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The Blankaart Reserve lies on the east bank of the Yser (Ijzer) river in western Belgium. Habitats include the shallow and heavily vegetated Lake Blankaart, covering about 70ha and derived from ancient peat cutting as well as marshes with extensive reedbeds and wet meadows.
Formerly well-known as a breeding site for Black-tailed Godwit and other species including both bitterns, Garganey, Ruff and Marsh Harrier, Blankaart has now lost many of these but with careful management some may return. During passage periods a wide range of waders occurs and includes Spotted Redshank and Little Stint.
In winter large numbers of geese are found here as well as Bewick's Swan.
Birds you can see here include:
Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Great Cormorant, Great Bittern, Grey Heron, Bewick's Swan, Taiga Bean Goose, Pink-footed Goose, Eurasian Wigeon, Common Teal, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Garganey, Northern Shoveler, Western Marsh Harrier, Hen Harrier, Pied Avocet, Little Stint, Dunlin, Ruff, Black-tailed Godwit, Spotted Redshank, Common Redshank, Common Greenshank, Green Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Little Gull, Black Tern, Short-eared Owl, Cetti's Warbler, Common Grasshopper Warbler, Savi's Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Reed Bunting
History and Use
Areas of Interest
Access and Facilities
To reach Blankaart follow the coastal road west from Oostende to the Yser and then inland to Blankaart near Woumen, about 8km south of Diksmuide and just west of the N369.
The reserve itself requires a permit to enter but much can be seen from public roads and paths in the area.
Content and images originally posted by Steve