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Birds of Bulgaria (List of Bird Species)

old house in mountains

Birding in Bulgaria

Over the last year, bird watching has getting more and more traction. One of the reasons being that Bulgaria is quite of a birding paradise thanks to the big variety of spieces represented. There are over 200 Dalmatian pelicans in the colony at the Srebarna UNESCO reserve, over 800 pairs of Pygmy cormorant and over 100 pairs of Ferruginous duck. 

The Birds

There are over 400 spieces present. Many rare European species, like Pallid swift, Little and spotted crakes, Stone-curlew, Collared and Black-winged pratincoles, Gull-billed and Caspian terns, White pelicans, Eagle owl, Ural owl, Scops owl, Pygmy and Tegmalm’s owls, Shore lark, Rock and Blue rock thrush, Sub-alpine, Barred, Sardinian and Orphean warblers, Nutcracker, Rock sparrow, and Dotterel are relatively easy to find. In almost every wood and the open area there are Black, Green, Grey-headed, Middle-spotted, Great-spotted, and Lesser-spotted woodpeckers. High in the mountain are three-toed woodpecker. There is a good chance of the rare White-backed woodpecker, as well as Syrian woodpecker and Wryneck in the open areas.


Bulgarian landscape is very variable. The plains and marshes of the Danube and Maritsa rivers and Black sea coast give a great possibility of getting all the European herons, as well as Spoonbills and Glossy Ibis, Little Bittern breed. Even the forest in the centre of Sofia – the Bulgarian capital, gives perfect opportunities for birding, and Vitosha mountain national park is just a few minutes by car from Sofia. 

If you plan to visit Bulgaria, make sure you will take a proper pari of binoculars and camera with you so you can enjoy the view.


The climate is typically continental in Northern Bulgaria and Dobrudza region, which means warm summers and cold winters. Along the black sea coast the winter is not so severe and the summer is not so hot. In the high mountains the climate is typical with long and cold winter and shorter spring and summer. Along the southern border with Turkey and Greece the Mediterranean influence is tactile. 

Best Time to Visit

In my opinion, the best time is to visit Bulgaria in spring, while there are on average around 200-230 spieces present. There are huge number of birds every autumn with Honey Buzzards (6000+); Levant sparrow hawk (100+); Common buzzards (20,000+); Booted eagle (100); Lesser spotted eagles (10,000+); Short-toed eagles (400+); Pallid harriers (15); Hobbys (70+); Red footed falcons (1000+); White storks (over 130,000); Black stork (3000+); White pelicans (20,000+); Dalmatian pelicans, and many other rare and interesting birds such as thousands of wagtails, swallows, pipits, and larks etc.

