Cyprus Birding Tours

Offering guided bird watching tours around Cyprus


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Akamas 7th – 9th September 2018

Spent the last few days in north west corner of island – joining BirdLife Cyprus’ members weekend there which included a boat trip to Cape Arnaouti from Latchi Harbour.

My birding highlights included Baltic Gull, Gull-billed Tern, flocks of Purple & Grey Heron and Glossy Ibis, several Red-backed and Masked Shrike, a migrating European Sparrowhawk, flocks of European Bee-eater (see photo), an Ortolan Bunting, several autumn plumage Cyprus Wheatear (see photo), Red-rumped Swallow, Alpine Swift, a juvenile Pallid Harrier, Whinchat and a Common Hoopoe.

Cyprus Wheatear, Droushia 8th September 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Cyprus Wheatear, Droushia 8th September 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Bee-eater, Arodes 9th September 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

European Bee-eater, Arodes 9th September 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Akrotiri today 8th August 2018

The area is drying out but along with Larnaca Sewage Works, it is still probably the best birding location on the island at the moment. Plenty of Little Ringed Plover (see photo), Kentish Plover and Little Stint along with Glossy Ibis, Slender-billed Gull, a Broad-billed Sandpiper, a Spotted Redshank, Common Greenshank, Common Snipe, two Collared Pratincole, a Temminck’s Stint and a Gull-billed Tern. A female Western Marsh Harrier is putting the birds up frequently as she quarters the area and Elenora’s Falcon fly over from time to time.

Little Ringed Plover juv, Akrotiri 8th August 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Ringed Plover juv, Akrotiri 8th August 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Larnaca area this morning 30th July 2018

Migration slowly getting busier with c50 Collared Pratincole in the fields near Larnaca Sewage Works and a group of 13 Common Sandpiper resting on the rocks on the nearby coast this morning. Feeding on the Sewage Pools were Gull-billed, Whiskered and White-winged Tern. A couple of Slender-billed and Black-headed Gull were present as were more than 100 Greater Flamingo, a couple of Black-winged Stilt, 23 Ferruginous Duck, a Common Greenshank, six Grey Heron and six Cattle Egret, plenty of Spur-winged Lapwing and both the long-staying unseasonable Great Crested Grebes.

Ferruginous Duck, Larnaca Sewage Works, 30th July 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Ferruginous Duck, Larnaca Sewage Works, 30th July 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Gull-billed Tern, Larnaca Sewage Works, 30th July 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Gull-billed Tern, Larnaca Sewage Works, 30th July 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Larnaca Sewage Works 20th July 2018

Two unseasonal species this morning at Larnaca Sewage Works. Two Great Crested Grebe and three Common Tern (one in photo below). A single Great Crested Grebe had been there on 9th July but it has now been joined by another. A very early date for this passage migrant/winter visitor.

Also present were a flock of 60 plus Greater Flamingo, a Slender-billed Gull, ten Black-headed Gull, a few Common Sandpiper and at least ten Ferruginous Duck.

Common Tern, Larnaca Sewage Works, 20th July 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Tern, Larnaca Sewage Works, 20th July 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Waterbird count Larnaca area today 15th March

Black-necked Grebe, Larnaca Sewage Works 15th March 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Black-necked Grebe, Larnaca Sewage Works 15th March 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Morning around Larnaca doing the monthly waterbird count. Most wintering ducks have gone as have most of the Greater Flamingos. Highlights were a Greater Sandplover at Spiros Pool, a flock of more than 600 Slender-billed Gulls on the Salt Lake and my first Wood Sandpiper of the year.

Main sightings:

Meneou Pool
Kentish Plover 6

Larnaca Airport Pools South
Eurasian Thick-knee 2
Greater Flamingo 178
Black Francolin 1h
Laughing Dove 1 (first time seen here)

Larnaca Sewage Works
Spur-winged Lapwing 6
Black-necked Grebe 13 (see photograph)
Northern Shoveler 247
Common Pochard 3f
Eurasian Wigeon 1m and 1f
Green Sandpiper 2
Common Teal 44
Common Hoopoe 1

Spiros Beach
Greater Sandplover 1 (later seen on Spiros Pool)
Kentish Plover 2

Spiros Pool
Little Stint 14
Kentish Plover 1

Larnaca Airport Pools North
Greater Flamingo 100

Larnaca Salt Lake
Greater Flamingo 17
Common Shelduck 2
Slender-billed Gull 657
Ruff 145
Dunlin 16
Kentish Plover 14
Little Stint 56
Common Ringed Plover 28
Eurasian Reed Warbler 5+h
Reed Bunting 1h
Common Snipe 6+
Water Pipit 4
Common Redshank 1h
Spur-winged Lapwing 9
Little Egret 1
Bluethroat 1
Wood Sandpiper 1
Little Ringed Plover 1
Yellow Wagtail 1 first winter/spring


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Limassol area 10th & 11th March 2018

Spent the last two days in the Limassol area. The highlight was a Masked Shrike already on breeding territory at Prastio Kellakiou and two Bimaculated Lark in with a flock of Greater Short-toed Lark and Meadow Pipit on the coastline of Akrotiri Gravel Pits. Other interesting sightings during the two days:

Saturday 10th March

Zakaki Marsh
Water Rail 1h
Little Crake 1m
Penduline Tit 2

Lady’s Mile
Slender-billed Gull 2 ad and 1 imm
Heuglin’s Gull 1
Armenian Gull c30
Caspian Gull 2 imm
Isabelline Wheatear 1
Common Hoopoe 3 (See photo)
Lesser Whitethroat 1
Cyprus Wheatear 1

