The following 2003 Crete Bird Report has kindly been provided by Stephanie Coghlan. Following her standard book on Crete Birds:

Stephanie Coghlan - A Birdwatching Guide to Crete - Arlequin 5th edn. 2001.

Many thanks to Stephanie and all contributors.

Posted on cretewww 20.3.2010

Please note you can search this report in most browsers by pressing control+f


Compiled and edited by:

Stephanie Coghlan
25 Thorpe Lane

Introduction to Crete Bird Report 2003

Many thanks to everyone who contributed records for 2003. As usual Crete has
produced plenty of surprises. Interesting birds like a first year Gannet, a Great
Bittern, a Black Stork, and Egyptian and Black Vultures passed through but no large
“falls” were recorded but the bad weather produced some good migrants on the south
coast in April including Cretzschmar’s Bunting.

Weather: April was a very wet and cold month. May was more settled.

Names and Spelling: The spelling used is from the Harms Verlag Part 1 and 2

1:100,000 mapping, with some names used as in "A Birdwatching Guide to Crete"

Illustrations: Many thanks to Ken Baldridge for his illustrations.

The Bird List follows the order in "The Birds of Greece" Handrinos/Akriotis. 1997.

RB – resident, PM – passage migrant, AV- vagrant, MB- migrant breeder,

WV - winter visitor.

STATUS: rare, scarce, common, locally common, introduced.


Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis RB WV PM
Records from Lake Kournas, Georgioupolis, Agia and Bramiana Reservoirs from
April through to October. Usual numbers are between 2 and 10. Large numbers are
recorded at each site with 40 at Agia on 7.4. and 30 there 19/20.4. Presumably
passage birds. Numbers were higher in Autumn with 60-80 at Agia in September, and
50-100 there in October. There were 30 at Lake Kournas in mid October.

Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus WV PM
No records in 2003

Black-necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis WV PM
14 in a variety of plumages 10.4. at Lake Kournas. Singles at Lake Kournas on 3.5.
In Autumn just one there on 16
th Oct.

Cory's Shearwater Calonectris diomedea MB PM
In April recorded off the North coast with 1-2 seen off Panormo, with 20+ there on
9.4. 14 West past Creta Sun Hotel, Gouves on 13
th April a few on 21/22.4. and 10+
from Silver Beach Hotel, Gerani on 20.4. Only recorded off the south coast from
Damnoni beach with 5+ on 23.4.
The only Autumn record was 50+ off Stavros on the Akrotiri peninsula on 8
th Sept.

Mediterranean Shearwater Puffinus yelkouan WV? MB PM
3 west off Panormo on 8th April and 2 east there on 15th April.

Gannet Morus bassanus AV
One first winter flying east off Panormo on 8th April . (PW)

Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo WV PM
: Singles recorded from Itanos on 13th., Elounda 14th, Chania 16th and 18th.
One imm. Souda Bay on 21.4.
May: 2 Chania on 12th May.
Oct: 1 Plakias 19th Oct.

Shag Phalacrocorax aristotelis RB
Singles off Kolimbari on 16th, 2 off Chania Harbour on 18th, one Silver Beach
Hotel, Gerani on 20
th. 2 off Plakias on 21st and 1 off Damnoni on 24th on south coast.
May: Singles off Spinalonga and off Palm Beach, Prevelli 11th May .
Oct. One off Chania 12th Oct.

Great Bittern Botaurus stellaris PM WV
One record from Georgioupolis river feeding seen well by crossing the
footbridge and walking up towards the farm, on 20
th May. (CW)

Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus PM
Singles from 14th at Agia, Damnoni, Aposelemis delta, and Georgioupolis.
May: 2 at Agia reservoir on 2nd and 9th May and records of singles until 15th May
from Aposelemis river mouth, Georgioupolis Reservoir, Iraklion Power Station,
Petres river, Agia and Bramiana reservoirs.

Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax PM WV
First record with 5 at Agia Reservoir on 11th and 12th.
th April 14 took off from a roost near Itanos. Singles at the Turkish bridge in the
Megalopotamos valley on 19
th Silver Beach Hotel, Gerani on 20th, and Platanes on
May: 2-3 Agia Reservoir on 12th May and 1 at Limnes Pool on 18th May.

Squacco Heron Ardeola purpurea PM
Records from 8th with 4 at Panormo with 3 there and 2 at Thrapsano on 10th.
1 at Agia Reservoir on 11
th, with 4 at Bramiana Reservoir on 12th.
Singles at Kato Zakro on 14
th and Silver Beach, Gerani on 16th .
5 near Timbaki and 2 at Agia on 17
th. The passage noted on 19th with 22 at Damnoni,
5 at Moni Prevelli valley, 8 Silver Beach, Gerani, and 6 at Agia Reservoir with 9 there
on 20
th. Several each day recorded form 17th-30th April.
May: Singles or 1-2 daily until mid May at Platanes, Agia Reservoir, Georgioupolis,
Iraklion Power Station, Elounda, Frangocastello, Aposelemis river mouth and
Bramiana Reservoir.
Oct: Passage recorded with 50 and 100 at Malia and Elounda on 7th.

Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis PM WV
One on 21st April feeding with Little Egrets at Aposelemis delta in breeding plumage.
th May 1 in breeding plumage in an olive grove west of the castle at Frangocastello.

Little Egret Egretta garzetta PM WV
First recorded from 4th April with 1-2 at Geropotamos river nr Panormo,
Georgioupolis and Agia reservoirs. There were 27 at Panormo on the 5
th. For the rest
of the month it was a similar pattern with 1-2 recorded daily and small flocks recorded
of between 4-12. The largest flock was 27 at Malia on 14
May: Small numbers recorded daily until 18th May at wetland and coastal sites.
Sept: Records from 5th with 25 circling over Souda Bay and 140 passed Afrata on
Rodopou peninsula. Then daily until 18
th October with 1-2. Largest flock 50 past El
Greco Hotel, Rethymnon on 7
th Oct.

Great White Egret Ardea alba PM WV
No records in 2003.

Grey Heron Ardea cinerea OB PM WV
Recorded daily in April in small numbers 1-4.
May: Largest flock 8 over Kourtaliotiko Gorge on 4th May, otherwise 1-3 daily until
th May.
Sept: 3 at Agia Reservoir on 5.9. and 6 there 11.9. 23 in a flock with Little Egrets
over Kalives on 13.9. and 14 there next day. Two flocks of 20+ east of Souda Bay
and later 25 on Sept 15
th. Then recorded daily.
Oct: Recorded daily until 16th Oct. with 18 west over Georgioupolis headland on 7th
and 11 over Hania migrating with 2 Little Egrets on 18th being the only flocks noted.

Purple Heron Ardea purpurea PM
Singles recorded daily from Agia Reservoir, Roumeli, Tavronitis, Aposelemis
delta, Gouves, Platanes, Frangocastello with 7 at Damnoni on 18
th April and 13
passing Frangocastello on 23
May: 1-3 Aposelemis delta, Agia reservoir, Elounda saltpans, Lake Kournas, Prevelli
Palm Beach, Georgioupolis Lake, Elounda, Bramiana Reservoir until 15
th May.
Sept: 11 birds along east edge Agia Reservoir on 5th and 2 there on 11th Sept.
Oct: 14 at Malia on 1st Oct and 1 at Falasarna 11th.

