As with other trips, I did my birding on the island on a part-time basis with the main emphasis being to get away with my wife. I was able to use mornings and random opportunities to bird around a couple’s holiday to see as many sites, and of course birds, as I could. The other context to describe is that my wife’s holidays are tied to school terms and so this was the closest we could get to the spring migration and breeding period.
This was my 5th visit to Greece (my second as a birder), my first trip to Lesvos and my first visit to the eastern Mediterranean area in the spring. I was keen to plug some more gaps in my WP list and also to catch up with the special birds on the islands.
Planned the trip in February, and as with the previous year I used Travel Counsellors and a guy called Steve Finch who was very helpful. See www.travelcounsellors.co.uk/steve.finch/: he arranged flights and accommodation (with input from me that we needed to be in Skala Kalloni) and gave us an ATOL certificate on the package. As I make Steve do a lot of work for me, I also buy my annual travel insurance through him.
I should mention at this point the excellent resources available through the Lesvos Birds Facebook page www.facebook.com/groups/271104122899599/?fref=ts. It’s a closed group but birders are welcome to join. The focus is very much on the mid-April to mid-May migration season but apart from a nice place to see and place photos the people on the group are very open and helpful with advice for planning.
We flew with Thomas Cook and the flights were without incident. (In fact the turn around at Mytilini on the way back was very swift as there were Arsenal fans among the flight and cabin crew who wanted to get back for the Cup Final!) We paid for hold luggage but with minimal additional stuff needed apart from scope and tripod.
Our accommodation was at the Kalloni Bay Hotel www.kalloni-bay.com/english/the-kalloni-bay-hotel/, which I would recommend without hesitation. It is one of two main locus for the birding migrants who arrive in Spring. From what I could see it is slightly cheaper than Pasiphae and closer to the sea making it good for a ‘combi’ holiday. Friendly staff, good food, nice pool. Rooms were good and clean, if not luxurious. Wi-Fi was free in the lobby and I didn’t bother buying any mobile internet data.
I followed recommendations from the Facebook group and used www.lesvoscarhire.com/ for transport. Costas, Alison and their team were typically helpful and friendly as with literally all people we met on Lesvos. What a welcome change from the machinery and delays of the international companies – met at the airport, and driving 10 minutes after clearing customs! The car was Suzuki Jimny. Technically, we didn’t need a 4-wheel drive but quite a few tracks are rough and we took some wrong turns, which took us to some tricky hills so I was glad I paid the extra. Our car was quite old and on a wet day the car did spin on a hairpin (fortunately with no ill consequences) but I think the road holding on this car is known to be poor (see www.verdictoncars.com/jsp/vocmain.jsp?lnk=201&model=751&description=Suzuki%20Jimny). I always sort out excess waiver insurance in advance for peace of mind.
Field, Travel and Site Guides used:
A Birdwatching Guide to Lesvos – Subbuteo Natural History, 2009: Steve Dudley’s guide is simply the bible of Lesvos birding at the moment. Accurate, informative, top gen.
Lesbos Map – Freytag and Berndt, 2011: didn’t really use this because through the Facebook group I was sent the link to a brilliant map that linked perfectly to Steve Dudley’s guide but could be used for turn by turn directions offline on IOS and Android.
Lesvos Walks and Car Tours – Sunflower Books, 2013: Brian and Eileen’s book was an interesting supplement but I would have liked a bit more information on the walks. You don’t really want to be taking these walks (some quite long) in high season.
Surfbirds and Fatbirder – various trip reports: Useful background.
Collins Bird Guide – Collins 2010: obviously this is industry standard. I used the IOS app for the first time in the field and it was fantastic. If you have an iPhone, get it!
Overall a little disappointing as we had 4 days of sun and 4 days of cloud, rain & sun. But as we were active it didn’t matter too much.
