Just back from a great family holiday in northern Greece, close to its border with Albania. We started with a week on the coast in Parga, a chic resort with fabulous scenery, a beautiful harbour, ruined fort and plenty of excellent tavernas.
For our second week we drove inland to the Vikos-Aoos National Park: mountains, gorges and, we hoped, wildlife – lynx, wolves, bears, eagles. So this post is about some of the wildlife there.
In the same way that you need to be canny, quiet and lucky to glimpse most British wildlife (our local foxes are very cheeky – the dog fox strolls across our deck to cock his leg against our bird table – but the badgers have never been caught in their acts of vandalism of the veg garden), we did not see the big stuff while we were there.
In fact, our only glimpse of an eagle was of a golden (probably) eagle sitting in a field ripping some small creature to pieces as we drove by at speed on the highway back to Preveza airport. No chance of a photo as we were past it before we’d properly taken-in the scene – plus I am still getting used to my new camera.
But we saw what was probably an eagle – or vulture? – pellet as we climbed a track above Megalo Papingo one morning.
And we did – twice! – meet what we think (after research) were beech martens, clambering in coppiced hazel woodland, one above Megalo Papingo and one just along the Vikos trail from Mikro Papingo.
We also saw scads of smaller creatures
and some domesticated locals
but no snakes anywhere (especially at the Nekromateion, where we noticed this canister lurking at the top of the ladder into the main underground chamber)