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The deltas of the Axios and Loudhias Rivers once formed one of the most important Greek wetlands for birds but like other such habitats in this country much has been lost to development and agriculture.
In the Axios delta the river has been canalised and no longer floods the area but there remains a series of pools that are excellent for birds as well as coastal lagoons and part of an old branch of the river that can also be good. In the surrounding area the paddyfields and reedbeds hold a good selection of species during most of the year and the rivermouth itself can be very productive.
The Loudhias River to the west has unfortunately undergone similar habitat degradation and is now a canal. Although birds do not occur in the large numbers of former decades there is still an interesting range of species to be found.
The nearby delta of the Aliakmon River has much the same kind of habitats but has suffered far less from habitat destruction and is now probably the best wetland for birds in this part of Greece.
 Notable Species
Little Bittern, Squacco Heron, Black-crowned Night Heron and other herons breed in this area as well as small numbers of Eurasian Spoonbill and Glossy Ibis. The lagoons have breeding Oystercatcher, Pied Avocet and Black-winged Stilt, Collared Pratincole and Kentish Plover. Mediterranean Gull also breeds along with Little Tern and Common Tern.
Passage periods bring a wide variety of birds to the area and terns and waders in particular. All the regular European waders can be seen as well as scarcer species such as Great Snipe, Broad-billed Sandpiper and Marsh Sandpiper. The globally threatened Slender-billed Curlew is possible on passage here. Other species occurring on passage include Eurasian Spoonbill and Glossy Ibis, Pygmy Cormorant and Dalmatian Pelican. Red-footed Falcon is a common passage visitor especially in spring.
Winter sees the arrival of small numbers of White-tailed Eagle and Greater Spotted Eagle and Great White Egret is regular. Waterfowl numbers are far lower than once they were but Eurasian Wigeon still occurs in fair numbers. Thousands of Black-headed Gull and Yellow-legged Gull are present in winter.
Birds you can see here include:
Great Cormorant, Pygmy Cormorant, Dalmatian Pelican, Great Bittern, Little Bittern, Black-crowned Night Heron, Squacco Heron, Little Egret, Great White Egret, Grey Heron, Glossy Ibis, Eurasian Spoonbill, Greater Flamingo, Eurasian Wigeon, Common Teal, Mallard, Ferruginous Duck, White-tailed Eagle, Western Marsh Harrier, Levant Sparrowhawk, Greater Spotted Eagle, Common Kestrel, Red-footed Falcon, Eurasian Oystercatcher, Black-winged Stilt, Pied Avocet, Stone-curlew, Collared Pratincole, Kentish Plover, Red Knot, Sanderling, Little Stint, Temminck's Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Dunlin, Broad-billed Sandpiper, Ruff, Great Snipe, Common Snipe, Black-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Slender-billed Curlew, Eurasian Curlew, Spotted Redshank, Common Redshank, Common Greenshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Mediterranean Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Black-headed Gull, Yellow-legged Gull, Gull-billed Tern, Common Tern, Little Tern, Black Tern, White-winged Tern, European Turtle Dove, European Bee-eater, European Roller, Calandra Lark, Greater Short-toed Lark, Barn Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Tawny Pipit, Red-throated Pipit, Black-headed Wagtail (Su), Rufous-tailed Scrub Robin, Black-eared Wheatear, Cetti's Warbler, Zitting Cisticola, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Sardinian Warbler, Collared Flycatcher, Penduline Tit, Red-backed Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike, Woodchat Shrike, Masked Shrike, Spanish Sparrow, European Serin, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Black-headed Bunting, Corn Bunting
 Other Wildlife
 Site Information
 History and Use
 Areas of Interest
For the Aliakmon Delta head for the village of Nea Agathoupoli which is just off the main Athens-Thessaloniki road. Turn left in the village centre and follow this road to a large lagoon and there are smaller tracks and footpaths to other areas from here.
 Access and Facilities
The main road between Athens and Thessaloniki crosses part of the area and gives a taste of the birdlife present. To view the western bank of the Axios, the adjacent pools and scrub take a track off the main road at the Nea Malgara turn-off. After a few km this track heads towards a coastal lagoon which should not be missed. To view the east bank of the Axios take the southerly track from the western eand of the village of Chalastro which follows the embankment and passes some interesting pools and reedbeds.
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Content and images originally posted by Steve