Cyprus Birding Tours

Offering guided bird watching tours around Cyprus


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Cyprus Birding Tours Trip Report – Morning’s Guiding 12th October Achna Dam, Oroklini Marsh & Panagia Stazousa

Peter, Pat, Paul and Janet were staying in Nicosia so we had a bit of a drive before we could start our morning’s birding. We headed to Achna Dam where water levels are still good and where I had seen some good birds on a trip there last week. We spent some time there getting good views of three Great White Egret, an immature Whiskered Tern, a Common Kingfisher and two Northern Pintail. A group of five Glossy Ibis feeding on the far shore left the area after a while – probably continuing their migration south. Ten newly arrived Northern Lapwing flew into the area from the north. Several Cattle and Little Egret and Grey Heron were also present and a couple of Willow Warbler were feeding in the shorter reeds. As we returned to the car we spotted two Dunlin, a Little Stint and a Little Ringed Plover feeding in a muddy area. A juvenile Western Marsh Harrier was quartering the area and we saw it fly up from the ground with something in its talons. Unfortunately although we heard several European Bee-eater flying over the area they were too high for us to see.

We searched the rocky beach at Ormedeia for a Greater Sandplover but had no joy so we had to make do with a single Kentish Plover and three more Northern Lapwing. A quick stop at Oroklini Marsh enabled us to see a large group of almost forty Spur-winged Lapwing as well as a couple of Common Redshank, a Little Ringed Plover and a Ruff.

We finished our morning driving through the valley of Panagia Stazousa as we headed back to Nicosia. We were hoping that there would still be some Cyprus Wheatear around and we were not disappointed. At least four were still present and dutifully obliged by sitting out in the open on the top of low bushes. While watching one of them we spotted a juvenile Red-backed Shrike and when it flew further away we were pleased to also see a juvenile Masked Shrike in another bush. Several Whinchat were seen resting as they migrated through the island. We also had brief views of a Spotted Flycatcher and a female Eurasian Blackcap but a female Common Redstart was more co-operative and sat low in a shrub enabling us to watch her through the telescope. An unexpected bird to finish the morning on. A morning on which we managed to see a good variety of species – a few more than I had anticipated.

Total species – 40

Northern Pintail, Little Grebe, Common Woodpigeon, Eurasian Collared Dove, Common Coot, Glossy Ibis, Cattle Egret, Grey Heron, Great White Egret, Little Egret, Little Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Northern Lapwing, Spur-winged Lapwing, Ruff, Dunlin, Little Stint, Common Redshank, Whiskered Tern, Western Marsh Harrier, European Bee-eater (h), Common Kingfisher, Common Kestrel, Red-backed Shrike, Masked Shrike, Eurasian Magpie, Hooded Crow, Crested Lark, Barn Swallow, Willow Warbler, Cetti’s Warbler, Eurasian Blackcap, Sardinian Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Common Redstart, Whinchat, Cyprus Wheatear, House Sparrow, White Wagtail, European GoldfinchGreat Egret, Achna Dam 12th October 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

 

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Migrating herons this morning off Cape Greco, 7th September 2017

Although I was at Cape Greco to do a raptor survey it was the flocks of herons that kept me busy counting this morning. Around 450 Purple Heron and 150 Grey Heron passed by off the east of the Cape in several flocks. A lone Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Egret and 11 Glossy Ibis also headed south off the coast and a surprise spot was a juvenile Greater Flamingo migrating in with a flock of Purple Herons.

Photo of a distant mixed flock of Grey and Purple Heron.

Migrating Herons, Cape Greco 7th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Migrating Herons, Cape Greco 7th September 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Akamas area and visible migration Polis Chrysochou Bay 11th August 2017

Spent several hours sea watching in Polis Chrysochou Bay today. Plenty of Glossy Ibis on the move as well as Little Egret and a single Grey Heron. Bird of the day was a juvenile Greater Sandplover that flew onto the beach near me around 7.30 am and then flew off east after about 15 minutes. It was probably the large plover that I saw later migrating west in with a flock of Glossy Ibis.