Black Stork Ciconia nigra PM
19th May 1 seen flying west near Vrises. (CW).

White Stork Ciconia ciconia PM
3 soaring over Pilalimata. (WE)
Oct: 5 offshore at Malia on 1st Oct. (AJS)

Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus PM
First record from 12th April with 20+ at Bramiana reservoir. 6 at Aposelemis
delta and 30 flying west of Plakias on 16
th and 34 there on 18th. Small flocks of 1-6
in the second half of April with records.
May: 5 Aposelemis delta 5th May, 3 there 7th May. 1 Bramiana reservoir 15th May

Spoonbill. Platalea leucorodia PM
No records for 2003

Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruber WV? PM
No records for 2003

Mute Swan Cygnus olor OB WV PM
No records for 2003

Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus AV
No records for 2003

White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons WV
No records for 2003

Greylag Goose Anser anser WV
No records for 2003

Red-breasted Goose Branta ruficollis AV
No records for 2003

Wigeon Anas penelope WV PM
April 7th one female at Agia reservoir was the only report.

Teal Anas crecca WV PM
Only two records. One in Spring with a male on the pool on the Lassithi plateau on
th April.
In Autumn a pair seen on Lake Kournas on 17
th Oct.

Gadwall Anas strepera WV PM
Sept 30th – Oct 7th 1-3 at Thrapsano Pool.

Mallard Anas platyrhynchos RB WV PM
Recorded from 9th April with 1-4 at Agia Reservoir, near Thrapsano pool, Lake
Kournas, Georgioupolis Lake until mid May. Up to 7 at Bramiana Reservoir were the
largest counts. 12
th April and 15th May.
In Autumn recorded at Elounda, Thrapsano Pool, with 10 at Agia reservoir and a pair
at Lake Kournas on 17
th October.

Pintail Anas acuta WV PM
No Spring records. In Autumn 2 Agia Reservoir on 14th October.

Garganey Anas querquedula OB PM
Small numbers 1-12 passing through from 6th April at wetland areas and on the sea off
Plakias where there were 30 on 15
th April. There were records from Agia Reservoir
and Georgioupolis Lake and river as well as Lake Kournas, Thrapsano Pool,Bramiana
reservoir, Aposelemis long pool and from the seasonal pool at Lassithi until 15
th May.
In Autumn singles from 8
th Oct at Agia Reservoir and several there on 18th October.

Shoveler Anas clypeata WV PM
3 at Agia Reservoir with 2 males and 1 female from 7th April. Then 1-3 daily at
Aposelemis long pool, Bramiana Reservoir, and Agia Reservoir until 17
th when there
were larger flocks of 10 on Plakias Bay. Last record a single male at Bramiana
reservoir on 15
th May.
A few at Thrapsano pool Sept 30
th –Oct 7th.
Oct: 5 at Agia reservoir 14th-17th Oct. and 2 there on 18th Oct.

Red-crested Pochard Netta rufina WV PM?
No records from 2003

Pochard Aythya ferina WV PM
5 at Agia reservoir until 17th October.
th Oct 1 pair on Lake Kournas.

Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca OB WV PM
Male and female at Agia Reservoir on 2nd May.
Oct: 3 at Agia Reservoir rising to 6 on the 15th and 8 on 18th Oct. when there was also
a male at Lake Kournas.

Smew Mergellus albellus AV
No records in 2003

Honey Buzzard Pernis apivorus PM
1 over Panormo on 9th and 2 over Knossos on 13th, and 1 at Prevelli on 24th.
May: 1 just north of Georgioupolis on 8th May.
Oct: Seen on 1st and 2nd at Elounda.

Black Kite Milvus migrans WV PM
3 recorded near Plakias on 17th April, and singles at Monastiraki on 12th May, and 1
on Omalos plateau on 19
th May.
In October 1 at Falasarna on 15

Bearded Vulture(Lammergeier) Gypaetus barbatus RB
13th April One landed near Hotel on Omalos Plateau and joined by second
displaying to each other. 14
th April 2 sightings of adult over Kourtaliotiko gorge and
from Turkish bridge. Also 2 recorded over Spili on 16
th April and 1 seen several times
over Kourtaliotiko Gorge on 9
May: Recorded from the Kourtaliotiko Gorge, south of the Prasses Gorge in the
Amari valley, and over the Samaria Gorge.
Oct: Recorded circling over Zaros.

Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus RB
Recorded in Gorges and in the mountains. At least one pair nesting in Selinari Gorge.
In the lowlands recorded from Panormo, Thrapsano, and 26 in the Aposelemis Gorge,
Gouves, Petres Gorge. In the mountains recorded from Selinari Gorge, Kourtaliotiko
and Kotsiphos Gorges, Lassithi and Omalos Plateaux, Spili, Samaria Gorge, Ag Irini
Gorge, Therisso Gorge, Imbros Gorge, Prevelli Valley, and Lake Kournas.

Egyptian Vulture PM
8th May 11-13 recorded inland from Elafonisos (JP)

Black Vulture AV
12th May 1 at 15.23 on the mountain road south of Anogia above the wind turbine.
The bird was harried by two Ravens. (G&WW)
th Oct 1 juv above Fourfouras , Mt Ida. (Giorgios Andreou)
Assuming this is the same bird these are the first records since 1976.

Short-toed Eagle Circaetos gallicus WV PM
Only 3 records. 1 near Thrapsano on 9th April. (IH) and 1 flying past Phaestos on 20th
April.(HG) In May 1 at Georgioupolis near the coast on 20th. (CW)

Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus WV PM
Recorded almost daily from 9th April, with 1-6 seen. Mainly females but
solitary males were recorded from wetland sites like Agia and Georgioupolis
reservoirs and the Aposelemis river, but also from drier sites such as Phaestos, Aghia
Triada Monastery, Moni Prevelli and Frangocastello while on migration.
May: Similar sighting until 19th May.
Autumn migration not so notable with records at Agia reservoir on 7
th and 11th
September with 1-3 adult females and juveniles seen. In October 1-3 females recorded
on 8
th, 9th and 18th again at Agia reservoir.

Hen Harrier Circus cyaneus WV PM
Passage of ‘ringtails’ noted along the east coast from 13th-15th April. On 13th
April one female was at Aposelemis delta and on the 14th one male and one female
went over the Plakias headland near the wind farm.

Pallid Harrier Circus macrourus rare PM in April
One male at Panormo on 9th was the only record.

Montagu's Harrier Circus pygarus rare PM in April
1-2 seen daily from 11th April until 26th April, with passage noted along the east coast
th-15th April. Records from Aptera, between Gouves and Krassi, Spili, Kourtaliotiko
Gorge, in the Geropotamos valley below Agia Triada and at Prevelli and
Frangocastello indicate the birds are crossing the island while traveling north as well
as using the east and west coast for migration.

Goshawk Accipiter gentilis WV PM
1 over Damnoni valley in the early evening of 20th April. (SP)

Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus OB WV PM
Records from April with 2 at Aposelemis delta on 13th and 1 near Panormo on 16th.
1 at Ag Triada Moni 18
th April.
In May 1-2 seen at Georgioupolis on 4 dates between 7
In September only one seen on 3
rd near centre of Kalives in the early evening.
In October from 10
th-18th singles were recorded on the Omalos plateau, Amari valley,
Agia Triada, Megalopotamos valley, Plakias and over Lake Kournas.

