North of Germany --- The Luebeck area

Updated 2004

Tim Herfurth
Bismarckstr. 27
23564 Lübeck

Tel.: Germany 0049 (0)451 7060080


I got the idea of writing a report about the area I live in when I met a birder from the States some years ago in the North of Germany, somewhere near a muddy place on a rainy, boring day. He was working in Hamburg for some month. On weekends he tried to see as many European species as possible. Suddenly it became exiting for me as well to search for species like Tree Pipit or Crested Lark. It reminded me of my trip to Australia where local birders took their time to show me the species I needed. So if any birdwatcher is traveling or has to stay in the North of Germany this report could help a little. I am sorry that at this stage there are no maps in this report.

If you plan to visit the North of Germany (for example Hamburg, Luebeck, Kiel or Rostock) you should write to me or give me a ring. I would really like to show you around and help you finding the species you would like to see.

Luebeck is situated northeast of Hamburg, close to the Baltic Sea and at the former border to Eastern Germany. This region is rather interesting for a good variety of typical North-German species. Luebeck is definitely not a birding hot spot but it covers a rather great variety of different habitats. On the other hand Luebeck is as well a good base for further trips as it is rather close to exellent places at the North Sea and Baltic Sea coast as well as to god areas in Eastern Germany. In late spring or early summer between 100 an 150 species can be seen in one day in the Luebeck area (radius 30 km) Within a radius of 150 km another 30 species should be possible. In autumn, winter and early spring bewteen 80 and 100 species should be possible within one or two days. Key sites include:

1. Lübeck Schellbruch (SB):

The nature reserve Schellbruch is situated in the north of Lübeck at river Trave. By car it is a 10 min. drive from the city. You can also take the bus 12 or 24. Going by bike or bus you can walk along the river Trave till the village of Gothmund and take the bus back to the city from there. From Gothmund you can continue till the Kattegatt and Stau (S/K), two good places mentioned later in this report.

The reserve covers a great variety of different habitats.

The different types of forest are good for woodland species such as Fire Crest, Goldcrest, Both Treecreepers, Warblers, Tits and Thrushes. The reedbeds and graslands hold Marsh Harrier, Bluethroat, Sedge/Marsh and Reed Warbler, Savis/Grasshopper and sometimes River Warbler, Bearded/Penduline Tit, Water Rail, Reed Bunting and Bittern. Pools and lakes are good for Grebes (breeding species seem to be changing every jear), Ducks, waders in small numbers, Kingfisher, Grey heron, Smew (in winter) and for White-tailed Eagle. The reserve is one of the few places where several Rock Pipits winter.

2.Lübeck: Stau

Bus 31, 32...

You will reach the Stau by taking the B 75 towards Travemünde. Leave the B 75 in the direction of Rostock and Schlutup. Turn right, when you see some traffic lights drive on towards Schlutup. About 300 m behind the traffic lights there is a very small and well hidden car park on the left side of the road in the forest. On the car park there is also a wodden information sign. Park here and walk the trak. There. is a gate and a dam around the reedbeds and open water. The birdlife depends much on the changing vegetation and water level. You are not allowed to but you should (nobody cares) open the gate and climb the dam to check the muddy areas around the reedbeds. They are good for waders and ducks, usually for Water Rail.

Broad-billed Sandpiper, Caspian Tern, Black-winged Stilt and Little and Great-White Egret has been recorded in the past years.. The open water is good for Little Grebe, Black-necked Grebe and ducks. The reedbeds and canals hold Sedge/Marsh/Reed and Grasshopper Warbler, Bearded Tits and Reed Bunting. The area is also good for a number of woodland species such as Black Woodpecker, Great Snipe, Firecrest, Goldcrest, Thrushes, Garden/Black-capped/Willow Warbler, Treecreepers and Tits....

3. Travemünde/Priwall:

Travemünde and the Priwall is probably the best place for gulls. When the fishing boats come in (times seem to be changing) the fishing harbour is a good place (Glaucous Gull has been recorded). Usually most of the gulls can be found along the beach of the Priwall on the oposite side of the river Trave which you can reach by boat. The boates leave every 5 minutes and cost 0,50 €. In the past 3 winters (not in 1999/2000) one Mediterranean Gull was found along the Travemünde promenade. This bird is sometimes found at the beaches on the Priwall too.

