8 to 12 May 2002

I usually prefer to go birding on a bike since I believe is a good way to see things along the route.
I did a cycling tour Between May 8 – May 12, 2002 in the area between Dinar and Banaz (Afyon,Denzli, Uzak admin. regions).

We reached Dinar by bus from Kusadasi, where we crossed from Samos Island (Greece).

The route was Dinar- Isikli- Hocalar – Pacacik – Buyokoturak – Murat Dag – Banaz.

Day 1: We biked along the eastern shore of Gokgol marshes and Isikli lake having on our right the Ak Dag mountain.
Day 2: We turned right just in the beginning of Isikli village to follow the road to the Buyuk Mederes valley up to about 4 km from Hocalar.
Day 3: Hocalar – we turned right at appr. 20 – 23 km from Hocalar to Yenice
Day 4: Yenice – Buyukoturak – we cross the main highway Ismir -Ankara, follow the north side road parallel to the highway until the first RR station and then turned to the north to Murat Dag. All 4 days we camped in the open and slept under the stars.
Day 5: Murat Dag through forest roads to Bahadir and then to Banaz. We spent the night at friends’ house in Banaz and took the bus to Ismir – Kusadasi. We overnight in Kusadasi (pansion)and the next day we took Dolmus to Kusadasi – Soke and Soke – Balat (by B. Mederes delta). We walk the 2km road Balat – Akkoy and took another dolmus to Soke – Kusadasi. Next day we returned to Samos (Greece) by boat.

Birds seen (mainly raptors and larger birds):

White Stork Ciconia ciconia
4 B.Mederes (en route), 10+ Isikli lake and Gokgol maershes, 6 in Selcuk (en route)

Black Stork Ciconia nigra
1 Murat Dag

Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
180 – 200 Gokgol marshes

Great White Egret Egretta alba
30+ Gokgol, ~30 Balat(B. Mederes Delta)

Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
120+ Isikli lake

Dalmation Pelecan Pelecanus crispus
1 flying over the road Balat – Akkoy (B. Mederes Delta)

Raven Corvus corax
7 Murat Dag, 2 near Yenice

Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus
1 on the route Dinar – Isikli, 7 km from Dinar.

Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus
1 on Dinar- Isikli road.

White-tailed Eagle Haliaetus albicilla
1 Ak Dag. The bird was flying over Beydilli village in the northern shore of Isikli lake. Late afternoon was soaring in the rocky area near the village. Probably is nesting there??

Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos
1 Ak Dag

Booted Eagle Hieraaetus pennatus
1 Isikli

Kestrel Falco tinnunculus
2 Isikli, 2 Ak Dag, 2 Murat dag, 3 Mederes Delta, 1 Selcuk

Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni
7 Akkoy village (B. Mederes Delta)

Falco sp. (probably naumanni)
group of 5, 4 km before Hocalar

Marsh Harrier Circus aeroginosus
5+ Isikli lake, Gokgol marshes

Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus
5 Ak Dag – Hocalar – Murat dag

Buzzard Buteo buteo
6 Murat dag

Barn Owl Tyto alba
1 in Banaz town

Little Owl Athena noctua
1 in Banaz town

If you want more info about the list or the areas I please e-mail me. The list is incoplete since I did not record other bird groups which may be of some interest. I found the areas through the IBAs for Turkey book. Unfortunately we did not see any black vultures in this area.

Giorgos Giannatos
Wild. Biologist MSc
Project leader WWF Greece,
26 Filellinon Str., 10558
tel. +30 -103314893
fax. +30 -103247578
e-mail: jackal@wwf.gr
or ygiannatos@hotmail.com