Birds seen during the day there and inland included:

Polis Chrysochou Bay
From 7.00 am – 8.30am and 11.00am to 16.00 pm
Grey Heron 1
Glossy Ibis flocks of c60 + 34 + 38+ 11 + 52 + c100 + 45 + 18 + c80 (see photo)
Little Egret 27 flying over area all day
Greater Sandplover 1 on beach in morning then flying W later with flock of Glossy Ibis 12:10
Wader spp 18 probably Common Redshank flying offshore heading W
Common Ringed Plover in off sea and inland
Common Kingfisher 1
European Shag 1 offshore
Alpine Swift 2
Common Sandpiper 5

Pittokopos
European Roller 3
Lesser Grey Shrike 1 imm

Pittokopos to Androlikou track
European Roller 5
Long-legged Buzzard 1
Lesser Grey Shrike 2 ad
Woodchat Shrike 2m
Cyprus Warbler 1m and 1f
Masked Shrike 1m and 1 juv

Androlikou
Cyprus Wheatear 2

Prodromi
Eleonora’s Falcon 1 over

Glossy Ibis, Polis Chrysochou Bay 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Glossy Ibis, Polis Chrysochou Bay 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Woodchat Shrike, Androlikou 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Woodchat Shrike, Androlikou 11th August 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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World Wetlands Day 2nd February 2017

A visit to Manglis Lake in the suburbs of Nicosia this morning showed the importance of this and other wetlands to wintering birds here in Cyprus. There were nearly 50 Greater Cormorant, four Grey Heron, a Great Egret, a Little Egret, more than 20 Eurasian Coot, three Moorhen and a Little Grebe all feeding and resting there.

Grey Heron, Manglis Lake 2nd February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Grey Heron, Manglis Lake 2nd February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Coot, Manglis Lake 2nd February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Coot, Manglis Lake 2nd February 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Limassol area today 25th January 2017

Visited some of the Limassol sites today and although it was quite quiet (unless you like Common Black-headed Gulls!) I still saw some interesting birds, including a pair of Bonelli’s Eagle, and finished the afternoon watching seven Eurasian Griffon Vultures circling over Kensington Cliffs.

Germasogeia Dam
Bonelli’s Eagle 2ad over dam wall
Grey Wagtail 2
Water Rail 1h
Cyprus Warbler 1h in song

Akrounta Creek
Fox
Cyprus Warbler 1h

Zakaki Marsh
Little Egret 1
Western Marsh Harrier 1
Long-legged Buzzard 1

Lady’s Mile
Siberian Stonechat 1 poss
Common Black-headed Gull c700
Common Gull 3
Sandwich Tern 1

Kensington Cliffs
Eurasian Blackbird 1
Eurasian Griffon Vulture 7+ (seven seen in air at same time and then others flying in ones and twos which could have been same birds)
Yellow-legged Gull c20
Peregrine Falcon 2

Kourion Stadium
Cyprus Warbler 2m seen

Armenian Gull, Lady's Mile 25th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Armenian Gull, Lady’s Mile 25th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Yellow-legged Gull, Lady's Mile 25th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Yellow-legged Gull, Lady’s Mile 25th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Egret, Zakaki Marsh, 25th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Egret, Zakaki Marsh, 25th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Eastern Cyprus today 11th January 2017

A break from the rain today and I started at Akhna Dam which now has almost double the amount of water than when I last visited. Plenty of Eurasian Coot and some Grey Heron but more interesting was the female Red-crested Pochard, two Great Crested Grebe and the immature Great White Pelican that has been in the area since mid November 2016. At the coast at Agia Trias I found three Grey Plover, two Greater Sand Plover and three Common Sandpiper (see photo). An immature Slender-billed Gull flew in for a few minutes and then flew off again south (see photo).

A quick look at Cape Greco with only a female Blue Rock Thrush, a female Hen Harrier and Cyprus Warbler of note. Single Little Egret were on Kermia Beach, Makronissos Beach and Dekeleia. Nearly twenty Armenian Gull, a big male Caspian Gull and an adult Mediterranean Gull were on Oroklini Beach and a large flock of Common Starling were flying around before roosting. There were four Temminck’s Stint and six Common Ringed Plover at the JUMBO drainage channel. I finished the day at the Larnaca Sewage Works hide. No sign of the Pallas’ Gull that have been there for a few days but there were seven Greater White-fronted Geese in the fields.

