Monday, 8 April 2013

The Wind takes its toll and some raptors struggle through


With westerly gales over night still going strong this morning the bushes and olive groves were impossible for birding so we opted to fight our way out to the lighthouse which in the circumstances was remarkably productive. In the shelter of the ridge close to the lighthouse there were single Blackcap, Redstart and Chiffchaff, 2 Willow Warblers, 2 Northern Wheatear and a group of 10 very tired looking Swallows as well as 2 Red-rumped Swallows. We can't be sure when these birds arrived but they didn't appear to be present yesterday morning. Amazingly a Little Egret came in off the sea while we were there, where had that set off from?

Hirundines at the lighthouse

A search of the bushes and gardens was almost fruitless. However more surprisingly 6 Kestrels and a single Marsh Harrier were seen heading north off the headland and were all presumed to have somehow found their way in during the day.

Away from the headland the exhausted hirundines we saw yesterday had suffered for roosting on the road with 2 dead House Martins and 2 dead Swallows following collisions with cars.

Victims of the windy weather

The plateau above Gerolimenas also proved productive for raptors with 2 Lesser Kestrel and 7 Kestrel (only 2 of the latter seen yesterday); while a single Montagu's Harrier and 2 Montagu's / Pallid Harriers were seen crossing Gerolimenas bay and heading on to the plateau late on.

Weather - westerly gale with showers overnight increasing WNW 9 by mid-morning, relenting a little force 8 during the afternoon. Overcast to start, clearing by midday and some broken cloud by early evening.


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