Thursday 29 September 2022

Lesvos - Day 12: 19th September 2022

Dad and I were up at the double bandstand at Argennos below Mt Lepetimnos by 10am with a stiff somewhat chill north easterly blowing onshore but not a cloud in sight. A small team assembled and over the next two hours we picked up at least 33 juvenile Honey Buzzards coming in from Turkey including a flock of 12. All were on the dark side bar a strikingly pale individual that was in fact the first we saw. Some of the views were fantastic. A juvenile Marsh Harrier, eight Sparrowhawks and singles of both Lesser and Common Kestrel were noted. A male Goshawk was seen battling across and another adult male and female were seen around us and may have been migrants or locals.

The big female was seen off by a Raven - probably the only diurnal bird to give them a headache. Two dark Eleonora's Falcons passed by us and a Peregrine was up around the masts with the tumbling Ravens and local Buzzards drifted up now and then.

Honey Buzzard

Honey Buzzard

Eleonora's Falcon

Eleonora's Falcon

Eleonora's Falcon

Battle of the beasts - Raven v Goshawk

Chaffinches bimbled east and a Tree Pipit went the other way but there was no other discernible passage. I did however find two fine Woodpigeons in the valley below and forced the others to look at them!

A quick stop above Mithymna on the way back added a flock of Bee-eaters, two more Honey Buzzards and a Short-toed Eagle while Robins, Cirl Buntings and Middle Spotted Woodpeckers were heard from the roadside groves and Oaks.


The cooler morning had become a blistering afternoon and while the Queens State funeral played in the background and a gathering of Brits respectfully watched the big screen Thekla had set up, I dozed in the shade.

A short pre-dinner pootle around the Triangle gave me a female Sparrowhawk, Green Sandpiper, a Short-toed Eagle on a pole, a few more flava Wagtails and Whinchats and a close view of that male Red-backed Shrike at last!


 Short-toed Eagle 

 Short-toed Eagle - 'in the landscape shot'

Red-backed Shrike - can you take too many Shrike pictures?

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