Two new nests of Lesser Spotted Eagle have been confirmed in the special protection area “Suha Reka” in the beginning of May. The surveys of the species in North-eastern Bulgaria have started despite the state of emergency in the country declared to help contain the spread of Covid 19. All activities happen in compliance with the restrictive measures imposed by order of the Minister of Health.

In the period May-August, surveys are being carried out to identify new occupied territories and the location of eagles’ nests. Field experts collect data using the specially developed SmartBirds Pro application, through which the information is uploaded to the Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds database.

The first field days of the season were conducted in the protected site “Sucha reka”. Twenty pairs of Lesser Spotted Eagles were recorded there, but only two nests were found and proven. For these two nests BSPB had preliminary information. As a result of the monitoring the two nests have been proven active.

The protected site “Sucha reka” is located north of Dobrich town. It covers the valley of Sucha River with its adjacent dry valleys, cliffs and high rock faces. The hills along the dry valley are covered by oak forests and the open spaces around the valley are occupied by agricultural land and pastures.

The protected site, which is part of Dobrudzha, is important for the conservation of the Lesser Spotted Eagle. The current estimate for the protected site and its surroundings is between 3 and 5 pairs of the species. As a result of the monitoring two nests have already been found. The exact number of nesting pairs of Lesser Spotted Eagles in the area is yet to be determined.

“Suha Reka” is used as a resting place for Lesser Spotted Eagles migrating from the northern populations. Here they rest from several hours to several days.

The monitoring activities in North-east Bulgaria will continue. They are carried out within the framework of the project “Conservation measures for the Lesser Spotted Eagle and its habitats in Bulgaria” implemented under the EU LIFE Programme by the Executive Forest Agency in partnership with the BSPB and the Southeast and Northeast State Companies.