Chukar 11th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Chukar 11th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Sandpiper, Agia Trias, 11th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Sandpiper, Agia Trias, 11th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Slender-billed Gull, Agia Trias 11th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Slender-billed Gull, Agia Trias 11th January 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Akhna Dam, Cape Greco and east of the island today 22nd November 2016

Went over to the east of the island again today to try my luck with the Asian Buff-bellied Pipit found at Akhna on Saturday. This is the 5th record of the species in Cyprus. Was lucky enough to find it, take a record photo before it flew off and see some other good birds.

Akhna Dam
Asian Buff-bellied Pipit 1
Water Pipit 20+
Meadow Pipit 40+
Eurasian Wigeon 1m and 1f
Common Shelduck 1 imm
Peregrine Falcon 1
Grey Plover 1
Common Ringed Plover 4
Great Cormorant 3
Common Chaffinch 6
Eurasian Blackbird 1
Song Thrush 10+
Common Linnet 3
European Serin 2+

Cape Greco
Finsch’s Wheatear 2m and 1f
Blue Rock Thrush 3m and 1f
Western Black Redstart 11
Great Cormorant 20 heading SW

Agias Trias
Little Egret

Oroklini Marsh
Greater Flamingo c60
Water Rail 1
Spotted Crake 1
Bluethroat 1
Cattle Egret c100
Song Thrush 1
Common Starling 16
Northern Lapwing 3

Asian Buff-bellied Pipit, Akhna Dam 22nd November 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Asian Buff-bellied Pipit, Akhna Dam 22nd November 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Stonechat, Cape Greco 22nd November 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Stonechat, Cape Greco 22nd November 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Egret, Agia Trias, 22nd November 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Egret, Agia Trias, 22nd November 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Athalassa Dam, Nicosia 21st October 2016

A quick visit to Athalassa Dam, outside Nicosia this morning – very peaceful and with some good views of some interesting birds.

Eurasian Spooonbill 3 (possibly 5 but quite mobile)
Great Egret 3
White-winged Tern 1
Little Egret 24
Little Grebe 60 in a group moving around edge of water in company of the feeding Little Egrets
Grey Heron 7
Greater Cormorant 11
Common Kingfisher 3
Grey Wagtail 3
Water Rail 2 (one seen, another heard elsewhere)
European Robin 2+
White Wagtail 4
Eurasian Spoonbill, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Eurasian Spoonbill, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Three feeding Eurasian Spoonbill, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Three feeding Eurasian Spoonbill, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Great Egret, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Great Egret, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Grey Heron, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Grey Heron, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Egret, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Egret, Athalassa Dam, 21st October 2016 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Polis Chrysochou Bay 9th and 10th September 2016

A chance to see some migrating birds off the north west coast of the island and to join the BirdLife Cyprus annual boat trip from Latchi to Cape Arnaouti. Highlight of that for local birders was a Eurasian Oystercatcher seen flying E along the rocky shore – never common here it has been five years since I last saw one in Cyprus, although at least one has been seen on this coast so far this autumn. Also seen over the two days were Purple and Grey Heron, Baltic Gull, Little and Cattle Egret, Garganey, White-winged Tern, Common Redshank, Peregrine Falcon, Western Marsh Harrier, a ring-tailed Harrier – probably a juvenile Pallid, Yellow Wagtail, Little Ringed Plover, Eurasian Shag and migrating Common Black-headed Gull. Plus several flying fish!


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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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Birding around Paphos area, 10th August 2015

Spent today out in the Paphos area. Rain was a pleasant relief from the heat when I got to Arodes but it didn’t put off both the Long-legged Buzzard and Eurasian Hobby that were flying over the area. There were at least four European Roller in the area and two Eurasian Turtle Dove.

Off shore I saw thirteen Grey Heron, three Little Egret, at least 75 Glossy Ibis, around fifty Garganey and six Gull-billed Tern as they migrated over Polis Chrysochou Bay. A Woodchat Shrike was at Neochorio and Masked Shrike were at Androlikou and Minthis Hills with several European Roller at both those locations.

A quick visit to Paphos Sewage Works on my way home produced 12 migrating Yellow Wagtail .

European Roller Arodes 10th August 2015  (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Roller Arodes 10th August 2015 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Woodchat Shrike Neochorio 10th August 2015  (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Woodchat Shrike Neochorio 10th August 2015 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours