tern. An odd bird for this location but a new one for our trip list was a Northern Lapwing. Several Great Cormorant and Grey Heron were also on the water.

We finished our day checking the Ha Potami valley and then headed back into Paphos after seeing a good variety of species during what is a relatively quiet period bird-wise.

Species list- Chukar, Mallard, Little Grebe, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dover, Common Coot, Grey Heron, Great Cormorant, Greater Sandplover, Northern Lapwing, Spur-winged Lapwing, Ruddy Turnstone, Common Sandpiper, Yellow-legged Gull, Whiskered Tern, Little Owl, Osprey, Hen Harrier, Long-legged Buzzard, Common Kestrel, Eurasian Hobby, Eleonora’s Falcon, Merlin, Red-backed Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Eurasian Jackdaw, Hooded Crow, Great Tit, Eurasian Skylark, Crested Lark, Zitting Cisticola, Willow Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Lesser Whitethroat, Cyprus Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, European Robin, Black Redstart, Blue Rock Thrush, Whinchat, European Stonechat, Northern Wheatear, Cyprus Wheatear, House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, Red-throated Pipit, Meadow Pipit, Western Yellow Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, White Wagtail, Common Chaffinch, European Goldfinch, Corn Bunting

Greater Sandplover, Paphos Headland 27th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Sandplover, Paphos Headland 27th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Achna Dam and Oroklini Marsh 26th October 2017

Visited Achna Dam and Oroklini Marsh this morning after yesterday’s rain. Birds around included Hen and Western Marsh Harrier, Great Egret, Spur-winged Lapwing, Common Snipe, Common Kingfisher, my first Meadow Pipits of the winter and a Bluethroat. Photos of a female Northern Pintail and a Western Marsh Harrier from Achna.

Northern Pintail, Achna Dam 26th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Northern Pintail, Achna Dam 26th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Western Marsh Harrier, Larnaca 26th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Western Marsh Harrier, Larnaca 26th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Achna Dam this morning 17th October 2017

More Common Crane migrating over the island today. Over 50 reported over Tala, Paphos while I had 95 over Achna Dam around 9:30 this morning. Also at Achna were:

Hen Harrier 1 ringtail
Eurasian Sparrowhawk 1
Great Egret 1
Glossy Ibis 2
Northern Lapwing 2
Common Redshank 2
Wood Sandpiper 1
Common Snipe 1
Little Stint 2
Dunlin 1
Common Kingfisher 1
Red-throated Pipit 3
Northern Pintail 2
Common Crane, Achna Dam 17th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Crane, Achna Dam 17th October 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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Larnaca Waterbird Count, 18th March 2017

Some of the main sightings from my morning in the Larnaca area doing the monthly waterbird count. It was still windy but a fall of warblers all along the coast – mainly Chiffchaff but also Lesser Whitethroat, Ruppell’s and Subalpine. The only Ruppell’s that stayed in the open long enough for a photo (see below) didn’t chose the best backdrop before he dived into the shelter of the nearby bushes.

Meneou Pool
Black-winged Stilt 60
Greater Flamingo 190
Ruff 3
Kentish Plover 22
Common Black-headed Gull 25
Dunlin 3
Little Stint 11
Common Ringed Plover 6
Marsh Sandpiper 6
Little Ringed Plover 1

Larnaca Airport Pools South
Baltic Gull ad and 2 imm over heading E
Eurasian Stone Curlew 10

Larnaca Sewage Works
Western Marsh Harrier 1
Ruppell’s Warbler 2m
Chiffchaff 13
Ruddy Shelduck 19
Black-headed Wagtail 3
Spur-winged Lapwing 3
Common Greenshank 6
Eurasian Wigeon 2m
Isabelline Wheatear 1
Eurasian Hoopoe 1
Song Thrush 3

Spiros Pool
Subalpine Warbler 1m
Corn Bunting 1
Black-winged Stilt 9
Common Chiffchaff 6+
Little Stint 3
Hen Harrier 1 ringtail

Larnaca Airport Coast
Lesser Whitethroat 1+
Common Chiffchaff 10+
Ruppell’s Warbler 1m
Subalpine Warbler 1m

Larnaca Airport Pools North
Greater Flamingo 210
Black-winged Stilt 30
Ruff 2
Marsh Sandpiper 2
Common Redshank 1