Saturday 23rd May 2015
Landed at Mytilini Airport, whose setting was a brilliant start to the holiday as it’s a chilled out airport and you depart straight onto a quiet seafront road. The beautiful Aegean Sea laps on a stony beach below the road with expansive views of the Turkish mainland on the horizon. Exiting arrivals at 12.45, the handover of the car from Costas was quick and straightforward and with the temperature around 28° we set off on a ‘scenic’ route towards Skala Kalloni, away from Mytilini town. This involved going south then round the eastern headland through Charamida and Loutra before joining Route 36 north of Pirgi. Before arriving at our hotel at 15.00 we picked up 15 species (although we saw no shearwaters from the headlands). These included Black-eared Wheatear and Lesser Grey Shrike on wires and two circling Long-legged Buzzards over coastal hills and we arrived at our hotel at 15.00.
After settling, between 17.30 and 18.45 I took a walk from the hotel to look at Kalloni Pool, which predictably produced little additional, other than singing Cetti’s Warbler, groups of Collared Dove and hirundines feeding. Walking towards the Christou River I added Jay and 3 vocal Eastern Olivaceous Warblers to the list and a Chukar was heard. The Christou River was very quiet (I think this was 10 days after the departure of the celebrated Demoiselle Crane), with only Crested Lark, a single Kentish Plover and breeding pair of Black-winged Stilts on show. We ended the day with cocktails by the beach and a nice dish of Greek mixed meze at La Caprice Taverna.
Sunday 24th May 2015
Needed an alarm to get me up out of bed but departed the hotel at 06.00 to a warm day with light cloud. I drove through Skala Kallonis to the hide at Tsiknias River mouth and along with feeding hirundines (including swallows nesting in the hide roof), the lovely song of Nightingale filled the air. Arriving at the Ford at 06.20 there was a pair of Little Ringed Plover and a Moorhen in the river and I heard a Reed Warbler in song. Driving on to Lotzaria at 06.35 a scan produced nothing new and then I arrived at the Kalloni Saltpans at 06.40. There were Common and Little Terns fishing along the first channel and I could see around 60 distant Greater Flamingo across the saltpans. 10 Black Storks flew over Alykes Wetlands and Avocet, Kentish Plover and Black-winged Stilt were present around the saltpans with young. I tried to access the stilted hide but it was locked. However, scoping the pans from the road revealed 2 Common Shelduck and 8 Ruddy Shelduck (a species I was particularly keen to see given its ‘dodgy’ status in the UK!). There were a few Little Egrets around the ditches, and driving around to Alkyes Wetlands there was an attractive Bee-eater on the wires. I thought I heard a Mediterranean Gull calling, but later realised Yellow-legged Gull’s call is not too different so haven’t ticked that species. No doubt about the identification of song and conspicuous sighting of a fine male Black-headed Bunting on the wires.
I turned round, back by the entrance to the salt works and by 07.25 I had reached the road running up the west of the salt pans, where a Zitting Cisticola was seen in its familiar song flight. A Grey Heron was noted and I turned right towards the northeast corner of the saltpans. Again the hide was locked and I drove off east leaving the site at 07.40.
Kalami Coastal Pool was dry but there was a pair of Woodchat Shrike feeding in a nearby field and a Hooded Crow. Driving on towards Vouvaris, I scoped Mesa Pool from the road and noted 6 Mallard with a single Ruddy Shelduck and 10 Common Shelduck. There was another Bee-eater near the Vouvaris river mouth but nothing else of note before I arrived at the Achladeri picnic site at 08.10. I spent a very enjoyable 45 minutes there, birding with a friendly Dutchman. Common birds around were Chaffinch and Blue Tit and the air filled with the unmistakeable song of Woodlark. The big target bird for this site was Krüper's Nuthatch and I caught what I presumed was the call of this bird in trees near the car park. Eventually, we got a couple of quick but enjoyable views of this fine bird pinging its way along low trunks and branches. Other birds added to the list at this site were Serin and Short-toed Treecreeper.
