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What Will Become Of The Owls Now That The Trees Are Gone?

29/07/2014 - by Eleni P Hoplaros
There are various ways to describe what pruning means.

Some definitions include to “trim (a tree, shrub, or bush) by cutting away dead or overgrown branches or stems, especially to encourage growth” or to “cut away (a branch or stem) from a tree, shrub, etc”.

So one has to wonder when pruning otherwise translated to the complete hacking away at the trunks of a tree causing colossal ruin.

You see, the forestry department recently gave permission for the eucalyptus trees at the Armenian Cemetery in Nicosia, near the Ledra Palace crossing, to be pruned.  The same department however did not have enough staff to inspect the site before granting the go-ahead.

The result. The cutting down of eucalyptus trees more than 50 meters tall.  Trees that were the home to many owls and their young, including the rare long-eared baby owls.

According to the European Birds Directive, it is illegal to cut down trees during breeding seasons if there are nests in them with eggs or young birds.

Understandably, fears have now been raised as to what fate awaits these owls which were nesting in the branches of the trees.

So it therefore needs to be asked.  From the damage caused to the turtle nests at Lara Bay to the near destruction of the eucalyptus trees in Nicosia, to what extent is nature conservation being given the attention it deserves in Cyprus?  

Source/Full article here: Cyprus Mail

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  • 09/07/2014 - by Eleni P Hoplaros

    It has been reported that the Green Party is opposed to the operation of the bar because the lights and noise pollution coming from it will have a detrimental effect on the turtles.   

    Marine biologist Myroulla Hadjichristoforou, formerly of the Fisheries Department who has been actively involved in the Sea Turtles Protection Programme for 30 years, has also said that “turtles are shy animals and if they see shadows or hear noises, they go back into the sea.”  If this happens continuously over consecutive nights, the turtles then lay their eggs in the sea which is devastating as the eggs are killed by sea water.

    The Cyprus Mail reports that “the manager of the bar, which has been up and running for a few weeks, disagrees with the Green Party that the eggs are in danger. We are very careful with the nests and we make sure no-one disturbs them. We have spoken to the Fisheries Department officer who comes to check them. The bar is not on the beach, it’s higher up. The only things we have on the beach are umbrellas and sun beds,” he said.”

    Community leader of Neo Chorio, Andreas Christodoulou has reportedly also said “We at the village are very sensitive to environmental matters, we decided that the bar’s existence was not harming the beach or the environment in any way .He said they gave permission to the bar to have umbrellas and sun beds on the beach because it has been approved by the Cyprus Tourism Organisation.”

    Being that lights on beaches can attract and confuse turtle hatchlings, causing them to go the wrong way when they head out to sea, one has to wonder whose argument holds more weight.  And until this has been decided, one can only hope the turtles continue to thrive and their population grow.

    Source: Cyprus Mail

    What's Going To Happen To Our Turtles?

  • 06/07/2014 - by Eleni P Hoplaros

    They have made their third annual public appeal to help record jellyfish sightings and monitor their populations which seem to be fluctuating.

    This public appeal is part of the “Jelly Watch” project which is being undertaken across 22 countries.

    According to the Financial Mirror, “the project aims to record the species of jellyfish that can be found in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea and their populations which have shown an increasing trend in their frequency in recent decades. Up until last year, only ten countries participated in the project and the monitoring of Jellyfish covered only the Mediterranean Sea. This year, the project was extended to the Black Sea and the number of countries participating in this effort doubled that shows growing interest in these organisms that affect important fisheries, aquaculture and tourism, as well as the health of citizens.

    The Financial Mirror further reports that “the UCy Oceanography Centre has undertaken a difficult task, since Cyprus has 648km of shoreline and a total area of 130,766 km2 of sea surface under Cyprus jurisdiction. It wants people to send a photograph, if available, and other data (position, abundance, density, interaction) to the Oceanography Center email at jellywatch@ucy.ac.cy

    For further information, the Oceanography Centre has created various webpages where one can learn more about jellyfish and its varied species. These are them:


    Source: Financial Mirror

    The Oceanography Centre of the University of Cyprus Needs Help To Monitor Jellyfish Sightings!

