Monday, 21 February 2011


Wednesday morning went to a town called Veere,where there is an amazing spire on the town church, and a large expanse of water where several slavonian and black necked grebes could be seen fishing.
After that we made our way to a nearby reserve in the dunes,but it was almost a bird free zone with only 4 crossbills and a buzzard seen,there was an interesting raptor watch point up a tower,but sadly no raptors.There were quite a few ponies grazing here they were squat chunky and black I wondered later if they were descended from pit ponies?On the way back to HQ a short eared owl was spotted hunting over a grassy field,the highlight of the day.
Back to the hostel for meat balls and pasta,bavarian lager and an evening of unadulterated cribbage.

Thursday a day of rest for the drivers,we split into three groups of six and set off on foot  in different directions around the local woodland.My group went last and went down the road to the east,within minutes a flock of small birds was located in the top of the pines and included goldcrest,coal tit,crested tit,long tailed tit,treecreeper and blue tit.A few yards further on and a lesser spotted woodpecker was seen sitting in a silver birch and its mate drumming nearby.Great spotted was seen and then a large dark woodpecker was seen briefly flying away calling, the mythical Black Woodpecker!Great tit and nuthatch followed and a wood lark was seen flying over,at the road junction ?left or right?luckily left won ans soon another black woodpecker was seen,this time it was just visible through the undergrowth on a tree trunk,before disappearing from view again,however at this point a buzzard started wheeling overhead,which must have spooked the woodpecker and it flew right over our heads into the woods the other side of the road!I must now discover a new mythical bird to find.What a superb morning and only a short distance from the hostel.
During the walk we had met an english birder living there who told us there were two pairs of BWs in the area,so we may have seen one of each pair,he also told us of a nearby area of pools and reedbeds where great egrets could be found,before dinner a few of us had a quick reccy and found a single great white egret.
NUTHATCH collecting moss
One of a million coot in Holland,strangely I didn`t see a single moorhen.

Friday,the last full day,went back to the nearby pools and added bewick swan and white fronted geese to our list,it was a raw February day and a complete contrast to the pleasant weather of the rest of the week,after this I decided to return to Brouwersdam,while the others went into Belgium for the day.More Red breasted mergansers,a female smew,more seals,a large raft of common scoters off shore and finally a pink footed goose and a bean goose in a road side field were the pick of the day.

GREY SEAL the long straight forehead and nose are diagnostic.
SMEW the red headed female.
RBM male and female
RED BREASTED MERGANSER a close inspection reveals the serrated bill which gives the family name of SAWBILL.

PINK FOOTED GOOSE the only one left in southern Holland?
Couldn`t possibly leave Holland without a windmill photo,no mouse no clogs though.

1 comment:

  1. Great photos Phil looks like you had a great time. Some good birds seen and the elusive Black Woodpecker !!!