Akrotiri Salt Lake/Zakaki run off
Little Ringed Plover 20+
Common Ringed Plover 20+
Kentish Plover c100
Little Stint c30
Northern Shoveler c50
Greater Flamingo 800+
Dunlin 5
Western Marsh Harrier 1 ad male
Common Snipe 12
Black-headed Wagtail 1m

Akrotiri Gravel Pits
Kentish Plover 2
Isabelline Wheatear 1
Northern Wheatear 1m
Ruppell’s Warbler 1m
Greater Short-toed Lark 4

Phasouri Reed-beds
Subalpine Warbler 1f
Eurasian Reed Warbler 4+h
Red-throated Pipit 1h

Kensington Cliffs
Alpine Swift 14
Cyprus Warbler 2h

Sunday 11th March

Germasogeia Dam
Cyprus Warbler 3 singing males and 1f
Eurasian Reed Warbler 1h

Prastio Kellakiou
Masked Shrike 1m
Cyprus Warbler 4 singing males
Common Buzzard 1

Parekklishia
Great Spotted Cuckoo 1 flew over road

Akrotiri Gravel Pits coast
Bimaculated Lark 2 (Record shot below)
Greater Short-toed Lark 20+
Isabelline Wheatear 2
Black-eared Wheatear 1f

Common Hoopoe, Lady's Mile 10th March 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Common Hoopoe, Lady’s Mile 10th March 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Bimaculated Lark, Akrotiri Gravel Pits 11th March 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Bimaculated Lark, Akrotiri Gravel Pits 11th March 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Waterbird count Larnaca area today 20th February 2018

Numbers of ducks decreasing but still good numbers of Northern Shoveler and Common Teal as well as 24+ Black-necked Grebe, a pair of Gadwall, some Eurasian Wigeon and Common Pochard. More than 1000 Greater Flamingo in the area, although no sign today of a melanistic one seen yesterday, as well as nearly 1000 Common Shelduck on the main Salt Lake. A couple of hundred Slender-billed Gull were on the Salt Lake as well as some Caspian and Armenian Gull and plenty of Black-headed. But the best was an adult Pallas’s Gull in full breeding plumage in the north-east corner together with a Baltic Gull, two Heuglin’s Gull and a Mediterranean Gull. Waders included at least 16 Common Snipe, five Ruff, a few Eurasian Stone Curlew and hundreds of Dunlin and Little Stint.

The only spring migrants I saw were some Barn Swallows, an Isabelline Wheatear (see photo) and a Common Hoopoe. I then went along the coast towards Agios Theodoros where the Great Grey Shrike (probable aucheri intergrade) was still present and I managed to get a view of one of two Short-toed Snake Eagle that have also been in that area for a few days.Isabelline Wheatear, Kiti, 20th February 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Limassol area today 10th February 2018

Spent most of the day birding around Limassol. Found a couple of singing Moustached Warblers at Zakaki Marsh where I also heard Eurasian Penduline Tit, Water Rail and Reed Bunting. There were two Reed Bunting at Phasouri Reed-beds and two Western Marsh Harrier, a ring-tail Hen Harrier and a Common Buzzard. Plenty of gulls on Lady’s Mile including Armenian, Caspian, Yellow-legged and Black-headed as well as a single adult Heuglin’s Gull, an adult and an immature Mediterranean Gull, an immature Slender-billed Gull and a Common Gull.

Also went to Germasogeia Dam where several Cyprus Warbler were singing and there was a very large flock of European Serin. Two Common Snipe flew up from the stream

No sign of any spring migrants anywhere that I visited.

Armenian Gull, Lady's Mile 10th February 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Armenian Gull, Lady’s Mile 10th February 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Mediterranean Gull, Lady's Mile 10th February 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Mediterranean Gull, Lady’s Mile 10th February 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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Gulls, Lady’s Mile 27th January 2018

At Lady’s Mile this lunch time for the BirdLife Cyprus New Year’s meal. Quick opportunity to check out the gulls there – mainly Black-headed Gull but also an adult Little Gull (photo) and Slender-billed Gull (photo) as well as a couple of Yellow-legged Gull, only one Caspian Gull, a Mediterranean Gull and several Armenian Gull of varied ages. A Sandwich Tern flew by further out at sea.

Little Gull, Lady's Mile, 27th January 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Little Gull, Lady’s Mile, 27th January 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Slender-billed Gull, Lady's Mile, 27th January 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Slender-billed Gull, Lady’s Mile, 27th January 2018 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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One of several Black-winged Stilt this morning at Larnaca Sewage Works.

Black-winged Stilt, Larnaca Sewage Works 17th July 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Black-winged Stilt, Larnaca Sewage Works 17th July 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

 
Several juveniles were also present as well as a Slender-billed and Black-headed Gull, a few Little Tern and an adult and juv Whiskered Tern, seven Ferruginous Duck, a couple each of Ruff, Common Sandpiper and Little Ringed Plover and at least twenty Spur-winged Lapwing.


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Some interesting birds at Larnaca Sewage Works pools 29th & 30th June 2017

Just had 30 minutes to spare yesterday and today in the hide overlooking the Sewage Pools but managed a few decent birds there after a quiet couple of weeks. Two long staying Grey Heron and the breeding Spur-winged Lapwing, Mallard, Coot and Little Grebe have been joined at some stage by a White-winged Tern, up to seven fishing Little Tern, a Gull-billed Tern, an adult Slender-billed Gull, two Little Ringed Plover and up to six Black-winged Stilt. Feeding on caterpillars in the bushes along the fence line are an adult (photo) and a juvenile Great Spotted Cuckoo.

Great Spotted Cuckoo, Larnaca Sewage Works 30th June 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours

Great Spotted Cuckoo, Larnaca Sewage Works 30th June 2017 (c) Cyprus Birding Tours


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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