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Lesvos Bird News 2019

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Old Monday 21st January 2019, 19:41   #1
Mick Sway
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Lesvos Bird News 2019

Welcome to Lesvos Bird News 2019
Well here we are another year.
I will continue to source Lesvos Bird News, by trawling the Net including:
Lesvos Bird News , Eleni Galinou's Facebook group and Steve Dudley's Levos Birders Group along with others.
I have the permissionof many regular contributors to reproduce images from these sources
and will continue to add them to posts as long as that is the case.

I guess we're all wondering what March 29th will bring us travel wise.

Personally, I'll be surprised if visitor numbers to Eastern Europe will
hold up. What about those all inclusive deals , in many Greek Islands ?
Families will possibly have to stump for those new green cards, Mum & dad for
international driving licences and possibly re-visit their travel insurance, as
there's no guarantee that EU countries will honour current medical
arrangements for the European Health Insurance Card.
There's also the question of Europe licences for UK Airlines, travelling
over the 27's airspace.
I've attached Simon Calders advice from last weekend (14/01/2019)
regarding UK Nationals, travelling to Europe, in case it is of any interest.
As spring is just around the corner, I can't wait to see how it all pans out.
Thanks for reading.
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Old Monday 21st January 2019, 20:28   #2
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20 January 2019 - Red breasted Merganser Mergus serrator

20 January 2019 - Mesa Wetland
Red breasted Merganser - Mergus serrator
Mr P Tsakmakis, photographed this
scarce winter visitor.

Weather wise the snow of early January , gave way to slightly higher
temperatures , fore cast for the rest of the month to be in the range
8c -12c. with some rain also on the way . Winter rain is essential to sustain
and attract migrating birds onto the wetland areas in spring.
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Old Sunday 27th January 2019, 14:43   #3
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26 January 2019 - Persistent Rain

26 January 2019
Eleni Galinue reports persistent rain, swelling rivers and streams on Lesvos.
See an old photo of mine showing a dry river bed at Kremasti Bridge and
one taken last week by Stavros X Valtas.
Spoonbill 11 Jan 2019
The only bird news of note , were two spoonbill on a river, possibly the
Tsiknias River, taken by local enthusiast Giorgis Laskaridis.

Of course the heavy rain bodes well for spring migration as long as it
persists and temperatures, do not become excessive.

I should mention that Eleni Galinue serves as a bird guide in Spring and
can be contacted via her Facebook Group, Lesvos Bird News.
To see the latest updates on Lesvos Bird News, click here.
Also of interest may be The Lesvos Nature and Landscapes group
and the group founded by Steve Dudley, Lesvos Birders.

Latest on Travel RE Post BREXIT No Deal

Some scares stories circulating , regarding queues at European Airports , of several hours waiting at passport control, for entry.
Others reference a 15 months , minimum on UK Passports for entry.
See here.
I hope that our politicians bring this nightmare of uncertainty to an end soon.
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Old Friday 1st February 2019, 20:53   #4
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28 January 2019 - 140 Med Gulls - Gulf of Gera

28 January 2019 - Gulf of Gera
Mediterranean Gulls

Eleni Galinue had a count of 140 Ichthyaetus melanocephalus
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Old Wednesday 6th February 2019, 14:33   #5
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3 February 2019 - Little Gull Alykes Wetland

03 February Alykes Wetland Little Gull
Eleni Galinue photographed two little gulls Larus minutus in the fields
below Kalloni Salt Pans .
Little gull are scarce visitors to Lesvos.
See Lesvos Bird News for more information.
If you're looking for a Lesvos Birding Guide this spring, she can be contacted
via her Lesvos Birdwatching , Facebook page. Click here
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Old Saturday 9th February 2019, 20:10   #6
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08 Feb 2019 - Black Kite - Mesa wetland

Mesa Wetland 08/02/19
The first :
Black kite Milvus migrans,
(non breeder seen in small numbers through the year)
First of the year was photographed by local environmentalist and bird guide
Eleni Galinou‎ , at Mesa Wetland.
See here
Eleni also reported seeing Kruper's Nuthatch a its Achladeri breeding site.
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Old Saturday 16th February 2019, 21:21   #7
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22 January 2019 Red Knot Polychnítos Salt Pans