Driving back past Vouvaris there was a pair of Turtle Doves on the telegraph wires, interestingly the only ones I actually saw all trip. The drive back west to Kalloni produced more ticks including a pair Red-rumped Swallow at Vouvaris river mouth. Kentish Plover also appeared to be breeding here and there were 2 adult and 2 young Shag off shore. Driving passed Mesa, there was a hunting female Marsh Harrier and near Kalloni there was a Little Owl on a roadside fence, my 50th bird of the trip. Although it was close to breakfast time, I decided to sneak in a visit to Metochi Lake, as this was heralded as a splendid place in Steve Dudley’s guide and the site for many brilliant photos of birds on the Facebook page. Unfortunately, it proved to be almost dead on this and nearly all my visits! The only trip tick there was a singing Little Grebe.
Back to the hotel at 09.45 in time for a splendid al fresco breakfast with hirundines around and the twittering of a Greenfinch to accompany us. We spent the next few hours enjoying the sunshine by the pool before eventually getting bored and setting off for a jog towards the Tsiknias River at 15.00. Nothing new along the river but on the way back through Skala Kallonis we found Great Tit family and then a Spanish Sparrow colony at the Malemi Hotel.
After a shower, we headed off to the Napi Valley for a walk in the early evening and then for some lunch. We obviously took a wrong turning somewhere north of Napi but finding a suitable piece of countryside pulled in for a 40-minute stroll around 18.40. The weather was still pleasant with 20% cloud and we added a few very nice birds. A pair of Ravens flew around the cliff-tops above the valley and then came great views of one of the highlights any visit to Lesvos, Cretzschmar's Bunting. In this case, we saw adults carrying food to a nest, and the same was true of a family group of Sombre Tits. Other common birds were seen or heard before we headed off to Agia Paraskevi for a very enjoyable and traditional meal at a taverna located opposite the post office in the central part of town on Eparchiaki Odos Arisvis-Mantamadou. I am annoyed that I didn’t note the name (and Google Street View doesn’t show it) because I would have liked to have written up a positive review on Tripadvisor (which currently notes no restaurants in Agia Paraskevi!)
Monday 25th May 2015
Up early again at 05.45 on a day of 10% cloud and 15°C outside. Thought I would give Metochi Lake a try again and arrived there at 06.00 and took 2km walk around the area recommended in Steve Dudley’s guide. The only waterbirds seen were Little Grebe again and Moorhen. However, as soon as the circular rock took me to rocky terrain to the north of the lake, I heard and then saw Rock Nuthatch – a very conspicuous and familiar bird on the island.
Leaving at 06.35, I thought I’d call in to ‘Scops Copse’ near Kalloni on my way up north. Sure enough, got a lovely view of a Scops Owl roosting in the most southerly tree as well as a rather scary bee’s nest high up in the eucalyptus trees. The cloud had built up a bit by the time I reached the Raptor Watchpoint at 07.00. There were certainly no raptors to watch! But I added Stonechat, saw a Woodchat Shrike and I’m sure there were Subalpine Warblers in song but I didn’t know that’s what they were then.
The objective of the morning was Rüppell's Warbler and I thought I’d try early in the trip as it might need a few efforts. And that proved to be very true! I was at Kavaki between 07.35 and 09.00 and the wind was blowing as I wandered around not really sure where I should be looking for the key species. However, there were lots of good birds around, including plenty of Black-eared Wheatears, some collecting food. Also, got clear and definite views of Subalpine Warblers at this site as well as at least one stonking male Eastern Orphean Warbler. I was 90% sure that I heard a Rüppell's singing by the road, but it was not close and stayed in cover. However, from up the hill I scoped the coast and picked up a solitary Yelkouan Shearwater – the only sighting on the trip. That was it, time for breakfast and I was back at Kalloni Bay Hotel by 09.35.
The afternoon started to get cloudy so Lotty & I took another afternoon jog and between 17.30 & 18.30 we covered again the lower part of the Tsiknias River. Typically the sun came out once we started running but the outing produced a singing Eurasian Skylark over the fields and a Great Reed Warbler singing by the Ford. There was also a Yellow (Black-headed) Wagtail along the riverbed.
Enjoyed our second sampling of Skala’s tavernas, this time visiting Mr. Dudley’s recommended Dionysus, which did not disappoint.
