Aladağlar is home to many different and important bird species. Many bird watchers
visit Aladağlar every year, especially around may. Caspian snow cock (Tetraogallus
caspius), Lammergeier (Gypaetus arbatus) and Golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) are
among the most popular birds.Other Bird Species: Other species you may see here are
Radde’s Accentor, Crimson-winged Finch, Alpine Accentor, Red-fronted Serin, Chukars,
Wallcreeper, Snowfinch, Alpine Chough, Chough, Finsch’s Wheatear, Rose-colored
Starling and Olivaceous Warbler.
Having been living and mountaineering professionally in Aladağlar for several years, Caspian snowcock are very well known to us. Most of the time we can see them fly with the naked eye and hear their songs. We even have moments with them staring at each other. Sometimes they fly above us and sometimes we watch them fly below from the top of the mountains. They always do share our solitude in the mountains. If you also want to experience living with them, we recommend camping overnight in Akşam Pınarı or Vali Konağı. This way you may wake up to their magnificent songs and feel like you’re in paradise.
Main Birdwatching Spots:
The most important birdwatching spot in Aladağlar is without doubt the Arpalık Yayla.
Arpalık plateau (2200 mt.) For Caspian snowcock, you should be here
very early in the morning, before sunrise around 03:30 - 04:00. There is a dirt road
just to the right of the Mountain hut in Demirkazık village, take that road and you
will start climbing. When in junction, take the left to continue climbing.In a little while,
you’ll reach the Sokullupınar Campground.Hereyou should take left and continue
towards Arpalık Yayla. However the road gets steeper at that point, you may need to
enter the road with a velocity and pay more attention after that.
Mostly regular car can climb this part. If your vehicle would not climb, you may
need to park there and walk the rest for nearly 50 minutes. You also have the option
to book a jeep transfer from the Demirkazık village directly to Arpalık Yayla, which takes
up about 20 minutes. After the drive you can immediately start birdwatching without
any need for walking. However, the weather is very chilly in early mornings, you need
to gear up accordingly. We also recommend carrying a thermos flask with hot water.
This placealso may be a little crowded thanks to its popularity as a birdwatching spot.
Chrome mine, Susuz tepe.2300mt. Another birding spot is Susuz Tepe, which is
located in Maden Boğazı.This was a chromium mine many years ago. There’s a dirt
road on the right in the entrance of Pınarbaşı village, which will take you directly to the mine. However, it is impossible with a standard vehicle, so we recommend you to rent a jeep. The road may also be partially blocked with snow in may, so you may need to walk
a little. You will also come across many flocks of wild goats.
Cımbar Valley (1600 mt.) Cımbar Valley is quite popular as a birding
spot, as well as it is for rock climbing. It is especially a habitat of Alpine Chough. You
can reach the entrance of the valley with a standart vehicle. By making a short walking
tour inside the valley, you may expect to see many different species including and
perhaps the most important of them all, the Golden eagle (Agulia chrysaetos).
Sarımehmetler Camp Site (1600 mt.) It is located in the south part of Aladağlar.
You may reach here with a standard vehicle, by taking the dirt road that comes after
Martı Mahallesi in Çukurbağ. 500 meters after the bridge, take the right road which will take you directly to Sarımehmetler, which is aroud 8 km.s from Martı Mahallesi.
The terrain is mostly woods, so you may expect to see many different mammals and
birds. On the way, you have a good chance to see a Golden eagle (Agulia chrysaetos) hunting for ground squirrels.
Caspian Snowcock. ph.S.Bekir
Bird watchers in Arpalık plateau. ph:R.İnce
Bird watchers in Chromiun mine. ph:R.İnce