Czech Republic

Fieldfare Turdus pilaris ©Jiri Bohdal Website
Birding the Czech Republic

Czechia (The Czech Republic) is a landlocked country in Central Europe and a member state of the European Union. The country borders on Poland to the northeast, Germany to the west, Austria to the south, and Slovakia to the east. The capital and largest city is Prague. The country is composed of the historic regions of Bohemia and Moravia, as well as parts of Silesia.

The Czech landscape is quite varied. Bohemia to the west consists of a basin drained by the Elbe (Czech: Labe) and the Vltava (or Moldau) rivers, and surrounded by mostly low mountains such as the Krkonoše range of the Sudetes. The highest point in the country, Sněžka, at 1,602 m (5,262 ft), is located here. Moravia, the eastern part of the country, is also quite hilly. It is drained mainly by the Morava River, but it also contains the source of the Oder (Czech: Odra) River. Water from the landlocked Czech Republic flows to three different seas: the North Sea, Baltic Sea and Black Sea. The Czech Republic also leases the Moldauhafen, a 30,000-square-metre (7.4-acre) lot in the middle of the Hamburg Docks, which was awarded to Czechoslovakia by Article 363 of the Treaty of Versailles to allow the landlocked country a place where goods transported down river could be transferred to seagoing ships. The territory reverts to Germany in 2028.Phytogeographically, the Czech Republic belongs to the Central European province of the Circumboreal Region within the Boreal Kingdom. According to the WWF, the territory of the Czech Republic can be subdivided into four ecoregions: the Central European mixed forests, Pannonian mixed forests, Western European broadleaf forests and Carpathian montane conifer forests.

Weather and climateThe Czech Republic has a temperate continental climate with relatively hot summers and cold, cloudy winters, usually with snow. Most rain falls during the summer. The temperature difference between summers and winters is relatively high due to the landlocked geographical position.

Within the Czech Republic, temperatures vary greatly depending on the elevation. In general, at higher altitudes the temperatures decrease and precipitation increases. Another important factor is the distribution of the mountains. Therefore the climate is quite varied.

At the highest peak (Sněžka, 1,602 m/5,260 ft) the average temperature is only −0.4 °C (31 °F), whereas in the lowlands of South Moravia, the average temperature is as high as 10 °C (50 °F). The country’s capital Prague has a similar average temperature, although this is influenced by urban factors.The coldest month is usually January, followed by February and December. During these months there is usually snow in the mountains and sometimes in the major cities and lowlands. During March, April and May, the temperature usually increases rapidly, and especially during April the temperature and weather tends to vary widely during the day. Spring is also characterized by high water levels in the rivers due to melting snow, with occasional floods.

The warmest month of the year is July, followed by August and June. On average, summer temperatures are about 20 Celsius or 36 Fahrenheit degrees higher than during winter. Especially in the last decade,[citation needed] temperatures above 30 °C (86 °F) are not unusual. Summer is also characterized by rain and storms.

Autumn generally begins in September, which is still relatively warm, but much drier. During October, temperatures usually fall below 15° or 10°C (59° or 50°F) and deciduous trees begin to shed their leaves. By the end of November, temperatures usually range around the freezing point.

Top Sites
  • Prague

    InformationSatellite View
    Compared to most European metropolitan areas Prague is quite green with abandoned slopes and a large variety of biotopes that can be hardly found in other towns. Perhaps as a result of hunting in the past rural areas have virtually no crows and none are breeding (zero pairs!) in Prague (500 km2). What a difference in comparison with cities abroad. However, the population of magpies is dramatically increasing in the last 3-5 years. On the other hand I estimate about 250 pairs of kestrels that breed mainly in the central area. Kestrels may not be surprising, but what about 100 pairs of sparrowhawks breeding in this area (70-90 pairs in the central 220 km2). Many people visit Prague because you can close observe nests of sparrowhawks that are quite unafraid of man. Peregrines have unfortunately disappeared from Prague, but in the parks buzzards are breeding more and more toward the city centre. During breeding they hunt in parks being hidden under canopy. We know this because some of them are equipped with radio transmitters. Also one or two eagle owls are breeding within the city limits of Greater Prague.
Contributors
Number of Species
  • Number of bird species: 417

