Bird Racing in Durankulak

For the first time, Branta-Tours is organising a Winter Bird Race in Bulgaria,
just like the ones held in the UK.

If you wish to join the Red-breasted Goose protection community, don’t miss your chance to take part in a fun event in the second and third week-end of January and the first and second week-end of February to test your birding skills in one of the top Bulgarian birding locations.

Branta-Tours invites novice and experienced bird watchers from all over Europe to take the opportunity to discover the variety of daily trips from Bulgarian and Romanian lagoons, along the Black Sea coast, through steppe habitats and ancient wet forests, to steep-sided gorges…

The main goal of Bird Race is to raise awareness and funds for the protection of the Red-breasted Goose.

This event is set in one of the most diverse protected areas of the region and possibly the whole of the country. It offers an ideal conditions for many wintering highlights, typical of Pontic steppes and coastal wetlands, such as Red-breasted, Greylag and White-fronted Geese, plus a large array of other waterfowl including divers, grebes and ducks and, with luck, a few of the exceedingly rare Lesser White-fronted Geese.
Ferruginous Duck, Smew, Black-throated Diver, Black-necked Grebe, Pygmy Cormorant, Great Egret, Bittern and three species of Swan are also present. Several notable raptors feature on the menu, including White-tailed, and even Spotted Eagles, Hen and Marsh Harriers, Merlin, Rough-legged and Long-legged Buzzards. Woodpeckers are also well represented with Grey-headed, Syrian and Middle Spotted ones, while other passerines include Crested and Calandra Larks, Great Grey Shrike, Bearded Tit and, with luck, Moustached Warbler. There is good chance of an Eagle Owl and an outside possibility of Saker Falcon and Pallas´s Gull.

Anyone who wishes to take part in the challenge will receive a guidance in advance to enable them to explore the area and the winner will get a free 5-day birding trip in the following April.

We will only be able to run this race if we have a minimum of 5 competitors per week-end. The cost per person is the normal Short Breaks price staying at Branta Birding Lodge, located in the epicenter of the Red-breasted Geese world wintering site.

Incomes from this event will be reinvested for the protection of Red-breasted Geese.

If you wish to bring your direct contribution to the conservation of the world's most endangered goose you can help by seeking a sponsorship for your local Bird-Race in January and send the money raised to our foundation for use in the Red-breasted Goose Conservation Project.

* Promotional statement:
We offer a 5 percent off the listed prices for anyone who makes a reservation with Branta Birding Lodge (and sends deposit) by 30 November.

Book now!

Census of Wintering Waterbird Populations in Bulgaria

Branta-Tours would also like to inform our readers and potential participants in the Bird Race that on 12 and 13 January 2013 the Bird Race will coincide with the Census of the Wintering Waterbird Populations in the most important wetlands of Bulgaria.

As in previous years, a number of national institutions and local NGOs will take part in these traditional mid-winter counts. Within the scope of this event the Bulgaria-U.S. Red-breasted Goose Project will undertake the challenging job of covering the region of the Northern Bulgarian Black Sea coast, paying special attention to Durankulak and Shabla lakes. The teams of counters will be accommodated at Branta Conservation Centre overlooking Durankulak Lake and the Black Sea.

If participants in the Bird Race would like to join our census team, their two-day stay at the lodge (in January) will be free of charge. During these days they will only have to pay for their meals and drinks.

The two-day itinerary will be covered using four-wheel drive vehicles provided to the counters by Branta-Tours Birdwatching Company.

Finally, we would invite any interested persons to volunteer their help with this important enterprise. For more information on our conditions regarding the Bird Race and Mid-winter counts, please contact us

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