The Priwall is also good for migrating waders, warblers and Thrushes,... In winter many ducks and Goossanders can be seen close to the beach. On the other side of the Priwall (not the sea-side) there is some kind of "lake" called the Pötenitzer Wiek. This place is also very good especially for wintering and migrating ducks.

If you take the car it is more expensive but you can do a tour around the Dassower See and just start or finish at the Priwall.

4.Ruppersdorfer See:

This is probably one of the best sites around Lübeck especieally for migrating birds.

Take the motorway A1/ E47 towards Puttgarden and turn of at Ratekau. Follow the road into the village of Ratekau. In the village (having passed the yellow-village sign) take the first road to the right. After 200m you will see the lake to your left and the railway to your right. Follow the road and take the first road to the left towards the lake and park near the lake. Take the little walking trak to the left. There is a hide from which you have good views. On a sunny day you should visit this reserve in the morning as the sun can be frustrating in the afternoon. This reserve holds breeding Garganey, Little and Black necked Grebe, sometimes Mediterranean Gull, Common Tern, Marsh Harrier, Reed –and Marsh Warbler, Reed Bunting, Yellow Wagtail.... Several rarer birds have been recorded in the past years such as White- winged Black Tern, Great White Eagret, Marsh Sandpiper or Spoonbill.

On migration Osprey, Black Tern, Little Gull and different species of waders and ducks can be seen. Smew occurs in winter.

5. Nordwest-Mecklenburg (NWM):

Lübeck belongs to the state of "Schleswig Holstein" while the North of the former German Democratic Republic is now called "Mecklenburg Vorpommern". The county of Northwest Mecklenburg starts immediately to the east of Lübeck. You will still find the old borderline with its track made of parallel running concrete slabs near the villages of Herrenburg or Schattin as well as along the Baltic Sea coastline. Immediately behind the former border it is surprising how different the birdlife is compared to the areas west of the former border. For example the Corn Bunting is a very rare (!) bird around Lübeck while it is rather common in Nordwest Mecklenburg.

This area has a very low population and a huge number of underwatched sites. Every year I find new spots and I am sure it will take ages to check all good sites.

In this area you definitely need a car as the bus system is poor.

The best way for birding is to search for small roads or unsealed tracks and stop wherever it looks good. There are small pools on fields which are always worth a check for Garganey, Red-necked Grebe or Green Sandpiper. Like that you should see Red-Kite, Marsh Herrier, Stock Dove, Corn Bunting, Yellow Wagtail, Red-backed Shrike, Whinchat, Nightingale and Thrush Nightingale without any problem. Especially in spring it is always possible to see Cranes on fields nearby wet forests. White-tailed Eagles are sometimes hard to see but can turn up everywhere. Most villages south of Schönberg hold breeding White Storks. For Crested Lark the best sites (in winter too !) are the huge and ugly industrial fat stock stables with cows and pigs. Most villages hold one or two of them (the village of Mallentin may be the best for Crested Lark).

To make the decision easier where to go I will mention several good sites.

5.1 Brook: In the village there is a sign showing the way to the beach "Strand". There is a car park. Parallel to the beach there is a little walking track. This area might be one of the safest for Scarlet Rosefinch in late spring. Ringed plover breeds on the beach and there should be always some Terns around. In cold winters "seawatching" is usually productive for Long Tailed Duck, Red Throated-, Slovanian and Black throated Diver, Goldeneye, Eider, Whooper Swan, Common Scoter (sometimes Velvet Scooter, Black Guillemot, ....).

(For seawatching there are other and sometimes better sites further east, for example near the village of Steinbeck !)

(In the past years the „Wohlenberger Wiek" east of „Boltenhagen" was much better than „Brook". There is a long beach in the „Wiek" from where you should see most of the wanted species. Drive from „Kluetz" towards „Wismar" and you will find the beach.)

5.2 Dassower See: The lake is good for all kinds of waterfowl ( Little Grebe, Black-necked Grebe, Tufted Duck, Pochard, Goldeneye, Teal, Gadwall, Red-Brested Merganser, Goosander) especially in winter when thousands of Scaups and sometimes hundreds of Smew rest.

