Sunday 12 June 2016

Lesvos : Day Four : 26th April 2016

Day 4: 26th April : 

It was blowing a hoolie when we emerged this morning but we ventured out after an early breakfast and had a chilly, windblown stroll down the east side of the Tsiknias. The male Penduline Tit popped out and flicked fluff from a reedmace head while a Cetti's Warbler looked on from the next stem. A Purple Heron lurked and there were Sand Martins on the move as well as a pair of Red-footed Falcons. A Lesser Grey Shrike watched from the wires and the Little Owl was sheltering out of the wind. 

Tskinias River Mouth with Mount Olympus engulfed in cloud

Windswept traffic jam

And why not? A smart male Blackbird

The badly oiled Wood Sandpiper

With rain imminent we headed back to pick up Sam before once again braving the wind to search for the Spur Winged Plover on the Kalloni Salt Pans. We picked it up near the Hide but soon lost it again. The weather was improving so we headed out past a Great White Egret, three more Red foots, Short-toed Lark and two leggy Tawny Pipits who were sharing their field with nine Whinchats, wagtails, Bee-eaters and Corn Buntings. 

The Stilts were particularly flighty in the gusty conditions

Great White Egret

On to Achladeri where the obligatory poppy field stop filled the mind with a sea of scarlet set off by the dark pines and brooding skies.   

Once in the wood it did not take long to find three fledgling Kruper's Nuthatches being fed by their parents and they gave superb prolonged views. Short-toed Treecreepers, Long-tailed and Coal Tits were seen and I heard a couple of Serins but we saw no Shrikes. Woodlarks sang over the trees and huge careering Alpine Swifts hurtled through with the wind behind them.

The beautiful Acladeri pine forest

Getting bogged at by an upside down Mr K

and one of his very cute kids

Snake-eyed Lizard Ophisops elegans

Snake-eyed Lizard Ophisops elegans

Grecian Southern Grayling Hipparchia senthes

Serapias species

Blue Pimpernel Anagallis arvensis

Paper Wasp

Common Poppy Papaver rhoeas

Oriental Marbled Skipper Carcharodus orientalis

But the star he was not a bird but an insect with a crazily fluffy Owl Lion complete with yellow and black wings and heart shaped deeley bobbers for antennae!

The speldiferous Owl-Lion Libelluloides coccajus

Owl-Lion Libelluloides coccajus

After a spot of lunch we followed the coast road towards Skamioudi and the Alikoudi Pool. An immature female Pallid Harrier was seen well, hunting a hedge line and a hole in the third primary on the right wing confirms that it is the same bird from Kalloni yesterday. 

These are HOOOOGE waves for the Bay...

2nd calander year female Pallid Harrier

2nd calander year female Pallid Harrier

A Squacco was trying to blend in with the vegetation in the river channel and several Common Sandpipers were along the beach. 

Common Sandpiper

Wood Sandpiper

Yellow-legged Gull

Yellow-legged Gull


The track headed inland and a couple of olive grove stops produced singing Olive Tree Warbler, Masked Shrikes and Eastern Orphean as well as Hoopoe, Middle Spotted Woodpecker and Persian Squirrel. Black-headed Buntings, Bee-eaters and three shrike species adorned the wires as we headed back into open country before a mini wader fest at Alikoudi added five very obliging beach Collared Pratincoles to the list along with Temminck's and Little Stints. 

Masked Shrike

Black-headed Bunting
Alikoudi Pool

Alikoudi Pool
Collared Pratincoles

Some double Stint action

Great White Egret

House Sparrows investigating an old jetty

Family life...

The day was rounded up back at the Kalloni Salt Pans with superb views of the Spur-winged Plover on the pumping station pool and a couple of cracking Temminck's Stints and the sound of many more tropical sounding Black-headed Buntings proclaiming from wires and bushes...

Oh and someone mentioned the other day that it could not have been a Dalmatian as it lacked spots so I was pleased to find one with spots down there with the requisite adornments...

Spur-winged Plover

Spur-winged Plover

Spur-winged Plover

Temminck's Stint

Temminck's Stint - post bath
A proper Dalmatian just for Roy...

Black-headed Wagtail

Black-headed Wagtail

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