  • 24/09/2016 - by Sophia Addison

    Although most people prefer to go on cruise holidays and backpack through Europe during their vacation period, there are those who hope for something more daring and adventurous. If you are one of these people, then you definitely need to visit Africa for the holiday. This destination will not only enable you to explore the unseen side of the world, but it will also enable you to have an unforgettable holiday experience. If you think that going to this place is a waste of time and money, here is why you are wrong. 
    The Wildlife
    This is one of the main reasons why a great number of people wish to visit this destination. If you have heard of the Kruger National Park, then you would know that it is the home of some of the most beautiful wild animals in the world. When visiting this destination, you will not see these wildlife animals behind the cages. You will be able to witness them in their living spaces. This will enable you to learn more about their lifestyles and natural behavior. 
    Outdoor Activities 
    One of the most famous outdoor activities in this destination is the Africa safaris. During this journey, you will not only be able to see the beauty of the nature, but you will also be able to witness the amazing wildlife of the area. Apart from this, you can also go horse riding, cage-dive with white sharks or even go hiking on the mountains. You should also know that Africa has some of the best beaches in the world. This means that you will be able to swim, surf and sun bathe as much as you want. 
    The People
    Africa does not only have an amazing climate and astonishing wildlife, but it also has a loving and friendly community. During your holiday, you will be able to meet people from various cultures and communities that speak various languages. You will be pleasantly surprised by their traditions and rituals. If you are a people person, you will definitely love the African people. Moreover, you will also be able to make friends for life. 
    Value for Money
    Since it is quite a large destination, people think that visiting Africa can cost a lot of money. On the contrary, this will definitely turn out to be a cheap and affordable vacation. The destination offers high value for money and therefore you will be able to purchase products and services for reasonable prices. Also since most services are locally produced, you will not have to waste too much money unnecessarily. For instance, instead of staying at costly five start resorts, you can opt for homestay programs or even live in traditional huts. This will enable you to have a lot of fun for an affordable price. 
    Furthermore, the destination also offers great food, a comfortable climate, good infrastructure and a rich history. So, you can be assured that visiting this place for your holiday will enable you to learn a great deal. Therefore, Africa must definitely be on top of your list among possible vacation destinations. 

    Reasons You Must Go to Africa during Your Holiday Vacation

  • 19/08/2016 - by Lisa Brooke

    Riding a bike is a great and fun way to get exercise. It's difficult to get motivated to hop on the seat and peddle on down the street if you always get uncomfortable halfway through your trip, returning home in a miserable state.  A good ride should leave you tired, but feeling accomplished and looking forward to your next outing, not tired, sore and cranky. By choosing the correct cycling clothing, properly outfitting your bike, and properly fueling yourself, you can be certain that you are comfortable throughout your entire ride and always look forward to your next one.

    Dress for Success
    Clothes can make all the difference in your comfort. The wrong clothes will leave you overheated, sweaty and even chaffed. Bike wear should lightweight and help wick away moisture to avoid sore skin. Mtb clothing by POC does exactly that.  It offers a great selection of cycling clothing that is designed for comfort and performance. The wide variety of clothes are made from lightweight material meant to last.  You will find:

    Resistance shirts, jackets, shorts, pants and socks- all made of durable materials to stand up to rough terrain, but also keep you cool at the same time.  They are also designed to keep away moisture.Lightweight tees and shorts for comfort and breathability.Jerseys that allow room for armor underneath and wick away moisture.Chamois to both remove sweat as well as support your bottom.
    Along with wearing the right clothes, you also want to make sure you are dressing well for cycling according to the weather. You want to make sure you have the appropriate layers as well as the right protective gear. Protective gear includes:

    Armor, to keep your limbs and core safe.Gloves, which can not only protect your hands but also keep vibrations through your handlebars to a minimum.Helmets, to keep your head intact.
    Wearing the right combination of the correct bike wear can ensure that you are kept cool, comfortable and protected every time you head out for a ride.

    Outfit Your Bike
    The wrong bike parts can lead very quickly to a sore ride.  There are several items that should be examined to allow for maximum comfort.

    The bike seat.  Finding the right seat and placing it correctly can be tough.  An incorrect seat leads to back and bottom pain.  Not all seats are created equally.  If you can, test out a few seats to be certain that they fit you properly and are going to be comfortable to sit on.  As far as making sure your seat is positioned for your needs, it could be beneficial to have a professional measure you.

    Handlebars. The size and shape of your handlebars can make all the difference in your shoulders, neck and upper back. Make sure you have the proper reach, width and shape to avoid any cricks and cramps.

    Handlebar tape. Certain tapes provide great cushion, reducing the vibrations from the road and saving your hands and arms from becoming numb during your ride.

    Even with the right equipment on your bike, your body can still ache after staying in the same position, especially on longer rides. To prevent this from happening, change positions from time to time. Move your hands to different areas of the handles, shift your bottom to a different place on the seat, you can even stand up occasionally to remove stress from your lower back and bottom.

    Fuel Up
    An empty stomach can make for a miserable, and potentially dangerous, ride.  Without proper nutrition, you will inevitably tire faster.  Your muscles won't work as well, as they lack the necessary fuel to operate properly.  You could become light-headed, which is a dangerous situation, especially if you are out on your own.  

    Before you head out, make sure to eat a good meal that consists of a decent amount of carbohydrates. Your body needs these carbohydrates to convert into the energy your muscles need to power through your ride. If you are planning a long ride, be sure to pack a snack or two that will offer your muscles the necessary nutrients to sustain their activity.

