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Birdwatching trip in Bulgaria 2023: day 7 of 10

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Semi-collared Flycatcher

Day 7: May 30th

Route: Burgas – Tuylenovo

We started our journey to the North straight after breakfast. Our first planned stop was in just over an hour so we zoomed directly to a fantastic woodland to look for Semi-collared Flycatcher and Middle spotted Woodpecker. We spent about an hour in the wood but managed to get only fleeting views of the Middles spotted Woodpecker and the flycatcher never turned up. We saw several common woodland birds like Short-toed Treecreeper, Nuthatch, Long-tail Tit and Chaffinches.

I decided to check another spot nearby just across the road. Upon arrival I heard a Wood Warbler which I located here last week so it didn’t take long to see it in the scope. One of the group members saw a Semi-collared Flycatcher and Middle spotted Woodpecker but the birds didn’t perform for the group. Suddenly it started raining and we had to go. It was lunch time anyway so we drove to a road side café and had proper meal.

Semi-collared Flycatcher

Semi-collared Flycatcher. Image: Raimonds Simanis

After lunch we checked another ancient woodland at Kamchia reserve for the target birds above but only heard the Middle-spotted Woodpecker. It was time for plan B as birds were obviously not willing to cooperate. I drove to a resort north of Varna where I had a nest of Middle spotted Woodpecker found last week. Guess what, chick had grown up and had left the nest. They were still around but didn’t want to show up. One of the group members Georgi saw a Grey-headed Woodpecker and found a nest of a Semi-collared Flycatcher. Hooray! We spent 15 minutes at the nest as we were not disturbing the birds and kept taking pictures.

An icecream stop was well deserved before we headed to our hotel. Our way was across the steppe North of Kavarna so we did several stops for birds by the road. Everybody got very excited after the difficult birdless day. First I saw a Grey Partridge right by the road but not everybody managed to get on it. Then we saw a Stone Curlew feeding only a few metres from the road. This time I managed to stop not far from the bird. Fantastic views! Just there we added several Short-toed larks to our list. Further along the road we saw many Calandra Larks, a Roller and a Tawny Pipit. We arrived in a fantastic hotel right on the beach with sea views for all rooms. Everybody was very excited and appreciated the nice hotel. While enjoying our drinks on the terrace we saw Alpine Swifts, Shags and our first Pied Wheatear! Well, everything is good when it ends good.

Stone Curlew

Stone Curlew, image Raimonds Simanis

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