Orlova Chuka Cave

Welcome to one of the bat roost of international importance for the conservation of the European populations of bats! A colony of more than 12 000 bats from 4 species spends the winter here: the greater horseshoe bat, the Mediterranean horseshoe bat, the Mehely’s horseshoe bat and the greater mouse-eared bat. Orlova Chuka Cave is the most important winter roost of the Mediterranean horseshoe and mehely’s horseshoe bats in the whole country!

Bulgaria boasts 33 out of the 35 bat species which can be found in Europe. In different seasons of the year a total of 14 species of bats live in Orlova Chuka Cave:

  1. Greater horseshoe bat – Rhinolophus ferrumequinum
  2. Lesser horseshoe bat – Rhinolophus hipposideros
  3. Mediterranean horseshoe bat – Rhinolophus euryale
  4. Mehely’s horseshoe bat – Rhinolophus mehelyi
  5. Geoffroy’s bat – Myotis emarginatus
  6. Greater mouse-eared bat – Myotis myotis
  7. Lesser mouse-eared bat - Myotis blythii
  8. Schreiber’s bent-winged bat – Miniopterus schreibersi
  9. Long-fingered bat - Myotis capaccinii
  10. Daubenton’s bat – Myotis daubentonii
  11. Serotine bat - Eptesicus serotinus
  12. Savi’s pipistrelle batеHypsugo savii
  13. Noctule bat – Nyctalus noctula
  14. Common pipistrelle bat – Pipistrellus pipistrellus

All bats in Bulgaria are under the protection of the national Biodiversity Act! Four of the species inhabiting the Orlova Chuka Cave are ialso ncluded in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: the Schreiber’s bent-winged bat, the long-fingered bat, the Mediterranean horseshoe and Mehely’s horseshoe bats!