Trip Report Hungary

  1. Janos Olah 4 weeks ago

    Dear Ralf! Great report usually enjoy reading them. Not sure how accurate it is though regarding Hortobágy. It is more like your imperssions only. Anywhere in Europe it is not easy to access the good places when lone travellers on thight budget. This is a problem and frustratin, and I agree it is the case in Hortobágy NP too and this is not really a good thing…
    However there are excellent logdes who cater for birders and wildlife enthusiast like Bíbic Nature Lodge in Balmazújváros (you should stay there and support these places) and although a lot of good areas are restricted access, guides are available! It is easy to see Souslik, there are several Steppe Polecat territories, easy to see Hamster and very good chance of Otter, Stout, Weasel. Golden Jacklas also arrived a few years ago and they doing well but really shy due to hunting pressure. Surely for mice Hortobágy is not really good! Ungulates as you describe – like Przewalski Horse – nowhere in the World roaming wild nowadays…They are enclosed in Hortobágy as well as in Hustai (Mongolia as well). Red Deer is not in the area but Roe Deer is common. I hope next time you seek some local help and make your visit more enjoyable! Keep up mammal watching!

    • Author
      Ralf Bürglin 4 weeks ago

      Thank you, Janos! You added some useful information. – I see a lot of places. Where ever I go, there is something I get enthusiastic about, but once in a while I become frustrated. At Hortobagy, I found, it was necessary to let off steam.

    • Mattia from Italy 3 weeks ago

      I agree with Ralph: Hortobagy is a poor place for mammals. And I was not alone, but with a local birding guide. For Sousliks we had to go in another place (near the Slovak border), because they are difficult in Hortobagy. We saw a Stoat, but the absence of wild ungulates was surprising. Steppe Polecat is very difficult to see.

      • Janos Olah 3 weeks ago

        I did not say Hortobagy is a great place for mammals!! I just commented on the possibilities.
        But seeing Souslik is easy and your guide (was a birders) was not on top!
        However they do aestivate but in August they are still around. I think precipitation in summer is more important then temperature. We still see them in August in Romania too.
        Steppe Polecat is very difficult to see, indeed I totally agree but everywhere not only in the Hortobagy. Two were seen yesterday at broad daylight while watching for Cranes… For this species it is more like the actual timing (easiest in April-May), mammals, scarce or difficult to see species like birds, there is always a best time to see one.
        Anyway I hope next time you have a better experience on Hortobagy. Great place for wildlife – I leave and watch wildlife here for 25 years…

  2. Vladimir Dinets 4 weeks ago

    There are free-roaming herds of Przewalski’s horse in Mongolia and China. See

    • Vladimir Dinets 4 weeks ago

      Also, sousliks are usually aestivating in August.

      • Author
        Ralf Bürglin 4 weeks ago

        “usually” … I watched sousliks on August 4th at Spis Castle and Muránska Planina National Park, Slovakia, and on August 13th at Lake Neusiedl, Austria.

        • Vladimir Dinets 4 weeks ago

          Seems to depend on geography. I didn’t see a single one in August in Hungary or the Balkans. Maybe they are more likely to come out in the northern part of the range?

          • Mattia from Italy 3 weeks ago

            It depends on the hot climate. The Hungarian plain is one of the hottest place in Europe during summer (and in winter is very foggy… all in all not the best climate!). Even the Alpine Marmots in the Alps on southern sunny slopes stay in dens during the day in the most hotter weeks of summer, and come out at night. Climate in Vienna, or on Hungarian hills, is more friendly and you can watch Sousliks without problems even in August.

    • Janos Olah 3 weeks ago

      Thanks for correction Vladimir!

  3. Author
    Ralf Bürglin 3 weeks ago

    I guess it’s a question of absolute temperatures. This summer was mild – also in Hungary. No reason to go into aestivation.

  4. Vladimir Dinets 3 weeks ago

    Could be. It was very hot when I was there.

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