Egrets, flamingos, crested larks of Kos, Greece

Black-winged stilt and little egrets, 15 May 2019

Still 15 May 2019 in the Alikes nature reserve on Kos island in Greece. A bit further than the black-winged stilts flock was this lone black-winged stilt and these little egrets.

Little egrets, 15 May 2019

Magpie, 15 May 2019

A magpie. A bird which we had not seen on Tilos.

Flamingos, 15 May 2019

On the other side of the lake, this flock of flamingos.

A zitting cisticola flying and singing.

Pheasant sound.

A clouded yellow butterfly.

Two swifts fly past.

A white wagtail on the footpath.

Blue-tailed damselflies in a mating tandem.

A grey heron flying over the lake.

Great reed warbler singing.

Moorhen, 15 May 2019

A juvenile moorhen.

Little egret, 15 May 2019

Yet another little egret.

Alikes, Kos, 15 May 2019

We walk on.

We arrive at the Aegean sea beach. The sound of migrating bee-eaters.

As we walk on, we pass a ditch with many tadpoles.

Crested lark, 15 May 2019

A crested lark on a rock.

Crested lark, on 15 May 2019

Then, another crested lark on the footpath.

Crested lark, Kos, 15 May 2019

At the end of our walk around the lake, a Sardinian warbler on a bush. This species seems to be less common here than on Tilos island.

As the evening fell, it turned out that not only barn swallows, but also a hooded crow and a female house sparrow drank from the swimming pool.

During the night, scops owl sound.

The next day, 16 May, we left Kos and Greece. We won’t forget the wildlife of Tilos and Kos islands!

Black-winged stilts, sparrow of Kos, Greece

Black-winged stilt, 15 May 2019

After our arrival on Kos island on 14 May 2019 came 15 May. Like on 14 May, we went again to the Alikes salt lake nature reserve. Where we saw this black-winged stilt.

Like on Tilos, during the night we had heard a scops owl. As soon as we had entered the gate of the nature reserve, we heard Cetti’s warbler sound.

Both red-rumped swallows and barn swallows flying.

A hooded crow.`

Black-winged stilt, on 15 May 2019

Sometimes, the black-winged stilts stand on small islands …

Black-winged stilt, Kos, 15 May 2019

Black-winged stilts, 15 May 2019

sometimes, they stand in shallow water…

Black-winged stilts, on 15 May 2019

… and sometimes they fly.

Black-winged stilts, Kos, 15 May 2019

Like this bird. A female, as males have more black on their heads.

Black-winged stilt, flying, 15 May 2019

There was a male house sparrow as well; collecting nesting material.

House sparrow male, Kos, 15 May 2019

Stay tuned, as there will be more on this blog about the birds of Kos!

From Tilos golden oriole to Kos flamingos


After 13 May 2019 on Tilos came 14 May. For the last time, we heard a golden oriole sing in the Tilos morning.

We boarded the ferry to Kos island.

In Kos city, swifts flying.

In Tigaki village, greenfinch sound.

This video from Greece says about itself:

These are just a few of the 70 different species of birds we found on the delightful island of Kos over just a week in early May 2012. The northern migration did not really get into full swing until about the 9th, so our week was almost over before we spotted the hoards of Bee Eaters heading north ………. a wonderful sight and sound…

We were on the first holidaymakers’ flight out of Birmingham, so there were no crowds, just a lot of peace and quiet punctuated by the occasional ‘lifer’.

In the afternoon, we went to the Alikes lake. It used to be a salt pan; now it is a nature reserve.

Scores of black-winged stilts near the shore.

A bit further, about 15 flamingos.

Two ruddy shelducks swimming.

Cetti’s warblers sing.

A little egret.

A crested lark flies to a treetop.

Squacco herons.

A green sandpiper.

Holy orchid flowers.

Barn swallows nest under a roof near a swimming pool. They drink from the pool.

Bee-eaters, snail on Tilos, Greece

This January 2019 video is about diving off Tilos island in Greece.

After 12 May 2019 on Tilos came 13 May. Our last full day on Tilos.

Like on many days on Tilos, the day started with a golden oriole singing.

For the last time, I went to the reed beds.

Barn swallows flying.

A clouded yellow butterfly.

As I walked back to the village, a sling-tailed agama on its usual wall.

Snail, 13 May 2019

This macro lens photo shows a snail on an apple.

Bee-eater, 13 May 2019

Later, our last Tilos bee-eater photos; in Megalo Chorio village.

Bee-eater, on 13 May 2019

Bee-eaters, 13 May 2019

Some of the birds had managed to catch food.

