Tag Archives: kerkini

Karen’s Pelicans of Lake Kerkini

A Dalmatian Pelican drifts gently on the waters of Lake Kerkini photographed during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday

Karen joined our Pelicans of Lake Kerkini trip in 2018, having missed out in 2017. She may not have gotten the snow, but she got some awesome light, coupled with fantastic opportunities for reflection shots.

With three boat trips and three shoreline feeds, there were plenty of opportunities to get some classic shots “in the bag” before trying some more creative photography.

A Dalmatian Pelican drifts gently on the waters of Lake Kerkini photographed during one of the NaturesLens Photography Holidays for photography of the Pelicans of Lake Kerkini Continue reading

The Pelicans of Lake Kerkini by Richard

A trio of in flight Dalmatian Pelicans fly over Lake Kerkini photographed during one of the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays

Richard joined our Pelicans of Lake Kerkini tour for the third time in as many years. One of the reasons he joined the trip was to capture a reflection of a Dalmatian Pelican in flight. He didn’t quite manage this in year one or year two, but as the saying goes, “third time lucky!”
A group of perfectly reflected Dalmatian Pelicans with the Belasica mountains behind photographed during one of the NaturesLens Photography Holidays for photography of the Pelicans of Lake Kerkini Continue reading

Lake Kerkini’s Pelicans by Rosamund

A splendid group of Dalmatian Pelicans, with a single juvenile showing off his immature plummage photographed during one of the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays

Rosamund was one of our guests on the last of our three trips to photograph Lake Kerkini’s Pelicans in Greece. She wanted to capture some stunning reflection shots, and I think it would be fair to say that she succeeded! Take a look at the colours in the image below – gorgeous.
A Dalmatian Pelican line up at dawnThe close up stare of a Dalmatian Pelican photographed during one of the NaturesLens Photography Holidays for photography of Lake Kerkini's Pelicans Continue reading

Steen’s images of the Pelicans of Lake Kerkini

A group of Dalmatian Pelicans drifting on the lake with the beautiful mountain range behind photographed during the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday

Steen enjoyed his first trip to the Pelicans of Lake Kerkini so much that he decided to join us again in 2018. Having attended the tour before, Steen had a list of images that he hoped to capture on his return trip.
A Dalmatian Pelican drifting on the lake's still waters photographed during the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday Continue reading

Annette’s images from our Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday

A wide angle image of a pod of pelicans at one of the shoreline feeds image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday

As soon as I had set eyes on some photographs of Dalmatian Pelicans on the internet I knew that I was going to visit them, I was so profoundly enchanted by them. It didn’t take me long to find the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday & I booked it right away!

