20190325 full day Central Netherlands

Full day birding Central Netherlands at Hilversum and Oostvaardersplassen
Guide: Arjan Dwarshuis
Date: Monday 25th of March 2019

At 6:15 AM I picked up Paul and Kristin at their B&B in Amsterdam. Our mission was simple: to see as many European species as possible. This was their first visit to the Old World, so practically everything would be new. The weather, however, was not on our side, with a freezing cold, gale-force wind blowing from the northwest and the occasional shower streaming overhead.

We kicked-off at 7 AM in the forests northwest of Hilversum, at the border of Noord-Holland and Utrecht. Literally our first bird was a beautiful male Hawfinch on the parking lot, a good start! We made our way south through the forest listening carefully. After some time we found our first Eurasian Nuthatches and Marsh Tits and not long thereafter a territorial pair of Northern Goshawks. While watching these cracking accipiters I heard a Lesser-spotted Woodpecker singing in the distance. We rushed over there and obtained fantastic views of a cooperative pair foraging in the canopy. Simultaneously we ticked-off Coal Tit and Crested Tit and a little further along the trail we found a summer plumaged male Brambling and a nice flock of Goldfinches and Greenfinches. On our way back to the car we had great scope views of a Redwing.

Next up was Flevoland. On our way we had a very welcome coffee break. Our first stop in the Flevo was along the Oostvaardersdijk, where I had seen a cracking male Velvet Scoter a couple a days prior. Howling wind and horizontal rain showers made our mission next to impossible, but against all odds I finally found the bird way in the distance with a flock of Tufted Ducks. While watching this globally vulnerable species several Caspian Gulls of different age-groups drifted past. Another nice surprice was a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers alongside the usual Common Mergansers.

At the Natte Graslanden we made it to the hide just before another rainstorm drifted overhead. In the hour that followed we picked up a male Smew, Black-tailed Godwit including one islandica, Eurasian Spoonbill, Eurasian Curlew, Avocet, Cetti’s Warbler, a perched adult female Peregrine and a nice variety of ducks and waders.

Luckily it stayed dry during our walk to the Lepelaarsplassen which materialized in several cracking Willow Tits (completing all the Dutch tit-species), and a cooperative flock of Gold- and Firecrest. After playing hide-and-seek for a while with a Common Kingfisher we continued.

We battled the howling winds and found a female Bearded Reedling (Europe’s only monotypic family after the osprey-split) in an almost horizontal reedbed and searched in vain for white-tailed Eagle.

We finished a great day in the field with two showy male Bluethroats and I dropped Paul and Kristin at their hotel at 5:15 PM, just in time for a well-deserved beer and some bitterballen and 88 species of birds in the pocket.

UK NL Latin
Little Grebe Dodaars Tachybaptus ruficollis
Great Crested Grebe Fuut Podiceps cristatus
Great Cormorant Aalscholver Phalacrocorax carbo
Grey Heron Blauwe Reiger Ardea cinerea
Great Egret Grote Zilverreiger Ardea alba
Spoonbill Lepelaar Platalea leucorodia
Mute Swan Knobbelzwaan Cygnus olor
White-fronted Goose Kolgans Anser albifrons
Greylag Goose Grauwe Gans Anser anser
Barnacle Goose Brandgans Branta leucopsis
Shelduck Bergeend Tadorna tadorna
Wigeon Smient Anas penelope
Gadwall Krakeend Anas strepera
Mallard Wilde Eend Anas platyrhynchos
Northern Pintail Pijlstaart Anas acuta
Teal Wintertaling Anas crecca
Shoveler Slobeend Anas clypeata
Common Pochard Tafeleend Aythya ferina
Tufted Duck Kuifeend Aythya fuligula
Velvet Scoter Grote Zee-eend Melanitta fusca
Goldeneye Brilduiker Bucephala clangula
Smew Nonnetje Mergellus albellus
Red-breasted Merganser Middelste Zaagbek Mergus serrator
Goosander Grote Zaagbek Mergus merganser
Marsh-Harrier Bruine Kiekendief Circus aeruginosus
Sparrowhawk Sperwer Accipiter nisus
Northern Goshawk Havik Accipiter gentilis
Buzzard Buizerd Buteo buteo
Peregrine Falcon Slechtvalk Falco peregrinus
Moorhen Waterhoen Gallinula chloropus
Coot Meerkoet Fulica atra
Oystercatcher Scholekster Haematopus ostralegus
Avocet Kluut Recurvirostra avosetta
Lapwing Kievit Vanellus vanellus
Golden-Plover Goudplevier Pluvialis apricaria
Ringed Plover Bontbekplevier Charadrius hiaticula
Black-tailed Godwit Grutto Limosa limosa
Curlew Wulp Numenius arquata
Redshank Tureluur Tringa totanus
Dunlin Bonte Strandloper Calidris alpina
Ruff Kemphaan Philomachus pugnax
Common Gull Stormmeeuw Larus canus
Great Black-backed Gull Grote Mantelmeeuw Larus marinus
Herring Gull Zilvermeeuw Larus argentatus
Caspian Gull Pontische Meeuw Larus cachinans
Lesser Black-backed Gull Kleine Mantelmeeuw Larus graellsii
Black-headed Gull Kokmeeuw Larus ridibundus
Wood-Pigeon Houtduif Columba palumbus
Collared-Dove Turkse Tortel Streptopelia decaocto
Kingfisher IJsvogel Alcedo atthis
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Kleine Bonte Specht Dendrocopos minor
Greater Spotted Woodpecker Grote Bonte Specht Dendrocopos major
Sand Martin Oeverzwaluw Riparia riparia
White Wagtail Witte Kwikstaart Motacilla alba
Meadow Pipit Graspieper Anthus pratensis
Water Pipit Waterpieper Anthus spinoletta
Goldcrest Goudhaan Regulus regulus
Firecrest Vuurgoudhaan Regulus ignicapillus
Wren Winterkoning Troglodytes troglodytes
Dunnock Heggemus Prunella modularis
Blackbird Merel Turdus merula
Redwing Koperwiek Turdus iliacus
Chiffchaff Tjiftjaf Phylloscopus collybita
Blackcap Zwartkop Sylvia atricapilla
Robin Roodborst Erithacus rubecula
Bluethroat Blauwborst Luscinia cyanecula
Bearded Tit Baardman Panurus biarmicus
Long-tailed Tit Staartmees Aegithalos caudatus
Marsh Tit Glanskop Poecile palustris
Willow Tit Matkop Poecile montanus
Coal Tit Zwarte Mees Periparus ater
Crested Tit Kuifmees Lophophanes cristatus
Great Tit Koolmees Parus major
Blue Tit Pimpelmees Cyanistes caeruleus
Nuthatch Boomklever Sitta europaea
Short-toed Treecreeper Boomkruiper Certhia brachydactyla
Jay Gaai Garrulus glandarius
Magpie Ekster Pica pica
Jackdaw Kauw Corvus monedula
Carrion Crow Zwarte Kraai Corvus corone
Raven Raaf Corvus corax
Starling Spreeuw Sturnus vulgaris
Chaffinch Vink Fringilla coelebs
Brambling Keep Fringilla montifringilla
Greenfinch Groenling Carduelis chloris
Goldfinch Putter Carduelis carduelis
Hawfinch Appelvink Coccothraustes coccothraustes
Reed Bunting Rietgors Emberiza schoeniclus

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