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Field Herping Holidays in Bulgaria

Field Herping Holiday in the Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains

Field Herping Holidays in Bulgaria: Rodopi Mountains

Field Herping Struma Valley

Field Herping Holidays in Bulgaria: Struma Valley

Field Herping Holidays in Strandzha & Black Sea Coast

Field Herping Holidays in Bulgaria: Strandzha & Black Sea Coast

Field Herping Holidays in Dobrudzha & Danube

Field Herping Holidays in Bulgaria: Danube & Dobrudzha

Balkan Trek's unique bespoke field herping holidays in Bulgaria are offered to individuals, couples, small private groups and societies. All field herping holidays can be tailor-made to suite your own requirements, and are carefully designed to provide a comprehensive exploration of the most rewarding field herping hotspots in Bulgaria. These include a field herping holiday in the Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains, taking in both the higher and lusher Western Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains, as well as the more arid and rugged Eastern Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains, and a field herping holiday along the Struma Valley, visiting not just lower-lying riverine sites, but also venturing into the higher mountains that border the river, providing a great variety of habitats and species. On the other side of Bulgaria, there are great opportunities for a highly productive field herping holiday in the Strandzha Mountains & Black Sea Coast. Alternatively, in northern Bulgaria, a field helping holiday in the Danubian Plain & Dobrudzha region is likely to turn up a range of interesting species and allow for some new and unexpected amphibian and reptile discoveries.

Currently, 20 species of amphibians are known in Bulgaria. Seven species are tailed amphibians. These included six species of newt, Smooth Newt (Lissotriton vulgaris) and Buresch's Crested Newt (Triturus ivanbureschi), which are found throughout much of Bulgaria, Danubian Crested Newt (Triturus dobrogicus) which is known solely from the Danube, Great Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus) from a few sites in north-western Bulgaria, Macedonian Crested Newt (Triturus macedonicus) from a site in south-western Bulgaria, and Alpine Newt (Ichthyosaura alpestris) which occurs only in mountainous regions. There are also Fire Salamander (Salamandra salamandra) which are found in hills and mountains throughout Bulgaria. The other 13 species of amphibians in Bulgaria are frogs and toads. These included Yellow-bellied Toad (Bombina variegata) and European Fire-bellied Toad (Bombina bombina), the latter restricted to the lowlands and coast. Also having a restricted distribution are Common Spadefoot Toad (Pelobates fuscus) and Eastern Spadefoot Toad (Pelobates syriacus), whilst Common Toad (Bufo bufo) and European Green Toad (Pseudepidalea viridis) are widespread. Frogs include Common Tree Frog (Hyla arborea) and the recently separated Eastern Tree Frog (Hyla orientalis), Agile Frog (Rana dalmatina), Balkan Stream Frog (Rana graeca), Marsh Frog (Pelophylax ridibundus), Edible Frog (Pelophylax esculenta) and Common Grass Frog (Rana temporaria), the latter found only in the mountains.

At least 39 species of reptiles have been recorded in Bulgaria, with 2 species of turtles, 3 species of terrapins and 2 species of tortoises, 14 species of lizards, and 18 species of snakes. The two species of marine turtle  Loggerhead Turtle (Caretta caretta) and Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) are rare visitors to the Black Sea coast, whilst inland one finds European Pond Terrapin (Emys orbicularis) and Balkan Terrapin (Mauremys rivulata), plus the invasive introduced alien Red-eared Slider (Trachemys scripta elegans), as well as Spur-thighed Tortoise (Testudo graeca) and Hermann's Tortoise (Testudo hermanni).

The lizards of Bulgaria comprise Kotschy's Gecko (Mediodactylus kotschyi), both Slow Worm (Anguis fragilis) and Eastern Slow Worm (Anguis colchica), European Glass Lizard (Pseudopus apodus), European Snake-eyed Skink (Ablepharus kitaibelii), Meadow Lizard (Darevskia praticola), Sand Lizard (Lacerta agilis), Balkan Green Lizard (Lacerta trilineata), Eastern Green Lizard (Lacerta viridis), Snake-eyed Lizard (Ophisops elegans), Erhard's Wall Lizard (Podarcis erhardii), Common Wall Lizard (Podarcis muralis), Balkan Wall Lizard (Podarcis taurica) and Viviparous Lizard (Zootoca vivipara), the latter species confined to the mountains.

The snakes of Bulgaria include Worm Snake (Xerotyphlops vermicularis), Sand Boa (Eryx jaculus), Smooth Snake (Coronella austriaca), Four-lined Snake (Elaphe quatuorlineata), Blotched Snake (Elaphe sauromates), Eastern Montpellier Snake (Malpolon insignitus), Large Whip Snake (Dolichophis caspius), Grass snake (Natrix natrix), Dice Snake (Natrix tessellata), Dahl's Whip Snake (Platyceps najadum), Reddish Whip Snake (Platyceps collaris),  European Cat Snake (Telescopus fallax), Aesculapian Snake (Zamenis longissimus), Leopard Snake (Zamenis situla), Nose-horned Viper (Vipera ammodytes) and Adder (Vipera berus). There are also old records of Orsini's Viper (Vipera ursinii) and Asp Viper (Vipera aspis), though these are now considered extinct in Bulgaria.

To find out more about the opportunities for tailor-made field herping holidays in Bulgaria, and to discuss your own specific plans and requirements, please email Balkan Trek. We will be happy to design and organize for you a unique and highly rewarding field herping holiday in Bulgaria.

Furthermore, all our field herping holidays in the Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains are organized in co-operation with the local NGO 'Wild Rodopi', ensuring that you not only have the best opportunities to observe and photograph some of the Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains rarest and most beautiful reptiles and amphibians, but will also be directly contributing to the work of the NGO 'Wild Rodopi' and help funding their efforts to research and conserve the amphibians and reptiles of the Rodopi (Rhodope) Mountains.