Birdphotography in Greece

From Greece, inspired by the Mediterranean Sea and the experience of 30 years of involvement in the conservation of birds, Chris Vlachos is ornithological tour guide and is dedicated to his true passion: the photography of birds, such as shown in this gallery.

Birdingmurcia - Chris Vlachos - Phoenicopterus ruber

Birdingmurcia - Chris Vlachos - Pelecanus onocrotalus

How do you start your passion for nature and wildlife photography?

I was always fascinated by wildlife and animals, especially  birds. As I had been working at Canon company for years, everything came in an natural flow! My observations have turned into imprintings  through my camera, at first  through slides and later on through my digital cameras.

At present you have a great collection of photos, do you remember your first photographic equipment and your first photos of birds? What equipment are you using now?

I started with a  AE-1 Canon camera with the 70-210mm (lense). My very first picture was a White Stork in flight. Today I have three contemporary digital camera bodies of Canon and almost the entire series of lenses of Canon. For bird photography I use the EF600mm, f/4 and the EF300mm, f/2.8.

Do you have any preference in the debate between the trademarks Canon or Nikon?

My photographic background originates from Canon, so I couldn’t  do otherwise but opt for this company- subjectively and objectively.

Have you any favorite bird? Why?

What I find fascinating are the Birds of prey. They are intelligent, difficult and every picture of theirs is unique, especially when in flight.

And, you have done several birding trips in Europe.. Is there any country you have enjoyed particularly for birdwatching?

I was captured by the light in Norway and Finnland, and by the variety found in Spain.

How and where you develop your activity as a guide for birdwatchers & birdphotographers?

Mostly in my country but also in other neighbour-to-Greece-countries. I guide people who are concerned both for bird watching and bird photography. The first one is my cup of tea, but the second one is what I  love doing.

What is the main origin of your groups? And what birds they require or prefer to watch?

I have chosen mainly my fellow people. However, there is considerable interest by  watchers or/and photographers from North European countries. They particularly want to meet the Mediterranean species or those appearing in Greece and coming from the East or Africa.

What is today the status of ornithological tourism in Greece?

It is continuously rising.

In a crisis like the current Is ecotourism an economic alternative?

It could be a smart, promising alternative.

After almost 30 years involved in the protection of birds as a member of HOS (Hellenic Ornithological Society); How has progressed the protection of birds in your country?

HOS has significantly contributed to the protection of birds and their habitat through European programmes and actions taken on behalf of HOS to communicate with little children. Nevertheless, more actions and continuous effort are required so that more positive results could be achieved.

Interview by J.M. Escarabajal (Birding Murcia)
The images that appear in this article are the property of Chris Vlachos; is necessary to request permission to the author for publication or any other use of the same.
“Birders Around The World” is an idea promoted by the Association Southeast Alive (Sureste Vivo) through the Project Birdingmurcia.