Trip Report: Greece Including Crete, May 3-30, 1999

Georges and Mireille Olioso, le Mail, 26230 Grignan, France;

Practical Information


The Greek language is very difficult. Many Cretans speak English or German.

On the Road

Driving is on the right. All the roads but the main on the north coast are narrow with often big holes. It is necessary to drive carefully, above all in the small villages and on mountain roads. Motor-fuels are cheap. Cars renters and motor-bike renters are numerous in all the cities.

Accomodations and Food

Renting a room is a good scheme. Rooms are numerous and often cheap. There are hotels in the toursitic areas, cheap during April and October but often expensive or very expensive in summer (June to September). Booking is not necessary in April or in the first half of May.

Tabernas and restaurants are cheap, and a good meal is possible with $8.00 or $10.00. Traditionnal Cretan food is the best choice: Zaziki (cucumber, yoghourt and garlic), aubergine salad, Souvlaki, fried rabbit, Greek salads (tomatoes, cucumber, olives, feta and olive oil).

Our best addresses in Crete:


Traveller's cheques are a good idea. Credit cards are not often used; Visa Card most often. The only money machines are in the bigest cities.


We went in Crete 20 April to 10 May 1998 and 10 to 29 May 1999. The second half of May is late for migrants, especially flycatchers and crakes, but is better for Olivaceous Warbler...




Continental Greece

  1. Acherondas Delta. This area is 36 km south of Igoumenitsa. There is good view from the main road (telescope is necessary). Turn right to Amoudia and explore riparian forest, agricultural lands and beach. 3 May, we saw Glossy Ibis, White Stork, Great White Egret, Squacco Heron, White-winged Black Tern, Alpine Swift, European Bee-eater, Fan-tailed Warbler, Penduline Tit, Black-headed Bunting, etc.

  2. Amvrakikos Gulf. Very good area, but large. The best sites are:

    (a) Nikopolis Lagoon, 6/8 km north Preveza on the main road. 1 km after the August's Monument, turn right on the old road to Arta, drive ca. 2 km and turn right on a small concrete road to the lagoon. Great White Egret, Gloosy Ibis, Dalmatian Pelican, Osprey, Fan-tailed Warbler, etc.

    (b) Petra and Strongili area. Driving west to east, 8 km after Louros, turn right. Watch the marsh for Squacco Heron and Spoonbill. Continue this small road, pass the village of Petra and Strongili (White Stork nest in both) and drive to the Strongili cimetery. Park here and explore olive tree orchards, riparian forest and marsh. There is an observatory at the end of the track. Dalmatian Pelican, Waders, Penduline Tit, Spanish Sparrow, Black-headed Bunting, etc.

    (c) Koronisia. 15 km east of Louros, turn right on the Arta road and, immediatly after the bridge, right to Rachi. Drive right to the end of the road (ca.10 km) and turn right to Koronisia (ca.12 km). Dalmatian Pelican, Black-headed Wagtail, etc.

  3. Ioannina Lake. Ioannina is 75 km north of Arta. There are small roads around the lake. Pygmy Cormorant, Ferrugineous Duck, Short-toed Eagle, Hoopoe, Great Reed Warbler, Woodchat Shrike, Penduline Tit, etc. There are also numerous snakes.

  4. Delphi area.

    (a) Archeological site, village and surroundings. Explore the area above the village (a track starts near the small church) and the archeological site. Golden Eagle, Alpine Swift, Hoopoe, Red-rumped Swallow, Crag Martin, Black-eared Wheatear, Rüppell's Warbler, Orphean Warbler, Sombre Tit, Western Rock Nuthatch, Woodchat Shrike, Serin, etc.

    (b) Kalivia Arachovas. Agricultural and rocky area. From Delphi, drive east to Arachovas and follow the Ski Station signs. Red-footed Falcon, Hoopoe, Tawny Pipit, Wheatear, Black-eared Wheatear, Subalpine Warbler, Cretzschmar's Bunting, Corn Bunting, etc.

    (c) Parnassos Mountain. Pass Kalivia Arachovas and drive to the Ski Station. On 8 May, there was snow above the station. Explore the forest and the rocky areas. Wood Lark, Tawny Pipit, Black Redstart, Rock Thrush, Firecrest, Serin, Rock Bunting, etc.