The Full List of Bird Species in Bulgaria

English NameScientific Name
1Mute SwanCygnus olor
2Whooper SwanCygnus cygnus
3Tundra SwanCygnus columbianus
4Black SwanCygnus atratus
5Snow GooseChen caerulescens
6Greater White-fronted GooseAnser albifrons
7Lesser White-fronted GooseAnser erythropus
8Taiga Bean GooseAnser fabalis
9Tundra Bean GooseAnser serrirostris
10Pink-footed GooseAnser brachyrhynchus
11Greylag GooseAnser anser
12Canada GooseBranta canadensis
14Barnacle GooseBranta leucopsis
15Brent GooseBranta bernicla
16Red-breasted GooseBranta ruficollis
17Egyptian GooseAlopochen aegyptiaca
18Common ShelduckTadorna tadorna
19Ruddy ShelduckTadorna ferruginea
21Mandarin DuckAix galericulata
22MallardAnas platyrhynchos
23GadwallAnas strepera
24Northern PintailAnas acuta
25Northern ShovelerAnas clypeata
26Eurasian WigeonAnas penelope
27Eurasian TealAnas crecca
28Green-winged TealAnas carolinensis
29GarganeyAnas querquedula
30Falcated DuckAnas falcata
31Marbled DuckMarmaronetta angustirostris
32Red-crested PochardNetta rufina
33Common PochardAythya ferina
34Ferruginous DuckAythya nyroca
35Greater ScaupAythya marila
36Tufted DuckAythya fuligula
37Common EiderSomateria mollissima
38Common ScoterMelanitta nigra
39Velvet ScoterMelanitta fusca
40Long-tailed DuckClangula hyemalis
41Common GoldeneyeBucephala clangula
42SmewMergellus albellus
43GoosanderMergus merganser
44Red-breasted MerganserMergus serrator
45Hooded MerganserLophodytes cucullatus
46White-headed DuckOxyura leucocephala
47Western CapercaillieTetrao urogallus
48Black GrouseLyrurus tetrix
49Hazel GrouseTetrastes bonasia
50Rock PtarmiganLagopus muta
51Helmeted GuineafowlNumida meleagris
52Red-legged PartridgeAlectoris rufa
53Rock PartridgeAlectoris graeca
54ChukarAlectoris chukar
55Grey PartridgePerdix perdix
56Common QuailCoturnix coturnix
57Ring-necked/ Common  PheasantPhasianus colchicus
58Red-throated Diver/LoonGavia stellata
59Black-troated/Arctic Diver/LoonGavia arctica
60Great Northern/Common Diver/LoonGavia immer
61Yellow-billed Diver/LoonGavia adamsii
62Great Crested GrebePodiceps cristatus
63Red-necked GrebePodiceps grisegena
64Slavonian/Horned GrebePodiceps auritus
65Black-necked/Eared GrebePodiceps nigricollis
66Little GrebeTachybaptus ruficollis
67Cory’s ShearwaterCalonectris diomedea
68Manx ShearwaterPuffinus puffinus
69Yelkouan ShearwaterPuffinus yelkouan
70European Storm PetrelHydrobates pelagicus
71Northern GannetMorus bassanus
72Great White PelicanPelecanus onocrotalus
73Dalmatian PelicanPelecanus crispus
74Great CormorantPhalacrocorax carbo
75European ShagPhalacrocorax aristotellis
76Pygmy CormorantPhalacrocorax pygmeus
77Great BitternBotaurus stellaris
78Little BitternIxobrychus minutus
79Black-crowned Night HeronNycticorax nycticorax
80Western Cattle EgetBubulcus ibis
81Squacco HeronArdeola ralloides
82Little EgretEgretta garzetta
83Western Reef EgretEgretta gularis
84Great EgretArdea alba
85Grey HeronArdea cinerea
86Purple HeronArdea purpurea
87White StorkCiconia ciconia
88Black StorkCiconia nigra
89Glossy IbisPlegadis falcinellus
90Eurasian SpoonbillPlatalea leucorodia
91Greater FlamingoPhoenicopterus roseus
92OspreyPandion haliaetus
93LammergeierGypaetus barbatus
94Eurasian Griffon VultureGyps fulvus
95Eurasian Black VultureAegypius monachus
96Egyptian VultureNeophron percnopterus
97White-tailed EagleHaliaeetus albicilla
98Golden EagleAquila chrysaetos
99Eastern Imperial EagleAquila heliaca
100Lesser Spotted EagleAquila pomarina
101Greater Spotted EagleAquila clanga
102Steppe EagleAquila nipalensis
103Booted EagleAquila pennata
104Bonelli’s EagleAquila fasciata
105Short-toed EagleCircaetus gallicus
106Red KiteMilvus milvus
107Black KiteMilvus migrans
108Black-winged KiteElanus caeruleus
109Western Marsh HarrierCircus aeroginosus
110Hen/Northern HarrierCircus cyaneus
111Montagu’s HarrierCircus pygargus
112Pallid HarrierCircus macrourus
113Long-legged BuzzardButeo rufinus
114Rough-legged BuzzardButeo lagopus
115Common BuzzardButeo buteo
