A Nature Park situated in North-Eastern Bulgaria close to the town of Rousse and the Danube River. The view of calcareous rocks along the canyons of Rousenski Lom River and its tributaries all amidst the agricultural areas of the Danubian Plane looks quite mystic. The incredible variety of habitats, consisting of broad-leaved woods, fish-ponds, vertical limestone cliffs, pastures and river-beds provide refuges to many birds and other animals. For them especially during the breeding season the territory of Rousenski Lom is a kind of oasis among the cereal fields around. The perfect conditions for breeding there have already attracted species like Black Storks, Egyptian Vultures, Lesser Spotted Eagles, Long-legged Buzzards, Short-toed Eagles, Eagle Owls, Rollers, Hoopoes, Black, Grey-headed and Middle Spotted Woodpeckers, Alpine Swifts, Lesser Grey Shrikes, Sombre Tits, Black-headed Buntings etc.
The gorge is situated in the Western Rhodopi Mountains near the Greek border. The limestone cliffs rise vertically more than 200 meters embracing you as part of the pulse of the mountains. The slopes around the gorge are covered with dense coniferous forests. The road follows the undulating picturesque valley of Trigradska River leading to the opening of the Devil's Throat cave just in the heart of the gorge. Namely here is the realm of the Wallcreeper disturbed only by other rock-dwelling creatures as Alpine Swifts, Crag Martins, Red-rumped Swallows, Black Redstarts, Rock Buntings and sometimes Golden Eagles and Peregrine Falcons.The watching point is 1.5 km from the village of Trigrad. There the hospitable natives, after warm welcome, will introduce us to the local traditions and way of life, still untouched by the modern civilization.
The 18 km long gorge, situated in South-Western Bulgaria, is a natural corridor for quite great number of migrants, which use the Via Aristotelis flyway. Excavated by Strouma River it separates Malashevska form Pirin Mountains. The steep shrubby rocky slopes of the gorge, overgrown with Mediterranean vegetation, and the old trees along the river bank create a unique combination of habitats for many invertebrates, reptiles and mammals. Respectively the area is a heaven for bird lovers. Despite the high temperature amidst the bushes in the end of spring and during summer could be observed many interesting passerines such as Barred, Orphean, Olivaveous and Eastern Bonelli’s Warblers, Masked and Woodchat Shrikes. Peregrine Falcons, Long-legged Buzzards, Short-toed Eagles, Black-eared Wheatears, Rock Nuthatches, Rock Sparrows, Rock Trushes, Blue Rock Trushes, Rock and Cirl Buntings can also be easily spotted in the rocky terrain. During migration lots of storks, birds of prey and passerines use the convenient meridional direction of Kresna Gorge when flying southwards in autumn or northwards – in spring.
The interesting landscape together with the Mediterranean vegetation and the high variety of birds forms the phenomenal place - Rupite. Lying on the bottom of the only one active volcano in Bulgaria, it is situated south-west of the town of Sandanski near the Greek border. The place is wrapped from the west by the Kozhuh Hill while from its east side flows Strouma River. The hot springs remind that volcanic activities are still passing under the ground. The area is mostly renowned to all entomologists and herpetologists in Bulgaria. However the avian richness here is also amazing. Among birds of prey usual species during the breeding season are Long-legged Buzzards, Levant Sparrowhawks, Short-toed Eagles etc. They implement a real spectacle when soaring and performing their display flights. In the middle of the summer records of separate individuals or small groups of wandering Eleonora’s Falcons are not excepted. The most probable passerines to be seen are Rock Nuthatches, Black-eared Wheatears, Rock Sparrows, Somber Tits, Olivaceous and Barred Warblers, Red-rumped Swallows, Masked, Woodchat and Red-backed Shrikes and others.
Studen Kladenets Dam Lake
Dam lake situated in the Eastern Rhodopi Mountain. Highly impressive cliffs along the deep main valley of Arda River and shrubby slopes around predetermine the vicinity as an important area for many species of European and global importance. The site is housing three species of vultures - Griffon, Egyptian and Black Vulture. For many others birds of prey like Eastern Imperial, Golden, Lesser Spotted, Booted and Short-toed Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, Honey and Long-legged Buzzards the territory nearby is a traditional breeding place. Black Storks also nest in the niches on the rocks. The abundance of southern species of passerines is also remarkable, including such specialities as Blue Rock Trush, Black-eared Wheatear, Rock Nuthatch, Sombre Tit, Eastern Bonelli’s, Olive-tree, Olivaceous, Orphean and Barred Warblers, Masked Shrike and Black-headed Bunting. During migration almost the whole birds of prey species list, known for Bulgaria so far, could be seen in the area!
Pamporovo is the most southern skiing resort in Europe, located not very high (1650 m.a.s.l.) in the Central Rhodopi Mountain. The coniferous forests with patchy distributed mountain meadows provide tranquility and good opportunities to observe during the breeding season some interesting species like Black, White-backed and Three-toed Woodpeckers, Crested and Willow Tits, Common Crossbills, Ring Ouzels, Goldcrest and Firecrest, European Serins etc. Pallid Swifts, Black Redstarts and Crag Martins are typical for the built-up area. Scops Owls and Nightjars could also be seen among the hotels at dusk.
Sofia is situated in the foothills of Vitosha Mountain. Being also the oldest Nature Park in the Balkan Peninsula, Vitosha has two natural reserves. Millions of tourists visit it to discover and admire its inspiring landscape, flora and fauna. The coniferous forests as well as the subalpine meadows are home for many interesting birds like Tengmalm’s Owl, Honey Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Black Woodpecker, Pallid Swift, Ring Ouzel, Rock Trush, Black Redstart, Crag Martin, Firecrest and Goldcrest, Alpine Accentor, Dunnock, Water Pipit, Nutcracker. During winter the species list is not so long, but Black Woodpeckers, Firecrest and Goldcrest, Nutcrackers and different small passerines could easily be noted while enjoying the impressive panorama of Sofia and its vicinity from a bird’s eye view.
Sakar Mountain is located between the valleys of Maritsa and Toundzha Rivers in South-Eastern Bulgaria and is mostly characterised by its low hilly relief (highest peak is Vishegrad – 856 m.a.s.l.). The temperate Mediterranean climate and the combination of uncovered shrubby slopes, checkered by small oak and other broad-leaved woods are appropriate for nesting of many interesting species of birds. During the breeding season in Sakar is most likely to observe Black Stork, Eastern Imperial Eagle, Booted and Lesser Spotted Eagles, Goshawk, Woodchat, Lesser Grey and Masked Shrikes, Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler, Orphean and Olive-tree Warblers, Isabelline Wheatear, Black-headed Bunting etc.
The lake of Pomorie is a hyperhaline coastal lagoon, separated from the sea by a sand bar and manmade dike. It is used primarily for salt production, but there is also a medicinal centre for healing people with curative mud, excavated from the salt-pans. Very similar to Atanasovsko Lake, the high salinity here determines the specific complex of inhabitants of the lagoon. Pomoriisko Lake is an important breeding ground for the Avocet, Black-winged Stilt, Kentish Plover and Little Tern. Being a part of the Via Pontica migratory route, the wetland is of special importance for observing soaring migrants (storks, pelicans and great variety of birds of prey), resting and feeding waders (stints, sandpipers, plovers, curlews, phalaropes etc.) and many gulls and terns (like Mediterranean, Little and Slender-billed Gulls, Little and Sandwich Terns etc.). During winter the lake and the adjacent sea area are perfect for many divers, grebes (especially Black-necked Grebe), Great Egrets, Bitterns, waterfowl (swans and diving ducks), gulls and waders.
