Cyprus Bird Watching Tours - BIRD is the WORD - Tour - Paphos & Akrotiri 21/02/2019
We was looking through the gulls when an Arctic Sku flew low over the car, a very scarce bird for Cyprus. We watched it as it flew down the coast and rested in the sea for a while, though as I drove down for closer views it vanished, briefly re-appearing and then losing it again. Only the second I have ever seen in Cyprus and a lifer for both Lisa and John.
We proceeded to look through the gulls and found a few Armenian, Slender-billed and Mediterranean Gull. Moving on to Zakaki there was a few Temminck's stint on the pool across the road from the hide.
On the way to Bishops pool a Common Buzzard was sitting out in the open showing very well and during a brief stop next to the salt lake a Common Kestrel swooped down and grabbed something from the ground in close proximity to the car. Bishop's Pool was again unusually short of waterfowl for this time of year. We did manage to see quite a few Ferruginous Ducks here though. We did manage to spot a Green Tree Frog which proceeded to hide in a shrub.
As we left the site we spotted a Cyprus Warbler sitting in the top of a low shrub next to the road, which provided good views at times. I suspect it was a recent arrival as this is not one of their territories.
We then headed to Phassouri seeing many finches at the entrance as well as some Common Swift ... with a few Alpine Swifts among them. We tried looking for the Black-bellied Sandgrouse that was seen recently here but was unsuccesful. A small party of Starlings were airborn and we later saw them all perched in a Eucalyptus tree. We got great views of a Marsh Harrier perched on some dead wood here.
We decided to have our lunch at Kensington cliffs whilst watching the Griffon Vultures. There was only one in view at first but shortly after we had 4 of them flying extremely close to us ... eye level.
Our final stop was the Sewage Works for Spur-winged Lapwing. One flew in and landed next to the car as did a second. A red-throated pipit flew overhead calling and a few Meadow pipit were at a puddle. A small group of Corn Bunting showed well in a bare pecan tree and moments later joined by a male Spanish Sparrow.
We ended the day by the pomegranate orchard to get good views of Serin which didn't disappoint.
We managed 63 species for the day
Black Francolin (h)
Western Marsh Harrier
Eurasian Penduline tit
Moustached Warbler (h)
Eurasian Blackbird (h)
Red-throated Pipit (h)
Green Tree Frog