Tuesday, 26th May 2015
This morning I decided to try to catch up with another target Cinereous Bunting, trying the sites recommended near Skala Kallonis and following advice by Facebook Messenger from the very helpful Paul Manning. Weather was fine with about 30% cloud and I set off to the west for the first time. First stop was Parakela Marsh at 05.55 where 2 Ruddy Shelduck flew over but nothing else was seen. Drove on and parked up below the chapel at Agios Ionnis at Parakela at 06.15 and worked hard in vain for 80 minutes searching for my target bird. Black-eared Wheatear were common as were Stonechat, House Sparrow and Rock Nuthatch and there were two pairs of Cretzschmar's Bunting near the chapel. In addition, there was a Common Kestrel hunting high on the hill and plenty of Cirl Bunting in song.
As I had been unsuccessful at this site, I took the second option recommended to me of searching the hills reached after driving through Parakela. Birding 07.55-08.35, many of the same birds were in view, along with Long-legged Buzzard, Woodchat Shrike and a Black Stork circled over the valley. Eventually, I caught up with a single female Cinereous Bunting perched atop a tree. Not a bird of great beauty but it stayed still long enough for me to scope it and be sure of identification.
Before breakfast I thought I could try out another of Paul Manning’s tips, this time for Olive-Tree Warbler. So, I parked up near the first olive grove in Potamia Valley, arriving at 09.00 and walked up the track towards it. Glad to pick up Middle-spotted Woodpecker around the hedgerows and to hear OTW singing its deep croaky song from within the olive grove. There was also Little Grebe and Coot on the pond next to the olives, but that was that for the morning.
Again, we spent some time by the pool and then decided to head off for a visit to the north coast, leaving around 15.45. Driving up the road alongside Tsikinias River, we noted a White Stork in the river bird near the main road. Then I took one of those ‘birder’s detours’ that (again prompted by gen from PM) we occasionally attempt and this time it paid off. Driving via Agia Paraskevi and turning left towards the impressive Kremasti Bridge, where we took a stop and some photos. We proceeded north-west from here through a very intensive olive-production area and after about 2 km a Masked Shrike flew across the car. I stopped and got my bins straight on it to see its bill chock full of caterpillars. A good but brief view of this timid species was welcome.
We arrived at Kavaki around 16.45 for a second attempt at the RW. This time, taking on board Steve D’s cunning plan of combining the birding with a lovely coffee and cake stop at Tsalikis Dessert Shop and Café. I managed to give it more than two hours before Molyvos called. Taking a walk up the road first, we noted a pair of Raven, and an Alpine Swift flying south towards Petra before visiting the café. Whilst sitting overlooking the hilly scrub we saw at least 2 pairs of very conspicuous displaying Black-eared Wheatear, at least 10 Subalpine Warbler including males in display flight and a brief view of what might have been either an Orphean or a Rüppell's Warbler. There was also Linnet on show along with a handsome male Northern Wheatear and the always-splendid Blue Rock Thrush.
So we then ended the day with a pleasant evening in Molyvos including some walking shopping and a splendid fish dinner at Le Grand Bleu. One thing that should be mentioned about this visit to Lesvos and to Molyvos in particular was the evidence of the refugees travelling daily from Turkey (mostly Afghans and Syrians). We saw dozens walking the roads, and at Molyvos there were life jackets and destroyed inflatable boats. Mention should go to the attitude of the islanders who we found to be very compassionate and hospitable to the refugees.
Wednesday, 27th May 2015
The morning broke with a different weather pattern: it was still warm but 90% cloud and with spits and spots of rain. I was also tired after the early starts so had a lie and decided to make a local visit to Potami Valley. Arriving at the first olive grove at 08.00 I was successful in seeing 2 Olive-Tree Warblers – one of those birds I had seen in Heinzel, Fitter & Parsloe in the 1970s and longed to see ever since! Also, 2 Night Heron were flushed from the pond there before heading off for a look at Potami Reservoir. This held only gulls and other common birds but I did hear the unmistakeable call of a Hoopoe. I did have a quick look up river by the weir but it was 08.50 by now and I think the birds had begun to settle down. Lake Metochi was once again quiet.
