Trip Report: Northern Cyprus, October 28 - November 1, 1998

José Tavares, Ankara, Turkey;

My first, brief visit to North Cyprus. Didn't do much birdwatching, since I was visiting the island with non-birding friends. We were based west of Girne (between Ye_iltepe and Alsancak), and spent most of the time along the north coast and in the northern slopes of the Be_parmak mountains. On the 30 October went to the easternmost end of the island (Karpaz peninsula/Zafer burnu), where I saw many migrants (pipits, wheatears, thrushes, etc).

Bird Species Seen:

Turkish names are given in parentheses [Editor's note: Apologies for the crude and probably sometimes incorrect transliteration of the Turkish characters that can't be crammed into ISO-8859-1 encoding. UG]

Shearwater species - Many (+50) far offshore west of Girne, 28 and 29 October. Not seen there after that date. The wind was strong from the NW on the 28 October. Either Cory's or Levantine Shearwater (boz yelkovan/yelkovan).

Cormorant - 7 flying high in V-formation from east to west along the coastline, west of Girne, in the early morning of 30 October (karabatak).

Shag - 1 seen west of Girne, 3 on a reef near Kaplica and 1 at Zafer burnu (tepeli karabatak).

Raptor species - 2 soaring very far away above the Be_parmak mountains near Kaplica on 30 October.

Sparrowhawk - 1 near Lapta (Be_parmak mountains) on 31 October (atmaca).

Kestrel - Common. Seen in several places along the north coast (e.g. 1 Küçükerenköy, 1 Kaplica, +4 Lapta) (kerkenez).

Probable Peregrine Falcon - 1 seen very high up, on top of the Be_parmak mountains above Lapta, on 31 October (gökdo_an).

Chukar - Seen in several places along the north coast. Big parties seen west of Kaplica, and near St. Philon (+ 15) (kinali keklik).

Black Francolin - 2 males seen near the golden sand beach, east of Dipkarpaz (Karpaz peninsula) (turaç).

Only two waders seen flying by fast west of Dipkarpaz on 30 October. Not identified.

Small gull species, Larus sp. - +70 seen flying low over the sea from east to west far offshore near Esentepe (East of Girne) on 30 October. Probably Black-headed or Slender-billed Gulls (karaba_ marti/ince gagali marti).

Yellow-legged Gull - Most of the +100 gulls roosting off Zafer burnu were from this species. Gull roost too far away for positive ID of all gulls there (gümü_ marti).

Wood Pigeon - +15 near St. Philon, 1 near Ta_kent, +10 near Karaman (tahtali).

Collared Dove - Not very common, seen only west of Girne (kumru).

Little Owl - 1 between Dipkarpaz and Golden Sands beach, 1 heard near Ta_kent (kukumav).

Crested Lark - Seen in several places along the north coast, but not around Girne or further west. Still quite vocal at this time of the year (tepeli toygar).

Swallow - 1 west of Girne on 31 October, 2 the next day nearby (kir kirlangici).

Meadow Pipit - +10 feeding on grass at Dipkarpaz football pitch. There was at least one other pipit species there, but no positive ID. Some Meadow Pipits also at Zafer burnu (çayir incirku_u).

White Wagtail - 1 seen feeding on a beach near Kaplica, 1 at Zafer burnu (ak kuyruksallayan).

Robin - Seen and heard in several places on the north coast and in Ta_kent (kizilgerdan).

Black Redstart - Seen in several places on the north coast, from Kaplica to Zafer burnu, and in Ta_kent (kara kizilkuyruk).

Stonechat - Seen in several places on the north coast (ta_ku_u).

Common Wheatear - 1 at Zafer burnu. 2 other wheatears were seen near St. Philon, but no identification (kuyrukkakan).

Song Thrush - +3 near St. Philon, a few more at Zafer burnu (öter ardiç).

Mistle Thrush - 25 at Zafer burnu (ökse ardici).

Cetti's Warbler - 1 near Karaman on 1 November (kami_ bülbülü).

Fan-tailed Warbler - 2 seen near Kaplica (yelpazekuyruk).

Sardinian Warbler - 1 male seen well in coastal scrub near Kaplica (maskeli ötle_en).

Blackcap - Song heard on 31 October at Lapta and on 1 November near Karaman (kara ba_li ötle_en).

Chiffchaff - Seen in several places on the north coast (çivgin).

Great Tit - Seen and heard in several places on the north coast. Also singing in Lefko_a (büyük ba_tankara).

Magpie - Common and widespread (saksa_an).

Jackdaw - Common and widespread. Seen in the centre of Lefko_a. +120 above Ta_kent (küçük karga).

Hooded Crow - Common and widespread (le_ kargasi).

Starling - 3 feeding on grass at Dipkarpaz football pitch (si_ircik).

House Sparrow - Common and widespread (serçe).

Chaffinch - Seen in several places on the north coast and in Ta_kent. 1 female dead on the road west of Dipkarpaz (ispinoz).

Serin - Some seen in a mixed finch flock west of Dipkarpaz. Also seen west of Girne (küçük iskete).

Greenfinch - Only 1 seen, on the north coast east of Girne (30 October) (florya).

Goldfinch - Seen in several places on the north coast and in Ta_kent (saka).

Linnet - +20 seen in a mixed finch flock (with serins, chaffinches and goldfinches) west of Dipkarpaz (ketenku_u).

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This page served with permission of the author by Urs Geiser;; November 25, 1998