Breeding spoonbills, for the first time in the eastern Netherlands

This is a spoonbill video.

From the Dutch government forestry department:

12 July 2006

For the first time in history, there is successful breeding by Eurasian spoonbills along the IJssel river [in the eastern Netherlands].

The nest is in a small nesting colony of grey herons in the Buitenwaarden near Wijhe village, a nature reserve of the Staatsbosbeheer (forestry department).

The three chicks are expected to fly within a week.

Spoonbills breed only at a few places in Europe, of which The Netherlands is northernmost. …

In the marshy and empty Netherlands of long ago, the spoonbill used to be an important breeding bird.

By draining marshes and building dikes around rivers and deltas, however, the possibility for breeding for spoonbills decreased drastically.

Already before 1900, the last colonies of over a thousand breeding couples disappeared.

After 1900, for a long time the total number of breeding couples for the whole country did not exceed 500, with a minimum of 150 pairs in 1969.

Since then, the spoonbill has recovered slowly.

About 1990, 500 couples were counted again, and in 1995 there were even over 700.

Important nesting colonies today are Oostvaardersplassen and Lepelaarsplassen [in the central Netherlands], big dune lakes and some Wadden islands, including Texel [all in the western and northern Netherlands].

1 thought on “Breeding spoonbills, for the first time in the eastern Netherlands

  1. Pingback: Early return of spoonbills to Texel island | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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