Larnaca Salt Lake
Grey Heron 5
Great Egret 2
Slender-billed Gull 779
Greater Flamingo 35
Ruff 197
Common Chiffchaff 10+
Common Shelduck 425
Black-necked Grebe 6
Ruppell’s Warbler 1m+
Western Marsh Harrier 2
Common Redshank 4
Spur-winged Lapwing 8
Little Crake 1
Eurasian Reed Warbler 6 (3 heard only)
Kentish Plover 15
Little Ringed Plover 4
Little Stint 10
Dunlin 6
Yellow Wagtail 1f (same bird as present all winter now acquiring ad plumage and seems to be flava female)
Water Pipit 2

Water Pipit, Larnaca Salt Lake 18th March 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Water Pipit, Larnaca Salt Lake 18th March 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Ruppell's Warbler, Larnaca Sewage Works, 18th March 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Ruppell’s Warbler, Larnaca Sewage Works, 18th March 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Spur-winged Lapwing, Larnaca Salt Lake 18th March 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Spur-winged Lapwing, Larnaca Salt Lake 18th March 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

 


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Agios Sozomenos, Nicosia this afternoon 6th February 2017

Only saw one Finsch’s Wheatear in the area this afternoon and he decided to keep an eye on me from behind a rock! A pair of Long-legged Buzzard were flying around the abandoned village calling and a female Hen Harrier was present. Lots of finches, Common Chiffchaff and Common Stonechat in the area.

Finsch's Wheatear, Agios Sozomenos, Nicosia 6th February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Finsch’s Wheatear, Agios Sozomenos, Nicosia 6th February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Chiffchaff, Agios Sozomenos 6th February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Chiffchaff, Agios Sozomenos 6th February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Waterbird Count Larnaca 14th January 2017

Out counting the waterbirds around Larnaca today was very enjoyable – not a lot of Greater Flamingos to count (last year there were 12000+ on this day!) – but lots of interesting birds including the largest flock of Greylag Geese in Cyprus for more than 30 years, five Pallas’ Gulls, two Common Quail, two Barn Swallow and plenty more. One of the Pallas’ Gulls was sitting at the north end of the Salt Lake with some Greater Flamingos (see record photo below).

Greater Flamingo and a Great Black-backed Gull, Larnaca Salt Lake, 14th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Flamingo and a Great Black-backed Gull, Larnaca Salt Lake, 14th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Meneou Pool
Common Redshank 4
Greater Flamingo 97
Common Shelduck 43
Common Ringed Plover 2
Kentish Plover 2

Larnaca Airport Pools South
Eurasian Stone Curlew 5

Larnaca Sewage Works
Eurasian Curlew 17
Great Cormorant 24
Greater White-fronted Goose 8
Eurasian Wigeon 16
Western Marsh Harrier 1
Eurasian Teal 736
Northern Shoveler 16
Mallard 232
Great Black-headed Gull (Pallas Gull) 2 ad and 2 imm
Black-necked Grebe 3
Northern Pintail 4
Tufted Duck 1m
Caspian Gull 3
Meadow Pipit c30
Great White Pelican 1
Mediterranean Gull 1 imm

Spiros Pool
Greater Flamingo 37
Eurasian Wigeon 3
Eurasian Golden Plover 336

Larnaca Airport Coast
European Shag 2

Larnaca Airport Pools North
Greater Flamingo 37
Common Shelduck 26
Northern Shoveler 41
Kentish Plover 4
Common Redshank 3
Dunlin 12

Larnaca Salt Lake
Common Starling 50
Greater Flamingo 1028
Common Shelduck 576
Common Ringed Plover 8
Little Stint 39
Common Redshank 7
Common Black-headed Gull 261
Greylag Geese 57 (presumably same birds as those at Akrotiri during the week)
Dunlin 62+
Hen Harrier 1
Black-necked Grebe 12
Slender-billed Gull 1 ad
Caspian Gull 60+
Armenian Gull 24
Great Black-headed Gull 1 ad
Common Quail 2 flushed
Corn Bunting c60
Common Buzzard 2
Common Snipe 4
Spanish Sparrow 20+
Common Reed Bunting 1h
Western Marsh Harrier 1
Song Thrush 2
Eurasian Blackbird 1
Marsh Sandpiper 1
Common Greenshank 1