The reedbeds and the nearby trees are good for Penduline Tit, Marsh/Sedge/Reed and sometimes Great-Reed Warbler and Marsh Harrier. The lake is also a good place to see White-tailed Eagle.

From Lübeck take the B 104 towards Wismar. At Selmsdorf take the B105 to the left.

First you reach Sülsdorf from whree you will not be seeing the lake . There are several good spots and viewpoints.

a) Turn left at Sülsdorf towards Teschow. Drive through the village of Teschow and stop where the rough track starts. You either walk to the right or straight on to have good viewpoints on the lake. The farmland here is good for Corn Bunting, Red-backed Shrike and sometimes for Scarlet Rosefinch. ( many migrants)

b) Go back to the B105 and drive on to your left. Turn left at Zarnewenz towards the lake and stop after 200 m. Walk to the lake. This area is probably the best for ducks. In winter thousands of Scaups can be seen (several can be seen in summer too !), Divers, White- tailed Eagle,....

c) Continue the B 105. Stop at the watchtower to the left of the road. There is a little track going to the lake. Usually Scarlet Rosefinsh is singing in summer. This is the only kown site for Bluethroat. The reedbeds close to the watchtower seem to hold at least 2 pairs. The area is also good for Bearded Tit and White-tailed Eagle.

d)Go back and continue the B105. After having crossed the little bridge just before you reach Dassow turn left. Climb the dam. The area holds good numbers of Smew and other waterfowl but is not so productive in summer.

5.3 Stepenitz- Maurine Niederung: Especially between May and July this is probably one of the best places in this report . I have only visited this area 4 times before I wrote this report and I must say it is fantastic ! It is realy worth while to go there in the early morning as for example Cranes are much easier to see or hear in the first daylight.

Just when you have crossed the little bridge before Dassow (B105 towards Wismar) turn right into the village of Dassow. After 400 m take the first road to the right towards Lütgenhof and Prieschendorf and drive till you see the sign "Prischendorf". Park there. On your right hand side there is a picture with birds which says "Stepenitz- Maurine Niederung". Walk that track...

Savis- River and Grasshoppers Warbler are rather easy to hear and to see, Cranes (more likely to hear), Kingfisher, Snipe, Black Kite, Sedge- Marsh and Reed Warbler are c., Bearded Tit, Meadow Pipit, Raven, White tailed Eagle, Nightingale, Trush Nightingale, Stock Dove, warblers, tits, buntings,....

This track used to stop after about 1,5 km as the bridge crossing the Stepenitz was broken.After about half the distance (till you reach the bridge) there is a little canal to your left. On this place you should get all the three Locustella warblers. This is also the place where it is possible to see or hear Bluethroat. Now the bridge has been repaired and the track continues as a bike trail towards Schönberg. I haven`t been birding this part but it is said that there are some pairs of Bluethroat behind the bridge.

6 Former Border area:

The birdlife and vegetation in this area is typical for a very dry and sandy ground. The woodlands with pines and some oaks are good for Crested Tit, Crossbill, Black Woodpecker, Gold- and Firecrest and lots of Chaffinches. The heathland (not much is left) holds Woodlark, Tree Pipit and Red-backed Shrike. The (what we call) dry- grass areas should produce Tree Pipit, Woodlark, Red- backed Shrike, Whinchat, different warblers and Yellowhammer. River warbler is fairly common in the wetter areas near Schattin. Rarer birds of the area are Golden Oriole, Corncrake, Quail and Honey Buzzard. I will devide this area into two sections:

  1. Herrnburg
  2. Schattin


6.1.1 North of Herrnburg

You can reach Herrnburg by the bus number 5. Get out of the bus at „Am Kamp" or „Ahornweg". Both stops are situated in an area with new houses. By car take the Brandenbaumer Landstraße situated in the southeast of Lübeck. Comming out of Lübeck you will see a yellow village-sign „Herrnburg". After 200 m you see new houses on your left. Take this road leading to those builings to the left. Park wherever you like, probably after 300m near the named busstops.

There are now some little tracks leading to the northwest out of this housing area (When you park near the bus stops go left). After 2 minutes you will see dry open grasland and pine trees. Take the track to the left of the pine trees. When you see the parallel running track made of concrete slabs you are on the right way. Follow the track and you should see Tree Pipit, Red-backed Shrike, Woodlark, Black Woodpecker, Whitethroat....After about 2 km there is a very sandy path leading to the left and one to the right ( a bit like a a junction). You have pine trees to your right and some wetter looking open area with birches to your left. This area is good for Golden Oriole and Corncrake.

