Wigeons, other Texel island ducks

Wigeons, 10 March 2016

Still 10 March 2016 on Texel island. After we were at Dijkmanshuizen nature reserve, we continued to De Zandkes nature reserve. Scores of wigeons were present.

Wigeons, Texel, 10 March 2016

There were two teal couples and a tufted duck couple as well, but mainly wigeons.

Wigeons grazing, 10 March 2016

Some wigeons swimming, some grazing.

Wigeons grazing, Texel, 10 March 2016

While most wigeons grazed, some watched whether there was any danger.

Wigeons grazing, Texel, Zandkes, 10 March 2016

These wigeons marked the end of the last full day of our stay on Texel.

Texel salt water and fresh water: here.

Texel, Dijkmanshuizen, de Bol changes: here.

Little egret, little grebe, black-tailed godwit

Black-headed gull on fence, 10 March 2016

Still 10 March 2016 on Texel island. After leaving De Schans fort, we continued to the north. Just south of Oudeschild village was this black-headed gull; already with a summer plumage dark brown head, while most of its colleagues were still in winter plumage.

Little egret, 10 March 2016

Close to the gull, in a meadow was this little egret. Behind the egret was a curlew, which flew away soon.

North of Oudeschild is Ottersaat nature reserve. Many brent geese there.

Dijkmanshuizen, 10 March 2016

Still more to the north is Dijkmanshuizen nature reserve.

Also many brent geese.

Barnacle geese, 10 March 2016

Barnacle geese as well.

Barnacle geese, on 10 March 2016

Just in front of the hide, a little grebe swims.

Shovelers, 10 March 2016

Northern shovelers.

Northern lapwings. Teal. Ruffs.

Black-tailed godwit flying, Texel, 10 March 2016

A black-tailed godwit: standing in shallow water, flying and calling. One of the first birds of its species back from wintering in Africa.

This was our last full day on Texel island. However, there will be another blog post on that day.

Fieldfares and redwings on Texel island

Fieldfares and mistle thrush, 10 March 2016

After 9 March 2016 on Texel island came 10 March. Where we saw this fieldfare and this mistle thrush.

That day, we were in the eastern part of the island, close to the Wadden Sea dike.

First, the Molenkolk nature reserve. Scores of curlews. Oystercatchers. Shelducks. Egyptian geese.

Then, we continued to an old fort, originally from the sixteenth century: De Schans.

A common pochard couple swimming in the moat. Grey lag geese. Mallards. Coots. Wigeons.

Fieldfares, Texel, 10 March 2016

On a meadow, there were scores of fieldfares and mistle thruhes.

Fieldfare, Texel, 10 March 2016

Redwing and fieldfare, Texel, 10 March 2016

Also some redwings.

Redwing and mistle thrush, on Texel, 10 March 2016

Redwing, 10 March 2016

And some starlings.

Brent geese and plants of Texel island

This video is about brent geese (Branta bernicla) grazing on grassland.

After 8 March 2016 on Texel island came 9 March. When we saw brent geese at the De Petten nature reserve.

Then, a wildlife ranger pointed out tundra vole dens in the grassland near the Mokbaai bay.

We continued with the ranger to De Geul nature reserve. Normally not open to the public as there was spoonbill nesting season.

Many great cormorants nesting.

Hairy bittercress flowers tell that spring is coming, though it is still rather cold.

Texel plants: here.

Lesser water-plantain on Texel: here.

Wintergreen on Texel: here.

Insects of the Geul on Texel: here.

Wren and sperm whale on Texel island

Wren on tree, 8 March 2016

After 7 March 2016 on Texel island came 8 March. When we saw this wren in the forest.

Earlier, east of Den Hoorn, a skylark flying and singing.

Near the Novalishoeve farm, a flock of jackdaws.

A greenfinch.

In the forest, a song thrush sings. A great tit.

A chaffinch sings.

Wood ear fungi on a fallen branch.

We arrive at Ecomare museum, and at their animal rehab center.

In the birds’ center at the moment mainly gannets. And one great cormorant. Other injured or sick birds brought to the center include herring gulls, lesser black-backed gulls, razorbills and guillemots.

In the harbour porpoise pool there are two porpoises. They beached when they were still very young, unable to survive in the North Sea not having learnt so from their mothers. In the pool they get herring and capelin fish.

Common seal, Ecomare, 8 March 2016

In the harbour seal rehab pools, some animals looked relaxed.

Finally, the new whale hall. Paid for by the sperm whale beached in December 2012 on Razende Bol islet near Texel. That whale turned out to have much valuable ambergris in its entrails. The ambergris meant enough money for a hall, big enough for the skeletons not only of the sperm whale, but also of the humpback whale beached also on Razende Bol a few days earlier; and of a killer whale.

Fin whale, beached on Texel, to Ecomare: here.

