Activities

Birdwatching

Gökçeada provides unique opportunities in terms of birdwatching. It is determined that total of 143 bird specifies are distributed in the island, including 16 sets and 41 families. The bird species that are observed in Gökçeada constitute approximately 30% of the bird fauna (473 species) in Turkey. 63 bird species may be watched in the island throughout the year. 55 species are summer migrant, 15 species are winter migrant and 10 species are transit migrant. According to the IUCN criteria, 138 of these species are of low risk category, 2 of the same are of sensitive category and 3 of the same are of close to threat category.1

Gökçeada is the richest island of the country in terms of surface and spring waters, and it also is the island with the largest surface area. Salt Lake that is located in Aydıncık region is a fishery, whose water is not potable and is not suitable for agriculture, which has a suitable depth for coast birds and flamingos and that has a connection with sea. Also, its surrounding is covered with sands that include ridges and shelters that are suitable for wintering of certain bird species, and it also provides a habitat suitable for certain bird

species (coast birds and seagulls). Salt Lake fishery and northern coasts of Gökçeada are determined as Important Nature Area.2 Ridges, rocks and stone areas of the island also include such variety of their own. It provides suitable nesting areas for eleonorae’s falcons, peregrine falcons, kestrels, swifts, swallows, seagulls, blue rock-thrushes, partridges and even pigeons and crows. In the winter, one may watch duck types, pelicans, cormorants, fulicita atras and seagulls all together on the coast and inner lakes. Shags, kingfishers, seagull types and cory’s shearwaters may also be watched on the shoreline.3 Gökçeada provides many opportunities in terms of birdwatching since it is on the immigration route of immigrant birds, while it also includes birds that are native to the island, such as partridges, woodcocks, greenlets etc.

1 Tok C., Özkan B., Gürkan M., Terrestirial Vertebrate of Gökçeada, Gökçeada Natural and Cultural Assets, Istanbul, page no.: 130, 2014.
2 Eken G., Bozdoğan M., İsfendiyaroğlu S., Kılıç D.T., Lise Y., Imporant Natural Areas of Turkey, Nature Foundation, Ankara, 2006.
3 Şebnem Samsa, Birds of Gökçeada, Gökçeada Natural and Cultural Assets, Istanbul, page nos.: 155-180, 2014.
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