24 March 2011 - Migrants!

From Terry Robinson:

"Hi Steve, what a day I am having. First a yellow wagtail at the polly pans, and marsh, wood and green sands, a marsh harrier, which flushed a short-eared owl, and while photographing the marsh sand, a spotted crake popped out of the undergrowth! Also this week spotted redshank, ruff, black-tailed godwit and alpine swift"

Record shot of Spotted Crake, Polichnitos Saltpans © Sue Robinson


Lesvos tweeting

Lesvos Birding is now on twitter @LesvosBirding.

Follow @LesvosBirding to stay in touch with the latest news and sightings.

Set up twitter on your mobile and keep up with sightings of rarer birds when on the island. I'll also send out tweets of the rarer sightings at the end of each day during the main spring weeks.

And tweet your news and sightings! By following and selecting all alerts you will get any news any from all @LesvosBirding followers including their sightings! Its a bird alert service for Lesvos on twitter! Its a great way to keep in touch when on the island.

Twitter apps are available for iPhone and Android.


Day excursions - 22 Apr - 4 May

Excursions with Lesvos Birding's Steve Dudley

By popular demand I am introducing a week full of excursions – early mornings, half-days and some full-days to more far flung corners of the island. I am the only guide to offer such excursions to independent birders visiting the island.

22 - 27 April
Six full-day trips available - places available each day

29 April - 4 May
A mix of half-day and full-day trips - places still available for most days

Day trips available, 22 - 27 April 2011

This week was advertised as a full group holiday week with Oliva Rama Tours, but we have a number of places available for each day. Participation is on a full-day basis each day (no half-days available). Cost £70 (€80) per person per day inc. taverna lunch). Max. group size 6 each day.

Itinerary -

22 April - Achladeri Forest, Mesa Wetlands, Kalloni Saltpans, Tsiknias River
A full day searching for migrants around the Kalloni Gulf wetland sites and Krüper’s Nuthatch, Short-toed Treecreeper, Masked Shrike and other woodland species in Achladeri Forest.

23 April - Kavaki, Perasma, Molivos, North Coast, Napi Valley, Kalloni Saltpans
A full day looking for Rüppell’s Warbler, Blue Rock-thrush, Crag Martin and coastal migrants (Kavaki), wetland species and migrants (Perasma), migrants and residents (north coast and Napi Valley) and wetlands species at Kalloni Saltpans.

24 April - the west - Lardia Valley, Ipsilou, Sigri/Faneromeni area, Meladia Valley
A full day searching for migrants and resident specialties in the west. Species we will look for inc. breeding Cinereous Bunting, Isabelline Wheatear, Rock Sparrow, Chukar, Blue Rock-thrush, Rock Nuthatch, Crag Martin; migrant passerines inc. shrikes, warblers, flycatchers, etc.; raptors inc. Long-legged Buzzard, Short-toed Eagle, harriers, Lesser Kestrel and other migrant falcons (inc. Eleonora’s).

25 April - Tsiknias River, Kalloni Saltpans, Mesa Wetlands, Alikoudi Pool, Polichnitos Saltpans, Kalloni Saltpans
A full day searching for migrants around the Kalloni Gulf wetland sites.

26 April - the west - Lardia Valley, Ipsilou, Sigri/Faneromeni area, Meladia Valley
See 24 April.

27 April - Metochi Lake, Parakila Marsh, Makara, Tsiknias River, Kalloni Saltpans
A full day searching for migrants around the Kalloni Gulf wetland site and the Napi Valley.

Days, sites visited on any day, are subject to change depending on weather and birding!

For further details and bookings please contact Lesvos Birding here.

For more general information on day excursions see the main excursions page here.

See terms and conditions here.

March 2011 - bird news

Record shot of Spotted Crake, Polichnitos Saltpans, 24 Mar 11 © Sue Robinson

Records from resident birders Eleni Galinou (EG) who covers the Kalloni area and Terry Robinson (TR) who is based at Skala Polichnitou (the more interesting records in CAPS).