116European Honey BuzzardPernis apivorus
117Northern GoshawkAccipiter gentilis
118Eurasian SparrowhawkAccipiter nisus
119Levant SparrowhawkAccipiter brevipes
120Common KestrelFalco tinnunculus
121Lesser KestrelFalco naumanni
122Red-footed FalconFalco vespertinus
123Eurasian HobbyFalco subbuteo
124Eleonora’s FalconFalco eleonorae
125MerlinFalco columbarius
126Peregrine FalconFalco peregrinus
127Saker FalconFalco cherrug
128Lanner FalconFalco biarmicus
129Water RailRallus aquaticus
130Spotted CrakePorzana porzana
131Little CrakePorzana parva
132Baillon’s CrakePorzana pusilla
133CorncrakeCrex crex
134Common MoorhenGallinula chloropus
135Eurasian CootFulica atra
136Common CraneGrus grus
137Demoiselle CraneGrus virgo
138Great BustardOtis tarda
139Little BustardTetrax tetrax
140Eurasian OystercatcherHaematopus ostralegus
141Pied AvocetRecurvirostra avosetta
142Black-winged StiltHimantopus himantopus
143Eurasian Stone CurlewBurhinus oedicnemus
144Collared PratincoleGlareola pratincola
145Black-winged PratincoleGlareola nordmanni
146Little Ringed PloverCharadrius dubius
147Common Ringed PloverCharadrius hiaticula
148Kentish PloverCharadrius alexandrinus
149Lesser Sand PloverCharadrius mongolus
150Greater Sand PloverCharadrius leschenaultii
151Eurasian DotterelCharadrius morinellus
152Caspian PloverCharadrius asiaticus
153Grey/Black-bellied PloverPluvialis squatarola
154European Golden PloverPluvialis apricaria
155Northern LapwingVanellus vanellus
156Spur-winged LapwingVanellus spinosus
157Sociable LapwingVanellus gregarius
158White-tailed LapwingVanellus leucurus
159Red KnotCalidris canutus
160SanderlingCalidris alba
161Purple SandpiperCalidris maritima
162DunlinCalidris alpina
163Curlew SandpiperCalidris ferruginea
164Temminck’s StintCalidris temminckii
165Little StintCalidris minuta
166Pectoral SandpiperCalidris melanotos
167Sharp-tailed SandpiperCalidris acuminata
168Broad-billed SandpiperLimicolla falcinellus
169Buff-breasted SandpiperTringites subruficollis
170RuffPhilomachus pugnax
171Ruddy TurnstoneArenaria interpres
172Common SandpiperActitis hypoleucos
173Spotted SandpiperActitis macularius
174Wood SandpiperTringa glareola
175Green SandpiperTringa ochropus
176Common RedshankTringa totanus
177Spotted RedshankTringa erythropus
178Common GreenshankTringa nebularia
179Marsh SandpiperTringa stagnatilis
180Terek SandpiperXenus cinereus
181Black-tailed GodwitLimosa limosa
182Bar-tailed GodwitLimosa lapponica
183Eurasian CurlewNumenius arquata
184WhimbrelNumenius phaeopus
185Slender-billed CurlewNumenius tenuirostris
186Eurasian WoodcockScolopax rusticola
187Great SnipeGallinago media
188Common SnipeGallinago gallinago
189Jack SnipeLymnocryptes minimus
190Red/Grey PhalaropePhalaropus fulicarius
191Red-necked PhalaropePhalaropus lobatus
192Wilson’s PhalaropePhalaropus tricolor
193Great SkuaStercorarius skua
194Pomarine Skua/JeagerStercorarius pomarinus
195Arctic/Parasitic Skua/JaegerStercorarius parasiticus
196Long-tailed Skua/JaegerStercorarius longicaudus
197Black-headed GullChroicocephalus ridibundus
198Slender-billed GullChroicocephalus genei
199Common/Mew GullLarus canus
200Ring-billed GullLarus delawarensis
201European Herring GullLarus argentatus
202Yellow-legged GullLarus michahellis
203Armenian GullLarus armenicus
204Caspian GullLarus cachinnans
205Great Black-backed GullLarus marinus
206Lesser Black-backed GullLarus fuscus
207Glaucous GullLarus hyperboreus
208Mediterranean GullLarus melanocephalus
209Audouin’s GullLarus audouinii
210Pallas’s/ Great Black-headed GullLarus ichthyaetus
211Relict GullLarus relictus
212Laughing GullLarus atricilla
213Little GullHydrocoloeus minutus
214Black-legged KittiwakeRissa tridactyla
215Sabine’s GullXema sabini
216Little TernSternulla albifrons
217Gull-billed TernGelochelidon nilotica
218Caspian TernHydroprogne caspia
219Sandwich TernSterna sandvicensis
220Common TernSterna hirundo
221Arctic TernSterna paradisaea
222Black TernChlidonias niger
223White-winged TernChlidonias leucopterus
224Whiskered TernChlidonias hybrida
225Common Guillemot/MurreUria aalge
226Pallas’s SandgrouseSyrrhaptes paradoxus
227Rock Dove/Feral PigeonColumba livia
228Stock DoveColumba oenas
229Common Wood PigeonColumba palumbus
230Eurasian Collared DoveStreptopelia decaocto
231African Collared DoveStreptopelia roseogrisea
232European Turtle DoveStreptopelia turtur
233Laughing DoveStreptopelia senegalensis
234Rose-ringed ParakeetPsittacula krameri
235Common CuckooCuculus canorus
236Great Spotted CuckooClamator glandarius
237Barn OwlTyto alba
238Eurasian Eagle OwlBubo bubo
239Ural OwlStrix uralensis
240Tawny OwlStrix aluco
241Tengmalm’s/Boreal OwlAegolius funereus
242Eurasian Pygmy OwlGlaucidium passerinum
243Long-eared OwlAsio otus
244Short-eared OwlAsio flammeus
245Little OwlAthene noctua
246Eurasian Scops OwlOtus scops
247European NightjarCaprimulgus europaeus
248Alpine SwiftApus melba
249Common SwiftApus apus
250Pallid SwiftApus pallidus
251Little SwiftApus affinis
252Eurasian HoopoeUpupa epops
253Common KingfisherAlcedo atthis
254White-throated KingfisherHalcyon smyrnensis
255European Bee-eaterMerops apiaster
256Blue-cheeked Bee-eaterMerops persicus
257European RollerCoracias garrulus
258Black WoodpeckerDryocopus martius
259European Green WoodpeckerPicus viridis
260Grey-headed WoodpeckerPicus canus
261Great Spotted WoodpeckerDendrocopos major
262Syrian WoodpeckerDendrocopos syriacus
263Middle Spotted WoodpeckerDendrocopos medius
264Lesser Spotted WoodpeckerDendrocopos minor
265White-backed WoodpeckerDendrocopos leucotos
266Eurasian Three-toed WoodpeckerPicoides tridactylus
267Eurasian WryneckJynx torquilla
268Common SkylarkAlauda arvensis
269Crested LarkGalerida cristata
270WoodlarkLullula arborea
271Greater Short-toed LarkCalandrella brachydactyla
272Lesser Short-toed LarkCalandrella rufescens
273Calandra LarkMelanocorypha calandra
274White-winged LarkMelanocorypha leucoptera
275Black LarkMelanocorypha yeltoniensis
276Horned/Shore LarkEremophila alpestris
277Common Sand MartinRiparia riparia
278Eurasian Crag MartinPtyonoprogne rupestris
279Barn SwallowHirundo rustica
280Red-rumped SwallowCecropis daurica
281Common House MartinDelichon urbicum
282Tawny PipitAnthus campestris
283Richard’s PipitAnthus richardi
284Water PipitAnthus spinoletta
285Meadow PipitAnthus pratensis
286Tree PipitAnthus trivialis
287Red-throated PipitAnthus cervinus
288White WagtailMotacilla alba
289Western Yellow WagtailMotacilla flava 
290Citrine WagtailMotacilla citreola
291Grey WagtailMotacilla cinerea
292White-throated DipperCinclus cinclus
293Bohemian WaxwingBombylla garrulus
294DunnockPrunella modularis
295Alpine AccentorPrunella collaris
296Black-throated AccentorPrunella atrogularis
297European RobinErithacus rubecula
298Rufous Bush Robin/Rufous-tailed Scrub RobinCercotrichas galactotes
299Common NightingaleLuscinia megarhynchos
300Thrush NightingaleLuscinia luscinia
301BluethroatLuscinia svecica
302Red-flanked BluetailTarsiger cyanurus
303Common RedstartPhoenicurus phoenicurus
304Black RedstartPhoenicurus ochrurus
305Northern WheatearOenanthe oenanthe
306Isabelline WheatearOenanthe isabellina
307Black-eared WheatearOenanthe hispanica
308Pied WheatearOenanthe pleschanka
309Black WheatearOenanthe leucura
310Desert WheatearOenanthe deserti
311WhinchatSaxicola rubetra
312Common StonechatSaxicola torquatus
313Siberian/Eastern StonechatSaxicola maurus
314Blue Rock ThrushMonticola solitarius
315Rufous-tailed Rock ThrushMonticola saxatilis
316Song ThrushTurdus philomelos
317RedwingTurdus iliacus
318Mistle ThrushTurdus viscivorus
319FieldfareTurdus pilaris
320Common/Eurasian BlackbirdTurdus merula
321Ring OuzelTurdus torquatus
322Black-throated ThrushTurdus atrogularis
323Naumann’s ThrushTurdus naumanni
324Barred WarblerSylvia nisoria
325Garden WarblerSylvia borin
326BlackcapSylvia atricapilla
327Common WhitethroatSylvia communis
328Lesser WhitethroatSylvia curruca
329Eastern Orphean WarblerSylvia crassirostris