  5. Cap Araxos area. Extreme North-West of the Peloponese, between Kato Achaia and Manolada. The lake, marshes and forest between Cap Araxos and Metochi are very good. Purple Heron, Little Ringed Plover, Olivaceous Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Fan-tailed Warbler, Penduline Tit, Western Rock Nuthatch, etc. The marsh near Metochi seems very good but we did not have time to explore...

  6. Klissoura gorge. On the main road, between Agrinio and Mesologi. Griffon Vulture, Long-legged Buzzard, Alpine Swift, Western Rock Nuthatch, etc.


  1. Kato Zakros area. A small bay with a small river, gorges, olive orchards, small lagoon and rocky hills.

    (a) Kato Zakros village and gorge. For the gorge, pass the archeological site and turn right at the start of the gorge. Explore the small ponds near the beach and at the archeological site. This site is very good for migrants in April (see our 1998 report). This year we saw Squacco Heron, Red-footed Falcon, Chukar, Scops Owl, European Bee-eater, Blue-cheecked Bee-eater, Black-eared Wheatear, Woodchat Shrike, Golden Oriole, etc.

    (b) Xerokambos. There are two roads to go to Xerocambos. From Kato Zakros, drive back to Zakros and trun left to just before the village on a small dirt road and drive 10 km. From Sitia, drive the Makrigialos and Piskokefalo road. After 10 km, in Episkopi, turn left to Handras, Ziros, Hametoulo and Xerokambos (ca.45 km from Sitia, on a new surfaced road). Explore the beach. There is a small temporary lagoon (dry from the end of May). Shag, Eleonore's Falcon, numerous waders, Alpine Swift, European Bee-eater, Black-headed Wagtail, Woodchat Shrike, Golden Oriole, etc.

    (c) Hohlakies gorge. This village is 10 km north of Zakros. Follow the signs for Karoumes gorge and beach (2.5 km on foot). Beautiful and very calm. Black-eared Wheatear, Blue Rock Thrush, etc.

  2. Selinari gorge. 8 km west Agios Nikolaos. Both old and new roads pass here. On the new road, arriving from west, just after Agios Georgios Selinari, turn left on the old road at the old quarry level and drive ca.300 m. Park at the observatory and watch the nearest cliff. There are Griffon Vulture nests.

  3. Georgioupoli area. For Georgioupoli lake, drive the old road Xania - Rethymnon; this road follow the lake 4 km before Georgioupoli (Little Grebe, Great Reed Warbler, Olivaceous Warbler, Terns...). For Kournas lake, east of Georgioupoli, always on the old road, follow the signs. Terns, waders, Olivaceous, Reed, Great Reed, Cetti's Warblers, etc.

  4. Agia reservoir. Very good site. En route from Xania to Samaria gorge, Agia reservoir is 5 km south of Xania. At the small village of Agia, turn right on the road to Kirtomados and watch for the signs for the reservoir. Little Grebe, Squacco Heron, Marsh Harrier, Alpine Swift, Olivaceous Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, etc.

  5. Omalos plateau. After Agia reservoir drive south for Samaria gorge. The road crosses the Omalos plateau, a cultivated area. Griffon Vulture, Lammergeier, Alpine Swift, Woodlark, Tawny Pipit, Woodchat Shrike, Red-billed Chough, etc.

  6. Mountains south of Anogia. This is the only easily accessible mountainous site. Leaving Livadia, drive to Anogia then turn right to the observatory and ski resort. After 15 km a road start on the left to the observatory. It is at 1742 m (5,250 feet). Griffon Vulture, Eleonora's Falcon, Chuckar, Crag Martin, Alpine Accentor, Wheatear, Red-billed Chough, etc. The other road goes to Ideo Cave (species are the same).

  7. Thrapsano lake. Drive from Iraklion, past Knossos. 12 km after the archeological site turn left to Kastelli and, well before this city, right to Voni and Thrapsano. In the village, follow the main road until the church. Turn left just before the church and follow the sign to Kastelli. 200 m after the exit, turn left on a large road and drive this road until the lake. Glossy Ibis, Squacco Heron, Little Egret etc. (in 1998). Spotted Sandpiper, Hobby, Eleonora's Falcon, Bee-eater, Red-throated Pipit, Black-headed Wagtail, Sedge Warbler, Little Bittern, Wiskered Tern, etc.

  8. Rethymnon area.

    (a) Platanes river, 3 km east of Rethymnon. There is a small road on the left side of the river, upstream the bridge with easy park. Walk on the road to the gorge. Waders, Red-throated Swallow, Crag Martin, Reed, Great Reed, Cetti's and Olivaceous Warblers, Blue Rock Thrush, etc.

