A 9-day wildlife holiday to Bulgaria’s south-western mountain ranges in search of the most desirable species of butterflies on the Balkan peninsula.
During the first part of this tour we will explore the Pirin Mountains. This is landscape of exceptional natural beauty, boasting high peaks over 2500 m, and fascinating alpine meadows dotted with glacial lakes, dense forests, spectacular rocky gorges. The butterfly fauna there includes Apollo, Clouded Apollo, Balkan Copper, Purple-shot Copper, Mountain Argus, Rippart’s Anomalous Blue, Higgins’s Anomalous Blue, Balkan Blue, Turquoise Blue, Escher’s Blue, Meleager’s Blue, False Eros Blue, Phalakron Blue, Balkan Fritillary, Ottoman Brassy Ringlet, Bright-eyed Ringlet, Eastern Large Heath, Northern Wall Brown, etc.
Along the Struma valley we will be looking for Eastern Festoon, Southern Small White, Eastern Wood White, Lang’s Short-tailed Blue, Little Tiger Blue, Eastern Baton Blue, Chequered Blue, Nettle-tree Butterfly, Balkan Marbled White, Common Glider, Southern White Admiral, Lesser Spotted Fritillary, Freyer’s Grayling, Lattice Brown, Yellow-banded Skipper, Oriental Marbled Skipper, etc.
In the next days we will visit the Slavyanka Mountain. It is a former border zone, which for many years have had limited access, and therefore have very rich wildlife. The character and physical appearance of the mountains here changes significantly from the wetter high mountain areas to the dry, Mediterranean habitats, which variable flora is matched by a wonderful selection of butterflies, like Mountain Small White, Large Blue, Anomalous Blue, Phalakron Anomalous Blue, Niobe’s Fritillary, Marbled Fritillary, Twin-spot Fritillary, Eastern Rock Grayling, Great Banded Grayling, Balkan Grayling, Marbled Skipper. In the lowland areas we have good chances to find Large Copper, Lesser Fiery Cooper, Blue-spot Hairstreak, Eastern Short-tailed Blue, Reverdin’s Blue, Chapman’s Blue, Southern Comma, Cardinal, Oriental Meadow Brown, Sandy Grizzled Skipper.
The last part of our trip will take us back to the Rila Mountains, where we will explore the subalpine and alpine zones of the northern part of the mountain, looking for alpine specialties like Balkan Clouded Yellow, Balkan Copper, Scarce Copper, Poplar Admiral, Cynthia’s Fritillary, Bulgarian Ringlet, Nicholl’s Ringlet, Ottoman Brassy Ringlet, Water Ringlet, Black Ringlet, Dewy Ringlet, Eastern Large Heath, Large Grizzled Skipper, Dusky Grizzled Skipper.