Sunday, March 29, 2015

Athens half day trip, March 15th 2015

Even a half day trip in March can be very productive! This trip was species-orientated; Ruppell's Warbler, Scops Owl and Sombre Tit being some of our targets.

We started just before dawn to look for the smallest owl of the area - the Scops Owl. Mt Hymettus holds a very large population of it and we found two birds very easily! Our next stop was the mountain ridge, to check for the Ruppell's Warblers. Even though the date was marginally within their arrival time, we managed to see two males!

Ruppell's Warbler
Nest stop was Schinias National Park. The wetland was full of water and held lots of Ferruginous Ducks, along with more common waterfowl (Mallard, Pintail, Shoveler). We also watched the first Red-throated Pipits of the season, along with Green and Wood Sandpipers. Our main target, however, was the Sombre Tit and to find it we had to move to the olive groves and the woodland of the surrounding hills. It tooks as quite a long time but, in the end, we made it! 

Sombre Tit
The best way to end the trip was by watching a freshly arrived Hoopoe, on Mt Penteli! It was a short but very fruitful trip! 

TRIP CHECKLIST (H = Mt Hymettus, S = Schinias NP, P = Mt Penteli)

Mallard S
Pintal S
Garganey S
Shoveler S
Ferruginous Duck S
Little Grebe S
Marsh Harrier S
Sparrowhawk S
Common Buzzard S
Kestrel S
Water Rail S
Coot S
Green Sandpiper S
Wood Sandpiper S
Yellow-legged Gull S
Collared Dove S
Scops Owl H
Hoopoe P
Crested Lark S
Woodlark P
Barn Swallow S
Red-throated Pipit S
White Wagtail S
Wren P
Robin H
Black Redstart S
Stonechat S
Northern Wheatear S
Blackbird H
Song Thrush P
Cetti's Warbler S
Sardinian Warbler H
Ruppell's Warbler H
Blackcap S
Chiffchaff S
Great Tit H
Rock Nuthatch H
Penduline Tit S
Jay H
Magpie HSP
Hooded Crow S
House Sparrow S
Chaffinch S
Cirl Bunting P

TOTAL: 44 SPECIES

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