We transferred from the Black Sea to Shipka (The Balkan Ecology Project- BALKEP) on Sunday and have spent the last few days exploring the local area. I've had a look at the fields W of the village, around the monastery, and a bit up the valley towards the monument. Ebird list HERE. Highlights have included Black and Grey-headed Woodpeckers and birds seen round here but not on the coast include Pied Flycatcher, Wood Warbler, Cirl Bunting and Ravens (in fact there were no corvids at all on the coast). Also had Red-breasted Flycatcher at the monastery which I think is the first time I've seen them up there.
I did a bit of noc mig recording over the village but it was very quiet. Also checked out Buzludzha (a main mountain vista and vantage point) and no sign of any raptors going over.
Have done two night moth trapping at my mum's holiday home garden and another night in the BALKEP market garden. Still working through the identifications and not easy as we only have limited internet access (need to invest in moths of europe books).
Spotted Flycathers- good numbers in the local area in all kinds of habitat- this one in sunflower stubble in the fields
Willow Warbler- good numbers of these in the local area.
Black Redstart at the monastery
The wildlife pond at the market garden. A good moth haul in this area. Also had three Wrynecks in the vicinity.
Orange Swift (female above, male below)
Scarce Bordered Straw