Wildlife of the Netherlands (Europe)
"The Netherlands is like one giant wetland nature reserve with wildlife all year."
I recommend the European Birds (premium link) activity.
The Netherlands is on the coast of northern Europe. I believe this is one of the top destinations for winter birdwatching in Europe. It is in the centre of a region that extends approximately from Britain to Germany where large numbers of overwintering geese, ducks, waders (shorebirds in American English) and other waterbirds are found. The Netherlands has vast areas of wet fields which are prime habitat for these overwintering birds.
The wetlands are also good in the summer with dragonflies, butterflies, flowers and still plenty of birds. Meanwhile, Dutch woodland has birds, mammals and other wildlife all year round including rarer species such as Black Woodpecker.
There seem to be improvements to the national parks http://www.nationaalpark.nl http://www.nationaalpark.nl/documents/documents/np-brochure-engels.pdf every time I visit. These include large-scale projects to create wildlife corridors and reintroductions of rare or locally-extinct species. I think this is part of an atmosphere of conservation that helps make the Netherlands such a good place to visit.
Birds of the Netherlands
The Netherlands could be described as being in "north-west Europe". Birds that prefer a more southerly, warmer climate (such as the bee-eater and Hoopoe) are either rarer or not found here. There are lots of birdwatchers http://www.waarneming.nl in the Netherlands.
One of the highlights of hiking or wildlife watching in the Netherlands are the islands just off the coast. Texel is covered as a separate location and Schiermonnikoog is site 3 in the Lauwersmeer location. Other islands include Terschelling (which is also a popular tourist destination) with breeding Spoonbill and Vlieland which is popular with birdwatchers who look for rare/vagrant birds particularly in September/October.
There are 416 species of bird that are found in Europe (ignoring vagrants and very rare birds). The Netherlands has 218 of these species (ignoring some of the waders/shorebirds that are only likely during passage). 93 species of bird are likely in the Netherlands (by which I mean this is approximately the number you might see in a week of typical birdwatching). 52 species are only possible in the summer (for example warblers) and 47 are only possible in the winter (for example geese).
This article is part of the Nature Travel Guide and was published on October 19th 2018.
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