A Flora and Fauna of Symi

A personal guide to the wildlife of Symi and beyond

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Yelkouan Shearwaters

A trip on the catamaran ferry up to Kalymnos  always brings the possibility of seeing shearwaters and Sunday was no exception. A glassy sea, the sun behind us and a close encounter with the Datca peninsular near Knidos are all favourable omens. Yelkouan shearwaters stay in the Mediterranean all year round (there is some evidence they travel up to the black sea for winter), unlike their cousins, Cory's shearwaters who spend their winters off the Argentine coast so it was a real pleasure to get my first shots of them from the boat. They sit on the water in rafts of 50+ until disturbed and here we are all traveling at about 25 knots.

Another great sight from the ferry was a flock of rock doves, again disturbed roosting from a small islet. These look about as true to the species as you can get showing all the right markings and with no hint of feral pigeons anywhere.

The return trip was no less spectacular with a sunset over the island of Nisyros.


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