330Sardinian WarblerSylvia melanocephala
331Rüppell’s WarblerSylvia rueppelli
332Eastern Subalpine WarblerSylvia cantillans
333Asian Desert WarblerSylvia nana
334Zitting CisticolaCisticola juncidis
335Common Grasshopper WarblerLocustella naevia
336River WarblerLocustella fluviatilis
337Savi’s WarblerLocustella luscinioides
338Cetti’s WarblerCettia cetti
339Sedge WarblerAcrocephalus schoenobaenus
340Aquatic WarblerAcrocephalus paludicola
341Moustached WarblerAcrocephalus melanopogon
342European Reed WarblerAcrocephalus scirpaceus
343Marsh WarblerAcrocephalus palustris
344Blyth’s Reed WarblerAcrocephalus dumetorum
345Paddyfield WarblerAcrocephalus agricola
346Great Reed WarblerAcrocephalus arundinaceus
347Icterine WarblerHippolais icterina
348Olive-tree WarblerHippolais olivetorum
349Olivaceous WarblerIduna pallida
350Willow WarblerPhylloscopus trochilus
351Wood WarblerPhylloscopus sibilatrix
352Eastern Bonelli’s WarblerPhylloscopus orientalis
353Common ChiffchaffPhylloscopus collybita
354Arctic WarblerPhylloscopus borealis
355Greenish WarblerPhylloscopus trochiloides
356Yellow-browed WarblerPhylloscopus inornatus
357Pallas’s Leaf WarblerPhylloscopus proregulus
358GoldcrestRegulus regulus
359FirecrestRegulus ignicapilla
360Eurasian/Winter WrenTroglodytes troglodytes
361Spotted FlycatcherMuscicapa striata
362Red-breasted FlycatcherFicedula parva
363Pied FlycatcherFicedula hypoleuca
364Semicollared FlycatcherFicedula semitorquata
365Collared FlycatcherFicedula albicollis
366Great TitParus major
367Coal TitPeriparus ater
368European Blue TitCyanistes caeruleus
369Crested TitLophophanes cristatus
370Marsh TitPoecile palustris
371Willow TitPoecile montanus
372Sombre TitPoecile lugubris
373Long-tailed TitAegithalos caudatus
374Bearded Reedling/TitPanurus biarmicus
375Eurasian Penduline TitRemiz pendulinus
376Eurasian NuthatchSitta europaea
377Western Rock NuthatchSitta neumayer
378WallcreeperTichodroma muraria
379Eurasian TreecreeperCerthia familiaris
380Short-toed TreecreeperCerthia brachydactyla
381Great Grey ShrikeLanius excubitor
382Lesser Grey ShrikeLanius minor
383Red-backed ShrikeLanius collurio
384Isabelline ShrikeLanius isabellinus
385Woodchat ShrikeLanius senator
386Masked ShrikeLanius nubicus
387Common/Eurasian MagpiePica pica
388Eurasian JayGarrulus glandarius
389Spotted NutcrackerNucifraga caryocatactes
390Western JackdawCorvus monedula
392Alpine/Yellow-billed ChoughPyrrhocorax graculus
393RookCorvus frugilegus
394Hooded CrowCorvus cornix
395Common RavenCorvus corax
396Common StarlingSturnus vulgaris
397Rose-coloured StarlingPastor roseus
398Eurasian Golden OrioleOriolus oriolus
399House SparrowPasser domesticus
400Italian SparrowPasser italiae
401Spanish SparrowPasser hispaniolensis
402Eurasian Tree SparrowPasser montanus
403Common Rock SparrowPetronia petronia
405Common ChaffinchFringilla coelebs
406BramblingFringilla montifringilla
407Common LinnetCarduelis cannabina
408TwiteCarduelis flavirostris
409Common RedpollCarduelis flammea
410European GoldfinchCarduelis carduelis
411Eurasian SiskinCarduelis spinus
412European GreenfinchChloris chloris
413European SerinSerinus serinus
414Red-fronted SerinSerinus pusillus
415Eurasian BullfinchPyrrhula pyrrhula
416HawfinchCoccothraustes coccothraustes
417Common/Red CrossbillLoxia curvirostra
418Two-barred CrossbillLoxia leucoptera
419Common RosefinchCarpodacus erythrinus
420Trumpeter FinchBucanetes githagineus
421Desert FinchRhodospiza obsoleta
422Snow BuntingPlectrophenax nivalis
423Lapland BuntingCalcarius lapponicus
424Common Reed BuntingEmberiza schoeniclus
425Little BuntingEmberiza pusilla
426Rustic BuntingEmberiza rustica
427Ortolan BuntingEmberiza hortulana
428Cretzschmar’s BuntingEmberiza caesia
429YellowhammerEmberiza citrinella
430Pine BuntingEmberiza leucocephalos
431Cirl BuntingEmberiza cirlus
432Black-headed BuntingEmberiza melanocephala
433Corn BuntingEmberiza calandra
434Rock BuntingEmberiza cia

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