As it was not pool-side conditions we decided to head off to the west. The usual detour via Tsiknias River produced a juvenile or female Little Bittern that showed for a few seconds and in panic I dropped my telescope next to the hide! I saw the Penduline Tit nest near the Ford but no sign of the birds around but there were 3 Bee-eaters present.
The rain started to fall very heavily as we set off for the west. We had an adventurous journey including a 180-degree spin on an uphill hairpin, somehow staying on the road and hitting nothing. Suzuki Jimnys … hmmm. At 12.40 the weather was improving and we parked up by the track near the Eressos/Sigri junction as suggested by Mr. Manning. After a brief walk uphill we picked up the hoped-for Isabelline Wheatear along with Black-eared Wheatear. Searched hard for Rock Sparrow but only House Sparrow in evidence. However, I did get good views of Cinereous Bunting (along with the other 3), and there were also Woodlark, Hoopoe and Long-legged Buzzard around. A very decent site.
We arrived at Sigri at 13.50 and I thought I saw some White Wagtails flushed from the road but wasn’t certain. No doubt about the Jackdaw party over the town. We really enjoyed this place, with a lovely al fresco light lunch at taverna overlooking the sea as the weather turned very sunny. Most of the rest of the day was ‘touristic’ as we went to the excellent Petrified Forest Museum in Sigri and then drove across to the Petrified Forest site arriving just before it closed at 15.50. There was a party of Rock Dove there, a Long-legged Buzzard and a pair of Lesser Kestrel circling. We left after a few minutes and drove off to Skala Eressos where we had a stroll and stopped off for a drink in a suitably Sapphic taverna.
When we got back to Skala Kallonis we learned we had missed a torrential 2 hour downpour there while we were enjoying sunshine in the west of the island! An unexpected last tick of the day came at 20.55 when I was advised to step away from our table at Faiara Fish Taverna in the middle of SK square to view a family of Barn Owl emerging from their roost in a village chimney to set off hunting. Splendid end to the birding day!
Thursday, 28th May 2015
Another slightly late start on a morning with 40% cloud after some heavy rain. I decided to follow more gen from Paul Manning and left the hotel at 07.00 and arrived at Tsikinias Ford at 07.15. There were 2 Squacco Heron there and on inspecting the nest I saw yesterday noted that a Penduline Tit was indeed feeding young in the nest.
Drive the few metres back south along the east back of the river towards its mouth and noted 2 or 3 Bee-eaters feeding. Reaching the end of the road I first heard then saw well a couple of Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin. A surprisingly uninspiring bird (until it shows its tail – which it did), with an attractive song. Still I was very happy with another lifer.
Returned to the Ford around 07.45 where I spent a few minutes just enjoying the Squacco Heron, Pendulines Tits and the diversity of bird song. Black-winged Stilts and Black-headed Wagtail also dropped in. Then headed off and by 08.05 arrived at Kalloni Saltpans where I was very pleased to see a male and 2 female Red-footed Falcon. They showed well on the wires and were great to watch. Also White Stork and Black Stork were around. At 08.40 I drove through Alkyes Wetlands towards Salemi Beach and there was a very conspicuous Rufous Bush Robin along with Black-eared Wheatear and 2 Zitting Cisticola. A pair a Spanish Sparrow were dust-bathing on the road there. On the way back to Tsiknias River I picked up a Common Whitethroat singing on a bush and a single Sand Martin on a wire and two Reed Warblers were showing near the Ford before getting back to the hotel for breakfast.
Another afternoon jog locally was taken between 14.30 and 15.30 in search of the Long-eared Owls. Not much new to see, with mixed weather offering sun, cloud and rain. Cocktails at Grigoriou Taeiarchoula’s café bar then evening meal today at the hotel. This proved that the Kalloni Bay Hotel as a restaurant was as authentically Greek, as good value for food and as pleasant for service as anywhere else we tried in Lesvos.