Updated 31/03/11

Ruddy Shelduck - present at Kalloni Saltpans and Vouvaris River
Eurasian Wigeon - present at Kalloni Saltpans
Northern Shoveler - present at Kalloni Saltpans
Northern Pintail - present at Kalloni Saltpans
Red-breasted Merganser - up to 8 off Tsiknias River mouth and up to 7 off Vouvaris River mouth
Yelkouan Shearwater - Gulf of Kalloni off Polichnitos Saltpans with 81 on 8 Mar and 95 on 11 Mar with small numbers to months end
Great Crested Grebe - Gulf of Kalloni up to 600 off Polichnitos Saltpans 11 Mar
Black-necked Grebe - Gulf of Kalloni up to 8 off Tsiknias River mouth (6 Mar) and 2 off Vouvaris River mouth 2 Mar.
Greater Flamingo - seen Kalloni Saltpans, Christou (Kamares) River estuary, Polichnitos Saltpans and Tsiknias River.
Black Stork - 2 Vouvaris River mouth 2 Mar, singles Polichnitos Saltpans 14-15 Mar and Mesa Wetlands 17 Mar
White Stork - first returning bird Tsiknias River 26 Mar
Great White Egret
- present Kalloni Saltpan, Polichnitos Saltpans (max. 27 on 8 Mar), Tsiknias River, Kantria, Vouvaris River mouth, Christou (Kamares) River.
DALMATIAN PELICAN - 1 still present at Kalloni Saltpans to at least 2 Mar (EG)
Short-toed Eagle - singles over Polichnitos Saltpans 25 Mar and Agia Paraskevi 29 Mar
Long-legged Buzzard - 1 Kalloni Saltpans area, 2 Agia Paraskevi 14 Mar
Marsh Harrier - up to 3 Kalloni Saltans and 1 Christou (Kamares) River
Hen Harrier - up to 2 Polichnitos Saltpans and up to 3 Kalloni Saltpans
COMMON CRANE - 1 Kalloni Saltpans 2 Mar (EG) - only the second record since 2003
Water Rail
- 1 Tsiknias River 6 Mar
SPOTTED CRAKE - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans 24 Mar (earliest ever record)
Avocet - present Kalloni Saltpans and Polichnitos Saltpans
Grey Plover - 1-2 Polichnitos Saltpans throughout month
Little Ringed Plover - 4 Kalloni Saltpans 2 Mar, 2 Polichnitos Saltpans 9 Mar with 5 there on 10 Mar and daily thereafter
Black-tailed Godwit - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans 23-26 Mar
Eurasian Curlew - present at Kalloni Saltpans and Polichnitos Saltpans
Spotted Redshank - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans 22-23 Mar
Marsh Sandpiper - up to 5 Polichnitos Saltpans from 21 Mar
Green Sandpiper - up to Tsiknias River
Wood Sandpiper - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans 6-11 Mar, daily thereafter
Little Stint - present Polichnitos Saltpans, Max. 25
Dunlin - present Polichnitos Saltpans, max. 65
Ruff - present Polichnitos Saltpans from 13 Mar, max. 7
SLENDER-BILLED GULL - 1-3 Tsiknias River 1-13 Mar
Sandwich Tern - up to 13 (2 Mar) Tsiknias River mouth
Scops Owl - 1 Agia Paraskevi 14 Mar
Alpine Swift - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans 17 Mar, 15 Tsiknias River 26 Mar
House Martin
- (first seen 25 Feb) 40 Kantria 2 Mar, 25 Skala Kallonis 6 Mar
Barn Swallow - present Polichnitos Saltpans from 13 Mar
Hoopoe - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans 27 Mar
Willow Warbler
- singles Polichnitos Saltpans 13 Mar & 25 Mar
- up to 8 Skala Polichnitou
Sardinian Warbler - present at Polichnitos Saltpans
Redwing - 1 Agia Paraskevi 15 Mar
Fieldfare - 2 Skala Polichnitou 7 Mar
Black Redstart - present at Polichnitos Saltpans, Skala Kallonis, Kallonis Saltpans
Northern Wheatear - (first seen 19 Feb) 1-2 Polichnitos Saltpans from 13 Mar
Black-eared Wheatear - 1 Polichnitos Saltpans from 23-29 Mar
Yellow Wagtail - recorded from 22 Mar with max. 26 Polichnitos Saltpans 30 Mar
HAWFINCH - up to 7 Polichnitos Saltpans

Lesvos Birds 2010

written and compiled by Steve Dudley

This, the second annual report for the island, covers all species recorded on the island in 2010 plus some additional records from 2009 and earlier years.

Running to 74 pages it covers over 250 species and includes many colour photographs and various updates on birding sites on the island and more general birding and visitor information.

As well as accounts for commoner species, records include many notable scarce and rare species including the first Lesvos records of Yellow-browed Warbler and Grey Phalarope (and White-tailed Plover from 2001), second record (and only Greek's third) of Finsch's Wheatear, the second breeding record of Penduline Tit, the third record of Red Knot plus a record year for Terek Sandpiper, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Calandra Lark, Greek's highest ever count of Little Gulls and much, much more.

Lesvos Birds 2010 - Click here for PDF (2Mb) web version (via Scribd)

Lesvos Birds 2009 - Click here for PDF (3Mb) web version (via Scribd)