Saturday, March 04, 2017

Birdwatching in Athens: Half-day trip, Feb 25, 2017

Elayna is an artistic spirit and a citizen of the world. After her first trip to Greece, where she tracked her Greek roots, she decided to spend a few days in Athens and visit the temple of Artemis in Vravrona. She had already read about the rich birdlife of the area, so doing a birding trip with Greece Bird Tours was a must.

We started at 7.00, and headed for Vravrona. The estuary of Erasinos river in Vravrona teemed with birds; Great and Little Egrets, Mute Swans, Black-headed, Mediterranean, Slender-billed and Yellow-legged Gulls were feeding in the shallow waters, while Shags and Cormorants rested in the rocky shores. The flooded river banks are excellent feeding place for Moorhens and Water Rails, while Chiffchaffs, Cetti's Warblers and Reed Buntings were moving across the reedbed.
Water Rail
The route from the museum to the archaeological site was also very rewarding. Teals and Mallards rested at the small pool in front of the museum and lots of passerines were seen along the path, Blackcaps, Sardinian Warblers, Great Tits, Blackbirds and Song Thrushes, Chaffinches, Goldfinches and Robins being the most common. 



Female Blackcap
Next stop was Artemis Lagoon, a small but precious wetland north of Vravrona. It was full of Black-headed Gulls that were feeding on small floating incects, while Shovelers, Mallards, Teals and a single Tufted Duck were resting close to the reeds. Coots, Moorhens and Little Grebes were also present. 
Female Tufted Duck

It was about time to call it a day. We saw and heard some 45 species. Elayna was really happy with her choice of birding with us!



TRIP CHECKLIST (V = Vravrona, A = Artemis)

Mute Swan    V
Teal                V
Mallard         V
Shoveler        A
Tufted Duck A
Little Grebe VA
Cormorant   V
Shag              V
Little Egret   V
Great Egret  V
Water Rail    V
Moorhen      VA
Coot              A
Redshank     A
Green Sandpiper A
Black-headed Gull VA
Slender-billed Gull V
Mediterranean Gull VA
Yellow-legged Gull  VA
Kingfisher V
Crested Lark V
Skylark A
Grey Wagtail A
White Wagtail VA
Meadow Pipit VA
Wren V
Dunnock V
Robin VA
Stonechat V
Blackbird V
Song Thrush V
Cetti's Warbler VA
Blackcap V
Sardinian Warbler VA
Chiffchaff VA
Great Tit V
Penduline Tit V
Magpie VA
Hooded Crow VA
House Sparrow VA
Chaffinch VA
Serin V
Goldfinch V
Linnet V
Reed Bunting V




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