22 January 2019 Polychnítos Salt Pans
Here's one I've picked up on late.
Eleni Galinou reported the unusual sighting of a Knot (Calidris Canutus)
at Polychnitos Salt Pans.
As at 2016 there were only 7 records accepted, all singles between
April and September, except one record of 9 in 2016.
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Old Monday 18th February 2019, 16:34   #8
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18 February 2019 - First returning breeders

18/02/19
House Martins

Eleftheria Pavli reports 3 house martin ( Delichon urbicum) above Pamfila today.
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Old Wednesday 20th February 2019, 14:08   #9
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19 February 2019 - Pigmy Comerant

19/02/19
Dipi-Larsos reedbed (Gera Gulf)

Pygmy cormorant (Microcarbo pygmaeus)
One photographed by Eleni Galinou while visiting the site.
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Old Wednesday 20th February 2019, 14:17   #10
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20 February 2019 - Spring Migration Underway

20/02/19
Petra

Med Gulls
A movement of 550-600 Mediterranean Gulls (Ihthyaetus melanocephalus)
along the North West Coast of Lesvos.

Charadima
Barns swallows Hirundo rustica - have returned to their nests here.

Eleni Galinou reports on Lesvos Bird News .
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Old Saturday 23rd February 2019, 20:21   #11
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23 February 2019 - Snow hits the island.

A weather update 23/02/19:
Recent reports of incoming birds and the onset of spring,
may have been a little premature.
Large parts of central and northern Lesvos were hit by a few centimetres
of snow today, Molivos and Agiasos included.
The inclement weather is set likely to continue for the next few days.
See photo below by permission of Andreas Efes , who owns a gift shop in Molivos.
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Old Saturday 23rd February 2019, 20:44   #12
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It's a bit concerning how the number of views and responses to these annual threads have dropped off
on Birdforum over the past 2 years.
Whilst I'm obliged to credit the source of these observations , I'm personally not a great fan of Facebook.
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Old Monday 25th February 2019, 12:22   #13
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24 February 2019 Mesa Wetaland

24 February 2019
While the wintry conditions persist on Lesvos this week, there are
photographs online of the strange site of flamingoes in the
foreground at the Salt Pans along with snow capped hillsides.
On the upside, one hopes that it bodes well for a extensive
wetlands and seasonal pools in spring, holding good numbers
of migrating birds.
Mesa Wetland
Meanwhile local photographer Petros Tsakmakis was out and about
on sunday, photographing a few overwintering species.
See photos for
Ferruginous Duck (Aythya nyroca) x 2
Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia) x7

Click here for Eleni Galinou's Lesvos Bird News Facebook page.
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Name:	spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia) Petros Tsakmakis 240219.JPG
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Old Tuesday 26th February 2019, 10:03   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mick Sway View Post
It's a bit concerning how the number of views and responses to these annual threads have dropped off
on Birdforum over the past 2 years.
Don't even think of stopping, Mick, please. I for one always keep reading; even though I'm incapacitated ATM I still hope to get out there again soon.
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Old Tuesday 26th February 2019, 20:13   #15
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24 February 2019 Mesa Wetaland

Quote:
Originally Posted by davercox View Post
Don't even think of stopping, Mick, please. I for one always keep reading; even though I'm incapacitated ATM I still hope to get out there again soon.
Thanks for the encouragement Dave, much appreciated.

below Petros Tsakmakis photo of
Ferruginous Duck (Aythya nyroca)
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Old Monday 11th March 2019, 12:27   #16
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9 March 2019 - First hoopoe - migration 2019

09/03/19
Mandamados
(near to)
The first hoopoe (Upupa epops) of the season was reported
on Lesvos Bird News.
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Old Thursday 14th March 2019, 15:43   #17
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13 & 14 March 2019 - Migration update

13/03/19
Kalloni Salt Pans Channels
Green Sandpiper (Tringa ochropus) 5

14/03/19
Mitilini port area
Common swifts (Apus apus) x 30
Mitilini Airport
Common swifts (Apus apus) - small parties of passing through