Friday, 29th May 2015
Weather was worse again this morning and with 90% heavy cloud, a strong breeze and it was rather cool. I thought I’d give Kavaki a third and final go s set off at 05.40. After a heavy shower en route the weather was a bit better at Kavaki and I birded there 06.25-07.25. The gen on Facebook seemed to suggest that the target species was most often seen from the road and after a frantic time watching and listening to skulking Subalpine and Eastern Orphean Warblers I final got a completely stonking view of a male Rüppell's Warbler perching on a bush. It disappeared soon but I was happy!
As I had some time in hand I followed Dudley’s map app to the site known as Agriosikos, arriving at 08.10. It was quite chilly and I was in the cloud but the upland wooded habitat produced some interesting birds. Woodlark were singing, Middle-spotted Woodpecker were vocal too and I got a brief view of Masked Shrike. Also, Cirl Bunting, Raven and Sombre Tit were present.
Leaving at 08.35, I had the pleasant site of a family of Chukar on the road as we descended to Kalloni. Couldn’t resist a final check of Metochi Lake at 09.00 which was still birdless the morning ended well with a splendid summer plumaged Curlew Sandpiper on the Christou River at 09.15. After breakfast, with more wind and cloud, we thought we would visit one of the ‘turkish’ baths (or ‘healing hot mineral baths’ as the Greeks call it), which we were told were a must-visit. Unfortunately, the one at Larisos was under repair and so we thought we would look at Mytilini and then check out the Thermi baths. Mytilini we found an interesting bustling town but only drove through it. We visited Thermi (in high winds) and the old baths were long-closed, with just an archaeological site available. Apparently we should have gone to the Efthalou near Molyvos, which is also the favoured refugee-landing site. The only interesting bird of this drive was a Common Buzzard seen near the Dipsi River.
We returned around 15.30 and spent 4 hours by the pool as the sunny weather finally allowed us to top up our tan. 8 Sand Martin flew over late in the afternoon. Our final meal was taken at the Ambrosia taverna, deservedly one of the highest-rated in Skala Kallonis.
Saturday 30th May 2015
Up early for the last morning at 05.55 to sunshine. Had toyed with the idea of heading west for a quick scramble to look for Rock Sparrow but I have a philosophy of ‘always leave yourself something to come back for’ so went for a more relaxed local morning. Swallows were actively visiting a nest in the hide at the Tsiknias Rover as were the Penduline Tits at the Ford. Got another great view of Rufous Bush Robin flaring its tail and also Little Ringed Plover and Bee-eaters were around. Moving on to Kalloni Saltpans, there was a female Marsh Harrier around and the Red-footed Falcons on the wire had increased to 4 males and 2 female. A final treat came back by the Tsiknias Ford when I picked up a solitary Rosy Starling.
And that was it. Back for breakfast, check-out and left the hotel at 10.05 for the airport. Return journey went very smoothly and we even made it home for the (very anti-climatic) FA Cup Final!
Conclusion and Summary
This was a thoroughly enjoyable holiday where I managed to combine birding with a happy couples holiday. I did a lot of work in advance but the technology and gen provided by Steve Dudley’s book and app and by the interactions through Facebook really helped. I’m not sure I could have coped with Lesvos in the ‘scilly’ season as it were, although my list of 96 would have been modest if I had arrived a month earlier I guess. It was great to have the birding to myself with just a few other birders to talk to (although I do enjoy the odd twitch with the best of them). Weather was indifferent but okay. Would certainly visit the island again and can recommend it as a friendly beautiful place.
