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YesilUzumlu, Incerkoy and Cadianda areas. (1 Viewer)

27th April
Patara Lycian Ruins

Last full day in the SW Turkey before heading home. Patara is a magnificent place to visit, I often do it with Liz as part of a beach day. I usually get a few hours to mooch around while she enjoys the beach and her book. Today was a birding day. The entrance fee is no longer cheap (approx £13 each) but they are currently rebuilding the 2000 year old lighthouse from the base upwards, so the cost is understandable for this 4 or 5 year project.

I was a little surprised and worried when we started mooching about as bird life seemed very quiet to normal. Corn Bunting and some incredibly low flying Alpine Swifts were the only things around for the first twenty minutes. I had bigged the place up to Jeff for a few good year birds but not even Black eared Wheatear were showing. Anyway, a walk through the incredible theatre enjoying it to ourselves was nice. Jeff found the first baggable bird with a Common Redstart in a shaded tree, while we disturbed a Little ringed plover from the Reed bed while looking for White-throated Kingfisher. The default species was now Woodchat Shrike which perched on numerous lines, rocks and bushes.
The is the only fairly local site I know for White spectacled bulbul and they didn’t disappoint today with a pair seen on a few occasions during the morning.
We have had a good week for Reed bed warblers and again today it was nice to see a Great Reed warbler in a small patch of grass a little distance from the main Reed beds.
While walking the reedbed edge we had a few Sardinian warbler singing, just to bushy an area to pin them down but was also distracted by an out in the open Ruppells Warbler. A Whinchat perched high up on a rocky wall while a Purple Heron got spooked in the marshes by a Marsh Harrier.
A stop at the fantastic lighthouse area gave us a purring Turtle Dove that seem to be back in SW Turkey in very good numbers.

Patara is usually the place for a number of Wheatear species, today we got three. The very common Black-eared, not so common Northern Wheater and the very Special Finsches Wheatear. Today I think we got the pair as what looked like a female stayed around with the male and left with it when disturbed by sightseers.

Highlight of the day was possibly the last bird. As we were walking back to the carpark a call alerted me to something different (we had constant chatter of Corn bunting, Chaffinch, swallows, Black -eared Wheatear etc) I was trying in my head to decipher it when I eventually glimpsed a Black Headed Bunting which quickly flew out of sight. This would be a lifer for Jeff and a bird we had hoped to see in a few locations during the week. A few minutes later it returned to sing….. as did a few more as we walked the main access road for a while.

Little Grebe was the only species on the wetlands as we left.


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