The detail of a pelican beak at one of the shoreline feeds image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
Six months later I found myself standing on the shores of the beautiful Lake Kerkini in Northern Greece, adjacent to the Bulgarian border, & I discovered that these majestic birds are even more charming than I had first imagined.
Each morning & evening for four fully-packed days we went out for lengthy sessions of Dalmatian Pelican photography & I never got tired of doing so.
Flying in the morning light, a pair of Dalmatian Pelicans at sunrise image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
We started off with a gorgeous sunrise on the first morning out on the lake with our avian models following in the wake of the boat. Our fabulous boatman & Dalmatian Pelican expert kept them entertained & happy so that we could catch wonderful moments.
A pelican lands on Lake Kerkini in the wake of the boat image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
These early morning boat trips were a treat by themselves; the colourful sunrises with these gorgeous birds in front is something you will never forget as well as the sight of the lake that lies calmly like a perfect mirror for the flying Pelicans.
Gliding serenely on the waters, a rear view of one of Kerkini's Dalmatian Pelicans image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
Attempting to swallow a fish, one of the pelicans at a shoreline feed image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
What a beautiful experience … after a 3 hours boat trip in the mornings & a nice break in our comfortable hotel for lunch & warming up we went out a second time to photograph the Pelicans from ashore in the afternoon.
A wide-angle image of a pod of pelicans at one of the shoreline feeds image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
I was amazed at the sheer abundance of dalmatian pelican photography opportunities; flying, landing, portraits, close-ups, details, panning, long exposures, reflections, wide-angle shots, single birds, pairs, groups vying for fish & many more.
Slow shutter speed, motion blurred, one of the Dalmatian Pelicans stretches it's wings image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
The cloudy days provided for capturing calm pictures with perfect reflections & vibrant colours, the sunny days golden light. & if you ran out of ideas all you had to do was ask Sean, our excellent guide; so easy going, knowledgeable, always helpful & encouraging.
One of the pelicans glides over the still waters of Lake Kerkini image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday Causing a wake from landing on the lake, one of the pelicans perfectly reflected in the waters of Lake Kerkini image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
The workshop was perfectly organised, the hotel comfortable, providing piles of delicious Greek food & thanks to a friendly group of NaturesLens guests, we also had a lot of fun & laughter … what more would you want?
You are welcome to view more images of these beautiful birds on my homepage.
A solo Dalmatian Pelican watches as the sun breaks the horizon of Lake Kerkini image captured during a NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday
To photograph the charismatic Dalmatian Pelicans yourself, join Sean Weekly, one of the most active members of the NaturesLens guiding team, in Kerkini, Greece during January 2018 for a trip lasting 4 nights; this photography holiday will offer you the opportunity to capture images of the Dalmatian Pelican; the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans Photography Holiday is offered on a full board, non-shared room basis, & costs £1099 per participant.
All the details of the Dalmatian Pelicans Photography Holiday are available on the dedicated event page.

Fancy some Dalmatian Pelican Photography in 2018?

A Dalmatian Pelican lands with little drama on the ice of a frozen Lake Kerkini photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans Photography Holiday

With both our originally announced Dalmatian Pelican Photography trips full, we have the opportunity for a third set of dates to head to Lake Kerkini to photograph the wonderful & charismatic Dalmatian Pelicans of Greece.

One of the Dalmatian Pelicans strides across the ice of a frozen Lake Kerkini photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans Photography Holiday

As usual, the rooms are all on a non-sharing basis, all food is included in the trip & believe me, there is plenty of food served on these photography holidays – plus there are easy flights into & out of Thessaloniki, with airport transfers from the airport to the hotel & back all included.

A Dalmatian Pelican lands with little drama on the ice of a frozen Lake Kerkini photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans Photography Holiday

We include at least 3 shoreline feeds – if we can fit them in, this increases to 5, we also include 3 boat trips out on the lake in the early morning light – weather allowing, 2017’s trips were unique in that the lake was frozen, but this is not the norm!

You get to stay in a wonderful hotel, that is 500m from the lake, with all rooms on a non-sharing basis, & we don’t levy a single supplement either! Throughout the trip, you will have opportunities to photograph a wide selection of images; both portraits & closeup shots of perched Dalmatian Pelicans, pelicans calling, flying, fighting for fish; plus wider bird in the landscape images to show impressive backdrop to the lake with the snow covered Bulgarian mountain ranges in the distance.

Group numbers are strictly limited to allow everyone to get a great position on the boats that we use during this photography workshop to venture out onto the lake, whilst on the boat & during other activities, general advice will be given before the commencement of each element of the trip.

With a boat trip each morning & a shoreline feed each evening, we certainly hope to capture many facets of the Dalmatian Pelicans personality as they go about life on the lake – hopefully including take-off, landing & in-flight shots of these magnificent birds. The NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holiday is suitable for mid-level & experienced photographers.

If you would like to join this trip, please view the events page here, from which you can send us a booking enquiry – the trip is priced at £1049 for the all the elements listed above as being included & will be conducted over the dates of January 7th to 11th 2018.

The dreamy Dalmatian Pelicans of the Greek Lakes

Dalmatian Pelicans are by a small margin the largest of the pelican species & as a whole one of the largest living bird species.