Species List noting where birds first seen (new for Greece (G); new for Western Palearctic (WP))
Ruddy Shelduck - 8 Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May; 2 Parakela Marsh, 26 May 2015 (WP/G)
Common Shelduck - 2 Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015 (G)
Mallard - 10 Mesa Pool, 24 May 2015
Chukar Partridge - 1 heard Skala Kallonis, 23 May; family group below Agriosikos, 29 May 2015
Little Grebe - singing male Metochi Lake, 24 & 25 May 2015
Yelkouan Shearwater - 1 off Kavaki, 25 May 2015 (WP/G)
Shag - 2 adults and 2 young at Vouvaris river mouth, 24 May 2015 (G)
Little Bittern - juvenile or female Tsiknias River Mouth, 27 May 2015 (G/WP)
Black-crowned Night Heron - 2 Potami Valley, 27 May 2015 (G)
Squacco Heron - 2 Tsiknias River Ford, 28 May 2015
Little Egret - 5+ Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015
Grey Heron - 1 Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015
Black Stork - 10 flying over Alykes Wetlands, 24 May; 1 Parakela, 26 May; Kalloni Saltpans, 28 May 2015 (G)
White Stork - 1 Tsikinias River, 26 May; Kalloni Saltpans, 28 May 2015 (G)
Greater Flamingo - 60 Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015 (G)
Marsh Harrier - female Mesa, 24 May; female Kalloni Saltpans, 30 May 2015 (G)
Sparrowhawk - 1 near Haramida, 23 May 2015 (G)
Long-legged Buzzard - near Haramida, 23 May; Parakela, 26 May; near Ipsolou, 27 May 2015 (WP/G)
Lesser Kestrel - pair circling Petrified Forest, 27 May 2015 (G)
Common Kestrel - 1 hunting Parakela, 26 May 2015
Red-footed Falcon - Kalloni Saltpans, 3 on 28 May; 2 on 30 May 2015 (G)
Eurasian Coot - Potamia Valley, 26 May 2015
Common Moorhen - 1 Tsiknias Rover, 24 May; Lake Metochi, 25 May 2015
Black-winged Stilt - breeding pair Christou River, 23 May (G); Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May; Tsiknias Ford, 28 May 2015
Pied Avocet - breeding groups Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015 (G)
Little Ringed Plover - pair Tsiknias River, 24 & 30 May 2015
Kentish Plover - 1 Christou River, 23 May; 2 Kalloni Saltpans & Vouvaris river mouth, 24 May 2015 (G)
Curlew Sandpiper - 1 summer plumage Christou River, 29 May 2015 (G)
?Mediterranean Gull? - possible calling Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015
Yellow-legged Gull - Mytlini Airport, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Common Tern - party feeding Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015 (G)
Little Tern - party feeding Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May 2015 (G)
Rock Dove - party Petrified Forest, 27 May 2015
Collared Dove - Kalloni Pool, 23 May 2015 and daily
Turtle Dove - pair Vouvaris, 24 May 2015
Barn Owl - family emerging from roost, 27 May 2015 (G)
Scops Owl - near Kalloni, 25 May 2015
Little Owl - near Kalloni, 24 May 2015 (G)
Common Swift - near Loutro, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Alpine Swift - Kavaki, 26 May 2015
European Bee-eater - 1 Alkyes Wetlands; 1 Vouvaris River Mouth, 24 May; 3 Tsiknias Ford, 27 May; 2 Tsiknias River, 28 and 30 May 2015 (G)
Hoopoe - 1 calling Potamia Valley, 27 May 2015 (G)
Middle-spotted Woodpecker - Potamia Valley, 26 May; 1 Agriosikos, 29 May 2015 (G)
Crested Lark - Christou River, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Woodlark - 1 singing Achladeri Forest, 24 May; 1 Agriosikos, 29 May 2015 (G)
Eurasian Skylark - 1 in song flight Tsiknias River area, 25 May 2015 (G)
Sand Martin - 1 near Tsiknias River, 28 May 2015