The pine trees to your right should hold Crested Tit and Goldcrest, sometimes Crossbills.

6.1.2 South of Herrnburg

You should take a car to reach this area as well as for the Schattin area. Take the road towards Herrnburg and drive through the village. You will pass a railway line and a church. Turn right towards Duvennest. Just when you have Herrnburg behind you there is a sharp bend to the left. After 50m there is a car park to your right with a wooden sign telling you that you are in some kind of Nature Reserve („Naturschutzgebiet Wakenitzniederung") There are three possible pathes. One leads to the left, a sandy one with pine trees to both sides. This one is good for Crested Tit, Woodpeckers, and Treecreeper. The one more in the middle lies bewteen the open dry grasland and the pine trees. This one is not so productive.

The third leads you to the right (behind the little house and garden). Following this path you will reach a small canal after 300m. After that it continues up a little hill with single pine trees and heathland. This area is good for Woodlark, Little Woodpecker, Whinchat, Tree Pipit, Grasshoppers Warbler and sometimes River Warbler.

6.2 Schattin

Follow the same road towards Duvennest. You pass Duvennester Krug, Duvennest and Schattin. 200m behind Schattin there is a road to your right pointing towards the „Waldhotel Schattin". After 200m (look on the fields to your right for White Stork) there is a bend to your right towards the hotel and a sign telling you this is a „Naturschutzgebiet". Park here. Follow the footpath straight on. There are Pine Trees to your right.

After about 200m path leads to the right and one straight on/or a little bit to the left.

The wohle area is good for River Warbler, Golden Oriol, Red Kite, Whinchat, Red-backed Shrike, Tree Pipit, Buzzard and Kestrel.

Usually River Warbler is rather common in the wetter areas following the path to the left. Here Golden Oriole and Crane is possible too. Look out for Honey Buzzard as it usually can be seen here during the breeding season. During migration time Wheater turn up.

7 Lauerholz

Between the town centre of Lübeck, Israelsdorf and Schlutup there is a rather big area of different types of forests. Deciduous forest changes with coniferous forest. The whole area should produce the typical woodland species but there is one central area which seems to be very safe especially for the probably most wanted species like Middle- spotted Woodpecker, Stock Dove, Firecrest and Crested Tit. Other species include Wood Warbler, Goldcrest, Great-spotted Woodpecker, Black Woodpecker, Blackcap, Song-and Mistle Thrush, Robin, Wren, Pied Flycatcher, Woodcock (in the more open areas in the late evening), Tawny Owl....

You will find the best site at the road called „Wesloer Weg" which devides the Lauerholz into an eastern and western area. Coming from the south take the second car park to your left. It is situated near a bend going to the right. Park here and go back for about 20m. There is a track going into the forest with a wooden sign „Am Rittbrook". Follow this track. For Middle Spotted Woodpecker the best area might be after 500 m on the left side of the track. They like old oak trees.

By the time I have not finnished this report. There are many other places around.

In the Luebeck area (radius 30 km) the following interesting species can usually be seen at the right place and in the right time of the year:

Black-throated Diver (winter), Red-necked Grebe, Black-necked Grebe, Slavonian Grebe (winter), White Stork, Black Stork, Smew (winter) Red-Kite, White-tailed Eagle, Honey Buzzard, Corncrake, Quail, Crane, Eagle Owl, Barn Owl, Black Woodpecker, Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Little Woodpecker, Wood Lark,Crested Lark, Thrush Nightingale and Nightingale, Bluethroat, River Warbler, Icterine Warbler, Barred Warbler, Bearded Tit, Red-breasted Flycatcher Golden Oriole, Serin, Both Treecreepers, Scarlet Rosefinch... and lots more

and of course breeding or migrating ducks, geese, waders,....

For most waders/geese and some ducks it is definitely better to take a trip to the North Sea coast or to the Island of Fehmarn. Fehmarn is a one hour drive from Lübeck. You will need 2 hours to reach the North Sea Coast.