    Don't forget the water. Dehydration also has some devastating effects. Make sure you have plenty to drink before you head out as well as carry a bottle or two on your ride to keep your hydration level up. Signs of dehydration include:

    Muscle aches
    Dry mouth

    Food might not be the first thing you think of when you think of having a comfortable bike ride, but ensuring that you eat properly beforehand and have any necessary snacks to keep you going can keep your muscles from tiring, your mind from clouding and your stomach from uncontrollable growling.

    Being comfortable throughout the entire course of your bike ride is rather important.  Excessive sweat, body pains and a ravenous stomach can keep you from wanting to go back out for another ride.  By making sure you wear the right clothes, have good equipment on your bike and you have eaten well, you are ensuring a comfortable ride every time you take off.

    How to Make Riding More Comfortable?

  • 11/02/2014 - by Melissa South

    Head a little further up the age-range, and you'll find those who seek generic sun-drenched villas that could be anywhere - Greece, Italy, Spain.  Both of these miss out on what really makes Cyprus Cypriot - the rural culture around Pafos and Lemesos that has followed the same rhythms for millennia.  No longer, though, are these areas with their gorgeous, picturesque traditions an afterthought, a hasty day-trip on which to nurse a hangover - for some tourists, they're becoming the beginning and end to a trip to Aphrodite's Island.

    A New Kind Of Tourism

    There's a name for when you try to embed yourself in the rural lifestyle and traditions of a particular country: agrotourism.  If you've come from a busy city, it makes perfect sense as a way to unwind and relocate yourself - why swap a jammed-out and sweating underground carriage for the same thing but with the added ear-splitting bass in Ayia Napa, or a generic office block for a generic villa? Instead, get yourself an apartment in a converted stables among in the pine trees in the hills above Lemesos, where the sweltering summer heat drops lower into the kinder twenties, and spend your days wandering from vineyard to village, as true Cypriot life meanders around you. Aware of the growing popularity to tourists of their rural idyll, the Cyprus Agrotourism Company can provide you with specific details about events and local festivals taking place in the villages - but wouldn't it be just as fun, and more in keeping with the spirit of the place, to just see what you happen to stumble across?

    Investing In The Past For The Future

    The one thing that might, if you're of the more pampered persuasion, fill you with dread about all of this, is the prospect of what your actual living quarters in that Cypriot village will look like. Spartan at best, right? At worst - a donkey in the next stall, air-conditioning provided by a fan emitting clouds of dust and not much else, so little security for your valuables you might as well arrange them display-style. Perhaps once, but no longer. In the past twenty years of so, an initiative spearheaded by the Cyprus Tourism Organisation has brought about a program of restoration to traditional rural buildings to make them inhabitable, and beyond. Take, for example the now-famous Casale Panayiotis, a hotel-spa hybrid built in the shadow of the St John Lapadistis monastery, that houses eager agrotourists in 28 separate traditional village houses. It's luxury, but in its own, authentic, unique way.

    Off The Beaten Track

    Of course, deep down most people know that while some tranquillity is bliss, a lot is too much of a good thing - but don't imagine that just because you're away from the fleshpots and sunspots of the coast that all chance of excitement is gone.  Mountain biking, for example, is hugely popular in the Cypriot countryside, and you can do a number of guided tours through the Akamas and Troodos regions, taking in beaches, coastlines and all the randomly-scattered archaeology that a small country with 3000 years of history can throw at you.  But if you'd prefer to stay at a more leisurely pace, simply rent a bike and spend the time winding along the roads connecting the villages, exploring what you wish to explore.

    The Necessary Facts

    Lastly, a little pre-emptive housekeeping.  Any resident of the EU can stay in Cyprus for up to 90 days with only a passport, and this is the case for many non-European countries, although visas are country-dependent. You can bring pets in too with only an up-to-date pet passport, which is a boon - after all, why you should you be the only one roaming free in the rural idyll? At present the only accepted currency in Cyprus is the Euro, although the Cyprus Tourism Organisation has sought to make money-changing facilities available to holidaymakers through their tourism-focused developments, should you get caught short.  Otherwise, unfortunately you might have to briefly venture back to humanity - but fear not, a glass of wine and the muted sounds of village life will be waiting for you when you get back.

    A New Way To See Cyprus


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  • Petra tou Romiou (Aphrodite's Rock)

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  • Akrounta Dam

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    just a heads-up that Akrounta dam is the same with Germasoyia dam
  • Germasogeia Dam

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    You have to choose the time of year when you visit the dam (and the nature trail behind it). In sumemr it is dry-as all of Cyprus- an dmostly empty, but in late wintera nd spring, especially if the winter has been good and rainy, it is all green and full of beautiful flowers. It is one of my fav. spots to visit in Limassol

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