I was born on Corfu and after spending a childhood abroad, I have lived permanently on the island for the past 37 years. I have always been interested in the natural world, especially insect life. This passion was nurtured by summers spent in Corfu in an idyllic setting surrounded by amazing wildlife and my grandfather’s butterfly and shell collections. I feel humbled to have lived in a village with no electricity or running water. Light was the Milky Way galaxy and music was the howling of the now extinct jackals. I now enjoy butterfly hunting in the same gardens I played in as a child.
After many years of working in tourism and as an English language teacher, my wish is to now give back to my beloved island by supporting ventures such as the Corfu Butterfly survey. I’m overjoyed to have met like-minded individuals who share my passion for wildlife, and especially butterflies and moths.
After witnessing the negative effects of tourism in my lifetime, I am heartened to see increasing interest in the ecology of the island as opposed to package holidays.
I hope to join both my fellow Corfiots and all who love the island in saving our rich natural heritage and I feel honoured to be a part of Corfu Butterfly Conservation.
I was born on Corfu in 1946 and after leaving high school I attended the Naval Academy of Oinousses where I finished my training in 1965. I then studied at the School of Economics in Athens, Greece, from where I graduated in 1972. Finally, I finished my education when I graduated from the school of Licensed Guides of the Greek Tourist Organisation.
Much of my youth was based in Athens, from where I spent many years guiding groups of tourists through the magnificent archaeological sites of Greece. I also spent much of my time on cruise ships where I gave lectures on this subject and developed my English, French, German & Italian.
In 1982 I left Athens to return to Corfu to start a different project, namely the restoration of a 16th century historic family mansion, 'Fundana'. Set in the middle of Corfu, on the brow of a hill that overlooks the verdant Corfu Lake District, this traditional building was transformed into Fundana Villas, a central hotel accompanied by a complex of high-quality apartments. Immersed in this rich natural setting, accompanied by our traditional Corfiot hospitality, Fundana Villas has proved to be a relaxing location for many guests of all nationalities, many of whom repeat their stay with us on an annual basis.
Since 1985 I have been passionately involved with the local union for the protection of the Environment of Corfu. Over this time we have addressed many issues, including: the recent island wide domestic refuse problem; the illegal spraying of olive trees; the illegal extraction of construction material from the base of Mt. Tsouka, near Troumpeta; the opposition to development on the coastal habitats of Lake Korission and most recently, resistance to development on the richly diverse Corfu Lake District by the Municipality of Corfu, to construct a waste recycling plant and a new Corfu prison.
Recently, at Fundana Villas we have been delighted to welcome butterfly enthusiasts from the United Kingdom. Their interest in our natural heritage has been a kind of wakeup call for us all because it is only when we listen to their stories about the agriculturally industrialised landscape of the UK that we realise just how much of our rich and diverse native wildlife could potentially be lost in the years to come, if we do not take steps now to protect it. Fundana Villas has also benefited from this eco-tourism because the visits take place at a time of year that naturally extends the tourist season.
I am very pleased to have been involved in the birth of Corfu Butterfly Conservation and look forward to supporting its continued development over the years to come.