A good help is:

List of species you are likely to see in the Lübeck area at the right time of the year. I always add North Sea coast when it seems much easier to see the birds there.


-RS = Ruppersdorfer See

-SB = Schellbruch

-S = Stau

-H-P = Former border area Herrnburg/Palingen

-H-Sa = Former border area Herrnburg/Schattin

-SH = Stülper Huk

-DS = Dassower See area

-MW = Mönkhofwiesen


-SMN= Stepnitz Maurine Niederung

-NWM= radius of about 30 km to the east of Lübeck, county of Nordwest- Mecklenburg.

-Tr. = Travemünde/Priwall

c = Common species in suitable habitat and at the right time of the year

p... = not common, no safe site but always possible in suitable habitat

-Red-throated Diver: p. But rare in winter offshore NWM ,

-Black-throated Diver: in winter offshore NWM

-Great Crested Grebe: c

-Red-necked Grebe: in winter rather c offshore NWM, in spring and summer some of the fishponds south of „Schönberg" (NWM) hold several pairs, breeds as well at the Överdiek (small lake) in „Timmendorfer Strand" (north of Lübeck) , rather common on the Island of Fehmarn

-Little Grebe: RS, S, p..., rather c in winter

-Black-necked Grebe: very c breeder at RS ! also DS,SB,S

-Slavonian Grebe: can be seen in small numbers in winter offshore NWM

-Cormorant: c

-Bittern: r SB, r DS, a good place is the Pönitzer See about 25 km north of Lübeck. In the past 10 years at least on male has been calling in the north-western part of the lake.(The „Wasservogelreservat Wallnau" on the western part of the Island of Fehmarn is probably the best site)

-Grey Heron: c

-White Stork: breeds in villages in NWM for example in „Dassow, Kalkhorst, Klütz (castle)" and many more...

-Whooper Swan: in winter DS, SH, p...,

-Bewicks Swan: small numbers in winter together with Whooper Swans

-Mute Swan: c

-Bean Goose: migrant, on the fields in NWM (North Sea Coast !)

-White Fronted Goose: migrant, on the fields in NWM (c North Sea coast !)

-Brent Goose: migrant in small numbers (North Sea coast !)

-Barnacle Goose: migrant (North Sea coast !)

-Shelduck:c RS, S/K, SB...

-Wigeon: c migrant RS, SB...

-Mallard: c

-Gadwall: c RS, SB...

-Pintail: migrant RS, SB,..

-Shoveler: c RS, SB,...

-Teal: c RS, SB,...

-Garganey: RS

-Pochard: c

-Tufted Duck: c

-Scaup: in winter till early spring DS !! (single individuals can be seen with luck in summer at DS)

-Eider: c in winter at the coast, Tr...., in small numbers as well in summer. In summer still c. at the North sea coast and around the Island of Fehmarn

-Long-tailed Duck: c offshore in winter (NWM, Tr.,..)

-Common Scoter: offshore in winter (NWM, Tr.,..)

-Velvet Scoter: p offshore in winter (NWM)

-Goldeneye: c in winter rather c troughout the year at DS, SH,...(breeding ?)

-Smew: DS, SB, RS in winter

-Red-brested Merganser: in summer SH, DS, SH, winter offshore

-Goosander:in summer DS, SB, some areas along the river Wakenitz, c in winter

-Black Kite: always p but rare east of Lübeck for example H-Sa, SMN

-Red Kite: rather easy to see east of Lübeck (NWM) for example around the rubbish damp at Schönberg, H-Sa,....

-Hen Harrier: migrant

-Marsh Harrier: rather c SB, H-Sa,...can be seen in most places with reedbeds.

-Sparrowhawk: rather c

-Goshawk: no safe site known but always p..

-Honey Buzzard: rare but p H-Sa, NWM, also migrant, rather c migrant on the island of Fehmarn

-Buzzard: c

-Rough-legged Buzzard: rare but p winter , Island of Fehmarn is better

-White-tailed Eagle: With some luck White-tailed Eagles can be seen everywhere, especially east of Lübeck. Good are the DS and the SB.

-Osprey: migrant

-Kestrel: c

-Hobby: rare breeder and migrant, no safe site known, „Brook (NWM)", H-Sa, RS are the best sites

-Grey Partridge: no safe sight known but p. everywhere in farmland especially in NWM

-Pheasant: c

-Quail: rather c at MW !, p everywhere in open farmland (NWM...)

