Ungeheuerwiesen in winter

KornweiheThis winter wildlife heaven is often full of birds. Probably the most spectacular (and noisy) are the thrushes and European Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) to feast on the unfrozen meadows. Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus) winter out on the remote parts of the meadows, but will regularly hunt the lakes and wetland down to the shores of Blankensee. In the hawthorn and crab apple trees you might see Redwings (Turdus iliacus) and hundreds of Fieldfares (Turdus pilaris). Both Whooper Swan (Cygnus cygnus) and – to a lesser extent – Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus) over-winter near the Ungeheuerwiesen and occasionally drop in for a feed or even to spend the night. Frozen days might even reveal the usually shy Water Rail (Rallus aquaticus) as it is forced to leave the cover of vegetation in the ditches to find something to feed.

An excellent stake-out is an observation tower on the south-eastern edge of the Ungeheuerwiesen. Photographic opportunities are ideal for flying birds. It results in options to take pictures of the birds from above as well as to take pictures at eye level.

The area is protected as a nature conservation area and has a comparatively low intensity of use.

A varied vegetation structure of the fields and meadows ensures that not only wintering Rough-legged Buzzards (Buteo lagopus) will find many different feeding and resting areas. Also for other bird species of open agricultural land these meadows and fields are a highly welcome resting and wintering area.

Excursions to the areas near Berlin are always rewarding. During migration it is possible to see thousands of Eurasian Cranes (Grus grus). Besides the species mentioned above, other possible species to be observed from the tower hides are in late fall or winter few Eurasian Marsh-Harrier (Circus aeruginosus), some Northern Harrier and Merlin (Falco columbarius).

There are many airlines which use the Airport of Berlin. An alternative is to take a flight to Frankfurt/ Main, the international hub for Germany, and drive with a rented car in roughly half a day to Berlin and enjoy the landscape while almost flying over the autobahn.

Access to the wintering grounds for raptors are not difficult. There are other places in the nearer surroundings where access is a bit tricky. Please contact via the contact form if I can give further directions or even guide you!

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