to my dismay, I managed to delete the whole of my October report -
at least up to 24th October. That just leaves me to explain the
photos this time!
Walnut collecting near the Kiliaris River, Kalives.
4. Migrating grey herons and little egrets flying around the
Kalivaki Beach headland.
Purple herons flying
near Kalivaki Beach.
7. Four common snipe and female marsh harrier at Agia.
10. During a north coast walk between Petres and Rethymno, we found
crested larks and only our third ever sighting of shag. This one a
A popular spot for the local pelican is standing at the entrance to
the pedalo station.
13. A memorable sighting of lammergeier just south of Elos. It was
at some distance, but we watched for over five minutes, before it
drifted out of sight. Later this day we had unexpected sighting of
hawfinch. Initially one with just "head and shoulders" above the
foliage. We stopped nearby and saw three more - all distant, but
clear through our binoculars. One fuzzy picture for my records.
The pelican takes daily flights around Georgioupoli.
-17. More pictures from Kalivaki Beach area, including a one-legged
Yellow Wagtail/ male Flava
20. A rainy day drive almost abandoning our picnic intentions. We
didn't though, and were immediately "surrounded" overhead by 13
Eleanoras' falcons. As we picnicked in the car, a sparrowhawk flew
along the road, returned and settled in a tree in the field
Kestrel trying to catch insect
22. At the Viewpoint the water level remains high. Managed a
picture of female/juvenile garganey. More interesting was a distant
raptor on a cable next to an electricity pylon. The photo had to be
cropped severely, but confirms this was a hobby - a bird seldom seen
23 - 24. A single glossy ibis has turned up on the flooded meadows
behind Kalivaki Beach, looking exactly like the one seen recently at
Agia, having an unusually large amount of white on the head and
25 - 28. Again, the flooded meadows are turning up interesting
birds. This time a marsh sandpiper, amongst singles of redshank,
ruff, wood sandpiper, common sandpiper and little stint. Another
bird is proving difficult to identify. Apart from the length of the
beak, it appears to be a curlew sandpiper, but is probably a
dunlin. One picture shows six birds, each a different species.
29. A walk around the Kalivaki Beach headland, and this little
flower is showing up along the path, singly, or in small groups.
30. As mentioned in an earlier report, the return of the mute swan
meant it may team up again with the pelican - and it has! The
pelican always follows.
31 - 33. An unexpected sighting of plain tiger butterflies as I
walked along the quayside in Georgioupoli. A new species for me,
only occasionally turning up in Crete.
34 - 35. We are nearing the end of the month, but more grey herons
are migrating, a few landed on trees near the Viewpoint.
36. Again, at the Viewpoint, a small flock of corn buntings flew
past. This photo shows some with their legs dangling, typical of
37. A walk to Petres Gorge with Swedish friends, Eva and Bengt
Ranner, gave us sight of two griffons flying in the area. They were
absent from here for a couple of years until this spring. Today we
were able to see them across from our viewpoint, settled on what
looks like an old nest. Just as we were leaving, an adult peregrine
flew into the gorge, and immediately dived out of sight at great
38. Kalivaki is giving some good sightings this month. Today, a
redshank in winter plumage, is mingling with common and wood
39 - 40. Can't keep away from Kalivaki at the moment! Today, a
quick look revealed the glossy still there. So too the redshank,
wood and common sandpipers, and a common snipe. In a field nearby,
a great white egret roamed elegantly on the far side, but took off
only to settle in a quieter spot out of sight. A little further
from the beach, a small flock of tree sparrows - a bird I've only
seen a couple of times before. Other birds seen on this walk from
the house included robin, serin, great tit, stonechat, kingfisher,
white and grey wagtails, sedge, Sardinian and Cetti's warblers, and
singles of woodlark, meadow pipit and corn bunting, and two common
41 - 43 Today is the last day of the month, and a trip to the
Aradena area was our choice for picnic. An interesting day's
sightings, not least because we saw three late autumn migrants, soon
to be gone, and three new arrivals for the winter. This overlap can
only last for a short period. The birds soon to be gone were
black-eared wheatear and red-backed shrike. Those just arriving
were black redstart, robin and song thrush. We also had good
sighting of a first winter golden eagle, glimpses of peregrine and
sparrowhawk, lots of griffons and ravens. More common smaller birds
included blue rock thrush, crag martin, corn bunting, crested lark,
woodlark, wren, serin and linnet. It was almost dusk when we
reached the Georgioupoli Viewpoint as we neared home, but a quick
stop and we added water rail, grey wagtail, juvenile cormorant and
nine grey herons to our list. With all the obvious daily sightings
too, we had a list approaching 35 for the day. Below are three
pictures - the male black redstart, the golden eagle, and the
juvenile red-backed shrike
I have just remembered an unusual/very late sighting seen on 23rd
this month. Returning home in the car with my grandson, we were
just 30 metres from the house when a nightjar was spotted sitting in
the road caught in my headlights. It flew off into the night
passing very close to us. I mentioned a nightjar in our lane
spotted by my daughter in the August report, and I now wonder if
this could have been the same bird?