Lesvos, 5-12 May 2012

James Packer & Andy Slade

In 2011 James had been to Lesvos early in the spring and therefore missed a few of the late arriving migrants and breeders, therefore this trip was planned later in the spring to maximise the chances of seeing some of the migrant breeding specialities.

This year we stayed at the Kalloni Bay hotel (terrible website!). To be honest, there's not a lot between this and the Pasiphae where James stayed last year. The Pasiphae has better grounds but the food in the Kalloni Bay was excellent.

We ended up booking the direct charter flight and hotel separately, which saved up about £100 on the package. The rubbish package holiday company charges much more for this week as it had a bank holiday in it - we weren't prepared to accept this, so did it ourselves.

Hire car ended up being an Avis. It was a Nissan Micra, which was fine.

Unlike last year, the weather was too hot at the beginning of the week, cooling mid week to produce a spectacular fall of migrants at Sigri on our last day.

Systematic Lists


Ruddy Shelduck
Up to 8 seen in the Kalloni Salt Pans area every visit, also at Perasma Reservoir and Faneromeni Beach

Four on Skala Kalloni Pool including at least one pair with young.

Garganey, Kalloni

Drake, Alykes wetland all week

Drake, Perasma Reservoir 9th May.

Ferruginous Duck
Drake, Metochi Lake, 5th May

Little Grebe
Pair on Metochi Lake

Scopoli's Shearwater
Seven from Faneromeni Beach 11th May

Yelkouan Shearwater
40 Efthalou, 9th ; 500 in 15 mins Faneromeni Beach, 11th May

Greater Flamingo
20, Kalloni Salt Pans, 12th May

Black Stork, Kalloni

Black Stork
Seen daily in small numbers

White Stork
Several around Skala Kalloni area

Glossy Ibis
One, Alykes Wetland, 8th May

Little Bitterns, Kalloni

Little Bittern
Up to 3 present daily on Skala Kalloni Pool, up to 6 on Tsiknias River, 4 at Faneromeni area, and 2 Metochi Lake

Night Heron
Metochi Lake, 4 on 5th , 2 on 8th and 10th May

Squacco Heron
Seen daily. Up to 8 on Skala Kalloni Pool and Kalloni Saltpans area.

Grey Heron

Purple Heron
Up to 3 on Skala Kaloni Pool, and 1 on Christou River

Great White Egret
Seen daily around Skala Kalloni and Kalloni Salt Pans

Little Egret
Seen daily around Skala Kalloni and Kalloni Salt Pans

Seen daily on the sea at Skala Kalloni and Kalloni Salt Pans

Seen daily on the sea Skala Kalloni and Kalloni Salt Pans

Honey Buzzard
One, Kalloni Raptor Watchpoint 6th May

Short-toed Eagle, Madaros

Short-toed Eagle
Seen daily

Marsh Harrier
Singles Faneromeni, 7th ; Skala Kalloni Pool, 10th ; Alykes Wetland, 12th May

Pallid/Montagu's Harrier
Female showing characters of Pallid at Kalloni Saltpans, 6th May

Eurasian Sparrowhawk
One, Kalloni Raptor Watchpoint 6th May

Pair, Kalloni Raptor Watchpoint 9th May

Common Buzzard
Seen daily

Long-legged Buzzard
Seen daily

Lesser Kestrel
At least one Meladia Valley on 11th May

Common Kestrel
Small numbers throughout

Red-footed Falcon
One female Meladia Valley on 11th May

Eleanora's Falcon
Several seen throughout the week

One, Skala Kalloni, 9th May

One, Kalloni Salt Pans, 8th May

Little Crake
Male and a female Metochi Lake, 10th May

Spotted Crake
One, Tsiknias River, 10th May

Small numbers

Skala Kalloni Pool

Stone Curlew
Only one on Christou River, 11th May

One on Tsiknias River, 9th May

Black-winged Stilt, Kalloni

Black-winged Stilt
Common on wetlands

Common on wetlands

One on Alykes Wetland,6th and 8th May

Spur-winged Plover, Faneromeni

Spur-winged Plover
One Faneromeni, 11th May

Little Ringed Plover
Seen regularly

Ringed Plover
Common, up to 27 Alykes Wetlands

Kentish Plover
Small numbers around Skala Kalloni

Common Snipe
Single at Upper Faneromeni Ford, 11th May

2, Alykes wetland, 12th May

Marsh Sandpiper, Kalloni

Marsh Sandpiper
One, Kalloni Salt Pans, 12th May

One, Alykes Wetland, 5th ,6th ,8th May

Wood Sandpiper, Kalloni

Wood Sandpiper
Large numbers around Skala Kalloni and Kalloni Saltpans at the start of the week, with numbers gradually dropping throughout.