    (b) Petres River. 12 km west of Rethymnon. There is a car park east of the bridge and an another near the beach (arriving from Rethymnon, turn right ca.400 m after the bridge). The small road on the left is also good. Chukar, Black-eared Wheatear, Blue Rock Thrush, Olivaceous Warbler, Cetti's Warbler, etc.

    (c) Geropotamos River. ca.15 km east of Rethymnon, on the new road. Just before the bridge, turn right on the durty road and park. Explore the riparian vegetation and also the steppe area. Alpine Swift, Crag Martin, Olivaceous Warbler, etc.

  9. Plakias area. Very good area. 22 km south of Rethymnon, turn right to Asomatos and Plakias.

    (a) Kourtaliotiko gorge. 4 km after Koxare, the road follows the Kourtaliotiko gorge. Lammergeier, Griffon Vulture, Golden Eagle, Raven, Crag Martin, Alpine Swift, Blue Rock Thrush, etc.

    (b) Drive to Moni Prevelli. Chukar, Ortolan, Black-eared Wheatear, etc.

    (c) Turkish bridge to Palm Beach. At Kato Prevelli, there is an old Turkish bridge. Park here and follow the dirt road to the Palm Beach, a distance of 5 km. Possible, but difficult with car. Alpine Swift, Crag Martin, Black-eared Wheatear, Ortolan Bunting, etc. The beach is beautiful with Little Bittern, Crag Martin, Olivaceous Warbler and numerous migrants. Return is possible by a small track to Moni Prevelli.

  10. Limani. This is a small harbour in the far west of Crete, 6 km west of Platanos. Shag, Eleonora's Falcon, Greater Short-toad Lark, Woodchat Shrike, etc.

  11. Plemeniana. This small town is near Kantanos, 62 km south-west of Chania. Explore the road to Dris and Psariana. Olivaceous and Olive-tree Warblers

  12. Lasithi plateau. In the west, between Agios Haralambos and Kato Metohi, there is a temporary pool (dry in 1999) with some waders. After the late village, look at the river and the farmland for Woodchat Shrike, Chough, Black-eared Wheatear... In the east, past Mesa Lasithi, walk the dirt roads on the right (Griffon Vultures, Long-legged Buzzard...). Near Agios Georgios walk the dirt roads in the farmlands (Wryneck, Red-footed Falcon, Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark...)

  13. Miriokefala. This is a very small village in mountain area. From Rethymnon, drive the old road west to Episkopi. In this town, turn left to Arhontiki and Miriokefala (12 km). At a fork, drive left on the dirt road to Katapori and Hora Sfakion. Park where possible and walk. After ca.1 km, there is a crossroad. Turn left (there is a gate) and walk. Lammergeier, Griffon Vulture, Chukar, Wood Lark, Crag Martin, Tawny Pipit, Wheatear and Black-eared Wheatear, Ortolan Bunting, etc.

Annotated Species Lists

During these three weeks, we saw 100 species (or races) in Crete and several more on the mainland. Many of these species are eastern European species. We did not see Rüppell's Warbler in Crete.

Birds (except Chukar!) are tame; this is extraordinary for a Mediterranean land where hunters are numerous!

The more common species are Chaffinch, Italian Sparrow, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Blackbird, Sardinian Warbler, Great Tit, Crested Lark, Swallow, Stonechat and European Black Swift.

Abbreviations: f = female; m = male; Max = maximum; CR = Crete; GR = mainland Greece

(Numbers in parentheses are the number of observations for the species)

