Monday, 3 June 2013

Day 8 - Tuesday 7 May
I was up early and decided to have a run around the Saltpans and the track though the Tsiknias Lower Ford and along the river side back to Skala Kallonis. It was a lovely morning with great light in early morning before 06:30. The Saltpans held the expected species with wood sandpipers, black-winged stilts and little stints in abundance. 10 black storks were still on the drain along with little egrets, they moved off as I drove along the road and others were photographing them. I amused myself with a black-winged stilt and little stint, 2 amazing waders. It is incredible how difficult it is to judge the size of little stints when there is no reference species with them, well it is to me!

This little egret needs no introduction from me!

There is definitely something about the light in the early morning and evening which is excellent for photography in my eyes.

This eastern olivaceous warbler was singing its heart out on the side of the Tsiknias river.

One of the iconic spring time birds of Lesvos, the black-headed bunting. Seemingly everywhere with their beautiful song. Also along the river near the 'bandstand' had 20 bee-eaters.

The main part of the day was to be 'Out West' again. This was proving to be a very productive area for us on this holiday. Firstly it was a run down the Maladia valley. There were noticeably less shrikes around today, made up for though by 4 rock nuthatches. Otherwise we came across very much the same species as on our previous visit, until we came across this linnet, one of three. 

Our next stop was at the Meladia ford where there were 4 purple herons, a coot and this eastern olivaceous warbler.

One of my few male red-backed shrikes and one I'm not too happy with but there again a record and reminder.

Then a major panic, camera not at hand and this whinchat right beside the car, panic over and bird in the camera. Great species and one that is difficult to find near us at home. In total we had 6 whinchats in the valley. 

Our next stop was the chapel where we found a female pied flycatcher and a spotted fly.

Onwards and down to the Old Sanatorium I could see a lesser grey-shrike in a bush nearby so we rushed out to look at it, in fact there were 2! I looked behind me and sat 5 metres away was a roller. In my haste to get out of the car to look at the shrikes had left the camera in the car. An unbelievable opportunity missed and a lesson learnt!!!! 

Lunch in Sigri again.

As on previous visits it was onto Sigri and Faneromeni fields the lower ford and the beach. The ford has this very appealing little ringed plover and a distant squacco heron. 

In the other direction a male citrine wagtail - result! Also here we had a moorhen and a flyover short-toed eagle , then the familiar sound of bee-eaters - 30 -in fact. We decided to go and have a look to see if they stopped further up the road to no avail. Decided to have a look at the Upper ford, but, couldn't get there as a car was completely blocking the road in it! I do understand people wanting to get the best photographic opportunities but why can they not be aware of other people. Perhaps be should have debunked and walked into the ford!

Anyway it was back to the Faneromeni Beach and three lesser kestrels busy hunting so a record shot of one. In a bush at the back of the beach we had 2 female citrine wagtails and 13 yellow wagtails (6 black and 7 grey-headed

Our last stop of the day was to be the Lardia Valley. Whilst scanning the trees below us a warbler was seen in the trees just below our eye level, it called, the eastern bonelli's with food, result!

What an end to a great day!

1 comment:

  1. Good post Phil .... a few would be lifers their for me, particularly would like the Black-headed Bunt, very nice image too.