Eastern Poland offers some of the finest birding in Europe. Here is one of the few places in Europe where it is possible to birding in extensive primeval forest of gian poplars, oaks and spruces that have necer felt the axe, fabulous marshes extending as far as the eye can see and literally hundreds of untouched lakes. Despite the deep changes that the inclusion of Poland into the European Union has produced, the country is still preserving natural habitats on a grand scale, partly by design and partly due to the very slow rate of agricultural development, especially during the communist era.
During our explorations in Poland we will visit two different areas. From Warsaw we will travel first to the massive Bialowieza forest with their rich birdlife. Here we expect to enjoy a wide variety of woodpeckers, with the very sought-after White-backed & Three-toed Woodpeckers being the main specialties. Eurasian Bisons found here their very last valuart in Europe, and the place from where to re start a slow but decided recovery of their populations. On its worst moment, no more than 19 individuals survived in the very last herd in the world. Nowadays, the population keeps growing and the range has expanded from the core of Bialowieza out to nearby area and, due to reintroduction programs, into a number of European countries. The extensive forests here also host many other interesting birds including Eurasian Pygmy Owl, Hazel Grouse and Red-breasted & Collared Flycatchers. Lesser Spotted Eagles are surprisingly common, and Black Storks are a common views in the marshes around, where they are one of the main attractions along with the common Whiskered & White-winged Black Terns, White-tailed Eagles and a wide variety of nesting and migratory waders and ducks.
The last part of the trip is devoted to the Biebrza Marshes. Great Snipes and Aquatic Warblers are the major specialties in this marvellous area, but here we will also look for River & Marsh Warblers, while good looks into Corncrakes and Spotted Crakes are often depending on the amount of rain during the previous months. The many ponds and woodlands around will allow us to enjoy Red-necked Grebe, Spotted Nutcracke, Barred Warbler, Thrush Nightingale, Common Rosefinch and Icterine Warbler to name a few.
Carles Oliver has been birdwatching Eastern Europe extensively during the last years, from Greece to Latvia including Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Hungary. Indeed, Eastern Poland keeps being one of the best birding areas in the region and he is delighted to join him in this exciting trip exploring some of the wildest regions in continental Europe!
Day 1. Meet and greet in a coordinated arrival to Varsaw during the afternoon. We will have some hours to enjoy birding around the city. Here we will have first chances for some key species including Icterine Warbler, Thrush Nightingale, Common Rosefinch, Grey-headed & Syrian Woodpeckers. Also chances for the first raptor action of the trip.
Days 2-4. We will transfer to Bialowieza area in the morning on day 2, and during the next days we will look for a long list of specialties living not only the impressive forests around Bialowieza, next to the Belarus border, but also in the large marshes and wetlands around. Here we expect to see Red-breasted & Collared Flycatchers, Thrush Nightingale, Common Rosefinch, White-winged Black Tern, Black Stork, White-tailed Eagle and Eurasian Pygmy Owl. Woodpeckers will be at the core of the tour and with a bit of luck we will enjoy Eurasian Three-toed, White-backed, Grey-headed, Black and Middle Spotted Woodpeckers. Other very interesting species here include Hazel Grouse and the very elusive Tengmalm’s Owl. But this is also a land of large mammals, and you can expect to enjoy some of the very few Eurasian Bisons left in the area and, if very lucky, a Grey Wolf will appear in one of our evening walks!
Day 4-5. Afternoon transfer to the famous Biewrza National Park. Here we will enjoy the wonderful birding in the very extensive wet praries and marshes. Here we expect to contact with Spotted Crake, Corncracke, River & Marsh Warbler. Great Snipes nests in the area and we have a chance to enjoy their wonderful displays. Biewrza is also the place where to look for the extremely endangered Aquatic Warbler, and we will look for them in their typical habitat. While around, we will also look for Barred Warbler and Spotted Nutcracker.
Day 6. Final morning in the Biewrza, where we can enjoy last views on Croncrake or Aquatic Warbler but also Lesser Spotted Eagle and Eurasian Wryneck before transfering back to Warsaw for our early afternoon flight.
VAT included in all prices.
5 nights of accommodation in twin/double room, breakfasts, lunches and evening meals, birding guides, ground transport, reserve entrances fees and travel insurace.
Transport to/from Barcelona, alcoholic drinks, any other item not listed as “INCLUDED”
3 accommodations in our itinerary. We will spend most of them in local owned, small accommodations in the privilegied locations and wonderful birding immediatly around. All dinners are in our accommodations.
You can expect 20ºC to 25ºC with mostly sunny but some cloudy or even light rains appearing. It is very important to bring strong insect repellent for this tour, long t-shirts and pants.