Golden Eagle photography

Birdwatching trip in Bulgaria 2018 – 8 day trip, day 8

Route: Krapets – Sofia

Weather: sunny 30 C

Our birding trip approaches its end. On our last day we need to do a long drive from Krapets to Sofia. Since it is a very long drive we had time for only one planned stop for birding and that was well optimized. There were quite a few birds along the road though. Upon leaving Krapets, we had our last Rosy Starlings for the trip: about a dozen birds flew by the car. What a treat that was!

In a couple of hours I stopped just off the motorway to try again for Golden Eagle. When we approached the place, before even stopping the car I spotted the birds from the pair circling over their territory. I love when birds confirm what I say. “Dancho delivers”, said the group members. “I didn’t believe we will see it”, said another group member. We were all very happy to log this mighty bird, moreover we had superb views with birds flying right above our heads. Fantastic sighting!

Golden Eagle photography

Golden Eagle © Iordan Hristov

After this we had to celebrate with coffee and ice-cream so I pulled out by a garage back on the motorway. In an hour drive we had “What is that bird over there?”. I looked up and there was an Egyptian Vulture cruising above! Wow, Another exciting sighting. I couldn’t stop immediately because of the traffic on the road so had to pull out in a few metres and  drive back. By the time we were back the bird was drifting away but even though it was a great sighting.

It wasn’t even an hour later when I spotted a Goshawk flying over the road. That’s a third tick for the trip list just on the travel day. What a day!

The afternoon wasn’t as exciting and eventually we arrived in our hotel for an early dinner and ready to pack for the flight on the next morning.

What a wonderful trip! We had over 160 species for these 8 days which is pretty good for this late time of the year.

Thank you all for coming!

If willing to join us next year, feel free to book your trip on WingSpans webpage here. See the description of the guided birdwatching tour in Bulgaria here.

Here is the checklist of 164 species heard and/or seen during the trip:

1 Black-throated Diver Gavia arctica
2 Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus
3 White Pelican Pelecanus onocrotalus
4 Dalmatian Pelican Pelecanus crispus
5 Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
6 European Shag Phalacrocorax aristotelis
7 Pygmy Cormorant Phalacrocorax pygmeus
8 Grey Heron Ardea cinerea
9 Purple Heron Ardea purpurea
10 Great White Egret Egretta alba
11 Little Egret Egretta garzetta
12 Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
13 Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
14 Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus
15 Black Stork Ciconia nigra
16 White Stork Ciconia ciconia
17 Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
18 Eurasian Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia
19 Mute Swan Cygnus olor
20 Common Shelduck Tadorna tadorna
21 Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea
22 Gadwall Anas strepera
23 Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
24 Garganey Anas querquedula
25 Red-crested Pochard Netta rufina
26 Common Pochard Aythya ferina
27 Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca
28 Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus
29 Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus
30 Honey Buzzard Pernis apivorus
31 Black Kite Milvus migrans
32 Short-toed Eagle Circaetus gallicus
33 Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosus
34 Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus
35 Goshawk Accipiter gentilis
36 Common Buzzard Buteo buteo
37 Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus
38 Lesser Spotted Eagle Aquila pomarina
39 Imperial Eagle Aquila heliaca
40 Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos
41 Booted Eagle Hieraaetus pennatus
42 Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni
43 Common Kestrel Falco tinnunculus
44 Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus
45 Eurasian Hobby Falco subbuteo
46 Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus
47 Chukar Alectoris chukar
48 Common Pheasant Phasianus colchicus
49 Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus
50 Eurasian Coot Fulica atra
51 Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus
52 Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus
53 Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta
54 Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola
55 Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus
56 Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius
57 Yellow-legged Gull Larus michahellis
58 Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus
59 Little Gull Larus minutus
60 Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus
61 Black Tern Chlidonias niger
62 Common Tern Sterna hirundo
63 Little Tern Sterna albifrons
64 Sandwich Tern Sterna sandvicensis
65 Rock Dove Columba livia
66 Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus
67 Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur
68 Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto
69 Common Cuckoo Cuculus canorus
70 Scops Owl Otus scops
71 Eagle Owl Bubo bubo
72 Little Owl Athene noctua
73 Alpine Swift Tachymarptis melba
74 Pallid Swift Apus pallidus
75 Common Swift Apus apus
76 European Bee-eater Merops apiaster
77 European Roller Coracias garrulus
78 Eurasian Hoopoe Upupa epops
79 Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos minor
80 Middle Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos medius
81 White-backed Woodpecker Dendrocopos leucotos
82 Syrian Woodpecker Dendrocopos syriacus
83 Green Woodpecker Picus viridis
84 Calandra Lark Melanocorypha calandra
85 Short-toed Lark Calandrella brachydactyla
86 Crested Lark Galerida cristata
87 Woodlark Lullula arborea
88 Eurasian Skylark Alauda arvensis
89 Crag Martin Hirundo rupestris
90 Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
91 Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica
92 House Martin Delichon urbica
93 Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava ssp feldegg
94 Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea
95 Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris
96 Pied/White Wagtail Motacilla alba
97 Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio
98 Lesser Grey Shrike Lanius minor
99 Woodchat Shrike Lanius senator
100 Dipper Cinclus cinclus
101 Dunnock Prunella modularis
102 European Robin Erithacus rubecula
103 Common Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos
104 Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros
105 Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe
106 Black-eared Wheatear Oenanthe hispanica
107 Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellina
108 Blue Rock Thrush Monticola solitarius
109 Ring Ouzel Turdus torquatus
110 Blackbird Turdus merula
111 Song Thrush Turdus philomelos
112 Mistle Thrush Turdus viscivorus
113 Cetti’s Warbler Cettia cetti
114 Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola
115 Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus
116 Great Reed Warbler Acrocephalus arundinaceus
117 Eastern Olivaceous Warbler Hippolais pallida
118 Olive-tree Warbler Hippolais olivetorum
119 Eurasian Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita
120 Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler Phylloscopus orientalis
121 Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla
122 Common Whitethroat Sylvia communis
123 Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca
124 Barred Warbler Sylvia nisoria
125 Eastern Orphean Warbler Sylvia crassirostris
126 Subalpine Warbler Sylvia cantillans
127 Firecrest Regulus ignicapillus
128 Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata
129 Semi-collared Flycatcher Ficedula semitorquata
130 Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus
131 Penduline Tit Remiz pendulinus
132 Sombre Tit Parus lugubris
133 Coal Tit Parus ater
134 Great Tit Parus major
135 Blue Tit Parus caeruleus
136 Eurasian Nuthatch Sitta europaea
137 Short-toed Treecreeper Certhia brachydactyla
138 Corn Bunting Miliaria calandra
139 Yellowhammer Emberiza citrinella
140 Rock Bunting Emberiza cia
141 Ortolan Bunting Emberiza hortulana
142 Cirl Bunting Emberiza cirlus
143 Black-headed Bunting Emberiza melanocephala
144 Reed Bunting Emberiza schoeniclus
145 Common Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs
146 European Serin Serinus serinus
147 European Greenfinch Carduelis chloris
148 European Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis
149 Eurasian Linnet Carduelis cannabina
150 Common Crossbill Loxia curvirostra
151 Hawfinch Coccothraustes coccothrauste
152 House Sparrow Passer domesticus
153 Spanish Sparrow Passer hispaniolensis
154 Tree Sparrow Passer montanus
155 Rose-coloured Starling Sturnus roseus
156 Common Starling Sturnus vulgaris
157 Golden Oriole Oriolus oriolus
158 Eurasian Jay Garrulus glandarius
159 Common Magpie Pica pica
160 Eurasian Jackdaw Corvus monedula
161 Rook Corvus frugilegus
162 Common Raven Corvus corax
163 Hooded Crow Corvus cornix
164 Pied Wheatear Oenanthe pleshanka

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