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WEATHER; overcast with some sunshine, windy and quite chilly. Top temp 20C

I arrived at Mytiline around 8am this morning and the group were not due to arrive until late afternoon. So, after collecting the minibus I drove for ten minutes to a site near Haramida where the mountain slopes are covered in tamarisk, cistus shrubs and broom.

I searched for the Ruppell’s Warbler and within a few minutes I heard at least three birds singing, I tracked down one bird and watched it  performing for about 30 minutes as it moved from song-post to song post and performed its song-flight a couple of times. Sardinian Warbler and a nice male Orphean Warbler also appeared.


From there I drove back past the airport and headed for Skala Kalloni and our hotel. I made a couple of recce stops along the way. At Kalami Marshes, near Mesa, I ‘scoped’ a roadside pool and found Moorhen, Coot, Grey Heron, Mallard chicks and 5 male Garganey. A Zitting Cisticola was constantly calling out its annoying ‘zit’ call, I saw Corn Bunting (hooray!!) , Marsh Harrier, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Common Swift, Barn Swallow and Whinchat.

a view of Kalami Pool where the garaney were seen

one of the five Garganey seen at Kalami, can you spot the Grey Heron?

A short walk produced sightings of Black-winged Stilts, Wood Sandpiper, Ruddy Shelduck, Greater Flamingo, Great Egret & Little Egret. A Gull-billed Tern flew along the shore of Kalloni Bay with Yellow-legged Gulls.

I stopped at the entrance to kalloni Salt Pans and in the pool on the south side of the road a flock of 30+ Ruff wee feeding and at the Pumping station in the south-west corner of the pans I saw a Spur-winged Plover, it was a nice surprise even though I knew that there were three of these in the area I did not know where!

Spur-winged Plover (Lapwing)

After checking into the Kalloni Bay hotel I ate a lovely Greek salad for lunch and then got changed ready for some more birding before I returned to the airport to meet the group. I drove back to the salt pans vis the Tsiknias River and Lotzia track. Large puddles (mini-lakes) lay along the bumpy tracks after a few days of heavy rain.

A seasonal pool is visible from the Lotzia Track, which was also covered in large puddles after recent rains. I scoped Greenshank, Common Shelduck, Ruff, but other birds could not be identified through the heat haze. I saw Crested Larks and a couple of Red-throated Pipits in the field next to the track and European Bee-eaters called as they flew over.

Black-winged Stilt taken earlier at Kalami

I arrived at the Salt Pans and drove around to Alykes Wetland where a flock of 31 Glossy Ibis fed in the marsh with a lone Black Stork. The strong wind was hampering my viewing and made it feel quite cold even though the temperature gauge in the car read 20C!  One last good sighting was of two Montagu’s Harriers (ringtails) distant but nice in the scope.

At 3:30pm I drove to the Airport to meet the group, their flight was delayed by 40 mintues and it wasn’t until 5:30pm that we left the airport. We made a quick stop at Kalami Marshes where we saw the Garganey, Zitting Cisticola, Black-winged Stilts, Corn Bunting, Squacco Herons and a few other species. The wind was even stronger and it was quite uncomfortable standing in the open.

Squacco Heron

We left for the hotel and arrived at 7pm. Dinner was taken 30 minutes later, a bit of a rush but that is what a late arrival produces!! Everyone was happy with what we had seen so far.