Larnaka’s Feathered Friends Return

The famous flamingos that grace Larnaka’s salt lake between the months of November to March have finally appeared this year, later than usual due to the dry weather, and are a welcome sight in their flurry of bright pink.

Despite the popular misconception that the flamingos stop over in Cyprus on their way to and from Africa, the flamingos actually come from Turkey where they breed during the summer months. As temperatures in Turkey become considerably colder at this time of year, they make their way to Cyprus and require a delicate balance of conditions to settle at Larnaka’s salt lake, which Research Coordinator for Birdlife Cyprus, Mr Martin Hellicar, explains.

“Flamingos have a good sense of when a lake reaches the right conditions for them and once they have identified that, can be there within a day. The salinity of the lake waters has to be just right for the shrimps they feed on to thrive, and that is dependant on there being an optimum amount of water in the lake.”

Flocks can number up to 10,000 and are one of the town’s most defining sights. The flamingo is also the town’s mascot and appears in several guises for visitors to photograph.

Salt Lake