As reported by Eleni Galinou on Lesvos Bird News.
More updates here

Important
If you are looking for an experienced bird guide with superb local knowledge for your Lesvos 2019 birding trip, you can contact Eleni here.
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Old Thursday 14th March 2019, 22:14   #18
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Thanks for the updates, always a pleasure to see the season spanning out
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Old Friday 15th March 2019, 11:49   #19
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10 March 2019 Soumouria soccer pitch Scops Owl

10/03/19
Eurasian Scops Owl (Otus Scops)
Soumouria soccer pitch , near Kalloni Village

A late report, as local enthusiast Stylianos Zannetos noted the
return of a single scops at the copse of old eucalyptus trees, which
is their traditional breeding ground, adjacent the mini soccer pitch.

Thanks once again for your interest Jos.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jos Stratford View Post
Thanks for the updates, always a pleasure to see the season spanning out
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Old Sunday 17th March 2019, 13:58   #20
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More Migration News

16/03/19
A couple of Spring firsts, as reported by Eleftherios Kakalis:
Karyonas

short-toed eagle (Circaetus gallicus)
Napi Valley
subalpine warbler (Sylvia cantillans)

16/03/19
one by Dimitra Anastasaki
Petrifed Forest
Northern wheatear (oenanthe oenanthe)


As first reported on Lesvos Bird News
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Old Tuesday 19th March 2019, 11:15   #21
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Habitat Destruction

18/03/19
Metochi Lake

Images emerged yesterday of the destruction of reed beds and
other vegetation. following authorised excavation work
around the Metochi Lake , by what appears to be the local authorities.
Apparently the work was undertaken back in October and involved
a JCB of some sort.
Local and international wildlife enthusiasts are outraged by the lack
of forethought in this wanton destruction.
This will have disrupted both breeding and migration wildlife populations
of crakes, herons, warblers and reptiles.
Before and after photos below, by Michael Bakas.
Here's a translated quote from one of the local commentators:

"Wetland is protected by a presidential decree but unfortunately in October as part of the project project, the region put bulldozers and flattened"
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Old Tuesday 19th March 2019, 14:45   #22
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That is a great shame Mick, I thought it was a great little site and when I was there one afternoon in May 2014 the reeds and fringe vegetation supported numerous Nightingale & Black-crowned Night Heron and I saw both Little Crake & Little Bittern - plus loads of turtles.
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Old Wednesday 20th March 2019, 14:10   #23
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Metochi

Quote:
Originally Posted by foresttwitcher View Post
That is a great shame Mick, I thought it was a great little site and when I was there one afternoon in May 2014 the reeds and fringe vegetation supported numerous Nightingale & Black-crowned Night Heron and I saw both Little Crake & Little Bittern - plus loads of turtles.
Anyone has been , knows what a valuable habitat this is. No doubt it will recover over the coming months . though too late for Spring migrants.
Thanks for your response.
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Old Thursday 21st March 2019, 10:38   #24
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20 March 2019 - Yellow Wagtail sub species

20 March 2019 - more evidence of migration
Kalloni Salt Pans

Black-headed yellow wagtail M.f. xanthophrys 1
Black-headed yellow wagtail M.f.superciliaris 1
Black-headed yellow wagtail Moticilla flava feldegg 9
Marsh harrier Circus aeroginosus 2

Gulf of Gera
A movement of:
Garganey Anas querquedula 250
Yelkouan Shearwaters Puffinus yelkuan 30
Ferruginous Ducks Aythya nyroca 55


Sightings by Eleni Galinou & Stylianos Zannetos
As reported on Lesvos Bird News
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Name:	BH  yellow wagtail M.f. xanthophrys Kalloni SP 210319 S Zannetos.JPG
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Old Thursday 21st March 2019, 15:14   #25
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Was there given reason for the pool excavation? Even from an aesthetic angle, it also looked better before, so strange they saw need to clear the reeds. But on the bright side, at least it still exists, I guess by next season it will be quite some better.
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