Romania - Danube Delta

Danube Delta
The mighty Danube River flows 1.788 miles from its springs in Germany’s Black Forest to the Black Sea. Just before reaching the sea it forms the second largest and best preserved of Europe's deltas: 2.200 square miles of rivers, canals, marshes, tree-fringed lakes and reed islands.
The Danube Delta is a wildlife enthusiast’s (especially a bird watcher’s) paradise. Some 300 species of birds make Danube’s Delta their home
In the delta quantity is the watchword, but there is also great quality. Red-necked and Black-necked Grebes are found on the larger lakes and the herons, including Purple Heron, Great White Egret and Bittern are well represented. Good numbers of Spoonbills can be seen and the prehistoric-looking Glossy Ibis is nowhere more common. Black Storks wheel high above the forests of the delta and large flocks of White Storks will be passing through. Pochard, Garganey and Ferruginous Duck are the most numerous wildfowl. They are occasionally disturbed by a hunting White-tailed Eagle.
Birds are not the only inhabitants of the Delta. There is also a rich community of fish and animals; from wildcats, foxes and wolves, to even an occasional boar or deer. Altogether, 3.450 animal species can be seen here, as well as 1.700 plant species.

Babadag Forest
The whole area inland of Tulcea is hilly and much of it is still forested. The hills rise to almost 500 metres at Mount Greci and as a consequence the bird life is quite different to the other areas visited. In the dry oak forests we shall look for the localised Sombre Tit. At a drinking pool in the forest we should get close views of Hawfinch, Yellowhammer, Nuthatch, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Marsh Tit.

Ancient Histria was situated on a peninsula directly on the Black Sea. The ancient coastline has since changed due to the Danube’s enormous sedimentary deposits. All sites are ranked among the best single birdwatching sites in Europe.


  • Day 1
  • Day 2-4
  • Day 5
  • Day 6
  • Day 7
  • Day 8
  • Bucharest - Tulcea
  • Danube Delta
  • Babadag Forest
  • Histria - Lake Sinoe
  • Telita
  • Bucharest

Amongst the thousands of waterbirds here can be found a fine variety of terns and waders; Collared Pratincole and White-tailed Plover breed here. Away from the main lake, the area has innumerable pools and reedbeds, and these form a wonderful habitat in themselves, with innumerable herons of several species and fabulous variety of warblers and other songbirds. Away from the lakeshores, the area has extensive scrub and rocky sites with dry steppe land good for Stone Curlew and Calandra Lark, together with four species of Shrike and Roller and sometimes, a few Pied Wheatear. The raptors here are excellent, with Red-footed Falcon, Lesser Spotted Eagle and Marsh Harriers.

Lake Sinoe
To the south of the delta lies Lake Sinoe, a huge bird-filled lake. Hundreds, sometimes thousands of pelicans feed here, mostly Whites, but with a few of the rare Dalmatians. On a previous visit we were fortunate to watch a large flock of White Pelicans round up shoals of fish, in a large circle moving inwards all the time. Once the fish were sufficiently concentrated, the pelicans began feeding, as did an opportunistic Caspian Tern overhead. Another rare European breeding bird here is the Ruddy Shelduck.

Telita has an unique brush and coppice, occupying the southern sector of the natural landscape of Nistru River basin. It includes the Hirtop forest (Anenii Noi Forestry) and the slopes in the valley; a habitat of wood pasture consisting of Oak, Hornbeam and Wild Pear. On the dry slope to the hills we can see lots of Susliks - a type of ground squirrel, found on the steppe areas of Romania up into the Ukraine. The isabeline Wheaters use the burrows of the Suslikes to nest in. In the reserved area grow around 300 species of plants, including rare species such as forest grape-vine, dappled-tulip, etc.

Trip Report

This trip was made 10 may - 17 may 2014
On our way to Tulcea we made our first stop at Lacul Hazarlac, where i had great vieuws of Great Reed Warbler, Purple Heron, Pygmy Cormorant, Whiskered Tern and Hooded Crow.
In Tulcea we boarded our floating hotel, a rather big boat (10 rooms and kitchen/dinning room) which would be our home for the next 3 day's/nights.
The first couple of hours we followed the Sulina Channel that runs past Tulcea, which is wide and straight to facilitate shipping down the Danube and through to the Black Sea. To get access to the smaller, less disturbed channels and lakes we used a small motorboat.


This list, give's you a nice idea of the things I h've photographed. So explore the list, to see nice picture's of different familie-goups; there are also detailed list available of the different species.

There are also some pictures available of the When you want to know more about these islands, you have to visit my travelpages.

This trip is made possible by

This is a verry pleasant way to explore the vast complex of reed beds, willow forest, and wetlands.
The first day brought a nice variety of birds (Dalmatian Pelican, Ferruginous Duck, Red-necked Grebe, Glossy Ibis, Long-eared Owl), Reptiles (European Grass Snake, European Pond Terrapin) and Dragonflies (Large Redeye)
On our second day we explored the north-eastern part of the delta. It's an area with hudge Sanddune's, which was the centuries ago the Black Sea-coastline. The Danube however brought so many mud/sand and sludge that nowedays the coastline has extended eastwards into the Black Sea.
The highlights this day where Birds (Collared Pratincole, Temminck's Stint, European Honey Buzzard, Black-headed Bunting, Black Woodpecker) and Plants (Carthusian Pink, Violet Limodore, Fragrant Bug Orchid, Common Vincetoxicum)
The last day we visisted Lake Furtuna, which is one of the large lakes, and was holding a large flock of Great White Pelicans. Other sightings where Birds (Common Kingfisher, Grey-headed Woodpecker, Eurasian Penduline Tit, Moustached Warbler, White-tailed Eagle) and Butterflies (Brown Argus, Large Skipper, Gypsy Moth)
The central part of Babadag Forest consits of dense forrest en southly is more an open habitat. Here we found Birds (Ortolan Bunting, Booted Eagle, Rosy Starling, Icterine Warbler, Syrian Woodpecker) Reptiles (Greek Tortoise and Snake-eyed Skink) Butterfly (Clouded Apollo, Scarce Swallowtail, Glanville Fritillary, Clouded Yellow) and Plants (Monkey Orchid, Lady Orchid, Astragalus peterfii, Clematis integrifolia).
Near Enisala a 12th to 14th century medieval fortress sitting high on a hill overlooking Lake Razim and a vast field of reed grass and water channels. Here we got nice views of the Red-crested Pochard.
The mention worthy species of our trip to Lake Sinoe are Birds (Red-footed Falcon, Levant Sparrowhawk, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Pallas's Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Spanish Sparrow, Trumpeter Finch) and Dragonflies (Green-eyed Hawker, Ornate Bluet).
Our visit to the Telita-region brought the only mammal-species (European Souslik, Red Fox) and the Dombrowskii Yellow Wagtail (hybrid subspecies of the Yellow Wagtail and the Black-headed Wagtail).
Furthermore i found some Butterflies (Grizzled Skipper, Knapweed Fritillary) and a Reptile (Balkan Wall Lizard)