Kamares area
Spur-winged Lapwing 3
Common Chiffchaff 50+
Moustached Warbler 1
Yellow Wagtail 1 1st winter bird – same as seen there in mid Dec
Common Snipe 1
Green Sandpiper 1
Common Redshank 1
Common Ringed Plover 1
Western Jackdaw 15
Barn Swallow 2
Western Marsh Harrier 1
Water Pipit 2


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Waterbird Count Larnaca 16th December 2016

A good day around the Larnaca area doing the December waterbird count. Although one of the Sewage Pools is still empty the other one had some good birds including six Greater White-fronted Goose, a Ruddy Shelduck, an immature Great White Pelican, two Common Shelduck, five Black-necked Grebe, nine Eurasian Wigeon, four Common Pochard and two Northern Pintail. Twelve Eurasian Golden Plover were on Spiros Pool and six Eurasian Curlew were in the nearby fields which also had many Eurasian Skylark and Meadow Pipit feeding in them.

Nearly 700 Greater Flamingo were on the main Salt Lake as were around 140 Common Shelduck. An unexpected find were three Common Crane – maybe the same birds that were at Akrotiri Salt Lake recently (see record photo). Flocks of Kentish Plover, Dunlin and Little Stint were feeding on the edges of the water. Towards the north east corner there were more than 20 Common Snipe and a single Temminck’s Stint. Water and Meadow Pipit were around and were put up by hunting Western Marsh and Hen Harrier and two Common Buzzard. In the reeds I found three Moustached Warbler and two Bluethroat, a Water Rail and a Jack Snipe, as well as many Common Chiffchaff, two Grey Wagtail and a first winter Yellow Wagtail.

Common Crane, Larnaca Salt Lake 16th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Crane, Larnaca Salt Lake 16th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Bluethroat, Larnaca Salt Lake 16th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Bluethroat, Larnaca Salt Lake 16th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Moustached Warbler, Larnaca Salt Lake 16th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Moustached Warbler, Larnaca Salt Lake 16th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Agios Sozomenos this morning 10th December 2016

Spent an hour at Agios Sozomenos this morning. Everywhere looking very dry again despite the recent rain.

Highlights:

Hen Harrier 1m and 1f hunting in same area and putting up many Meadow Pipits
Bluethroat 1 singing
Finsch’s Wheatear 1m (also singing) and 1f
Northern Lapwing 32 (see photo)
Meadow Pipit 200+
Western Jackdaw 300+
Red-throated Pipit 1 seen
European Serin 4
Eurasian Blackbird 1f
Common Chaffinch 6+
Spectacled Warbler 6+
Western Black Redstart 2
Little Owl 1

Northern Lapwing, Agios Sozomenos, 10th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Northern Lapwing, Agios Sozomenos, 10th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Paralimni area 6th December 2016

Went to Paralimni Lake and sites around Cape Greco. Not a lot to see but some good views of male and female Finsch’s Wheatear, hunting Hen Harrier, Merlin and Peregrine Falcon, my first Audouin’s Gull for a couple of months and a Greater Sand Plover.

Paralimni Lake

Common Starling c130
Western Marsh Harrier 2
Hen Harrier 1 ring tail
Song Thrush 8
Merlin 1

Agia Trias

Grey Plover 2
Greater Sand Plover 1

Cape Greco

Peregrine Falcon 1
Long-legged Buzzard 1 ad
Western Black Redstart 8
Blue Rock Thrush 1f
Finsch’s Wheatear 1m and 1f (poss 2m as he seemed to be everywhere at once)
Cyprus Warbler 1h

Kermia Beach

Audouin’s Gull 1

Makronissos Beach

Kentish Plover 7
Common Sandpiper 1
Corn Bunting 19

Potamos Liopetri

Common Sandpiper 1

Common Kingfisher 1

Male Finsch's Wheatear, Cape Greco, 6th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Male Finsch’s Wheatear, Cape Greco, 6th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Female Finsch's Wheatear, Cape Greco, 6th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Female Finsch’s Wheatear, Cape Greco, 6th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Sand Plover, Agia Trias 6th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Greater Sand Plover, Agia Trias 6th December 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours