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The Wadden side of Texel breathes a different atmosphere from the dune filled western side where the beaches border the North Sea. Along the Wadden dike you will find numerous special nature areas, which form important hatch- and feeding places for numerous birds.
This outer dike area is behind the dike of the reclaimed land of the Eendracht. Salt marshes are the higher parts at the foot of the dike. The salt marsh area is a whopping 6,700 hectare and undoubtedly one of the busiest bird areas of Texel.
Bird lovers find themselves in paradise! You have an excellent view on breeding stilt walkers and large terns from the Wadden dike. They make eager use of the shell islands, which were constructed in the area. Once this was farmland. Now, Utopia is a pleasant resting area for the birds. Lots of meadow birds land a bit further, in Drivers’ Bird meadow de Bol. These flowery grasslands are particularly busy in the spring with meadow birds, but also shorebirds come here to flee the high tide.
This was just wadden area before 1977, when the new Wadden dike was constructed. The reclamation provided a marshy plain with shallow brackish water full of worms, prawn and small fish. Special bird only islands were also constructed here. Another new area is De Zandkes.
This small reclaimed area, with brackish water, lies between the old and the new Wadden dike. The small waterways are partly natural and partly man-made. Especially, waders and ducks can be found here, but also shelducks, black-tailed godwits and avocets show themselves regularly.
Slightly further along the Wadden dike lies the diked area Ottersaat where among others common terns, avocets and gulls breed on the islands. The water is brackish. The vegetation is adjusted accordingly with plants such as strawberry clover, sea aster and glasswort. Dijkmanshuizen is also close by, this too is managed by the Society for preservation of nature monuments in the Netherlands. 13 endangered plant species can be found in this diverse area with wet and dry parts!
The Society for preservation of nature monuments has plotted a scenic bicycle tour of 35 kilometres which passes all the mentioned nature reserves. We highly recommend the tour! Tip: many of the areas have bird observatories. You will find an overview at www.vogelkijkhut.nl.