  1. Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis (7). GR Elefteri and Petra (03-05) and Ioannina (05-05) where there were two families (3 and 4 pulli). CR Georgioupoli and Kournas lake (16-05), Agia reservoir (19-05).
  2. Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus (1). GR 3 at sea at Koronisia (04-05) and >6 Ioannina lake (05-05).
  3. Cory's Shearwater Calonectris diomedea (2). CR 18 in front of Platanes (Rethymnon) (18-05). GR 4 in front of the Cap Araxos (30-05)
  4. Mediterranean Shearwater Puffinus yelkouan (1) CR 1 in front of Platanes (Rethymnon) (18-05)
  5. Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo (1) GR 4, Amvrakia lake (06-05).
  6. Shag Phalacrocorax aristotelis desmaresti (3). CR 2 Xerokambos (12-05), 2 Limani (24-05) and 1 Stomio bay (27-05).
  7. Pygmy Cormorant Phalacrocorax pygmeus (1). GR 2 Ioannina lake (05-05).
  8. Dalmatian Pelican Pelecanus crispus (2) GR 2 Nikopoli lagoon (03-05), 8 Koronisia (04-05).
  9. Little bittern Ixobrichus minutus (2). CR 2 Kato Zakros (11-05) and 2 Prevelli Palm Beach (25-05).
  10. Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax (4). CR 1 Kato Zakros (10-05), 2 Agia reservoir (19-05), 4 Thrapsano (21-05) and 1 here (29-05). All immatures.
  11. Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides (12). GR 25 Petra marsh (03-05) and 23 (04-05). CR 8 Kato Zakros (15-05) and 7 Agia reservoir (19-05). Also Amoudia (GR), Georgioupoli and Thrapsano (CR).
  12. Little Egret Egretta garzetta (22). Seen near all the waters. Max. 40, Amoudia GR (03-05).
  13. Great White Egret Egretta alba (2). GR 4 Amoudia and 2 Nikopoli lagoon (03-05).
  14. Grey Heron Ardea cinerea (10). CR 6, arriving from the sea, (17-05) Hora Sfakion.
  15. Purple Heron Ardea purpurea (1). GR 1, Metochi lake (30-05).
  16. White Stork Ciconia ciconia (13). GR Numerous nests in the villages near Amvrakikos Gulf (10+ in Filipiada). Nest also in Katsikas, near Ioannina.
  17. Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus (4). GR 11, Amoudia and 1, Nikopoli lagoon (03-05). CR 3, Thrapsano (21-05) and 1, here (29-05)
  18. Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia (1). GR 45 together, Petra (04-05).
  19. Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus ruber (1). CR 1 young, Elounda (10-05).
  20. Mute Swan Cygnus olor (1). GR 6, Eleftheri (03-05).
  21. Mallard Anas platyrhynchos (2). GR 2, Amoudia (03-05). CR female with 5 pulli, Agia reservoir (19-05).
  22. Ferrugineous Duck Aythya nyroca (1). GR 6 (5 males), Ioannina lake (05-05).
  23. Honey Buzzard Pernis apivorus (1). CR 1, Prevelli Palm Beach (25-05).
  24. Black Kite Milvus migrans (1). CR 1, Kato Zakros (11-05).
  25. Lammergeier Gypaetus barbatus (4). CR 1 (2nd year), Ommalos (19-05), 1 (adult) Kourtaliotiko gorge (25-05), 1 (2nd year) near Stomio (27-05) and 1 (age ?) Miriokefala (28-05).
  26. Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus (11). GR 5, Klissoura gorge (06-05). CR Seen in all the mountains. Small colony in the Selinari gorge with 1 young at nest 15-05. Max. 27, near Ideo Andro on a carcass (20-05).
  27. Short-toed Eagle Circaetus gallicus (2). GR 1, Ioannina (05-05) and 1, Mt Arakinthos (06-05).
  28. Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus (3). GR 1, Eleftheri (03-05) and 2, Ioannina (05-05). CR 1, Omalos (19-05). All were females.
  29. Montagu's Harrier Circus pygargus (1). GR 1 (male), Strongili (03-05).
  30. Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus (3). GR 1, Mt Parnassos (07-05). CR 1, Kato Zakros (11-05) and 1 (female attacking Aquila chrysaetos), Kato Metohi (29-05).
  31. Buzzard Buteo buteo (40). GR Only 1, Amoudia (03-05) and 1, Ioannina lake (05-05). CR Common. Pair at nest, Hromonasteri (26-05).
  32. Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus (1). GR 1 (adult), Klissoura gorge (06-05).
  33. Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos (3). GR 1 adult and 2 young, Delphi (07-05). CR 1, Kourtaliotiko gorge (25-05) and 1 Kato Metohi (29-05).
