Germany - North Eifel  5 - 9 July 2007
Birding trip report John van der Woude  www.jvanderw.nl  

This diverse area, so close to Holland, was a sort of revelation for us. There is a new national park (Eifel), which includes a very interesting former military terrain, and the high moors bordering Belgium produced a breeding species which, at just 21 km from the Dutch border, we had not anticipated at all: Nutcracker.
We camped at the lovely Camp Hammer, right at the river Rur (with Grey Wagtail, Kingfisher and Dipper).
All sites are on the 1:25.000 map 'Monschauer Land Rurseengebiet' (Wanderkarte nr. 3 des Eifelvereins).


Beech forest along the stream uphill (=South) from the Hammer campsite, which is SE of Simmerath/Eicherscheid. Black Woodpecker here.


Typical enclosed scenery East of Eicherscheid. Yellowhammer, Fieldfare.


Small part of the former military terrain Dreiborner Hochfläche, now part of the new Eifel national park. Red-backed Shrike, Skylark.


Same area, with Red-backed Shrike in the middle. To get here take road B266 East from Einruhr (which is East of Simmerath), and park at or near the start of the entrance road to Burg Vogelsang. From about 500 m on this entrance road go left and follow the trail to Wollseifen for about 1 km. 


Brackvenn high moor N of road L214 West of Mützenich (this area is just in Belgium). Very promising but rather birdless when we were there.


Blackish stream in the western part of the Allgemeines Venn, another high moor N of Brackvenn.


The site of our Nutcrackers (three), W of the Allgemeines Venn.


Many Lacerta agilis on the wooden trails across the Brackvenn.


Brackvenn's botanical highlight, halfway the wooden trail.

Notable species:

Black Kite
Red Kite
Buzzard
Turtle Dove
Kingfisher
Black Woodpecker
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker
Sky Lark
Meadow Pipit
Grey Wagtail
Dipper
Black Redstart
Fieldfare
Mistle Thrush
Whitethroat
Wood Warbler
Spotted Flycatcher
Long-tailed Tit
Marsh Tit
Crested Tit
Coal Tit
Nuthatch
Red-backed Shrike
Nutcracker
Serin
Siskin
Bullfinch
Hawfinch
Yellowhammer