-Corncrake: MW !, H-P, H-Sa,

-Water Rail: SB, S,...(The „Stau" is probably the best place to see one)

-Moorhen: c, sometimes not so easy in summer but the „Stadtpark" (parc in Lübeck near the „Travemünder- Allee"/street is a safe breeding site.

-Coot: c

-Crane: SMN, H-Sa,... breeds east and south of Luebeck especially in small wet forests, rather easy to see. contact local birders,

Waders only visit the Luebeck area in small numbers. For a good variety of species you should plan a day trip to the North Sea coast or the Island of Fehmarn. Some species of waders overwinter in small numbers along the North Sea coast.

-Oystercatcher: SB, SH, RS, S, breeds near the city at the „Gustav Radbruch Platz"

-Avocet: rare migrant at S, RS (c at the North Sea coast, Fehmarn )

-Ringed Plover: breeds in small numbers at the S and along the beaches in NWM (for example at Brook) also migrant, Tr, p along the coast (c at North Sea coast/Fehmarn)

-Little Ringed Plover: rather c , RS,..

-Golden Plover: migrant in small numbers S, RS (c migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Grey Plover: migrant in small numbers S, RS (c migrant North Sea coast)

-Lapwing: rather c in summer, small flocks overwinter on fields in NWM

-Turnstone: migrant in small numbers at Tr.,... (migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Sanderling: migrant Tr.,.. along the coast

-Knot: migrant along the coast Tr.,... (North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Curlew Sandpiper: migrant S, RS, Tr.,.. (North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Dunlin: migrant S, RS, Tr

-Little Stint: migrant S, RS, Tr.,..

-Temmincks Stint: migrant S (recorded every year at S),

-Ruff: migrant S, RS (breeding/ migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Curlew: rather c migrant along the coast but usually only passing through (breeding/ c migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Whimbrel: p but rare migrant

-Black-tailed Godwit: migrant ( rather c migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Bar-tailed Godwit: migrant in small numbers S, RS ( c migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Redshank: migrant S, RS.. (c breeder North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Spotted Redshank: migrant S/K, RS (migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Greenshank: migrant S/K, RS (migrant North Sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Green Sandpiper: migrant RS, S and possible breeder ,every wet forest, small pool or canal is worth a check especially east of Lübeck (NWM)

-Wood Sandpiper: c migrant S, RS

-Common Sandpiper: c migrant SB, S, RS,...

-Woodcock: rather c in all forests (Lauerholz, Wesloer Forst, Palinger Heide)

-Common Snipe: migrant SB, RS, S, H-Sa, breeds SMN (North sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Red-necked Phalarope: rare migrant S ( recorded 1998) ( easier North sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Mediterranean Gull: RS but not regular, one bird overwintered 96/97,97/98 and 98/99,... in the Travemünde harbour, contact local birders for sites. The best place is the RS. In some years there has been a pair there, so in 2003

-Little Gull: migrant RS, SB, Tr...

-Black-headed Gull: c

-Common Gull: c

-Herring Gull: c

-Yellow-legged Gull: usually there are always 1 or 2 birds in the Travemünde harbour.

-Great-Black-backed Gull: c

-Lesser Black-backed Gull: rather c in winter

-Common Tern: c

-Arctic Tern: always p. along the coast, migrant (North sea coast, Fehmarn)

-Black Tern: migrant RS and other lakes, breeding sites are not far away from Luebeck (Plöner See).

-Sandwich Tern: always p. along the coast, Tr.,... North Sea coast is much better

-Little Tern: always p. along the coast,.. much better is the North Sea coast and the island of Fehmarn

-Woodpigeon: c

-Stock Dove: p around forests in Lübeck and NWM, rather c In the Stepnitz Niederung

-Collared Dove: c

-Cuckoo: c

-Long-eared Owl: no safe breeding site known, contact local birders, some overwinter at Travemünde /Priwall

-Eagle Owl: Bred in the Egidien church till 1996. 1997 there was only a calling male. Several sightings 1998, but there are rather safe breeding sites in Luebeck, contact local birders as detailed site information shouldnt be published.