  34. Osprey Pandion haliaetus (1). GR 1, Nikopoli lagoon (03-05).
  35. Kestrel Falco tinnunculus (22). Widespread GR and CR. Nests in Kato Zakros gorge 11/05.
  36. Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus (8). GR 3, Arichovas (08-05). CR Kato Zakros (10 to 14-05, with max 8 11-05), 1 Georgioupoli (19-05).
  37. Eleonora's Falcon Falco eleonorae (13). Only in Crete, widespread. Max 24, Vizari lake (23-05) and 16, Droxia (21-05).
  38. Peregrine Falco peregrinus brookei (1). CR Pair, female catching a Feral Pigeon, Palekastro (10-05).
  39. Chukar Alectoris chukar (4). CR 1 (with pulli) Kato Zakros (14 and 15-05), 1, near Karoti (23-05) and 2, Miriokefala (28-05).
  40. Moorhen Gallinula chloropus (9). Seen at all the lakes in GR and CR. Pairs with 1 and 4 pulli, Ioannina lake (05-05)
  41. Coot Fulica atra (5). GR Family with 6 pulli, Ioannina lake (05-05). CR Only Agia reservoir.
  42. Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus (5). GR Strongili 03-05) at Metochi (30-05). CR 1, Thrapsano (21 and 29-05).
  43. Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius (6). GR 1, Metochi (30-05). CR 1, Kato Zakros (10-05); 1, Geropotamos mouth (18-05); 5, displaying, Platanias river (18-05).
  44. Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula (1). 1, Xerokambos (12-05).
  45. Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus (1). GR 1, Strongili (03-05)
  46. Little Stint Calidris minuta (5). GR 23, Strongili (04-05). CR Max 75, Xerokambos (12-05).
  47. Ruff Philomachus pugnax (2). GR 14, Strongili (03-05). CR 5, Thrapsano (21-05).
  48. Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus (1). GR 1, Strongili (04-05).
  49. Redshank Tringa totanus (1). GR 2, displaying, Strongili (04-05).
  50. Greenshank Tringa nebularia (3). GR 2, Strongili (04-05) and 1, Etoliko (06-05). CR 1, Thrapsano (21-05).
  51. Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus (2). GR 2, Strongili (04-05). CR 1 Xerokambos (12-05).
  52. Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola (6). GR 2, Strongili (04-05). CR 1, Kato Zakros (10 and 12-05) ; 1, Hametoulo (13-05) ; 2, Agia reservoir (19-05) and 3, Thrapsano (21-05).
  53. Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos (8). The passage is nearly finished. GR Nikopoli, Strongili and Ioannina. CR Kato Zakros, Platanias and Agia reservoir.
  54. Mediterranean Gull Larus melanocephalus (1). GR 3 imm, Preveza harbour (04-05).
  55. Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus (2). GR 1, Strongili (04-05) and 1, Ioannina lake (05-05).
  56. Yellow-legged Gull Larus cachinnans (32). Widespread in GR and CR, but not very numerous in Crete. CR Max. ca.150, near Apostoli, on a quarry (23-05).
  57. Sandwich Tern Sterna sandvicensis (1). GR 5, Koronisia (04-05).
  58. Common Tern Sterna hirundo (6). GR Widespread. Max ca.10, Koronisia (04-05).
  59. Little Tern Sterna albifrons (4). GR Not common. Seen at Koronisia, Strongili, Etoliko and Katafourko.
  60. White-winged Black Tern Chlidonias leucopterus (1). GR 3, Amoudia (03-05).
  61. Rock Dove Columba livia (9). Wild birds only in Crete where widespread in gorges.
  62. Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus (9). Only seen in Crete. Singers in Afrates (23-05), Angouseliana (25-05), Prevelli (25-05), Mili (26-05) and Kato Metohi (29-05).
  63. Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto (13). Widespread in GR, but not in CR where common in Xania, Rethymnon, Iraklion and Knossos. Also seen in Hora Sfakion.
  64. Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur (25). GR Not numerous. 1 singer, Ahladee (05-05). CR Numerous migrants in Kato Zakros: 24 (10-05) and 13 (15-05). Singers: Fres (2, 16-05), Aradaina (17-05), Lavris (2, 18-05), Droxia (3, 21-05), Platanias (3, 22-05), Afrates (2, 23-05), Karoti (2, 23-05), Prasies (2, 23-05), Angouseliana (25-05), Hromonasteri (4, 26-05), Mili (26-05), Sfinari (27-05), Miriokefala (28-05) and Thrapsano (2, 29-05).
  65. Cuckoo Cuculus canorus (6). GR Eleftheri, Vrisoula, Ahladee, Arichovas. CR Hohlakies and Aradaina.