    (As of November 2018)
Checklist

  • iGoTerra Checklist

    iGoTerra Checklist
    Fatbirder Associate iGoTerra offers the most comprehensive and up to date birds lists on the web
Useful Reading

  • Birding in Eastern Europe

    Gerard Gorman | WildSounds | 2006 | Paperback | 288 pages, illustrations | ISBN: 9781898665076 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Birds of the Czech Republic

    By Joseph Kren | Christopher Helm | 2000 | Hardcover | 336 pages, 43 b/w photos, 29 illustrations, 400 maps | ISBN: 9780713647846 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Fauna ČR: Ptáci 1 (Birds of the Czech Republic)

    By Karel Šťastný & Karel Hudec | Academia | 2016 | Hardback | 419 b/w photos, b/w line drawings and b/w distribution maps; tables | Text in Czech | ISBN: 9788020025753 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Important Bird Areas in the Czech Republic

    By Petra Malkova & David Lacina | BirdLife International (Czechoslovak Section) | 2002 | Paperback | 144 pages, colour photos, tables | ISBN: 9788090221666 Buy this book from NHBS.com
Organisations
  • Czech Rarities Committee

    Website
    Czech Rarities Committee was established by Czech Ornithological Society in 1989. Includes a Checklist of the birds of the Czech republic as well as latest decisions on rarities etc. This home page is only available in Czech at the moment. We are working on English versions of the most important pages. Until now, you can view Members and List of considered species.
  • Czech Society for Ornithology -

    Website
  • Czech Society for Ornithology - Eastern Bohemia Branch (VCP CSO)

    Website
    The Eastern Bohemia Branch of the Czech Society of Ornithology (VČP ČSO) at the East Bohemian Museum in Pardubice was established in March 1975 as a regional branch of the CSO with its jurisdiction in the territory of the Královéhradecký and Pardubický Regions. The mission of the VČP ČSO is primarily to organize activities aimed at the protection and research of birds and their popularization. At present, VČP ČSO has almost 200 members, mainly from East Bohemia, but also from other parts of the republic.
  • Jihocesky Ornitologicky klub

    Website
    Stranky Jihocesky Ornithology club…
  • Kuksovská Ornithological Society

    Website
    Kuksovská Ornithological Society (abbr. KOS, respectively. KOSbird) is the name for the independent company (not officially registered anywhere), consisting of enthusiasts for ornithology, respectively. called. birdwatching. Founded in early 2015, its founder is Michael Stanek. Area of ​​focus partly on Nachod district, but especially Trutnovsko, around the village of Kuks (ie. The village as such. Stipulating Kašov, Žireč, Choustníkovo Hradiste Vlčkovice in the foothills, Slotov, Brod nad Labem, Heřmanice, Krabčice etc.). Observations also underway to distant locations, eg. On the MV Delight and other locations around Nove Mesto nad Metuji, Hradec Kralove, etc.
  • Moravian Ornithological Society

    Website
    Moravian Ornithological Society – Central Moravian Branch of the Czech Society for Ornithology is a non-governmental organisation associating professional and amateur ornithologists, birdwatchers, and people liking birds and nature. We are realising projects on research and protection of birds, rising public awareness of ornithology and environmental education.
  • Nepomucký Ornitologický Spolek

    Website
    The Nepomuco Ornithological Association is a non-governmental non-profit organization - a civic association. The Association was founded in 2001 as a pure ornithological organization. Today, while much of our activity is related to ornithology, we are also concerned with the protection of other animals and plants, especially with the protection of their habitats.
  • Ornithological Club Holysov

    Website
    Birds, bird protection and birding in southwestern Bohemia (Czech Republic)... see also their Facebook page
Reserves