Bee-eaters, on 13 May 2019

So, this was our last full day on Tilos. But not yet the end of our stay in Greece. Because on 14 May we went to Kos island. So, stay tuned!

Lizard, black-eared wheatear of Tilos, Greece

This August 2018 video is about Tilos island in Greece.

After 11 May 2019 on Tilos came 12 May.

We walked again to Skafi beach, in the north of the island.

Sounds of migrating bee-eaters and golden orioles.

A clouded yellow butterfly.

Two spotted flycatchers on a bush.

A golden oriole flies.

Sling-tailed agama, 12 May 2019

As we come closer to Skafi, a sling-tailed agama lizard on its usual rock next to the footpath.

Sling-tailed agama, on 12 May 2019

Sling-tailed agama lizard, 12 May 2019

In Skafi bay, two shags swimming and diving.

Skafi, 12 May 2019

Besides these birds, there were, of course, the rocky shore and the waves at Skafi.

Skafi, on 12 May 2019

Skafi flowers, 12 May 2019

As we walk back, these purple flowers.

On a bush, a singing woodchat shrike on the top of a bush.

Black-eared wheatear, 12 May 2019

Then, this black-eared wheatear.

Ancient monastery, squacco herons, flycatcher, Tilos, Greece

This July 2013 video is called Tilos, Greece – Agios Panteleimonas Monastery.

After 10 May 2019 May on Tilos came 11 May.

A woodchat shrike on a wire.

At Agios Antonios, still two squacco herons present.

We followed the mountain road from Agios Antonios to Agios Panteleimonas monastery. Originally from the 15th century, monks no longer live there.

Agios Panteleimonas monastery, 11 May 2019

Religious objects are still present.

Mosaic, 11 May 2019

So are mosaics.

Viewpoint, 11 May 2019

We continued to this viewpoint. On the right of the photo is Megalo Chorio village.

Then, to the garbage dump of the island. It attracted surprisingly many birds. Including a spotted flycatcher; and two Cretzschmar’s buntings.

After arrival back in Megalo Chorio: a red admiral butterfly on a wall.

Bee-eaters, hoopoe of Tilos, Greece

Bee-eaters, 10 May 2019

Still 10 May 2019 on Tilos island, Greece. After returning from Livadia, we saw these bee-eaters near Megalo Chorio, late in the afternoon.

Two bee-eaters, 10 May 2019

Their colourful feathers made for a beautiful contrast with the vegetation.

Two bee-eaters, on 10 May 2019

First, there were two birds; at several spots.

Three bee-eaters, 11 May 2019

Then, three birds.

Five bee-eaters, 10 May 2019

Then, five birds …

Five bee-eaters, on 10 May 2019

… at more than one spot.

They rested a bit during their spring migration from Africa to Europe.

In spite of their name, they eat not just bees, but also insects like wasps and mosquitos. There are many bees on Tilos: beekeepers from other islands like Rhodes and Kos bring their hives to Tilos as there are many flowers for them there.

Hoopoe, 10 May 2019

Bee-eaters were not the only birds that day. A hoopoe joined them …

Hoopoe flies, 10 May 2019

… until it flew away.

Bee-eaters, swallow, sea of Tilos, Greece

This Associated Press video says about itself:

Greek island set to get all its energy from renewables

Plaka, Tilos island, Greece – 6 August 2018

1. Aerial shot turbine

2. Various of wind turbine

3. Cutaway of Greek, EU and Eunice Energy Group flags

4. Various of on-site project manager Spyros Aliferis opening container with batteries

5. Mid of batteries that store energy and later deliver it to the grid of wind turbine on northern tip of Tilos island ++MUTE++

6. Tilt down of cables connecting batteries

7. SOUNDBITE (Greek) Spyros Aliferis, on-site project supervisor for Eunice Energy Group: “The innovation of this program and its funding lies in the batteries, the energy storage, that’s what’s innovative. The energy made by the wind turbines and the photovoltaics will be stored in batteries so that this energy can be used for the grid when there is demand.”

ASSOCIATED PRESS Tilos island – 5 August 2018

8. Aerial of solar panels installed as part of the renewable energy storage project ++MUTE++

9. Mid of solar panels ASSOCIATED PRESS Plaka, Tilos island, Greece – 6 August 2018

10. Aerial of Aegean Sea, underwater cable bringing electricity to Tilos island from neighbouring islands Kos and Nisyros runs below ++MUTE++

11. Various of electricity poles connecting underwater cable to Tilos grid

ASSOCIATED PRESS Megalo Chorio, Tilos island, Greece – 6 August 2018

12. Various of Tilos mayor Maria Kamma working in her office

13. Cutaway of EuroNatur Prize 2009 certificate

14. SOUNDBITE (Greek) Maria Kamma, Mayor of Tilos: “Another factor that prompted us to proceed with this project is that we do believe in renewable sources of energy, and our ability to totally end our dependence on gasoline as a fuel for electricity, which is very harmful for the environment. For many years now, Tilos has plotted a course that is dedicated to protecting the environment. We are seeking visitors, tourists actually, people who will visit our island who love the environment and want to protect it and nature as it was given to us.”