  66. Barn Owl Tyto alba erlangeri (1). CR 1, killed by a car, Viran Episkopi (20-05).
  67. Scops Owl Otus scops (3). CR singers in Kato Zakros and Hromonasteri.
  68. Black Swift Apus apus (17). Widespread. Very common in the large cities: GR Piraeus, Patra. CR Agios Nikolaos, Irakleion, Rethymnon, Chania.
  69. Pallid Swift Apus pallidus (3). GR Nest under a roof in Kato Loutro (30-05). CR 3, on an islet, Amnisos (15-05) ; 1, Kournas lake (16-05).
  70. Alpine Swift Apus melba (15). Widespread. GR >25 above Piraeus harbour (09-05). CR 15, Omalos (19-05).
  71. Blue-cheeked Bee-eater Merops (superciliosus) persicus (1). 2, Kato Zakros (13-05).
  72. Bee-eater Merops apiaster (10). Not very common. GR heard only at Amoudia (03-05). CR regular at Kato Zakros (max 7, 11-05).
  73. Hoopoe Upupa epops (4). GR Ioannina, Delphi (1 nest with young 07-05) and Arichovas. CR Nest with young, Elounda (10-05), perhaps the first for Crete.
  74. Wryneck Jynx torquilla (1). CR 1, Droxia (21-05).
  75. Short-toed Lark Calandrella brachydactyla (2). CR 3, Limani (24-05) and 1, singing, Kato Metohi (29-05).
  76. Crested Lark Galerida cristata (31). Widespread, very common. CR 1 young, Elounda (10-05); birds carrying food seen Hametoulo and Karidi (13-05), Kaliviani (24-05). 6 singers on 1 km, Xerokambos (12-05).
  77. Woodlark Lullula arborea (12). Widespread on hills and mountains. GR 2 singers Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05). CR 9 pairs on 4 km, Omalos plateau (2 feeding youngs at nest, 1 young out of nest; 19-05).
  78. Sand Martin Riparia riparia (2). GR 2, Koronisia (04-05). CR 1, Hora Sfakion (17-05).
  79. Crag Martin Ptyonoprogne rupestris (14). In small number in gorges and cliffs. Max GR 6, Delphi (07-05). CR 9, Miriokefala (28-05).
  80. Swallow Hirundo rustica (38). Widespread and common. Nests also in city centers.
  81. Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica (13). GR and CR widespread in small numbers. GR nest building, Filothei (03-05). 1 near the sea, Derveni (30-05). CR seen at Droxia, Platanias gorge, Prasies, Kastelli/Kisamos, Angouseliana, and Mili.
  82. House Martin Delichon urbica (14). GR common between Korinthos and Patra. CR not common, nests only seen on Lassithi where the species is widespread. 28 migrants Agia reservoir (19-05). 7, arriving from the sea, Prevelli Palm Beach (25-05).
  83. Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris (4).GR 1, Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05); 1, Arichovas (08-05). CR 4, (3 singers + 1 carrying food) in a 4 km walk, Omalos plateau (19-05); 1, singing, Miriokefala (28-05).
  84. Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis (2). Only migrants. GR 1, Amoudia (03-05); 1, Revmatia (04-05).
  85. Yellow Wagtail
    Motacilla flava flava (3). CR 4, Kato Zakros (12-05); 1, Hohlakies and 2, Kato Zakros (14-05).
    Motacilla (flava) feldegg (3). GR 2, singing, Koronisia and 10 (+), singing, Strongili (04-05). CR 1, singing, Xerokambos (12-05).
    Motacilla flava thunbergi (1). CR 5, Elounda (10-05).
  86. White Wagtail Motacilla alba (6). Only seen in Crete. Not widespread. Only on the coasts at Xerokambos, Hora Sfakion, Limani, Prevelli Palm Beach and Sfinari. Family with 3 young, Petres river mouth (23-05).
  87. Wren Troglodytes troglodytes (23). Common and widespread in hills and mountains, in the rocky and dry areas. CR 14 singers on 2 km at Miriokefala (28-05). Pair carrying food, Omalos (19-05).
  88. Alpine Accentor Prunella collaris (1). 5 (2 singers), Skinakas observatory (20-05).
  89. Robin Erithacus rubecula (2). GR 1 singing on 1.5 km, Vargiatis \ (05-05); singers on My Parnassos forest (09-05).
  90. Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos (12). GR widespread. 7 singers on 1.5 km, Vargiatis (05-05). CR 3 singers Agia reservoir (19-05); 2 singers south of Prasies (23-05).
  91. Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros (1). GR >10 singers, Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05).
  92. Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus (1). CR 2, Kato Zakros (10-05).