Buzzard Buteo buteo RB WV PM
A common resident seen daily by recorders in most habitats.

Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus RB WV PM
Passage reported with 1 perched near Kato Moni Prevelli on 14th April, and 2 N. off
Hersonnisos on 15
th and 2 at Xerocampos on 16th April. There was 1 on Akrotiri near
Ag Triada Moni on 18
th. At the end of the month singles were recorded at Prevelli on
th and Aptera on 28th April.
In May 1 south of Prasses on 8
th and 1 near Stylos on 11th May.
In September 1-2 over Kalives between 3
rd and 15th and 3 perched on radio masts at
Akrotiri Drapanos on 10
th September.

Rough-legged Buzzard Buteo lagopus PM?
No records in 2003

Steppe Eagle Aquila rapax PM?
No records in 2003

Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos RB
Records of singles and pairs from Seli Ambelou Pass, Bramiana Reservoir, Spili,
Omalos and Samaria Gorge, Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Diktamnos Gorge and above Lake
Kournas during April and May.
In September 2 high over Expoli on 6

Booted Eagle Hieraetus pennatus PM WV
Singles from 13th April-23rd both dark and pale phase, with 2 dark phase over Lassithi
plateau on 15
th. One record in May on 10th from near Rethymnon.
Passage of single noted in early October until 18
th October on 6 dates.

Bonelli's Eagle Hieraetus fasciatus RB PM?
4 seen while descending from the Lassithi plateau on 15th April and 5 near Spili on
th April. 2 at Rodakino beach displaying together on 20th April. Then one at Prevelli
on 24
th. In May singles until 16th May from Prasses Gorge, Diktamos Gorge,
Elafanisos, Agia reservoir, Samaria Gorge, Myli Gorge and the lower Potamos valley.

Osprey Pandion haliaetus PM
One record on 10th May from Georgioupolis beach. (CW)

Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni OB PM
One first summer male with party of 12 Kestrel sp. at Petres Gorge on 6th (PW)
In the east on 13
th April 4 near Paleokastro and there were 2 others at Vai. One near
Chiona on 14
th and 2 near Vai on 15th.
In the west 1 first summer male with other falcons at Agia Triada Moni on 18
th, and
later in the month 26
th-28th April 1-2 at Frangocastello, Aptera and Prevelli.
In the Autumn, 1-2 at Kakomouri headland , Plakias on 15
th October.

Kestrel Falco tinnunculus RB WV PM
Common recorded daily from April to mid May and in the Autumn from September
until 19
th October by all recorders.

Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus PM
Passage recorded from 15th April with 4 at Vai and 4 near Zakros on 16th April. On
th –16th April there were small flocks of 1-4 around Aposelemis river, Rethymnon
and Spili, Agia reservoir and Tavronitis river.
th April was the main movement day with flocks of 23 and 12 seen at Agia Triada
Moni, while 60 were seen between Plakias and Moni Prevelli with largest flocks of 14
and 24.
On 1
st May there was one at Platanes and circa 10 at the monasteries at Akrotiri and 4
at Ag. Ioannis on 19
th May.

Hobby Falco subbuteo scarce PM
Singles over Panormo 13th-16th April. On 18th April 15+ seen with other falcons at
Agia Triada Moni on Akrotiri. On the same day singles seen at Damnoni and Moni

Eleanora's Falcon Falco eleonorae MB
2+ behind Frangocastello on 20th April, and a single there on 23rd.
In May 1 on Omalos plateau on 2
nd May and 1-6 seen almost daily until May 19th.
In Oct 2 seen at Malia on 6
th, Agia reservoir from 8th-14th and Eleftherna on 19th.

Lanner Falco biarmicus scarce RB PM
No records from 2003.

Peregrine Falco peregrinus RB WV PM
Recorded daily from 9th April-14th May from the coast, in Gorges and Lassithi plateau
and Omalos plateau.
In September 1 in among feral pigeons in Ellinospilios Gorge on 5
In October records from Chania and 1 foraging at Lake Kournas on 17
th and 18th.

Chukar Alectoris chukar RB
Recorded from Samaria Gorge and Omalos plateau, Kakomauri headland, Plakias,
Moni Prevelli and Megalopotamos valley, as well as Diktamnos Gorge, Elaphonisos
and the Lassithi Plateau in April and May.
In October the only record was from near Lake Kournas.

Quail Coturnix coturnix RB PM WV
The only records this year were on April 14th with 2 birds flushed twice at the
Aposelemis delta and in the south 2 males calling on the Kakomauri headland, Plakias
on the same day.

Water Rail Rallus aquaticus OB WV PM
One heard at North end of Lake Kournas on 17th & 19th October.

Spotted Crake Porzana porzana rare PM
1 found dead at Kalives on 7th April.
October: 1 Agia reservoir on 15th Oct.

Little Crake Porzana parva PM
First reported at 1 male at Georgioupolis reservoir on 10th April. On the 11th there was
a male and 2 females at Agia reservoir, and singles were seen there until 15
th. From
the 17
th April there were between 6 and 10 until 22nd April around the edges.
There were 3 at Frangocastello marsh on 23
rd. In May there were 6 at Agia reservoir
on the 2
nd, and singles at Aposelemis river on 5th and Georgioupolis reservoir on 9th

Baillon's Crake Porzana pusilla rare PM
No records in 2003

Corncrake Crex crex rare AV
No records in 2003

Moorhen Gallinula chloropus RB WV PM
Flocks seen at Lake Kournas, Georgioupolis, Agia, Bramiana, while there were
singles and 1-5 at wetlands and river mouths.
In September there were 120 at Agia reservoir on 5
th and a similar number in early
October. Later in the month there were just a few at Lake Kournas, Agia,
Georgioupolis and Keridis river.

Coot Fulica atra RB WV PM
Common with small flocks from 10-70 during April and May at Lake Kournas,
Georgioupolis and Agia reservoirs. Thrapsano pool and river mouth had smaller
numbers of 1-4.
In September there were 200+ at Agia on 5
th falling to 100 in early October. The last
record was 39 at Lake Kournas 17
th-19th October.

Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus PM
No records for 2003

Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus PM
Recorded at Thrapsano pool and fields on 9th April. On the 10th there were 2 at
Aposelemis long pool until 16th, and 1+ at Bramiana reservoir on 12
th April. 1+ at
wetland near Timbaki and 1 at Agia Reservoir on 17
May: 1 at Aposelemis river mouth.
Sept: 2 adults and 3 juveniles at Agia reservoir.

Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta PM?
No records in 2003

Stone Curlew Burhinus oedicnemus RB WV PM
1 in flight over beach at Frangocastello on 12th May.

Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola PM
1 in a damp field near Thrapsano pool on 9th April.

Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius MB WV PM
Common, nesting on beaches and rivermouths and at Elounda Saltpans. Pairs
recorded from Gouves, Itanos, Chiona beach, Plakias beach, Aposelemis delta,
Platanes, and Perama rivers in April and May.
In October 1 juvenile at river delta at Plakias harbour on 15

Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula WV PM
Singles recorded from 8th April at Aposelemis delta, Rethymnon beach 10th,
and Platanes from 22
nd – 6th May.
May: Records from Aposelemis delta in 5th May and 3 there 18th May. 1 at Malia on
th May.
Sept: 1 in pool at Spiliakos river mouth on 11th September.
30th Sept –Oct 18th: Singles at Malia beach until Oct 7th. 14th Oct 2 in dunes nr El
Greco Hotel and there were two at Chania 16
th-18th Oct.

Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus WV PM
16th October 1 juvenile Frangocastello on rocks on shore.(PBM)

Spur-winged Plover Vanellus spinosus AV PM?
No records for 2003

Lapwing Vanellus vanellus WV PM
No records for 2003

Sanderling Calidris alba PM
No records for 2003

Little Stint Calidris minuta WV PM
Small flocks 1-7 throughout April and May until 18th, at Geropotamos river nr
Panormo, Aposelemis delta and river mouth, Elounda saltpans, Georgioupolis
reservoir, Agia reservoir, Malia beach and Bramiana reservoir. Largest flocks 16 east
of Georgioupolis on 15
th May and 20 at Aposelemis river mouth from 13th –18th May

Temminck's Stint Calidris temminckii. scarce PM
2 feeding on the road at Damnoni on 18th/19th.
May: 1 at Georgioupolis Lake on 9th May.

Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea PM
16th April 1 at Geropotamos river, Panormo, and 2 at Platanes on 30th April.
th May 1 at marshy area east of Georgioupolis and 3 in breeding plumage at
Aposelemis river mouth on 18
th May.

Dunlin Calidris alpina WV PM
1 at Paleokastro river bridge pool on 15th April.
May: 1 on coast near Petres Gorge on 15th May.

Ruff Philomachus pugnax PM
Flocks recorded from 9th April until 15th May at river mouths, pools and reservoirs.
Usually 8-20 in flock but in May smaller flocks from 1-4.

Snipe Gallinago gallinago WV PM
Singles at Thrapsano on 10th April, and at Vai on 15th. There was one at Aposelemis
delta on 13
th and 14th. In May 1 at Tersanas Pool on 6th.

Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa rare PM
On 16th 300+ flock of mystery birds seen whirling around near Plakias.
Unidentified as recorder was inside a bus. Possibly Godwit?
Sept: 1 in reeds on S edge of Agia Reservoir on 5th.

Curlew Numenius arquata WV PM
10th April 1 at Aposelemis delta. (SP)

Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus rare PM
No records for 2003

Redshank Tringa totanus WV PM
Only 1 record from the damp fields near Thrapsano pool on 9th April.

Marsh Sandpiper Tringa stagnatalis PM
Single at Geropotamos river, Panormo on 5th and 3 there on 9th and 1 at
Aposelemis long pool on same day. 3 there on 13
th. One at Paleokastro bridge river
pool on 15
th. Single at Aposelemis 21st/22nd and 1 at Platanes on 29th.
May: 2 in breeding plumage Aposelemis long pool on 5th May and 1 there on 7th. 1 at
Georgioupolis Lake on 14
Nov: 1 at Skinias reservoir on 7th Nov. (MD)

Greenshank Tringa nebularia PM
Singles at Aposelemis long pool on 8th and at Geropotamos river. 3+ at
Aposelemis river, Malia, Thrapsano pool, Paleokastro bridge river pool,
Megalopotamos, Plakias, Rodakino beach and Panormo on 9
th and 3 there on 15th. 1
at Aposelemis lagoon on 14
th and 7 there 16th April. 1 at Agia reservoir on 20th. 2 at
Aposelemis long pool on 22
nd and 1 at Platanes on 23rd and 25th, which was the last

Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus WV PM
Singles from 8th-18th usually at Aposelemis long pool.
May: 1 at Georgioupolis Reservoir on 4 dates from 7th-13th May.

Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola PM
Recorded daily throughout from 8th, with small flocks seen at Aposelemis long
pool, Lassithi pool, Geropotamos river mouth, Elounda saltpans, Damnoni, Agia
reservoir, Tersanas Pool, with 4-25.
May: In May smaller flocks of 1-6 seen at Agia Reservoir, Aposelemis long pool,
Tersanas Pool, Georgioupolis reservoir, Lassithi Plateau and Bramiana Reservoir until
th May.
Sept: 1 at Agia Reservoir from 5th-11th September.

Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleuca WV PM
Recorded daily from 4th April around coasts, beaches, river mouths, in harbours, at
reservoirs and inland at upland pools such as Lassithi, usually 1-2, until 11
th May.
In October singles seen daily at Malia, Souda Bay and Plakias river mouth.

Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres rare WV? rare PM
No records for 2003

Long-tailed Skua Stercorarius longicaudus vagrant AV
No records in 2003

Mediterranean Gull Larus melanocephalus PM
No records in 2003

Little Gull Larus minutus WV PM
2 at Bramiana reservoir on 12th April. (SP)

Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus WV
No records in 2003

Audouin's Gull Larus audouinii MB
1 at Elounda on 8th and 18th May, 1 at Almyros near Ag.Nikolaos (NE).

Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus rare WV PM
1 adult in Chania Harbour (PA).

Yellow-legged Herring Gull Larus cachinnans MB WV PM RB
In Spring common and widespread in small numbers. There is a breeding colony on
Spinalonga. There were 400 on Bramiana reservoir on 15
th May.
In the Autumn in September and October only small numbers recorded daily 1-2 with
30 in Chania harbour in mid October.

Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla WV PM
No record in 2003

Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica PM
7 in Plakias Bay, 2 at Damnoni and 2 at Plakias on 18th April.
A single at Damnoni on 19
th April.

Sandwich Tern Sterna sandvicensis WV PM
1 and later 2 flying west at Panormo on 6th April. 15th April 4 at Petres Beach
and 3 at Souda Bay on 18
May: 1 Almyros (Ag. Nikolaos) on 9th May.

Common Tern Sterna hirundo PM
No records in 2003

Little Tern Sterna albifrons rare PM
1 at Plakias Bay and 2 at Damnoni and Plakias all on 18th April.
May: 1 at Falasarna on 8th May.

Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus PM
1 at Plakias Bay on 18th April.
May: 2 at Lake Kournas on 8th May and 7 at Agia Reservoir on 9th May.
On 10
th May there were 5-10 at Agia and on 12th there were 3 there. Last record was
of 2 at Bramiana reservoir including an oiled bird.

Black Tern Chlidonias niger PM
1 inland from Plakias on 18th April.
May: 1 at Agia reservoir on 12th May, and 1 at Bramiana reservoir on 15th.

White-winged Black Tern Chlidonias leucopterus PM
4 at Agia and 2 at Georgioupolis on 9th May. On 12th May there were 8 at
Moronis area, Souda and 8 at Agia reservoir.
In the east there were 8 at Bramiana reservoir on 15
th and centrally 1 at Aposelemis
river mouth on 18
th May.

Rock Dove Columba livia RB
Genuine wild type birds seen on sea cliffs and in gorges in the mountains.

Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus RB WV PM
Thinly spread with singles and pairs recorded at Kotsiphou Gorge, Kato Moni
Prevelli. Seli Ambelou Pass, Selinari Gorge, Lassithi plateau, near Spili and Phaestos
in April and May. Recorded from Elounda in October.

Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto. RB
Common and widespread in towns and countryside villages.

Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur MB PM
Passage of 2-4 from 15th April to 15th May with flocks of 20 on 19th April and 29 on
the 3
rd May being the largest groups recorded.

