A city as a birding hotspot

Geese over Tata, HUngary

by Gyorgy Szimuly on November 5, 2010 · 4 comments

in Birding Western Palearctic

Geese  over Tata, Hungary

While I’ve been with an urge to explore  new and exotic birding destinations, I live in a city of an annually repeated birding spectacle. It is seasonal but the 4-5 winter months  make this little town stand out compared to other European urban areas.

Imagine this lake which is almost entirely surrounded by houses, roads, city lights are reflecting in the water in the dark and yet tens of thousands of waterbirds are retuning every evening to the lake for night roosting. The Old Lake of Tata is about a 200 hectares large water body, used for fishery purposes, is drained every winter. The mudflats and a central mud island attracts the majority of the birds like wild geese, ducks and gulls.

While in the ’80s Bean Goose was dominant today the Greater White-fronted Goose ensures the nomination for being this Ramsar site an internationally important wetland. All in all the population in the last five years is stable peaked at 32,000 geese (2008/09) (the lowest maximum was 25,400 in the winter of 2007/08, source: DINPI).

While this significant and important shelter will never be mentioned in the list of world’s top 100 birding destinations, it is definitely a highly recommended site to visit anytime between November and February. While I am writing these lines about 3,500 wild geese were flushed. The blast makes an incredible noise. I hear it from my room even when the windows are closed. They are so close to me. In a month the same will happen every night by 10 times more birds than today. Just breathtaking! It is something what every birdwatcher should experience at least once in a lifetime! Over 10 thousands people will feel this atmosphere on the last Saturday of November during the 10th Wild Geese Festival at the Old Lake.

Random Posts:

    GregLaden: Darwin on the Andean Condor: Charles Darwin wasn’t just some guy who discovered the central processes by which biology operates (
    Category:Bird Research

    CharlieMoores: A view from a new nest: “Charlie Moores joins birdingblogs.com – that’s right, the incredibly brilliant Charlie Moores is to
    Category:Birding Western Palearctic

    Alex Vargas: Cede Prudente, a great Bird-Photographer in Malaysian Borneo: Cede Prudente is an excellent reference of first class Bird-Photography in Malaysian Borneo and he s
    Category:Birding AsiaDigiscoping & Bird Photography


Similar Posts:

    DaleForbes:The Greatest Wild Goose Festival?: Quite possibly the coolest wild goose festival in the universe takes place every winter around a lak
    Category:Birding Western Palearctic

    Gyorgy Szimuly:Addicted to birdwatching: Szimi Style birding Shorebirds, bird conservation, travelling for birds and bird photography and rec
    Category:Birding Western Palearctic

    DaleForbes:Beautiful winter birding in Bükk Hills, Hungary: Last weekend I got to spend a wonderful day out in the Bükk Hills National Park (Bükki Nemzeti Park)
    Category:Birding Western Palearctic

Subscribe Now

If you enjoyed this post, you will definitely enjoy our others. Subscribe to the feed to get instantly updated for those awesome posts soon to come.

BirdingBlogs.com gives you top birding content every day!

  • http://outwalkingthedog.wordpress.com/ Out Walking the Dog

    Wow. That looks spectacular.

  • http://alpinebirds.blogspot.com DaleForbes

    Szimi, I may have only been there twice, but your Tata lies very close to my heart. The geese, the people, the architecture, the birding… wonderful.

    • Anonymous

      Dale, Nice to hear. This is really stunning. A small group of Japanese birders visited the site today and they loved the scene, the birds and food. :)

      You are welcome to return anytime. Just let me know.

  • Pingback: The Greatest Wild Goose Festival?

Previous post:

Next post: