Finding Birds in  eastern bulgaria update

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Note that there are also further observations provided by readers of the earlier book Finding Birds in Bulgaria. These are available here


A review of this book has been published on the BTO website and can be viewed here.

The reviewer, Dawn Balmer actually used the guide during a visit to Bulgaria in late August. In addition to commenting that ‘it was a really valuable guide and a must for anyone visiting this underwatched area, she also suggested that ‘At first glance, you think the maps make no sense at all’. I’m a little puzzled by this because every one of the ‘close-up’ maps also has another map somewhere in the book (even if its only on the inside cover) putting the location into context - maybe a reader wouldn’t realise this at first. In checking this out, however, I did spot one error which might have caused some of Dawn’s confusion (see Durankulak below). I should add that Dawn does go on to say in the review ‘but when you are at the site, and read in conjunction with the text, it all makes sense!

Red-necked Grebes 2019

Red-necked Grebe has disappeared from Srebarna and from Nova Cherna fish-ponds. The only place where you can still watch them is the Danube island of Belene (or Persina). There’s a marsh there, called Persina swamp, where 5-6 pairs are still breeding and easy to watch. (Milko Dimitrov)


May 2019 Short-Toed Eagle, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Black Stork, White Stork, Roller, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Alpine Swift, Red-rumped Swallow, Scops Owl, Great and Little Egret (latter: colony of 50 birds), Night Heron, Little Bittern, Squacco Heron, River Warbler, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Red-backed Shrike, Golden Oriole and a few Sombre Tits (Michail Sobadjiew).


May 2019 Red-rumped Swallows, Nightingales, Serin. On the fields and  grassland: Lesser Whitethroat, Skylark, Ortolan Bunting, Yellow Wagtail, Bonellis Warbler, Hoopoe, Bee-eater, Roller, Cuckoo, Common / “Steppe” Buzzard (not sure), Honey Buzzard, Long-legged buzzard, Black Stork, Lesser spotted Eagle.

In 2013 I also saw and heard Black-headed Bunting. (Michail Sobadjiew)


May 2019 Village: Serin, White Storks, Spanish Sparrow, Woodchat Shrike, Scops Owl (very abundant in the town itself, as well as Nightingale (they are just everywhere!!!).

Site 6: Griffon and Egyptian Vultures, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Long-legged Buzzard, Black Kite,

The fields between the town and the Vulture Centre (right riverside) and the opposite riverside is a superb area for enjoying Red-Backed Shrike and Woodchat, Wryneck, Barred, Subalpine and Eastern Orphean Warblers, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcap.

On a cliff-hill south of Madzharovo (3 hours beautiful walk): Blue Rock Thrush and Ortolan Bunting. (Michail Sobadjiew)


On all my maps I draw an arrow showing which way is north. Unfortunately the ‘north’ arrow on the Durankulak map points west! If you hold the book upright, the arrow should be pointing up the page. Many apologies for whatever confusion this may cause.


Finding Birds in Eastern Bulgaria

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