Abbreviations Key

  • Animal Rescue Centre - Makov

    WebpageSatellite View
    The Center accepts all injured or ill animals. It takes care of abandoned baby animals and provides first aid, veterinary treatment, rehabilitation, preparation for release and actual release back to nature.
  • BiR Josefov Meadows

    WebpageSatellite View
    This unique project arising near the fort Josefov close to Jaroměř in Eastern Bohemia aims to create first private ornithological reserve in central Europe. We want to allow waders and other wetland species comeback to sometime flooded meadows and allow people to visit the area and admire its beauty.
  • Biosphere Reserves in the Czech Republic

    WebsiteSatellite View
    Interactive Map with notes on several reserves…
  • Important Bird Areas in the Czech Republic

    WebpageSatellite View
    To date 39 sites have been identified in the Czech Republic based on three levels of criteria: IBAs of global (A), European (B), and European Union level (C) importance.
  • NNR Soos

    InformationSatellite View
    A popular nature trail dedicated to geology, botany and zoology leads through the reserve. You may also visit a geopark, a museum with natural history and paleontological expositions, a display of life-size prehistoric reptiles, the "Avian World of the Cheb District" exposition, and a fallow-deer preserve.
  • NP Krkonoše

    InformationSatellite View
    It lies in the Krkonoše Mountains which is the highest range of the country. The park has also been listed as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve site. It borders Karkonosze National Park in Poland. Website (in Czech) HERE
  • NP Podyjí

    InformationSatellite View
    152 species of bird have been recorded in the park. The IBA trigger species recorded are Syrian woodpecker (Dendrocopos syriacus) and Barred warbler (Sylvia nisoria). The faunal species recorded consist of 65 species of mammals. There are seven species of reptiles, which include a tree snake and green lizard.
  • NP České Švýcarsko

    InformationSatellite View
    In 1999 the Czech government decided to create the Bohemian Switzerland National Park (Národní park České Švýcarsko) to its originally envisaged extent. On 1 January 2000 the valuable forest and rock landscape, the gorges of the Kamnitz and the area around the Růžovský vrch were given national park status.
  • NP Šumava

    InformationSatellite View
    The Bohemian Forest (Czech: Šumava) mountain range is covered by the most extensive forest in Central Europe, whose natural composition was, however, changed and today spruce plantations prevail in most of the area. In many places non-native spruce varieties were planted. Since the 1970s there has existed a stable population of lynxes.
  • Wetlands

    WebsiteSatellite View
    The Czech Republic currently (2018) has 14 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Sites), with a surface area of 60,207 hectares.
Forums & Mailing Lists
  • Život na zahradě (Ptačí zahrady)

    News, Views, Discussion
    Czech on-line birding community - Website with a forum, blogs and a photogallery dedicated to Czech birders…
Guides & Tour Operators


Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

  • Czech Birding

    Tour Operator
    Many of the Czech Republic's best birding areas are, however, vast and finding the key species, especially when one's time is limited, can at times be a daunting task. And as is often the case some of the very special species, such as rare raptors, owls and woodpeckers, can be difficult to find and observe without inside local knowledge. Thus, Czech Birding is in the process of setting up a network of professional English speaking local guides (including some of the Czech Republic's top ornithologists) to guide visiting birders for a few hours, one day, or on private trips, in Prague, South Bohemia and South Moravia.
  • E-Tours

    Tour Operator
    We have been organizing the birdwatching tours since 1991. We work for leading UK and world`s birding tour operators and various associations. We have three main criteria in designing the BW holidays : Professional competence and personality of expert group leaders and the local ornithologist Choice of the most interesting sites Smooth organization and a comfortable environment to ensure customer enjoyment and commercial success. E-mail us for a detailed itinerary and birdlists! info@etours.cz
  • Probirder

    Tour Operator
    Czechia (Czech Republic) is a surprisingly neglected birding destination. There are high mountains, dense forests, peat bogs, riverine woods, old parklands and many fish ponds. Key areas include the Trebonsko Basin, Nové Mlyny Reservoirs, Soutok Floodplain, Pálava Hills and Sumava. Special birds are White-tailed Eagle, Black Grouse, Corncrake, Eurasian Pygmy, Tengmalm’s, Ural and Eagle Owls, 10 woodpecker species and masses of geese in winter. There are also Europe’s only wild-breeding, “countable” Reeve’s Pheasants.
  • Rockjumper Birding Tours

