In Croatia there are many Ornithological (Bird) Zones and most of them are good for bird watching and some of them for photographing birds. The built hides can be used for bird watching and some of them for photographing birds too. Due to distance, sun position, angle of view most of them are not suitable for taking photos. Local guides and staff are not trained to give the support for photographers. 2nd problem is hunters and poachers. Out of National Parks, in practice, hunters take care about nature in Croatia. Many poachers kill the birds even in protected zones. Of course on each Sunday, hunters have their regular orgies too. So, the birds are very smart and shy and Photographing birds in Croatia is not an easy task. According to my experience the only effectively protected zone of hunters is Kopački Rit Nature Park with a partially skilled staff.
Below is the map of some Bird Zones I have used during last 5 years for bird watching and photography. Be sure a lot of data is missing. Take it at your own risk. Due to local situation I’m not ready to publish all my data. Some wildlife photographers share the animals’ distribution data with hunters and to get a good photo shot cooperate with them. Some wildlife photographers are hunters too.
From my point of view it’s hard to make a difference between hunters and poachers. I can’t explain the passion of killing animals.
For migratory species the best time is during spring and fall migrations (end of February to May and end of August to end of November). During winter time some birds species winter in Croatia, mostly at the Adriatic coast zone.
Important bird areas in Croatia are shown in the map below. It doesn’t mean you can’t birding in other areas. The map is based on reference Natura 2000 Directive of Croatia. The map can be opened in new large window too.