-Tawny Owl: all forest

-Barn Owl: breeding MW and in the viallage of „Vorrade" (south of Luebeck)

-Swift: c

-Kingfisher: SMN, SB, all along the river Wakenitz, many other sites in 2000

-Black Woodpecker: rather c... H-P, H-Sa, Lauerholz,.. found in.most forests with old trees

-Green Woodpecker: no safe breeding site known but p everywhere, this species is rare in Lübeck but rather c around Hamburg and Bad Oldesloe (small town between Lübeck and Hamburg)

-Middle Spotted Woodpecker: Lauerholz ! (rather easy in early spring March- April when they are calling, difficult later in the year but contact local birders)

-Great Spotted Woodpecker: c

-Lesser Spotted Woodpecker: rather easy to locate in spring and early summer when they are calling, contact local birders, sites for example SMN, H-Sa,...

-Skylark: c

-Woodlark: rather c at H-P and H-Sa

-Crested Lark: NWM !

-Sand Martin:c RS, SH, p...

-Swallow: c

-House Martin: c

-Water Pipit: winters SB, S/K

-Rock Pipit: winters along the coast

-Tree Pipit: H-Sa, H-P,...

-Meadow Pipit: SMN, SB , ... other wet and open areas

-White Wagtail: c

-Grey Wagtail: breeds in some of the narrow parts of the river Trave but not very close to Lübeck. The mill at the river trave south of the town of Segeberg (about 30 km north of Lübeck) is a rather safe place (We try to find closer sites !).

-Yellow Wagtail:RS, c NWM, farmland around Lübeck

-Waxwing: flocks can turn up everywhere in winter (gardens with berry-bushes) You need luck !!!

-Wren: c

-Dunnock: c

-Robin: c

-Thrush Nightingale: SMN,...NWM

-Nightingale: SH, MW, c in NWM, p...

-Bluethroat: rare breeder Dassower See behind the watchtower , also breeds in the reedbeds at the SB in the far eastern part of the „Große Lagune" (the bigger lake)

-Redstart: c

-Black Redstart: c

-Whinchat: H-Sa, SMN, MW p...rather c around extensive farmland

-Stonechat: rare breeder 1999, no safe site known 2000. Successfull breeding 2001 at the little hill at Herrenburg (see Herrenburg-Schattin area 6.1.2)

-Wheatear: rare migrant especially NWM where it ocours in open areas, sometimes around the huge fat stock stables. Rather c at the North Sea Coast and on the Island of Fehmarn/Grüner Brink

-Blackbird: c

-Fieldfare: c migrant in autumn, winter and spring

-Redwing: c migrant

-Song Thrush: c

-Mistle Thrush: rather c breeder H-P, H-Sa, Lauerholz ...

-Savis Warbler: SMN, SB

-River Warbler: SMN, H-Sa , MW ..

-Grasshopper Warbler: rather c

-Great Reed Warbler: became very rare in the past years, one singing bird at S in 2000, rare breeder around some lakes south of Lübeck (Mechower See, Schaalsee, Röggeliner See,...)

-Sedge Warbler: SMN, SB

-Marsh Warbler: c

-Reed Warbler: c

-Icterine Warbler: c

-Garden Warbler: c

-Lesser Whitethroat: c

-Whitethroat: c

-Blackcap: c

-Barred Warbler: breeds at SH near the carpark, also possible Dassower See,...

-Wood Warbler: c in forests

-Willow Warbler c

-Chiffchaff: c

-Goldcrest: c

-Firecrest: rather c in the Lauerholz

-Pied Flycatcher: rather c Lauerholz

-Spotted Flycatcher: c

-Red breasted Flycatcher: There is one safe site but it is very hard to find. Contact local birders.

-Bearded Tit: SB !, Stepenitz Niederung, DS

-Penduline Tit: This species used to be rather common at SB and S till the late 90ies. Meanwhile it became very rare ! In the year 2000 I only had one sighting near the fishponds in Schönberg/NWM so conatct local birders for news !

-Marsh Tit: c

-Willow Tit: rather c

-Crested Tit: H-P, H-Sa,..