    Tour Operator
    Our comprehensive Central and Eastern European birding tour takes in several unique areas situated in four countries: the Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary and Croatia. Though the focus is essentially upon the region’s birds, we will certainly not neglect the many cultural and historical sites and old towns that we will encounter. Indeed, this is a region steeped in history, both ancient and recent, and there will be opportunities to opt out of some of the birding excursions for those who wish to take in a little history instead.
Trip Reports


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  • 2009 [04 April] - Dave Read & Andy Shooter

    Report
    …A very pleasant walk through the park provided us with many good sightings including Wryneck, Night Heron, White Stork, Collared Flycatcher and Sparrowhawk, although the highlight for many was a male Grey-headed Woodpecker…
  • 2013 [03 March] - Stefan Stürup - Olomouc

    PDF Report
    …All three parks are easy accessible, the landscape is open with many old trees, there is a small lake in Smetanovy Sady and a stream runs through Bezrukovy Sady…
  • 2016 [06 June] - Fraser Simpson

    Report
    This was really a family trip with our 17-month-old son rather than a birding trip. Having been to the extremes of Europe for the exciting species in the past, there was no pressure to see anything new. Just relaxed camping, sight-seeing with some birding and sound recording at dawn while the family slept on.
  • 2017 [09 September] - Balázs Szigeti - Hungary & Czech Republic

    PDF Report
    The birding was superb, and the opportunity to spend time in the great cities of Budapest and Prague offered fascinating cultural highlights.
Other Links
  • Birds of the Czech Republic

    Website
    The Birds of the Czech Republic is the first-ever book on avifauna of the country written in English. Also has an up to date check list (also in English) and a list of journals etc.
  • Birdwatching CZ

    Website
    Czech Republic birding from Jan Haber and many others
  • Black Storks on line

    Website
    In the project, African Odyssey, we follow the life and long journeys of Black Storks (Ciconia nigra); with participation of the Czech Radio 2 - PRAGUE and its listeners
  • Checklist of Birds of the Czech republic

    Website
    The checklist of birds of the Czech Republic: 401 species (in categories A, B or C), 222 species nested, 186 species regularly nesting at the last 15 years, 8 irregularly and next 24 species nested only accidentaly or rare. 133 species regularly occurred at winter, another 53 irregularly
  • Czech Birding

    Website
    The site for birds and birding in Bohemia & Moravia!
  • Ornithological Page - Lubomir Peske

    Website
    Zoologist LUBOMIR PESKE offers you updates about his research and development works and some technical details for discussion about reintroduction programs, radio-telemetry, tagging and capturing the birds and other issues
Blogs
  • Czech Wildlife

    BLOG
    Czech birding and wildlife by Jiří Švestka
Photographers & Artists
  • BirdPhoto.cz

    Gallery
    At present, you will find here 18543 photos from these authors: Petr Šaj | Tomáš Pospíšil | Dušan Boucný | Luděk Boucný | Tomáš Bělka | Zdeněk Tunka |
  • Gallery - Martin and Ondra - PhotoTrip

    Gallery
    Bird and nature photo gallery (photobank)…
  • Photographer - Alex Auer

    Gallery
    Birds and Nature Photo Gallery
  • Photographer - Ivan Miksik - NatureBlink

    Gallery
    Nature, wildlife and travel photos
  • Photographer - Jan Veber's Photobank

    Photos of birds, mammals and nature
  • Photographer - Jir

    Gallery
    Here you will find photos of birds taken from the wild mostly around
  • Photographer - Jiri Bohdal

    Gallery
    Excellent all-round photographer with some great bird pictures
  • Photographer - Jiri Jech

    Gallery
    Photos of birds and other images of nature in the Czech Republic…

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