  93. Stonechat Saxicola torquata (29). Very common breeder. CR pair carrying food, Kato Metohi (29-05).
  94. Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe (7). Common in mountains. GR >10 singers Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05). CR 9 singers on 1 km climbing to Skiakas observatory (20-05). 12 singers on 2km above Miriokefala + 1 pair carrying food (28-05).
  95. Black-eared Wheatear Oenanthe hispanica melanoleuca (25). Widespread in rocky areas, from sea level to 1400 m. GR pair building nest, Delphi (07-05).
  96. Rock Thrush Monticola saxatilis (1). 2 pairs displaying, Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05).
  97. Blue Rock Thrush Monticola solitarius (27). Common in gorges and cliffs, sometimes in villages. CR 11 singers on 3 km in Kato Zakros gorge (11-05); 10 singers on 2.5 km in Hohlakies gorge (14-05); Pairs feeding young GR Erativi (06-05), Delphi (07-05); CR Selinari gorge (15-05), Cap Drapanon (16-05), Platanias gorge (22-05).
  98. Blackbird Turdus merula (46). Common and widespread. GR 10 singers on 1.5 km, Vargiatis (05-05). CR 12 singers on 5 km Kato Prevelli to Palm Beach (25-05).
  99. Mistle Thrush Turdus viscivorus (4). GR abundant in the Mt Parnassos forest.
  100. Cetti's Warbler Cettia cetti (41). Common near water. Sometimes in dry areas. GR 5 singers on 500 m riparian forest, Gouria (06-05). CR 10 singers on 1.5 km, Sfinari (27-05).
  101. Fan-tailed Warbler Cisticola juncidis (6). GR 2 singers, Amoudia, 1 singer Nikopoli lagoon (03-05); 2 singers, Antirio, 2 singers, Katafourko (06-05); 1 singer, Limanaki (30-05). CR 1 singer near the Georgioupoli harbour (16-05).
  102. Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus (2). CR 3 singers, Geropotamos mouth (18-05); 1 singer, Agia reservoir (19-05).
  103. Great Reed Warbler Acrocephalus arundinaceus (11). More widespread than the previous species. GR heard at Amoudia, Petra, Strongili, Nikopoli lagoon (>10 singers), Ioannina (very numerous), Gournia (6 singers on 600 m riparian forest of Acheloos river), Katafourko and Metochi. CR 1 singer, Georgioupoli lake (16-05) and 4 singers, Agia reservoir (19-05).
  104. Olivaceous Warbler Hippolais pallida elaeica (14). Common. GR 2 singers, Gouria (06-05) and some singers, Metochi (30-05). CR widespread in riparian forest and olive orchards. 6 singers on 500 m, Kournas lake (16-05); 4 singers on 800 m, Petres river (23-05).
  105. Olive-tree Warbler Hippolais olivetorum (1). CR 1 singer, Plemaniana (27-05).
  106. Subalpine Warbler Sylvia cantillans (7). Only in GR. ca.8 singers near Vrisoula (04-05).
  107. Sardinian Warbler Sylvia melanocephala (50). Very common up to 1740 m. CR 29 singers + 1 pair carrying food + 1 family of 3 juv, on 5 km between Kato Prevelli and the Palm Beach (25-05). Pairs carrying food Georgioupoli (16-05), Agia reservoir and Omalos (19-05), Anogia (20-05), Karoti (23-05) and Kato Metohi (29-05).
  108. Rüppell's Warbler Sylvia rueppelli (2). GR Delphi (07-05), 1 female archeological site, 1 pair above the site. CR none seen!
  109. Orphean Warbler Sylvia hortensis crassirostris (1) GR 1 singer above Delphi (07-05).
  110. Whitethroat Sylvia communis (3). GR 1, Nikopoli lagoon (03-05); 1 singer, Ioannina lake (05-05) and 1 singer Kalivia Arichovas 08-05).
  111. Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla (8). GR 1, Vrisoula (04-05); 2 singers, Ahladee and 6 singers on 1.5 km, Vargiatis (05-05); 1 singer, Delphi (07-05). CR 1 singer, Afrates (23-05); 2 singers, Hromonasteri and 1 singer, Mili (26-05) and 1 singer, Plemeniana (27-05). The species does not breed in Crete...
  112. Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita (1). GR 2 singers on 2.5 km, Vargiatis (05-05).
  113. Firecrest Regulus ignicapillus (3). GR Only between Delphi and Mt Parnassos. >15 singers, Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05).
  114. Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata (55). Widespread in small numbers.
