Monday, 30 March 2015

Harriers, a Plover and Hirundines

The 29th March saw another day of good raptor passage with a steady movement of Marsh Harriers all morning from when we first arrived (a little late) at the headland just after 08.00, with the last birds seen just before 13.30. This total includes several birds seen coming in off the sea at the lighthouse late morning. The final total was 25. There were also 4 Lesser Kestrel and 2 Kestrel. Late on a solitary ringtail Hen Harrier was seen feeding over the mountain.

A Marsh Harrier on the 'Narrows'

Lesser Kestrel at Kokinoghia

Other events of note was the presence of a European Golden Plover on 'pipit plateau', this presumably the same bird that was seen but not heard two days ago. A more thorough search of 'pipit plateau' today yielded no less than 10 Isabelline Wheatear (with additional singles at Koureli and Beehive Pass), this is an impressive total given we have only seen two birds in earlier years (2003 and 2010).

Day totals for other species were: 10 Common Swift, 9 Hoopoe, 8 Wryneck, 200 Swallow, 53 House Martin, 48 Red-rumped Swalllow (a new record count), 12 Whitethroat, 102 Subalpine Warbler, 4 Great Reed Warbler, 30 Nightingale, 7 Black Redstart, 7 Redstart and 18 Northern Wheatear.

Yesterday's Collared Flycatcher was again present in the bushes at Windy Gap (at Paliros) and had been joined by the first Pied Flycatcher (a male) of the spring.

A flock of 30+ terns flew east past the lighthouse but were very distant and eluded specific identification.

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