Katinger Watt, Schleswig-Holstein:
The Katinger Watt is a nature reserve approximately 8 km west of Tönning.
Together with a friend, I visited the Katinger Watt during high tide in Early May and was surprised by the huge number of birds inhabiting the wetlands at this time of the year. Apart from the thousands of Barnacle Geese, I particularly enjoyed the breeding Pied Avocets. After spending some time watching the birds from the hides erected and maintained by the German Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union (NABU), we drove to the Eider Barrage. Germany’s largest coastal protection structure was completed in 1973 and keeps several villages as well as Tönning safe from the occasionally very strong storm surges of the North Sea. Breeding colonies of Arctic Terns as well as Black-headed Gulls can be found on the rocky shore in front of the barrage and offer a great spectacle.
I had a fantastic time observing the terns catching fish from close quarters. Another superb birding adventure awaited me in early June when I visited the little island of Helgoland in the North Sea – check out the coming post!