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Crete and the birds   ...

Rightly, the island of Crete is VERY often associated  with raptor birds. The size of the island, the important relief, the diversity of biotopes ensure the different species a secure development.


It has become a "refuge" in recent years, to the delight of the Cretan people. This alternation of gorges and plains is a favorite place to search for prey. In addition, the island is on the bird immigration route to Africa.


 "ATHENA" is a turtle dove..." tagged using a satellite transmitter by the Greek Ornithological Society of Kythira.


          _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905- 5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b- 136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde- 3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                    L'automne dernier à la station ornithologique_cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b- 136bad5cf58d_d'Antikythira, elle a été choisie        _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b -136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde -3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b- 136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b-13 6bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde- 3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                     _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cd e-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         pour partager son long voyage de migration :

          _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905- 5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b- 136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde- 3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                     _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_       "Athéna" a réussi à surmonter deux obstacles majeurs durant son travel :

          _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905- 5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b- 136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde- 3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                     _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         le  désert of the Sahara and the Mediterranean Sea, after traveling 4,000 km  _cc781905-5cde-31 94-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                     _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_       _cc 781905-5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_          dans la plaine of Thessaly.     _ cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905- 5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b-1 36bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde- 3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                


          _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905 -5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_         _cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905- 5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_     _cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b- 136bad5cf58d_           _cc781905-5cde- 3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_                     _cc781905-5cde-3194 -bb3b-136bad5cf58d_      

She then poursuivi  her route to the North, where she will nest. 


Symbol of beauty, love and companionship since ancient times,

the dove of the woods  is the only one of the pigeon family in Europe

which migrates over long distances. 


Over the past few years, species a suffered 80% loss,

and is now endangered.

The loss of habitats due to the expansion of human activities has played

a decisive role, however in Mediterranean countries,

poaching is a crucial factor increasing the threat. 

Finally, raptors like to watch for sheep that have escaped from herds, which live in the mountains, almost in a wild state.

Goats are also a meal of choice for raptors.


Accompanied by a good Cretan guide, you can quite easily come across:

- Ie Bearded Vulture, found only in Crete of all Greece,

- the griffon vulture, in large numbers (about 400) which represents 70% of Greece,

- the golden eagle crosses quite easily in the mountains, (about 25 pairs in Crete),

- Bonelli's Eagle, which represents 20% of the Greek population in Crete,

- Eleanor's Falcon, very well preserved in Crete, (about 1200 pairs),

- the Peregrine Falcon, (about 75 pairs on the island),

- the Falcon Ianier, (8 couples identified to date (15.04.2019).

The bearded vulture

Regarding nocturnal species, we will easily come across the Barn Owl and the Scops Owl. Curiously, the Owl of Athena, very common in all the other Greek islands, is rare in Crete.

The permanent presence of ornithologists in recent years, as well as that of many amateur observers has provided further information on the birds. LIFE-NATURE programs have multiplied, and the European Union has set up the preservation of certain birds such as the Bearded Vulture.

there is an organization in Greece responsible for ornithological censuses: The Hellenic Ornithological Society (SOH):

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