Dragan Simic is obsessively passionate about two things – birding and travelling in search of birds. This is what he is narrating about on his birding report on Lake Kerkini, where he went in search for Pelicans.
“Our bird guide, Georgos Spiridakis, is driving slowly along this dirt track, checking the mud all the time. And then he stops and leaves the car – to show us a Grey Wolf track! It is an early April morning and we are in the hills surrounding Lake Kerkini in the north of Greece.
A movement in the bushes… a Lesser Whitethroat is hiding among the leaves, but we manage to see it. A few metres further, something is jumping from one branch to another… a pair of Subalpine Warblers, a Mediterranean species that does not go much further north than this. A male and a female and, very much warbler-like, they are hardly visible inside a low tree crown. Still, a few metres further, one, then another male sings in a low, dancing display flight (barely two-three metres above the bushes). It is still early spring and the leaves are small, not fully developed, so we manage to see them too, and we did it very ethically, without provoking a response by the mobile phone….
We are entering a long boat and sail by the wooden poles in the water, decorated with Common Terns (and one Black Tern that I’ve dipped), towards the greatest attraction of the lake, the pelican colony […], that of threatened Dalmatian Pelicans. Estimating all the flocks together, in those two hours of sailing we have seen some 250 to 300 Dalmatian Pelicans. Back towards the quay, we stop by a group of another pelican species, this one only passing through the area – Great White Pelicans (cover photo). It is nice to see both of them at the same time at such close range…”