  115. Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus (1). GR 4, Vargiatis (05-05).
  116. Sombre Tit Parus lugubris (4). GR 1 singer, Vrisoula (04-05); 6, archeological site and 1 family in the town (2 young), Delphi (07-05).
  117. Coal Tit Parus ater (2). GR Only Mt Parnassos forest where it is abundant (07 and 09-05).
  118. Blue Tit Parus caeruleus (15). Widespread breeder.
  119. Great Tit Parus major (45). Widespread under 1000 m.
  120. Nuthatch Sitta europaea (1). GR 1, Mt Parnassos forest (09-05).
  121. Rock Nuthatch Sitta neumayer (4). GR 2 singers, Klissoura gorges (06-05); pairs at nest above Delphi and in archeological site (07-05) and 1 singer, Kalogria (30-05).
  122. Short-toed Treecreeper Certhia brachydactyla (2). GR 1, Vargiatis (05-05) and 1, Metochi (30-05).
  123. Penduline Tit Remiz pendulinus (7). GR 1 nest, Petra (04-05); 2 nests, Gouria (06-05). Also Amoudia and Filothei (03-05), Strongili (04-05), Ioannina (05-05) and Lousika (30-05).
  124. Golden Oriole Oriolus oriolus (4). GR 2 singers on 500 m riparian forest, Gouria (06-05). CR 1 female, Kato Zakros (10-05); 1, Xerokambos (12-05) and 2, Aradaina (17-05).
  125. Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio (1). GR 1 male, Kalivia Arichovas (08-05).
  126. Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator (16). Widespread in GR and CR.
  127. Jay Garrulus glandarius (8). Not common in Crete, but 8 on 4 km, Omalos (19-05).
  128. Magpie Pica pica (8). Common in GR.
  129. Chough Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax (4). CR 1, Omalos (19-05), 10, road of observatory, Anogia (20-05) and 6 very tame, Kato Metohi (29-05).
  130. Jackdaw Corvus monedula soemmerringii (9). Widespread. GR numerous in Klissoura gorge (06-05). CR 80(+) on the Agia Irini aqueduct (29-05).
  131. Hooded Crow Corvus corone sharpii (51). Common and widespread. CR bird incubating, Thrapsano (21-05 and 29-05). 19, Vizari lake (23-05).
  132. Raven Corvus corax (16). Widespread.
  133. House Sparrow Passer domesticus (24). GR widespread and abundant. CR 1, Georgioupoli (16-05) and 1, Marathos (20-05).
  134. Italian Sparrow Passer (hispaniolensis) italiae (45). CR Very common and widespread, also at great distance of human installations.
  135. Spanish Sparrow Passer hispaniolensis (2). GR small colony, Strongili (03-05). CR 1, Georgioupoli (16-05).
  136. Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs (56). Very common and widespread. CR 12 singers on 2.5 km, Hohlakies gorge 14-05). Pair feeding youngs, Kato Zakros (16-05).
  137. Serin Serinus serinus (13). GR widespread. CR not common. 1 singer, Fres (16-05); 1 singer, Fournes (19-05); 1 singer, Prasies (23-05); 1 singer, Drapanias (24-05); 2 singers, Angouseliana (25-05); 2 singers, Kato Metohi (29-05).
  138. Greenfinch Carduelis chloris (42). Widespread and common. Not seen above 900 m.
  139. Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis (47). Widespread and common. Not seen above 900 m.
  140. Linnet Carduelis cannabina (20). Seen on hills and mountains in GR and CR. CR. 1, Kaliviani beach (24-05).
  141. Cirl Bunting Emberiza cirlus (17). GR widespread. CR above 300 m, but 1, Platanias gorge (22-05).
  142. Rock Bunting Emberiza cia (1). 3, Mt Parnassos ski resort (07-05).
  143. Ortolan Emberiza hortulana (5). CR 1 singer, Hametoulo and Sitanos (13-05); some singers, Meskla (19-05); 4 singers on 5 km between Kato Prevelli and Prevelli Palm Beach (25-05) and 6 singers on 2 km, road above Miriokefala (28-05).
  144. Cretzschmar's Bunting Emberiza caesia (1). GR 1 singer, Kalivia Arichovas (08-05).
  145. Black-headed Bunting Emberiza melanocephala (5). GR 1 singer, Amoudia, 2 singers, Nikopoli lagoon and 2 singers, Strongili (03-05); 1 singer, Vargiatis (05-05) and some singers, Amvrakia lake (06-05).
  146. Corn Bunting Miliaria calandra (13). Widespread.

My first trip report (20 April to 10 May 1998) in Crete is also available....

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This page served with permission of the author by Urs Geiser;; June 26, 1999, 1999