Texel sanderlings, turnstones and oystercatchers

Eider ducks, Texel, 7 March 2016

After 6 March 2016 on Texel island, came 7 March 2016 there. When we saw this flock of eider ducks flying past the beach.

We had arrived at the beach from the Pieter Rozenvlak walk in the sand dunes. Curlews calling. Meadow pipits. A flock of jackdaws.

Turnstones, sanderlings, gulls, 7 March 2016

On a jetty at the North Sea beach, sanderlings and turnstones on the foreground; herring gulls in the background.

Sanderling on Texel, 7 March 2016

Sometimes, a sanderling stretching.

Sanderling on Texel island, 7 March 2016

Sometimes, a sanderling from the jetty to the beach’s water line.

Seashells, 7 March 2016

Many seashells on the beach.

Oystercatchers, 7 March 2016

And a flock of oystercatchers. Standing …

Oystercatchers flying, 7 March 2016

… and flying.

Turnstone, 7 March 2016

Sometimes, ruddy turnstones found food in seashells.

Sanderlings on Texel beach, 7 March 2016

While some sanderlings looked for food, others cleaned their feathers.

Texel beach, 7 March 2016

After one last look at the sea we had to go back.

In a meadow in the sand dunes near Jan Ayeslag, horses and fieldfares.

Texel dunes in spring 2016: here. In May 2016: here.

Wren, sanderlings and snowdrops, 6 March 2016

Wren on treetop, 6 March 2016

On Sunday 6 March 2016, after our first full day on Texel island came the second day. In the Bollekamer nature reserve, this singing wren on the top of a dead tree.

Wren on branch, 6 March 2016

Then, the wren flew over the footpath to continue singing on a branch on the other side.

Ten curlews flying overhead.

At the beach: sanderlings.

As we returned, many teal in a lake. They called to each other.

Snowdrops, 6 March 2016

South of Den Hoorn village, many snowdrops grew.

Catkins, 6 March 2016

On a tree not far away, catkins.

Sanderlings and herring gulls, 5 March 2016

Bollekamer birds, Texel, 5 March 2016

In the afternoon of 5 March 2016, to the Bollekamer nature reserve on Texel island. Two gadwall duck couples in a lake. Lesser black-backed gulls. Shelducks. Mallards.

We continued to the beach.

Sanderling on Texel beach, 5 March 2016

On the beach: this sanderling.

Sanderling on Texel beach, on 5 March 2016

And this other sanderling.

Texel beach, 5 March 2016

And this beautiful cloudy sky.

Herring gulls, Texel, 5 March 2016

And these herring gulls.

Herring gull and sanderling, Texel, 5 March 2016

And this herring gull and sanderling, showing their size difference.

Herring gulls and sanderling, Texel, 5 March 2016

And common gulls.

Also oystercatchers.

Herring gull on pole, Texel, 5 March 2016

This herring gull rested on this beach pole.

Texel beach, on 5 March 2016

Finally, signs of the sunset to come. We went back.

Spoonbills, ducks and fungi on Texel island

De Petten, 5 March 2016

This photo shows nature reserve De Petten on Texel island on 5 March 2016. That 5 March was our first full day on Texel island. Cold. Frost in the morning. Just above zero degrees centigrade later in the day.

Just before De Petten, two male pheasants along the bicycle track.

At De Petten, a grey heron. Grey lag geese. Egyptian geese. A northern lapwing. A curlew calls.

About fifteen shelducks and some mallards swimming. A buzzard flying.

Near the Horsmeertjes lakes, a dunnock sings.

In the eastern lake a male northern shoveler swims.

A little grebe calls. A great crested grebe swims.

Two male common pochard and one female.


Six spoonbills fly overhead. Probably just back from their spring migration from Africa.

In the dunes south of the western lake, many winter stalkball fungi.

Moss, 5 March 2016

Moss grows there as well.

Grey lag geese, 5 March 2016

In a pool two grey lag geese swim, and talk to each other.

Reed bunting, 5 March 2016

A male reed bunting sings from a shrub.

Meadow pipits flying.

Kreeftenpolder, 5 March 2016

We passed the Kreeftenpolder dune valley.

Long-tailed tit, Texel, 5 March 2016

Blue tits and long-tailed tits on shrubs and trees.

Shelducks, other birds at Mokbaai, Texel, 5 March 2016

In the Mokbaai bay, about 200 shelducks. And other birds.

As we go back, near Den Hoorn village domestic pigeons on a bulb field.

Green sandpiper and spoonbill on Texel island

This is a green sandpiper video.

This morning, 10 March 2016, near the bank of the pond outside the window on Texel island: a green sandpiper.

A mallard couple swam in the pond as well.

A bit later, also close to the window: a male pheasant.

Yesterday, a spoonbill on the meadow a bit further.

We had also seen shelducks, Egyptian geese and 88 curlews on that meadow. And a kestrel on a traffic sign not far away.

There will be more posts on Texel on this blog; but first the photographs will have to be sorted out.