Natural park Rusenski Lom

  

The place is located south-east from the town of Ruse. About 15 km from this site is Danube River. Travelling in the relatively flat region of the Danube plain towards Rusenski Lom, the landscape changes dramatically.
Three meandering rivers cut in deep in the Ęarst rocks, forming an system of canyons. All this system is called “Lomovete” At places the old river bed is squeezed between vertical limestone cliffs, at others it opens up into large meadows. Terraces, rock niches and caves add up to the fascinating mosaic.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Russenski Lom near the village of Nisovo

Up on the plateau are the sweeping fields with wheat, maize and sunflowers. The wild meadows are many too, a home for flowers and insects. Down hidden by the trees is the river, dragging its waters. You can seldom find this place at peace or quiet. Even on the hottest day the songs of the Golden oriole, the calls of the Rollers and the whistling of the bee-eaters echo among the rocks filling the air with life.

  

Vegetation is diverse: bigger and smaller forests and groves, bushes and open areas, farming fields and grazing lands. Some of the places are protected areas, others shelter small villages perching on the rocks. The whole complex takes up an area of several dozens of kilometers, but because of its relief, it takes at least a week to walk around and years for its wildlife to be studied.
Beside its wild beauty this place is also famous for its historical monuments: the unique rock churches by the village of Ivanovo, which have been acknowledged as part of the world historical treasure by UNESCO.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Black stork at one of its usual hunting places.

Several couples nest in the rock niches here. Walking along the edge of the canyons you can often see these and many other birds flying directly at your level.

  

Having in mind the uneven terrain and the hard accessibility of some areas, photographing birds here is no easy job, but the diversity and the concentration definitely make the effort worth it. Among the dozens of birds species common for Europe, many other attractive species also nest here: Golden Eagle, Short-toed Eagle, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Booted Eagle, Long-Legged Buzzard, Levant Sparrow hawk Eagle Owl, Black Stork. This is also one of the north-most places where the Egyptian vulture nesting. A dozen of Rudy Shelduck couples live here too, but they are extremely cautious and hard to find. The birds that are easiest to see and photograph in summer are the Bee-Eater, Roller, Golden Oriole, Red-backed and Woodchat Shrikes, Hoopoe, Alpine Swift, several species of finches, buntings, warbles, woodpeckers, etc.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Bee-eaters – male and female

They attract photographers with their appearance and interesting behavior. The different periods of their breeding – the building of the nest, the courting, and the feeding of the young – offer various poses and compositions. Lovely.

  

In autumn and winter the park offers home to wintering northern species and many local ones as well. However, spring and especially summer are the best time for wildlife photographers.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Russenski Lom

Many are the places along the river where no human has treaded.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Red-backed shrike

The mosaic of bushes and meadows offer excellent conditions to Woodchats Shrike and more rare in the area Lesser Grey Shrike.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Red-rumped Swallows

Another regular resident of the area. The places where these birds gather building material for their queer nests are the best shooting sites.

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Hoopoe

Image copyright 2005 Emil Enchev
Lesser spotted fritillary

Image copyright 2006 Emil Enchev
The surrounding - small roads suitable for car window photogtaphy