Estonian Birds and Mammals 8 days

Estonia is well known for its rich bird-life. And, with its 700 Brown bears, 600 lynxes, and 200 wolves, Estonia also has one of the healthiest big carnivore population in Europe. In addition 12 000 Elks, Flying Squirrels, thousands of Raccoon dogs, 16 000 Beavers and 1500 Ringed Seals – good reasons to combine a bird and mammal watching tour.

 

In autumn the thousands of staging cranes, geese and ducks are spectacular! Elks are mating, Brown Bears are feeding up before hibernation, Ringed Seals gather in haul out areas, Wolves would teach their young to hunt and howl to communicate with each other. After raising their young, owls, woodpeckers and grouses are visible again. The timing in September and early October  allows us to meet these and many other species and enjoy nice autumn colours of Estonian nature.

 

Target species:

  • Elk,
  • Ringed Seal,
  • Beaver,
  • Brown Bear,
  •  Wolf,
  • Owls (Ural, Pygmy, Tengmalms)
  • Woodpeckers (8 species)
  • Common Cranes
  • Arctic Geese
  • Black and Hazel Grous, Capercaillie
  • Nutcracker

Book a tour with Triin: info@natourest.ee or by phone: +372 55 55 87 55

 

 

Day 1: Arrival (Tallinn)

We’ll start our trip in North-West Estonia, an in area rich in forests and coastal wetlands, with a walk in Kolviku nina, hoping to see some of the water birds, waders. Later in the evening we’ll hope to hear and see owls ( Ural, Pygmy) in Leidisoo forests. Night in Roosta.

Day 2: Nõva landscape reserve, Spithami, Haversi

Morning starts with Black Grouse lek, Woodpeckers and forest birds. The Nõva forests welcome the Capercaille, Hazel Grouse and Nightjar. In Spithami keep you eyes open for massive migration. Night in Roosta

Day 3: Silma nature reserve near Haapsalu

Silma reserve is a huge area of coastal meadows, lagoons and reedbeds with lots of ducks, some Slavonian and Red-necked Grebes, Goose, Cranes, Penduline and Bearded Tits. Later we look birds around Haapsalu.

Day 4: Marimetsa and south of Matsalu NP

We head to Marimetsa bog and forest area, hoping to see the Black Grouse, Golden plover, Great Grey shrike and some eagles.

Thousands of birds await us in Matsalu. It is the most famous wetland area in Estonia with vast spaces of coastal and alluvial (and some wooded) meadows and reed-beds making it a prime stopover location. By the time of the tour, tens of thousands of Barnacle Geese should be present, sometimes accompanied by a few Red-breasted Geese. Birders have recorded 170 species of birds breeding in the reserve, among them the Bittern, Osprey, Lesser Spotted and White-tailed Eagle and Caspian Tern.

Day 5 North of Matsalu NP

We will head early in the morning to Matsalu national park again. Here we will have another opportunity to watch the Elks, Cranes, Geese, Waders or an occasional raptors. Later we will take a traditional fisher boat to look for the Beavers, bats ant waterfowl in the Kasari delta.

Day 6 Bear hide in Alutaguse

Alutaguse is Estonia’s largest forest area, covering most of its north-eastern part. There are nowhere as many bears in Estonia as in Alutaguse. The area hosts also many other forest species like Flying Squirrel, Lynx, Wolf, Golden Eagle and different species of owls. In autumn the Brown Bears are preparing for hibernation. They need a lot of food to build up a solid layer of blubber. At that time it is possible to find their tracks in old orchards, on fields etc. In the evening we will go to the bear hide and we will also spend a night there. Besides the bears it is a great chance to see Raccoon Dog and sometimes Fox, Wild Boar and also the Pine Marten. The bear hide has comfortable chairs for observation, bunk beds, and a dry toilet. It is possible to take a short nap, when tired. Night in the bear-hide.

Day 7 Lahemaa NP

You might feel a bit tired after a night at the night in a bear hide, therefore we will take a rest until afternoon in hotel. In the afternoon we will be in Lahemaa NP, where we find stony and sandy beaches, huge boulders, old forests and great number of birds. Lahemaa is also famous for its historical villages and old manor complexes. Night in Rakvere

Day 8 back to Tallinn

In the morning we will drive to Estonian capital Tallinn. Here we will have an excursion in the medieval Tallinn Old Town and spend some time until the departure to airport.

Book a tour with Triin: info@natourest.ee or by phone: +372 55 55 87 55

 

Wolf pack howling in forest of Middle-Estonia:

 

Book a tour with Triin: info@natourest.ee or by phone: +372 55 55 87 55

Price

For other scheduled mammal and bird watching tours look at the calendar.

 

Price for groups

  • 2 people: 2200 EUR per person
  • 3-4 people: 1700 EUR per person
  • 5-6 people: 1170 EUR per person
  • from 7 people: 1050 EUR per person

 

Price includes

  • nature guide services for 8 days,
  • 7 nights in local hotels and guesthouses (twin rooms with toilet and shower),
  • local transport,
  • breakfast and dinner each day,
  • ferry tickets to Hiiumaa,
  • boot trip to seals near Hiiuma small islands,
  • boot trip to beavers on Kasari river,
  • rent of brown bear watching hide,
  • excursion in Tallinn.

Book a tour with Triin: info@natourest.ee or by phone: +372 55 55 87 55