-Blue Tit: c

-Great Tit: c

-Coal Tit: c

-Long Tailed Tit: rather c

-Nuthatch: c

-Short-toed Treecreeper: c

-Treecreeper: c

-Red- backed Shrike: rather c

-Great Grey Shrike: very rare but p especially in winter and spring at H-Sa

-Starling: c

-Golden Oriole: rare breeder in wet areas along the river Wakenitz, H-P, H-Sa

-Jay: c


-Jackdaw: c

-Raven: c

-Carrion Crow: c


-Tree Sparrow: c

-House Sparrow: c

-Chaffinsh: c

-Brambling: migrant

-Hawfinsh: rather c

-Serin: c

-Siskin: c in winter and spring, rare in summer

-Greenfinsh: c

-Goldfinsh: c

-Bullfinsh: rather c

-Redpoll: c in winter, is verly likely to breed in Lübeck as it can be seen rather easily in summer even

close to the city

-Linnet: c

-Scarlet Rosefinch: Probably the safest place are the bushes near the beach at Brook and Barendorf in NWM. I guess there are many places especially near the Baltic in NWM where you can find them.

The watchtower at the Dassower See is good too.

-Common Crossbill: In some years they are likely to breed in the Lübeck area. Try the Lübeck forests and the forests around H-P and H-Sa.

-Corn Bunting: only in NWM where it is a rather c species especially in the area between Selmsdorf, Dassow, Klütz and Brook

-Yellowhammer: c

-Reed Bunting: c

-Snow Bunting: rare migrant in Lübeck, North Sea coast and Island of Fehmarn is safer

Other species:

This list contains some species which are very rare in Luebeck but which you should get in spring and summer at other sites in the northwest of Germany.

-Gannet: island of Heligoland

-Most species of Geese can be seen in small numbers throughout the year at the North Sea coast or on the island of Fehmarn

-Bean Goose: migrant North Sea coast

-Pink-footed Goose: migrant North Sea coast

-White -fronted Goose: migrant North Sea coast

-Canada Goose: Island of Fehmarn

-Brent Goose: winters North Sea coast

-Barnacle Goose: migrant North Sea coast

-Red Crested Pochard: Fehmarn, Plöner See !

-Montagus Harrier: North Sea coast, for example „Meldorfer Bucht"

-Black-tailed Godwit: North Sea Coast, Fehmarn

-Broad -billed Sandpiper: rare migrant in Lübeck S( recorded 1998), also rare but easier to see at North Sea coast an Fehmarn end of May and August/September

-Kittiwake:p. along the North Sea coast. Breeds on the island of Heligoland.

-Gull-billed Tern: Meldorfer Bucht/North Sea Coast (rare breeder !).

-Sandwich Tern: North Sea, Fehmarn

-Arctic Tern: North/ Baltic Sea, Fehmarn

-Little Tern: North/Baltic Sea, Fehmarn

-Guillemot: Heligoland

-Razorbill: Heligoland

-Puffin: p on Heligoland

-Nightjar: In warm summer evenings the Fischbecker Heide is a good place. The area is also good for Woodlark. The Fischbecker Heide is situated south of Hamburg (it still belongs to Hamburg !) From Hamburg Harburg take the B 73 (Cuxhavener Straße) towards Cuxhaven/Neugraben-Fischbeck/Neuwiedenthal. After a 10 minutes drive you will reach Neugraben-Fischbeck. Take the small road called "Scharlbarg" to the left and continue till the road ends. Stop at the carpark and take the walking track which goes straight on. Especially the heathland to the right of the track is good. You can also take small tracks leading to the right but dont`t get lost - the area can be confusing especially at night !!!

-Green Woodpecker: Most forest in and around Hamburg.

-Shore Lark: Fehmarn and North Sea coast in winter or autumn

-Snow Bunting: Fehmarn and North Sea coast in winter or autumn

Rare Birds:

Every year lots of rare and very rare birds have been reported from the north of Germany. The island of Heligoland is definitely the best hot spot for all kinds of rarities especially for Sibirian Warblers or Pipits. For rare Waders and Geese the North Sea Coast is the best area. These sites are fantastic for good birds especially in late spring autumn but they also have the advantage of a high concentration of good birders. and The best to get information are the homepages of the and of the and of course local birders.

Every year some rarities turn up in Lübeck too. Marsh Sandpiper, Surf Scoter (very rare), Great White Eagret or White Winged Black Tern, Pallid Swift (2001) have been recorded in the past years.