Two full days in search of Hazel Grouse - one of the most elusive bird species in Europe
Hazel Grouse short break
Wednesday 3rd - Saturday 6th April 2013
Bulgaria boasts a healthy population of one of the most elusive species to the European birdwatchers – the Hazel Grouse! Here they inhabit the mountains mainly above 800 meters. Out tour will take us to the Rhodope mountain which sustain considerable part of the Bulgarian population. The Hazel Grouse is very secretive bird and the best time to find it is the beginning of the breeding season, more precisely end of February till first half of April. The birds are very active in that time and their gentle, whistling calls can be heard more regularly. Our strategy will be to walk quietly in the area, trying to locate the birds by their calls, and then we will approach them to get closer views.
In order to increase our chances for good observations, the tour participants are restricted to six plus leader. We have two full days to reach our goal and that is enough time. The area is very good for Rock Partridge too, so we will also pay attention to that species. Other species we expect are Black Woodpecker, Sombre Tit, Rock Bunting, Alpine Swift, Black Redstart, Black Stork, Long-legged Buzzard, Golden Eagle, Peregrine etc. Mammals we can see include Red Squirrel, Suslick, Beech Marten, Chamois, Red and Roe Deer. We may even see some footprints of Brown bears. This will be a relaxing holiday, with only one base.
The Black Woodpecker is also present in the area. Photo by Michele Mendi.
Hazel Grouse - our target bird. Photo by Mike Lane.
Rock Partridge is our second main target. Photo by Dobromir Domuschiev.