Saturday, 17 August 2013

Netherlands Holiday: part 2 of 4 17-20th of July 2013

(Story continued from part 1)

(I have also included Dutch and Shetland names to birds. Dutch names= Du and Shetland names= Sh)

Wednesday the 17th

This morning Dad and I cycled to the small lake 

A Comorant (Du=Aalscholver)

A crocodile or a lump of wood

A White water lily

Juvenile Robin (Du=Roodborst)

Today we went to a place called Ronostrand, it had a lake and an artificial beach (either you went here or traveled 100 kilometers to the coast where there was an actual beach).

When we arrived the beach was already filling up with people

A view from the south end of the lake

Black-headed Gull (Du=Kokmeeuw)

My first picture of a Great-crested Grebe (Du=Fuut),
I saw my first ones at the Hams, in the North Mainland of Shetland while out there during a trip with my Grandad and Mam.
It was during the summer of 2008 and all I can remember was two of these in summer plumage swimming together on a small loch. 

A female Chaffinch (Du=Vink) with some sort of fly (dragon?)

A baby Blue Tit (Du=Pimpelmees) from below,
quite hard to photograph when they are moving about from branch to branch

Also I spotted a strange pinky breasted bird farther along the path, I quickly started taking pictures of it until a Nuthatch (Du=)popped into sight on the same tree, I turned my attention to the Nuthatch and took several photos of it before it shimmied up a branch and disappeared.
After that I tried to relocate the pinky breasted bird and within a minute I found it again and started  taking tons of photos before it disappeared too and when I had taken a look at my pictures of the pinky breasted it turned out to be a male Chaffinch (Du=), well it was still worth the time to get photos of such a nice bird.

Thursday the 18th
A Magpie (Du=Ekster)

A leopard-tiger hybrid

The top sign is the name of the street we were staying at.

This morning we went to where Anne went horse riding.

While Anne was working with the horse and pony, Dad and I were being shown around the place by the man who owned the land and he grew lots of different types of trees to sell, he also had a large vegetable plot and gardens which were very good for wildlife, he was a very interesting man and he had lots of stories to tell us
Anne working with the Horse and Pony

A Thistle specie

A Swallow (Du=Boerenzwaluw) with its chicks

A bit of glass was taking out of the door and replaced with a bit of ply-wood so the Swallows can fly in and out of it when the door is closed.

The nest of a Wren, it only takes them one or two days to make one like this.
The male will make several and the female will pick the one she likes the best to lay her eggs in.
Here's a true story I heard of one Wrens nest, one day some bairns had been working with the horses and when they'd finished they took the bridles off the horses and hanged them back in the shed then the next day when they came back to get the bridles, they found one of them had a Wrens nest in them.

A very small dog which is 18 years old (not sure what breed it is)

A chicken chick


This Stork nest was used a year or two ago by a pair of white storks, they had one chick and the people who lived near the nest got worried since they had not seen the parents at the nest for a few days, when they checked the nest they found the chick dead with a bit of rope round it, the rope had been collected by the Storks to make the nest.

An Ant colony, all the white stuff is ant larvae 

This is being used for trying leaves to make tea

The iconic Holland clogs

In the afternoon we went to a nature reserve which had a several breeding pairs of Common Crane

This is a massive bench
(see comparison below)

We went to the watchtower on the right side of the map

The watchtower

While up in the watchtower we didn't see a single Common Crane but we did see two pairs of White Stork.

A mushroom

After visiting the Nature Reserve we headed to a small village that was built by the inmates of a prison.

The bee with the red spot in the middle is the queen

Part of the prison which is still in use

Anyone see the teapot man?

A female House Sparrow (Du=Huismus)

Now I thought this was amazing when I saw it, I wish I could get a bird to fly into my hand and eat out of it.
(The bird is a young Great Tit, Du=Koolmees)
(well I nearly got some ducks to eat out of my hand but they weren't fully wild)

And finally for today, we went to a Chinese Restaurant, it had a lake outside it which was full of different species of birds.

Black-headed Gull (Du=Kokmeeuw) with a ring on its right foot

A Common Tern (Du=Visdiefje)

A Canada Goose (Du=Canadese gans) with a neck collar, it was one of two birds with collars

wild domesticated Geese

Three Egyptian Geese (Du=Nilgans) chicks

One of the parents

Parent and young

Great-crested Grebe (Du=Fuut) and one of its chicks

One of the young birds

A wooden Buddha

Friday the 19th

This morning Marilyn and I cycled to a marshland with several lakes where we saw lots of different species of wildlife including Deer, Geese, Buzzards, Warblers, Finches
A Buzzard (Du=Buizerd)

A Mallard (Sh=Stock Deuk or Du=Wilde eend) and a Carrion Crow (Du=Zwarte Kraai)

We got to watch two deer chase after each other before they noticed us and ran separate ways

The Buzzards prey was a bit to big for it to catch

This afternoon we went for a look about Groningen.

The Groningen Museum 

This is used to swing heavy objects in to the upper floors of buildings

not something you'd see in Shetland

A Belgium Waffle Stand

The Martini Tower

The tower bells, the original ones were thrown out the top of the tower by the Germans in World War Two and melted down.

Some views from the tower 

The Clock

After we had finished walking down the 250 steps of the tower we headed to a restaurant were we had some thing to eat.

Town Hall?

We went to a tourist information place and then we took a walk along the canals

A house boat

We were walking along the canal and found some gardens, 
they had arches and tunnels made into the hedges.

A yellow ladybird and some kind of larvae


A hedge in the shape of a crown

A proper House boat with two bedrooms on top

A Mallard (Du=Wilde eend)Duckling

Now how did those get up there?

This mark is machine gun fire from when the Canadians liberated Groningen during World War Two.
(thanks to Marin for the translation)

A chalk drawing

The museum

The Groningen train station

Saturday the 20th

This morning Dad and I cycled a marshland area

My first Stonechat (Du=Roodborsttapuit)

                                             A female Stonechat (Du=Roodborsttapuit)
About five minutes before I took this picture a Buzzard had sat itself on the roof of the Tractor

Fungi on an old tree stump

This afternoon all of us (besides Abby and Marin) took a cycle to the Hunebedden stones for a picnic.
(Info about the stones below)

The Hunebedden Stone group D1

Some info on the Stones


White Stork (Du=Ooievaar) with a leg ring

Oil or gas fracking

While out cycling we spotted a Jay, this was my first Jay and I only got a glimpse of it before it disappeared into a tree.

We later stopped outside a Cafe and had a walk into a nearby forest 


We also found some feathers from a bird it had either been killed or had been doing very extensive preening, we also found a woodpecker feather.

When we had finished going through the forest we headed to the Cafe and had something to eat

Stone and metal sheep

This evening Marilyn, Mairi and I all went looking for a roost flock of Spoonbills which had been seen on a marshland south of Groningen.

A Male Pheasant (Du=Fazant)

Spoonbill (Du=Lepelaar) in flight,

A "white spotted" Bluethroat (Du=Blauwborst)

A Windmill on top of a house type thing

Two juvenile White Storks (Du=Ooievaar) in the nest

(Story continued on part 3 of our "Netherlands Holiday")


  1. White Spotted Bluethroat! well spotted! love seeing all your photos.

  2. All the information of the Netherlands is good. Nice photography please try to provide some more information of all these pictures.

  3. I went last year on holiday in Amsterdam and there were a lot of houseboats in the canals, you can also rent one, how awesome is that!
    just type in google houseboat amsterdam and you can find it.
    There are also a lot of beautiful nature parks in amsterdam!