Gr Spotted Cuckoo Clamator glandarius rare PM
No records in 2003

Cuckoo Cuculus canorus PM
1-2 recorded throughout April from 5th, usually seen but also calling. Last record on
th May on Omalos plateau. No Autumn records.

Ring-necked Parakeet Psittacula krameri Escape
2 seen around Platanes beach in late April early May. In late September 2 recorded
from around Malia until October 7
th. On 14th October 3 were seen flying over the
dunes near El Greco Hotel, Rethymnon.

Barn Owl Tyto alba RB WV PM
7th April 2 seen and heard over Panormo, 1 seen in Georgioupolis and 1 reported in
Chania between 7
th and 13th May. 1 flew over El Greco Hotel at 9.15 on 17th Oct.

Eagle Owl Bubo bubo RB?
No records in 2003

Scops Owl Otus scops RB PM
Heard from 12th April on Omalos plateau, Toplou Moni, Plakias Aptera, Megala
Chorafia and Georgioupolis town.
In October 3 calling at Lake Kournas between 14
th-18th October.

Short-eared Owl Asio flammeus WV PM
No records in 2003

Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus MB PM
1 heard ‘churring’ Elounda between 7th-18th May.

Alpine Swift Apus melba MB PM
First record from 6th –16th April when small numbers recorded daily. After 17th larger
flocks seen of 20 - 100+ until 18
th May.
In Sept seen from 5
th Sept with 12+ over Agia reservoir and 50+ on 9th Sept. ca 30 at
Kournas Lake on 16
th October. 1 on 18th Oct was taken over Agia reservoir by a
Sparrowhawk, the bird was dropped and recovered and flew off safely.

Swift Apus apus MB PM
Recorded from 4th April. Large colonies in Rethymnon and Chania.

Pallid Swift Apus pallida MB PM
2+ in mixed flock on 23rd April. 1 at Thronos in Amari valley on 1st May. 3-4 over
Georgioupolis on 4 dates in early May. 3+ Agia reservoir 12
th May. 2 at Sitia 14th
May. On October 8th 1 at Agia reservoir.

Kingfisher Alcedo atthis WV PM
Singles seen during April at harbour at Panormo on 5th, 2 Petres river on 15th, 1
Chania swimming pool on 18
th, 1 Silver Beach Gerani 20th, 1 at Plakias during the
week 17
th-24th, and 1 at Platanes. Last record in May at Petres Gorge on 15th.
Autumn records from September 3
rd. Singles all around the coast, up to 3 at Agia
reservoir, and ca. 5 in Chania Harbour in mid October. Common winter visitor.

Bee-eater Merops apiaster MB PM
3 over Tavronitis river 16th April. 17th-24th April 1-2 at Plakias and 10+ near
Agia Triada, Phaestos 20
th April.
May: 11 over Moni Prevelli on 4th May, 1 Frangocastello and heard at 3 other sites on
th May. 1 near Lakki on 19th May.
Sept: 30+ juveniles on wires above Karani off Omalos road on 7th Sept.

Roller Caracius garrulus PM
1 perched by the road between Agia Triada and Phaestos on 20th April.

Hoopoe Upupa epops MB PM
Singles recorded from 5th April until 8th May. 2 –3 recorded at Panormo 6th and 16th
April, Moni Prevelli 19th and 3 near Knossos on 21st April.
3 at Minithiana on 11
th September and 1 at Ag. Georgios in October are the only
Autumn reports.

Wryneck Jynx torquilla MB? WV PM
Singles at Panormo on 9th and 12th April. 3 on Omalos plateau on 13th April,
while on 14
th 1 seen and many heard there (IH). 2 at Damnoni on 19th April.

Calandra Lark Melanocorypha calandra OB? PM
No records in 2003

Short-toed Lark Calandrella brachydactyla MB WV PM
12+ at Malia near the taverna on 10th and 20+ there on 13th. 1 singing at
Panormo on 12
th and 20+ there on 16th. 7 at Plakias beach on 19th and 6 at Spili bumps
on same day. On 20
th April there were 6+ at Frangocastello delta and 2 at Silver
Beach, Gerani.
May: 3 at Aposelemis delta on 5th May. 3-4 on Prevelli beach on 10th May, there were
3 near Ag. Ioannis on 19
th May.
October recorded on Nida plateau on 15th October.

Crested Lark Galerida cristata common RB
Common and widespread breeding bird, in fields and coastal scrub.

Woodlark Lullula arborea RB PM
Recorded from 9th April from Omalos and Lassithi plateaus, and from sea level
at Panormo, Xerocampos, Damnoni and Moni Prevelli valley, and Aptera.
May: Seen on Omalos and Katharo plateaus, at Kournas.
Oct: Several sightings at Malia. 2 foraging at north end of Imbros Gorge on 16th.

Skylark Alauda arvensis OB? WV PM
1 heard over Plakias on 15th and one at Chania 17th October.

Sand Martin Riparia riparia PM
First records from 4th April. Flocks and small numbers recorded at river mouths and
reservoirs. Largest passage noted in mid April on 17
th with 1000 over Agia, mean
-while there were 500 at Georgioupolis on the same day taking refuge from foul
weather. There were 500 at Agia the next day 18
th. In May only 1-6 recorded until the
last record of 12 at Bramiana reservoir on 15
th May.
Autumn passage was 40+ at Agia reservoir on 5
th Sept. 1 there on 14th October and a
few at Ini reservoir on 7
th Nov.

Crag Martin Ptyonoprogne rupestris RB WV PM
Recorded from 4th April from sea level at Panormo and Kato Zakro and Xerocampos
as well as in the mountains in the Kourtaliotiko, Therisso, Kotsiphos, Imbros and
Samaria. Gorges. Last passage record 5 th May at Elounda.
In the Autumn ca. 10 at Samaria Gorge, Xyloskala and Nida plateau from 14
th Oct .
Also records of 1-15 from Ag. Ioannis at Ag. Nikolaos, Rouvas Gorge and Kakomauri
headland, Plakias.

Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica MB PM
Common records from April 4th – 13th May. No large flocks reported.
In September and October small numbers reported from 2
nd September to 17th Oct.

Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica MB PM
Singles reported from 14th April onwards. In May records continue until 15th with 8+
in Myli Gorge on 12
th. No Autumn records received.

House Martin Delichon urbica MB PM
Recorded in small flocks from 4th April to 17th May. Largest counts were 500+ at
Plaka headland on 17
th, and many hundreds reported between 17th-24th April.
In September and October there were 5+ at Agia on 5
th Sept, a flock at Selinari and
Malia in early October and seen daily at the El Greco Hotel, Rethymnon from 8
th- 20th

Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris MB PM
April and May:
10+ at Panormo on 6th April and then 1-2 daily until 19th May from,
Gouves, Malia, Aposelemis delta, Vai, Xerocampos, Plakias beach. Afrata,
Frangocastello delta, Agia Triada Moni, Moni Prevelli, Omalos plateau and Sfakaki
October: 1 at Malia and on 7th 2 near El Greco Hotel, Rethymnon.

Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis WV PM
1-2 around Panormo from 5th-16th April. 1 at Malia on 10th April, and 2 at
Aposelemis delta on 13
th. From 15th-22nd recorded daily with 12 on the Omalos
plateau on 19
th April, and from 17th-24th April there were several each day at Damnoni
on early morning visits.
October: 1 seen on two days at Malia during the first week of Oct.

Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis OB WV PM
Late winter records of 1 at Panormo on 5th April and Singles at Gouverneto Moni on
th April and at Platanes Beach on 22nd April were very late.
In Oct there were 1-2 over Plakias on 15
th October.

Red-throated Pipit Anthus cervinus rare WV PM
10 at Malia on 10th April were the first report. On 13th there were 25+ at
Aposelemis delta and on the coast at Malia. On 14th there were only 4 at Aposelemis,
2 at Elounda and 2 at Plaka headland. 20+ were at Tavronitis river on 16
th April. 20+
flew over Halepa Hotel and there were 2 at Agia reservoir on 17
th and 18th. There was
a single at Plakias on 19
th April and 20 there the day after. Then singles from Lake
Kournas, Sfakaki shore, Aposelemis delta, Malia headland and Geropotamos river
mouth until 13
th May.

Yellow Wagtail Moticilla flava MB PM
Flocks of 5 –50 seen from 4th April onwards at Panormo, Souda Bay cemetery,
Malia, Agia reservoir, Platanes beach, Frangocastello. In
May mainly singles or twos
seen at Falasarna, Agia Reservoir, Georgioupolis and Elounda, and Aposelemis river
mouth. Races included
flava, beema, thunbergi, and feldegg.
September: Small family flocks seen with 12 in fields near Georgioupolis harbour on
th and 20+ in alfafa fields near Spiliakos, Minthiana on 11th. During October there
were 1-4 at El Greco Hotel, Rethymnon, Agia Reservoir, damp fields near Plakias and
3 blue-headed (
beema) at Ini reservoir on 7th November.

Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea RB? WV PM
1 at Agia reservoir on dam wall on 8th Oct. 1-2 around Parking lot and Trout
pool at Hotel Idi, Zaros from 12
th- 14th Oct. In Plakias there was one on the stream
from 14
th –15th and 1 in Imbros Gorge on 16th and 1 in Kournas village on 18th

White Wagtail Moticilla alba RB WV PM
April and May:
Records of 1-2 daily from 5th April until 19th May, from Panormo,
Souda Bay cemetery, Gouves, Creta Sun gardens, Chiona Beach, Plakias beach,
Aposelemis delta, Agia Triada Moni , Coastal records in May from Geropotamos
river mouth, Swallows Canyon Beach, Moni Prevelli valley and Frangocastello.
October: Reported with 1-2 from Malia, Lassithi plateau, Agia reservoir outflow,
Plakias beach and Georgioupolis. The largest group was 10 at stream mouth in the
centre of Plakias on 15
th Oct.
Races. All the above were alba. One record of 1 adult yarrelli was at Plakias stream
mouth on 15
th October.

Wren Troglodytes troglodytes RB WV PM
Common in the mountains and Gorges. Records from Xiloskalo, Omalos, Kotsiphou
Gorge, Lassithi plateau, near Spili, Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Malos and Chromonastiro,
Imbros Gorge and Myli Gorge. 30 + recorded on walk through Samaria Gorge on 13
May. Records also from Nida plateau, as well as Ag Nikolaos, Rouvas Gorge and
Zaros and Katholikou Moni near the sea.
In October reported near Malia and on Lassithi plateau.

Alpine Accentor Prunella collaris RB
Resident but no reports in 2003.

Robin Erithacus rubecula WV PM
1 heard at Plakias on 14th, 1 at Eleftherna on 17th October and common at
Lake Kournas from 16th-19
th of the month.

Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos MB PM
Common in small numbers from 9th April until 16th May in any suitable scrub or wetland

Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros WV PM
one record of a male singing at Spili on 19th.

Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus WV? PM
Passage reported from 17th April with 1 female on Omalos plateau, 2 males at
Gouvenatou Moni on 18
th April. 2 at Moni Prevelli and 1 on Omalos on 19th. On 20th
there was 1 at Therisso Gorge and on 23rd there was 1 at Platanes.

Whinchat Saxicola rubetra MB? PM
April and May:
Passage recorded from 4th April in small numbers until 17th April.
Then rising to 10-20 daily and there were 100+ on 18
th April in vineyard and olive
grove at Ag. Triada Moni in poor weather. Then described as numerous until the end
on April. 1-3 seen until 4
th May.
September: 1 female on fence around the pool on Omalos plateau on 7th Sept.

Stonechat Saxicola torquata RB WV PM
Resident. Common breeding bird already with young in early April.

Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabelline MB? PM
No records in 2003

Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe MB PM
1 male at Panormo on 5th April then recorded daily with singles around the
coast 15-20 on Omalos plateau on 19
th April. Last record 10th May at Agia reservoir
and Samaria Gorge.
September: Singles daily in early September and passage noted on 11th on North
October: 1 near El Greco Hotel, Rethymnon on 7th and 1 Chania on 17th.

Black-eared Wheatear Oenanthe hispanica MB PM
Reported from 5th-9th April at Panormo, then in mountains and gorges from 14th
April onwards, with 20+ on 17th April and 50+ on 18th. Then small numbers recorded
until 10
th May.
September: 1 near Gavalohori, Drapano peninsula on 10th.

Rock Thrush Monticola saxatilis PM
1 male at Seli Ambelou Pass on 11th and 1 male near Agia Irini Pass on 19th.
May: 1 female seen on Samaria Gorge walk on 13th May.

Blue Rock Thrush Monticola solitarius RB PM WV?
Common with singing males from 4th April along suitable coastal cliffs and valleys
and in Gorges such as Kourtaliotiko, Selinari, Afrata, Gouvernatou, Theriso, Imbros,
Diktamnos, and Petres and on the Akrotiri peninsula as well as the Drapanos and
Rodopou peninsulas.
Still singing in September and October.

Blackbird Turdus merula RB PM WV
Resident and common in many habitats.

Song Thrush Turdus philomelus WV PM
1 near Minoan Cemetery, Armeni on 17th April.
October: 1 at Lake Kournas on 17th October.

Mistle Thrush Turdus viscivorus WV PM
No reports for 2003.

Cetti's Warbler Cettia cetti common RB
Common breeding bird. Heard in a variety of habitats except high in the mountains.

Fan-tailed Warbler (Zitting Cisticola) Cisticola juncidis locally common RB
1 seen and 2 calling in fields near Drama near Lake Kournas on 22nd April. On 7th
May there were 6 near Iraklion Power Station and in October recorded at Falasarna.

Savi’s Warbler Locustella lusciniodes PM
One watched at Platanes from an apartment balcony for one hour on 24th April.

Moustached Warbler Acrocephelus melanopogon PM WV
One at Prevelli Palm beach on 10th May.

Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola PM
Records from 11th April from Agia reservoir on 11th and 17th/18th April. One at Silver
Beach, Gerani on 19
th and one at Mylo river ford(now a bridge) on 21st April and one
at Creta Sun Gardens on the same day. Reported daily during week 17
th-24th April.
In May one singing in Geropotamos valley on 3
rd May, while on the 7th there was a
single at Iraklion Power Station and at Aposelemis river. Last record was 1 at Agia
reservoir on 10
th May.

Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus MB PM
No records for 2003

Great Reed Warbler Acrocephalus arundinaceus OB PM
Singles recorded from 12th April until 20th May at Lake Kournas, Agia reservoir,
Iraklion Power Station, Georgioupolis Lake and in reeds behind beaches and coastal

Olivaceous Warbler Hippolais pallida MB PM?
2 at Kato Zakro lower river on 14th April. 2 on Omalos plateau on 17th and 5
near Kathilikou Moni on 18
th April.
Singles at Platanes on 23
rd and Frangocastello on 26th.
May: Reported as widespread from 7th May.
September: One at beach nr Almirida and Kalives on 10th, and one at Kalives on 15th.
October: One at Lake Kournas on 18th October.

Olive-tree Warbler Hippolais olivetorum PM
On April 23rd one in olive grove up river from Platanes.

Icterine Warbler Hippolais icterina PM
One near church Ag. Eftikos, Chromonastio on 10th May and one at Georgioupolis
Lake on 18
th May.

Subalpine Warbler Sylvia cantillans MB PM
One male near Panormo on 6th and a pair there on 9th. Single male on Omalos plateau
on 17
th. One at Damnoni on 19th. One at Frangocastello delta on 20th April, and one at
Moni Prevelli on 21
st April. In early May 1-2 at Mahes .

Sardinian Warbler Sylvia melanocephala RB PM WV
Common and widespread. Breeding. Seen from a variety of habitats including in

Ruppell's Warbler Sylvia rueppelli MB PM
No reports from 2003

Orphean Warbler Sylvia hortensis MB PM
Three records. One at Frangocastello on 7th. One at Spili bumps on 9th and 1 at
Agia reservoir on 11
th May.

Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca PM
No records for 2003

Whitethroat Sylvia communis MB PM
Reported form 6th April at Panormo. Then reported daily in 1-4 until 3rd May.

Garden Warbler Sylvia borin PM
One flew into the restaurant window on 19th April at Plakias.

Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla RB? PM WV
One female at Argiroupolis on 10th April and one male at Laki on 11th. Then singles
recorded from 18
th April to 13th May, but scarce.
In October heard at Eleftherna on 17

Bonelli's Warbler Phylloscopus bonelli PM
No records in 2003

Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix PM
Reported from 5th April until 26th in ones and twos.
In October 1 foraging in conifers on the beach at Plakias on 15

Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita PM WV
Reported from Panormo on 6th April, Agia on 12th and Kato Zakro on 14th.
In May one heard at Megalo Chorafia.
In October heard at Imbros Gorge on 16
th, Lake Kournas on 17th and 19th and on 18th
in Kournas village.

Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus PM
One at Kalives on 12th April. 3 at Moni Prevelli on 19th April. 7th May one at Iraklion
Power Station.
In October records from Ag. Georgios, Agia reservoir, Chania and Plakias

Goldcrest Regulus regulus RB? PM WV
No records in 2003

Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata MB PM
Common migrant from 13th April until 11th May.
In Autumn 1-2 recorded from Sept 30
th until 16th October.

Red-breasted Flycatcher Ficedula parva rare PM
No records in 2003

Collared Flycatcher Ficedula albicollis PM
Reported from 5th April until 28th with small groups of 1-5 males usually at
coastal sites.

Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca PM
Singles reported from 5th April near Panormo.10+ at Afrata on 16th April. There were
20+ at Moni Gouvernetou on 18
th April. Then, numerous until 28th April. 1 male at
Prevelli Palm beach on 10
th May.

Semi-collared Flycatcher Ficedula semitorquata PM
1 male in pines below Moni Prevelli 19th April.

Blue Tit Parus caeruleus RB
Common in the uplands.

Great Tit Parus major RB
Common recorded widely.

Short-toed Treecreeper Certhia brachydactyla RB
13th May 4-5 seen and heard on Samaria Gorge Walk.
th October 1 heard in Imbros Gorge.

Coal Tit Parus ater PM?
10th May 1+ on track to Agios Eftikos, Chromonastiro. Seen and heard calling.

Penduline Tit Remiz penduline WV PM? PM?
A pair at Agia Reservoir dismantling reedmace on 17th April, and 2 males there on
On 7
th September 2 by the tavernas at Omalos.

Golden Oriole Oriolus oriolus PM
Passage from 12th April when reported daily with 2-6. Last records from 1st and 2nd

Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio PM
1 on wires near Ag. Stavros, Akrotiri on 3rd May.
September: 2-3 juveniles on Akrotiri peninsula and on fields near Georgioupolis
harbour on 6
th-10th . In October recorded from 3 days at Malia until 7th.

Lesser Grey Shrike Lanius minor PM
No records form 2003

Woodchat Shrike Larius senator ssp badius MB PM
Spring passage recorded from 5th April until 20th May with singles and 2-4 seen daily.

Masked Shrike Lanius nubicus PM?
One from a hotel balcony at Platanes on 1st May.

Jay Garrulus glandarius RB
Seen at Samaria Gorge, Diktamnos Gorge and Katharo plateau in April and May. In
October recorded from Imbros Gorge and Lake Kournas.

Alpine Chough Pyrrhocorax graculus RB
20 on Omalos plateau on 10th May.

Red-billed Chough Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax RB
Flocks over Samaria Gorge, and Omalos plateau. With 1-6 usually seen. Largest
flocks 28 over Samaria Gorge on 11
th April and 34 at Monastiraki on 12th May.
In September and October 6+ seen at Samaria Gorge and Omalos plateau.

Jackdaw Corvus monedula RB
Recorded from Petres Gorge, Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Morosini viaduct nr Knossos and
Geropotamos river mouth and Monastiraki.

Hooded Crow Corvus corone corone RB
Common and widespread resident.

Raven Corvus corax RB
Common in small numbers daily.

Starling Sturnus vulgaris WV PM
April: 1
6th/17th April 2 Tavronitis river and seen near Plakias.
October: 3 flocks in Chania from 12th-18th. 5 at Frangocastello village on wires on

House Sparrow Passer domesticus RB WV
Less common than Italian but males seen at Agia reservoir, Platanes and Knossos.

Italian Sparrow Passer domesticus x italiae. RB
Common breeding everywhere. Breeding colonies in holes in concrete posts and hotel

Spanish Sparrow Passer hispaniolensis OB WV PM
Small flocks form 9th April – 23rd from Aposelemis river mouth, Plakias, Souda
Bay cemetery, Afrata, Silver beach, Gerani, Platanes and on Omalos.
October: 50+ Vrondisi Moni 4km west of Zaros on 13th Oct. 25 at Plakias on 15th
October and 20 at Lake Kournas 17th-19th October.

Tree Sparrow Passer montanus RB WV PM?
3+ around gravestones in Souda Bay War Cemetery on 18th April, and 12+ there on
st. 2 at Elounda on 19th May.
In September and October records from Souda Bay War Cemetery and at Malia.

Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs RB WV PM
Common widespread resident.

Serin Serinus serinus RB WV PM
Recorded from April 6th from Panormo, Agia Reservoir, Knossos, Souda Bay
cemetery, Ag. Constantides, Lassithi, Gouverneto Moni, Tavronitis river, Venizelou
Memorial Park, Chania and Therisso Gorge.

Greenfinch Carduelis chloris RB WV PM
Common widespread resident.

Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis RB WV PM
Common and widespread in small flocks in April and May.
In September and October larger flocks of 200+.

Siskin Carduelis spinus WV PM
13th April, One male in Creta Sun Hotel grounds, Gouves.

Linnet Carduelis cannabina RB WV PM
Small flocks 1-6 in the Spring in the mountains. Flocks of 10-20 in September and

Hawfinch Coccothraustes coccothraustes WV? PM
No records reported in 2003

Cirl Bunting Emberiza cirlus RB
1-2 recorded daily from 9th April from route to Lassithi, Omalos plateau, ceramic
factory near Thrapsano. Ag Constandinos, Lassithi, Kato Zakro, Minoan cemetery at
Armeni, Katharo plateau and lower Potamos valley until 19
th May.
In October 1 male on Omalos plateau on 10
th Oct.

Cinereous Bunting Emberiza cineracea AV
No reports in 2003

Rock Bunting Emberiza cia PM PM
No reports in 2003

Ortolan Bunting Emberiza hortulana PM
One at Damnoni singing briefly on 23rd April. One on Omalos on 27th April. 2 singing
near Prasses on 8
th May and 2-3 on Omalos plateau on 13th-19th May.

Cretzschmar’s Bunting Emberiza caesia OB PM
23rd April One near Georgioupolis beach on wall. (ATS)

Corn Bunting Miliaria calandra RB WV PM
Thinly spread. One near Panormo on 9th April, and 20+ on Lassithi plateau on 11th
April. A few along the south coast and at Kedros fields, above Spili, from Malia,
Plaka headlands and Silver Beach Gerani, in fields behind Plakais, Frangocastello and

Mammal List follows 'The Mammals of Britain and Europe' Corbet/Ovenden. Collins

Eastern Hedgehog Erinaceus concolor One on 20th April on south coast. Several
dead on the roads in April.

Brown Rat Rattus norvegius One on 15.4. in Venezelou Memorial Park, Chania and
another sighting not recorded on the same date.

Weasel Mustela nivalis One crossed the road in the east on 15th April.

Beech Marten Martes fiona Several dead on the roads in April.

Badger Meles meles Two recorded dead on road in April and one dead in Oct near
Rodakino 16.10.

Mouse sp. Acomys minous Cretan Spiny Mouse? One on Lassithi plateau on 15.4.
and one dead on road at Therisso 20.4.

Bat sp. 10+ flying around Chania 16.4. 1 on Lassithi plateau on 15.4. 1 flying around
at lunchtime in Therisso on 20
th April.

Amphibian and Reptile List follows 'Reptiles and Amphibians of Britain and Europe.
Arnold/Burton. Collins 1978.

Green Toad Bufo viridis One caught at Silver Beach Gerani and 6-7 calling at Creta
Sun Hotel.

Common Tree Frog Hyla arborea One at Spili 16.4. Several heard and two seen
Agia reservoir 19/20
th April. Many in the orange trees there.

Cretan Frog Rana cretensis Agia reservoir, Thrapsano pool, Plakias area, Bramiana
reservoir and Toplou Moni in April.


Stripe-necked Terrapin Mauremys caspica Several at Agia reservoir in April. Lake
Kournas in Oct.

Balkan Green Lizard Lacerta trilineata Recorded singles in April.

Erhard' s Wall Lizard Podarcis erhardii One at Kolimbari 16.4.

Dice snake Natrix tessellata One in river at Plakias 24.4.

Balkan Whip Snake Coluber gemonensis 1 at Lake Kournas in Oct.

BUTTERFLIES The order follows 'The Butterflies of Greece' Pamperis 1997.

Swallowtail Papilio machaon Recorded from 10th throughout April and in Oct in

Scarce Swallowtail Iphiclides podalirius Plakias, April.

Cretan Festoon Z. cerisyi f. cretica One at Kolimbari 16.4. Plakias mid April.

Large White Pieris brassica Common in April.

Small White Pieris rapea Common. mid April in west.

Bath White Pontia daplidea Ag. Triada archaeological site in April.

Clouded Yellow Colias crocea Locally common in mid April in south and west.

Brimstone Gonepteryx rhamni? Seen on 16.4.

Painted Lady Vanessa cardui 2-3 noted on 16.4. and Plakias. In Oct at Plakias,
Georgioupolis and Lake Kournas.

Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta Just one noted 16.4. and Plakias and at Kournas and
Lake Kournas in Oct.

Cardinal Pandoriana pandora In Oct. 2 at Lake Kournas.

Southern Speckled Wood Pararge aergeria Plakias

Wall Brown Lasiommata megera Recorded in west 15th and 16th April. and Plakias.
In Oct at Lake Kournas.

Cretan Grayling Hipparchia cretica Dominant in Imbros Gorge on 16th October.

Brown Argus Aricia agestis 1 at Lake Kournas 18.10.

Common Blue Polyommatus icarus Seen Plakias in April.


Egyptian Grasshopper Anacridium aegyptian recorded daily mid/late April

Hungarian Grasshopper Acrida ungarica Singles seen on 15.4.

Pollen Beetle Oxythira funestra Several at Agia reservoir.

Cretan Soldier beetle Lygaeus saxatilis Seen on 10th/13th and 14th April.

Carpenter Bee Xylocopa violacea Common on several days in April.

7 Spot Ladybird Coccinella 7-punctata Recorded on 3 dates mid April.

22 Spot Ladybird Psyllobora 22-punctata recorded at Tavronitis river 16.4.

Pine Processionary Moth Thaumethopoea pityocampa Caterpillar nests noted in
many pine trees.

Silver –Y Moth Autographa gamma Seen on 24.4.

Hummingbird Hawkmoth Macroglossom stellatum Plakias in mid April.

Early Blue Hawker sp. Common near water at Agia in April. Possibly Brachyton
pratense one of the earliest dragonflies.


Land Crab Potamon potamios Recorded at Plakias

Banded Snail Cernuella virgata Common.

Mediterranean White Snail Albea candidissima Common


Michalis Dretakis Highlights throughout the year Univ of Crete. NHMC

Peter Wilkinson 5th April- 16th April 2003 H B GROUP.

Sarah Tyacke 14th April – 17th April 2003

Jenny Willsher 7th April- 16th April 2003 ISLAND HOLIDAYS

Stephanie Coghlan 8th April – 22nd April 2003 SNAIL’S PACE

Kevin Elsby/ John Boarder 12th April- 19th April 2003 viaNATURETREK

Mike Langman 15th April – 22nd April 2003 THE TRAVELLING NATURALIST

David Collins 17th April – 24th April 2003 HONEYGUIDE

Gordon & Wendie Wright 23rd April- 7th May 2003

Sean Huggins April 29th – May 13th 2003

Judith Pentreath 6th May – 13th May 2003

Colin Wilson 7th May – 20th May 2003

Norman Elkins 7th May – 19th May 2003

Mike & Rita Burstow 2nd Sept. – 16th Sept 2003

Peter & Barbara Murphy 6th Oct. – 20th October 2003

Pirkka Aalto 12th October – 18th October 2003 Chairman of the
Ornithological Society of Finnish Lapland ( Birdlife Finland)

Thomas Vikstrőm 12th October – 19th October 2003

Michalis Dretakis email: 10.11.2003.

Corrections and Additional records added March 2010
Apologies to anyone whose records I may have omitted or mangled.
These records are presented as submitted. Recorders of Rare and unusual records
have been asked to submit their records to the Greek Records Committee via their
Usual Birds Recording Form. The website is
© Stephanie Coghlan original draft February 2004
Completed February 2010.


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