Common Sandpiper
One, Tsiknias River, 9th May

Little Stint
Common, up to 43 on Alykes Wetlands on 6th May.

Temminck's Stint
3, Tsiknias River, 8th May, with singles here on 9th and 10th .

Curlew Sandpiper
Only records were 2 at Dipi Larisos, 5th , and 1 Faneromeni, 7th May

Broad-billed Sandpiper
One, Alykes Wetland, 6th May

Common on wetlands

Collared Pratincole
3, Kalloni Salt Pans Beach, 6th May

Yellow-legged Gull

Gull-billed Tern, Kalloni

Gull-billed Tern
Regularly seen around the Kalloni Salt Pans area, maximum of 17.

Little Tern

Common Tern, Kalloni

Common Tern

Whiskered Tern, Kalloni

Whiskered Tern
Small numbers at Skala Kalloni Pool and Alykes Wetland throughout the week

White-winged Black Tern, Kalloni

White-winged Black Tern
Small numbers at Skala Kalloni Pool and Alykes Wetland throughout the week. Highest count was 17

Rock Dove
Small numbers around Sigri

Turtle Dove
Small numbers throughout

Collared Dove

Great Spotted Cuckoo
One, Ipsilou 7th May

Common Cuckoo
One, Achlerderi, 6th May

Scops Owl
2 at Papianna, 1 at Mini soccer pitch

Long-eared Owl
Adult with chicks at Papiana

Common Swift

Alpine Swift, Faneromeni

Alpine Swift
Single figure counts on a couple of days

Roller, Sigri

1, approaching Sigri and 1 Meladia Valley, both 11th May

Bee-eater, Kalloni

European Bee-eater
Common throughout

Several during the week

Middle-spotted Woodpecker

Middle-spotted Woodpecker
Several around olive groves during the week

Red-backed Shrike, Faneromeni

Red-backed Shrike
Small numbers until 11th when there was around 400 in the Faneromeni and Meladia Valley area.

Lesser Grey Shrike
2, Faneromeni, 7th ; 1 Kalloni Salt Pans, 10th ; 3, Faneromeni, 11th ; 2 Meladia Valley, 11th ; 1, Christou River, 11th May.

Woodchat Shrike
Small numbers throughout

Masked Shrike
Regularly encountered throughout the week

Golden Oriole
2, Faneromeni, 7th ; 2 Faneromeni, 11th ; 1, Meladia Valley, 11th May.

Seen in small numbers


Hooded Crow

Recorded in higher areas of the island

Sombre Tit
Seen at Ipsilou and Plantania Track

Great Tit

Blue Tit

Short-toed Lark
Present on the beach around the Kalloni Salt Pans

Crested Lark

4, Achlerderi, 6th May

Sand Martin
Small numbers throughout

Barn Swallow

Crag Martin
Singles at Kavaki, 9th and Madoros, 10th May.

House Martin

Red-rumped Swallow
Seen daily in small numbers

Cetti's Warbler
Present around the wetlands

One, Skala Kalloni

Eastern Bonelli's Warbler
Male, Ipsilou, 7th May

Wood Warbler
One, Meladia Valley, 11th May

Great Reed Warbler
Present around water, up to 3 males Skala Kalloni Pool

Sedge Warbler
One, Faneromeni, 7th May

Reed Warbler

Marsh Warbler
Five males, Meladia Valley, 11th May

Eastern Olivaceous Warbler

Olive-tree Warbler
2, nr Skamniouda, 6th May; 1, Metochi Lake, 8th May.