ASSOCIATED PRESS Livadia, Tilos island, Greece – 4 August 2018

15. Aerial of entrance to Livadia harbour ++MUTE++

16. Aerial of rooftops in Livadia with solar panels and solar-powered water heaters ++MUTE++

17. Owner of Sea View Hotel Sevasti Delaporta walking into restaurant to get breakfast ready

18. Various of Delaporta getting things ready for guests

19. SOUNDBITE (Greek) Sevasti Delaporta, owner of Sea View Hotel: “I’m very optimistic about this project because there are few negative consequences, as a business, and for the guests of the hotel that I run. People are pleased with the service because they have no problems with their fridges and they have no problems with their air conditioning. They are happy, things are ok.”

20. Hotel guests having breakfast at the terrace

ASSOCIATED PRESS Livadia, Tilos island, Greece – 5 August 2018 ++MUTE++

21. Aerial of hotels and houses along the seaside

22. Aerial of sea and small boat

23. Aerial of town of Livadia

24. Aerial of surrounding mountains, sun going down

ASSOCIATED PRESS Livadia, Tilos island, Greece – 5 August 2018

25. Wide of main street with tourists and locals

26. Shop sign in main street

27. Various of main square with bars and restaurants

28. Man walking in the street

29. Wide of restaurant outdoor tables

30. Dutch visitor Eva Lemaier, who has been coming to Tilos every summer for 25 years

31. SOUNDBITE (English) Eva Lemaier, Dutch tourist:

After 9 May 2019 on Tilos came 10 May.

In the morning, the sound of bee-eaters on spring migration.

We went from Megalo Chorio to Livadia.

Livadia, 10 May 2019

The photos from Livadia in this blog post were made, as an experiment, with a ‘lensbaby‘: a kind of camera lens enabling to make photos in which some parts are focused while other parts are not.

Hooded crows flying along the coast.

A cuttlefish bone and a dead sea star on the beach.

Aegean sea, 10 May 2019

And, of course, the Aegean sea with its stones along the coast.

A barn swallow passes.

Flowers, elephants and herons of Tilos, Greece

This video is called Tilos 2014.

After 8 May 2019 on Tilos island in Greece came 9 May.

Early in the morning, bee-eater sound.

Wild carrot, 9 May 2019

Along a road near Megalo Chorio village, this wild carrot flower.

Wild carrot, on 9 May 2019

And this other wild carrot flower.

This 3 June 2019 video is called Could you spot a wild carrot? | [London] Natural History Museum.

Elephants, 9 May 2019

Back in Megalo Chorio, this supermarket, where you can buy elephants …

Food, 9 May 2019

… and various food items.

We walked to Agios Antonios.

A clouded yellow butterfly.

A sling-tailed agama on its usual wall.

Flowers, 9 May 2019

Along the road, these flowers.

Flowers, on 9 May 2019

And these flowers.

Holy orchid with snail, 9 May 2019

And this holy orchid with snail.

A house martin flies past.

A hoopoe calls.

In Agios Antonios, two squacco herons fly along the coast.

Agios Antonios, 9 May 2019

These trees grow there.

Just past the harbour, a gull on a rock. This time not a (common) yellow-legged gull, but a rarer Audoin’s gull.

This 11 July 2017 video says about itself:

Always carry a camera! Audouin’s gull – Port de Pollença, Espana

Cretzschmar’s bunting, elephant, flowers of Tilos, Greece

Flowers, on 8 May 2019

Still 8 May 2019 on Tilos island in Greece. As we walked back from the mountains above Agios Petros bay, we saw these flowers.

Two black-eared wheatears.

Cretzschmar's bunting, 8 May 2019

Then, a special bird of this rocky area: a Cretzschmar’s bunting.

Elephant, 8 May 2019

We passed a house on which an elephant had been painted: reminiscent of the small elephant species living on Tilos until a few thousand years ago.

As we walk back to Megalo Chorio, a Balkan yellow wagtail sits on a fence.

A male Eleonora’s falcon flying.

Holy orchids, 8 May 2019

Holy orchids growing along the road.

Poppy, 8 May 2019

So did this poppy and other flowers.

Butterfly, 8 May 2019

We saw this butterfly, probably a Turkish meadow brown, on this flower.

A chukar partridge flies away.