Barn Swallow - near Haramida, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
House Martin - Mytlini Airport, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter (G)
Red-rumped Swallow - pair Vouvaris River Mouth, 24 May 2015 (G)
Black-headed Wagtail - 1 Tsiknias River, 25 & 28 May 2015 (G)
?White Wagtail? - possible Sigri, 27 May 2015
Stonechat - male Raptor Watchpoint, 25 May; Parakela, 26 May 2015
Isabelline Wheatear - singletons near Ipsolou, 27 May 2015 (G/WP)
Rufous-tailed Bush Robin - 1 Tsiknias River; 1 Alkyes Wetland, 28 & 30 May 2015 (G/WP)
Common Nightingale - 2 Tsiknias River, 24 May 2015 and thereafter (G)
Black-eared Wheatear - near Haramida, 23 May; Kavaki, 25 May; Parakela, 26 May; near Ipsolou, 27 May 2015
Blue Rock Thrush - 2 Kavaki, 26 May 2015
Common Blackbird - near Haramida, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Cetti’s Warbler - Kalloni Pool, 23 May 2015 and daily in suitable habitat
Zitting Cisticola - 1 in song flight Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May; 1 singing Alkyes Wetlands, 28 May 2015
Eastern Olivaceous Warbler - 3 singing Skala Kallonis, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Common Whitethroat - 1 singing near Tsiknias River, 28 May 2015 (G)
Olive-tree Warbler - 2 singing Potami Valley, 27 May 2015 (G/WP)
Eurasian Reed Warbler - 1 singing Tsiknias River ford, 24 May and 28 May 2015 (G)
Great Reed Warbler - 1 in song Tsiknias River Ford, 25 May 2015 (G)
Subalpine Warbler - several Kavaki, 25, 26 & 29 May 2015 (G)
Rüppell's Warbler - Kavaki, 29 May 2015 (G/WP)
Eastern Orphean Warbler - Kavaki, 25 and 29 May 2015 (G/WP)
Sombre Tit - family group Napi Valley, 24 May; 1 Agriosikos, 29 May 2015 (G)
Blue Tit - 1 or 2 Achladeri Forest, 24 May 2015
Great Tit - family group Skala Kallonis, 24 May 2015
Krüper's Nuthatch - 1 Achladeri Forest, 24 May 2015 (G/WP)
Western Rock Nuthatch - Metochi, 25 May; Parakela, 26 May 2015 (G/WP)
Short-toed Treecreeper - Achladeri Forest, 24 May 2015
Eurasian Penduline Tit - visiting nest Tsiknias River Ford, 28, 30 May 2015 (G)
Lesser Grey Shrike - near Loutro, 23 May 2015 on wires
Woodchat Shrike - pair Kalami Coastal Pool, 24 May; 1 Raptor Watchpoint, 25 May; Parakela, 26 May 2015 (G)
Masked Shrike - near Kremasti Bridge, 26 May; 1 Agriosikos, 29 May 2015 (G/WP)
Eurasian Jay - Skala Kallonis, 23 May 2015 and other wooded areas
Eurasian Jackdaw - Sigri, 27 May 2015 (G)
Carrion Crow - near Haramida, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Raven - pair Napi Valley, 24 May; pair Kavaki, 26 May; 1 Agriosikos, 29 May 2015
Rosy Starling - singleton Tsiknias Ford, 30 May 2015 (G)
House Sparrow - Mytlini Airport, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Spanish Sparrow - colony Skala Kallonis, 24 May; 2 Alkyes Wetlands, 28 May 2015 (G)
Chaffinch - near Loutro, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Serin - Achladeri Forest, 24 May 2015 (G)
Greenfinch - Skala Kallonis, 24 May 2015
Goldfinch - near Loutro, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter
Linnet - Kavaki, 26 May 2015
Cirl Bunting - singing males Parakela, 26 May; near Ipsolou, 27 May; 1 Agriosikos, 29 May 2015 (G)
Cinereous Bunting - female Parakela, 26 May; near Ipsolou, 27 May 2015 (G/WP)
Cretzschmar's Bunting - Napi Valley, 24 May 2015; Parakela, 26 May; near Ipsolou, 27 May 2015 (G/WP)
Black-headed Bunting - male singing Kalloni Saltpans, 24 May; near Ipsolou, 27 May; Alkyes Wetlands, 28 May 2015 (G)
Corn Bunting - near Loutro, 23 May 2015 and daily thereafter (G)