Icterine Warbler
1, Vigla, 7th May; 1, Meladia Valley, 11th May

Savi's Warbler
One male, Dipi Larisos, 5th May

River Warbler
One male, Faneromeni Upper Ford, 11th May

Fan-tailed Warbler
One male near Kalloni Salt Pans throughout

1, Faneromeni, 7th ; 3 Faneromeni, 11th may

Barred Warbler
One, Meladia Valley, 11th May

Lesser Whitethroat
2, Faneromeni, 11th May

1, Faneromeni, 11th May

Subalpine Warbler
Present in rockier areas

Sardinian Warbler
One, Kavaki, 9th May

Ruppell's Warbler, Kavaki

Ruppell's Warbler
2 males, Kavaki, 9th May

Kruper's Nuthatch
Pair at the nest, Achlerderi, 6th May

Western Rock Nuthatch
Regular in rockier parts

Common Starling
One, Kalloni Salt Pans, 10th May


Common Nightingale

Rufous Bush Robin, Madaros

Rufous Bush Robin
Seen at Skala Kalloni Beach, Faneromeni, Meladia Vally and Madaros

Single birds on three dates


Isabelline Wheatear
One or two at Vigla

Northern Wheatear
Male at Vigla

Black-eared Wheatear

Blue Rock Thrush
Several around the rockier parts

Spotted Flycatcher
Small numbers

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Meladia Valley

Red-breasted Flycatcher
One, Meladia Valley, 11th May

House Sparrow

Spanish Sparrow

Rock Sparrow
One, Ipsilou, 7th May

Black-headed Wagtail
Small numbers throughout

Citrine Wagtails, Faneromeni

Citrine Wagtail
Male, Christou River, 10th ; Male, Skala Kalloni Pool, 10th ; Male and female Faneromeni Upper Ford, 11th May,

White Wagtail
2, Sigri, 11th May

Tree Pipit
1, Faneromeni, 7th May

Red-throated Pipit
4, Kalloni Salt Pans, 10th and 12th May


2, Achlerderi, 6th May




Corn Bunting
Very common

Cinereous Bunting, Ipsilou

Cinereous Bunting
Several pairs around Ipsilou, 7th May

Cretzschmar's Bunting
Common in the rockier parts

Cirl Bunting
Small number throughout

Black-headed Bunting, Meladia Valley

Black-headed Bunting
Only males seen in small numbers at the start of the week. Larger mixed sex flocks towards the end. 50, Faneromeni, 11th ; 120 Meladia Valley, 11th May.



Inky Skipper Erynnis marloyi

Oriental Marbled Skipper Carcharodus orientalis

Orbed Red Underwing Skipper Spialia orbifer

Small Skipper Thymelicus sylvestris

Eastern Festoon Zerynthia cerisy

Southern Swallowtail Papilio alexanor

Common Swallowtail Papilio machaon

Scarce Swallowtail Iphiclides podalirius

Orange-tip Anthocharis cardamines

Eastern Dappled White Euchloe ausonia

Black-veined White Aporia crataegi

Large White Pieris brassicae

Small White Pieris rapae

Eastern Bath White Pontia edusa

Clouded Yellow Colias crocea

Small Copper Lycaena phlaeas

Ilex Hairstreak Satyrium ilicis

Brown Argus Aricia agestis

Common Blue Polyommatus icarus

Cardinal Fritillary Argynnis pandora

Lesser spotted Fritillary Melitaea trivia

Spotted Fritillary Melitaea didyma

Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta

Painted Lady Vanessa cardui

Southern White Admiral Limenitis reducta

Aegean Meadow Brown Maniola telmessia

Small Heath Coenonympha pamphilus

Balkan Marbled White Melanargia Larissa

Eastern Rock Grayling Hipparchia syriaca



Dark Spreadwing Lestes macrostigma

Eastern Willow Spreadwing Lestes parvidens

Blue-tailed Damselfly Ischnura elegans

White-legged Damselfly Platycnemis pennipes

Blue-eyed Hawker Aeshna affinis

Emperor Dragonfly Anax imperator

Lesser Emperor Anax parthenope

Broad-bodied Chaser Libellula depressa

Scarce Chaser Libellula fulva

Black-tailed Skimmer Orthetrum cancellatum

Southern Skimmer Orthetrum brunneum

Small Skimmer Orthetrum taeniolatum

Red-veined Darter Sympetrum fonscolombii

Scarlet Darter Crocothemis erythraea

Violet Dropwing Trithemis annulata



All site content, including photos © James Packer