Schleswig Holstein 13 to 15 November 2015

This was a weekend visit by Roger White, Robin Prytherch, Ken Hall and Chris Adams to the northern part of Schleswig Holstein up to the Danish Border.  As can be seen from the photos the weather was generally dull and there was a fair bit of rain. We flew from Bristol to Hamburg where we picked up a car and drove to Gelting which is on the Baltic coast near Kappeln. This is a commentary on the main sites visited on the Baltic and North Sea coasts.

Geltinger Birk is a large peninsula with muddy shores, marshland, some woodland and a large lake with islands. A single Waxwing was at the car park P1010512near the mill. On the large lagoon and the adjacent shore were large numbers of waterfowl, which included Greylag Geese, Eider, Scaup, Red-breasted Merganser, Wigeon, Shoveler and Pintail. On the eastern side of the P1010528peninsula were more EiderCommon Scoter, Mergansers, Goldeneye and good numbers of Barnacle and White-fronted Geese on the wet meadows. Lapwings were the only waders.

Schlei Fiord is best viewed from the north shore, and it is possible to walk towards the spit of land that encloses the large lagoon. Duck on the water included Goldeneye and Merganser. There were Barnacle and Greylag Geese and a very large flock of Golden Plover on the muddy shore.

P1010542The whole of the North Sea coast from Husum to the Danish border is flat with a long dyke, behind which are the polders (Koogs), a lot of which are preserved wetlands, with marsh, reedbeds and extensive stretches of open water.  We looked at Rickelsbüller Koog, Hauke Haien Koog and Beltringharger Koog. As weP1010540ll as huge numbers of geese, and a lot of duck,  there were large flocks of waders. The highlights included 20,000 + Barnacles, Whooper and Bewick Swans, Pink-footed and Brent Geese, Smew, and enormous wader flocks coming inland on the rising tide, mostly Dunlin, Grey and Golden Plover, Oystercatchers, Avocets. On the salt marsh were small flocks of Twite.

The reported Gyr Falcon was not seen but there were several Hen Harriers, and close view of Rough-legged Buzzard

On the return P1010562journey to Hamburg during further stops on the Baltic coast we added , Slavonian and Red-necked Grebe, Goosander, more Smew, Long-tailed Duck and a Short-eared Owl which flew in from the sea.

The total of 88 species in 3 days was a lot more than expected.  Further information on this and on other trips can be obtained from Roger on

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