Almost prehistoric in appearance, the dalmatian pelicans of Greece are extremely photoegenic - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

An adult pelican can measure up to 185 cm in length, weigh up to 15 kg in weight & have a wingspan of up to 350cm. A Dalmatian Pelican’s average weight is around 11.5 kg, which makes it amongst the heaviest flying bird species in the world, although the largest individuals among male bustards & swans may be heavier than one of the largest individual Dalmatian pelican.

The focal point of the pelican is often the eye, staring out from underneath the messy hairdo - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

Dalmatian Pelicans appear to have one of the largest wingspans of any living bird, rivaling those of the great albatrosses & the great white pelican.

One of Greece's Dalamatian Pelicans drifts serenely on the surface of the lake - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

In winter, adult Dalmatian pelicans go from silvery-grey to a dingier brownish-grey cream colour, whilst the young birds are grey. During the breeding season, adult birds have an orange-red lower mandible & pouch against a yellow upper mandible, additionally their plumage reverts to the silvery-grey. In winter, the whole bill is a somewhat dull yellow.

Dalmatian Pelicans are often silent, as most pelicans tend to be, although during the mating season, it can be fairly vocal, during this period it may engage in a wide range of guttural, deep vocalisations, including barks, hisses & grunts.

In full breeding plummage & with their pouch a vibrant orange, the dalmatian pelicans make for an entrancing photographic subject - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

Dalmatian Pelicans are generally found in lakes, rivers, deltas & estuaries, as a species, the Dalmatian Pelican is less opportunistic in breeding habitat selection than other pelicans, in general returning to a traditional breeding site year after year unless it becomes completely unsuitable.

A ripple in the water disrupts the relection of one of the Dalamatian Pelicans as it drifts serenely on the surface of the lake - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

During the season of winter, Dalmatian Pelicans usually stay on ice-free lakes in Europe or seasonal lakes in India.

A ripple in the surface of Lake Kerkini's water disrupts the relection of one of the Dalamatian Pelicans as it drifts serenely on the surface of the lake - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

Dalmatian Pelicans have declined greatly throughout its range, more so than any other of the pelicans. Reportedly, there were once millions of Dalmatian pelicans in Romania alone. During the 20th century, the species’ numbers underwent a dramatic decline for reasons that are not entirely understood. The most likely reason was habitat loss due to human activities such as the drainage of wetlands & land development.

A Dalamatian Pelicans drifts serenely on the surface of the lake - photographed on the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini wildlife photography holiday

Why not photograph the Dalmatian Pelicans for yourself?

Lake Kerkini is one of the most important wetlands in Europe & it is easy to see why. For photographers keen to add more birds to their wildlife portfolio, a sojourn in Lake Kerkini provides an abundance of opportunities. Our focus during our photography holiday is the striking Dalmatian Pelican, which can be seen at Lake Kerkini from mid-January through to March.

Unlike many similar wildlife photography trips, the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini photography holiday gives three days at the lake & our accommodation is convenient & comfortable, just five minutes from Lake Kerkini, which allows us to maximise photography time. There are two sessions per day, with boat trips in the morning & shoreline feeding in the afternoon.

Our photography holiday for the dates of January 12, 2017 – January 16, 2017 still has spaces available & costs £949 for the 5 day trip, lead by Dan Tim, the trip includes all food, accommodation, boat trips, shoreline feeds & airport transfers!

Our Dalmatian Pelican images get a magazine spread

Dalmatian Pelicans of Lake Kerkini article by David & Pui Hang Miles of NaturesLens as featured in Wildlife Photographic Magazine in November 2015

Dalmatian Pelican images article by David & Pui Hang Miles of NaturesLens as featured in Wildlife Photographic Magazine in November 2015

This month Pui Hang & I have a wonderful multi-page feature containing a new selection of Dalmatian Pelican images from out photographic trip in January in Wildlife Photographic Magazine – it has some new images in there that we have not published before. Continue reading