Madzharovo is a small miner’s town located in Eastern Rhodopi Mountain. The surrounding area is very typical for this part of the mountain with its vertical volcanic cliffs, following the meandering Arda River. Shrubs and low deciduous trees cover the territory around the settlement. The birds of prey diversity here is really exceptional! During the breeding season the view of the sky is always quite attractive and very unpredictable. Except for the flying Griffon Vultures, inhabiting a small colony nearby, it is likely to observe at the same time also Black Storks, Black and Egyptian Vultures, Long-legged Buzzards, Honey Buzzards, Golden and Short-toed Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, Hobbies, Goshawks and many others. By the screening of the rocks use to hide their nests Rock Nuthatches, Blue Rock Trushes, Black-eared Wheatears, Crag Martins, Red-rumped Swallows etc. Although some of them are also breeders, during migration the species list of raptors becomes even longer with the presence of Ospreys, Lesser Spotted, Booted and Eastern Imperial Eagles, Black Kites, Marsh and Montagu’s Harriers, Levant Sparrowhawks, Red-footed Falcons etc.
A complex of various habitats, comprising flooded deciduous forests, small marshes, sandy dunes and hills, located along the Southern Bulgarian Black Sea Coast by the mouth of Ropotamo River. The territory in the vicinity of Ropotamo River and the shore southwards is the perfect place for summer holidays, where tourists from all over the world use to spend few days surrounded only by the beautiful nature of Strandzha Mountain. But for birdwatching the area is especially interesting during spring when some of the local specialties like White-tailed and Lesser Spotted Eagles, Honey Buzzard, Grey-headed and Middle Spotted Woodpeckers, Short-toed Treekreeper, Olive-tree Warbler, Semi-collared Flycatcher, Tawny Pipit, Golden Oriole and plenty of others could be seen.
The river flows along a valley surrounded by high volcanic rocky cliffs, shrubby open terrain and agricultural fields. The area is close to Studen Kladenets dam-lake and as a result most of the birds of prey species could be met here also. Wandering and searching for food vultures (Griffon, Egyptian and Black) use to pass over the territory of Krumovitsa River along with smaller raptors like Long-legged and Honey Buzzards, Short-toed and Booted Eagles, Peregrine Falcons etc. But what is most interesting in the valley is the presence during the nesting season of some species from the southern complex of passerines: Olive-tree, Olivaceous, Barred, Subalpine, Orphean and Sardinian Warblers, Red-backed, Woodchat and Masked Shrikes, Rock Nuthatch, Crag Martin, Red-rumped Swallow, Cirl and Rock Buntings etc. It is possible to see also the Great Spotted Cuckoo – one of the most exciting and scanty Mediterranean bird species, breeding in Bulgaria.
Malak Preslavets Lake
Malak Preslavets is a small lake, situated by the Danube River in North-Eastern Bulgaria. It is quite interesting wetland especially during the breeding season and till the end of the summer. Among the flooded trees and water-lilies use to nest Great Crested Grebes, Ferruginous Ducks, Whiskered Terns, Moorhens etc. Feeding Pygmy Cormorants, Night and Squacco Herons and even Dalmatian Pelicans could be observed also. The perfect view of the Danube River provides opportunities for recording also Great Cormorants, Oystercatchers, Little and Common Terns, Black Kite, Levant Sparrowhawk and White-tailed Eagle.
A lake of international importance, situated in North-Eastern Bulgaria. The wetland has extensive reedbeds and is separated from the Danube River by a narrow stripe of wood. There is also a channel, connecting the lake and the river, where the water flow from Danube could be easily regulated. Srebarna Lake is most famous for its colony of Dalmatian Pelicans. During the nesting season many other water-connected species use to breed in the reedbeds or the willow shrubs like Little and Great Egrets, Purple, Night and Squacco Herons, Spoonbills, Glossy Ibises, Pygmy Cormorants, Red-necked Grebes, Ferruginous Ducks (here is the main breeding area of this species in the country), Pochards, Garganeys, Whiskered Terns, Penduline Tits etc. White-tailed Eagles, Black Kites and Levant Sparrowhawks, although not breeding in the area, feed here regularly. During migration and winter (if the lake is not covered by ice) many waterfowl (such as Greylags, White-fronted, Lesser White-fronted and Red-breasted Geese, dabbling ducks etc.) rest here, accompanied by White-tailed Eagles and Rough-legged Buzzards.