Saturday, October 22, 2016

Birding in the Rhine Delta

The Rhine delta is probably the best place on Lake Constance to go birding. It is in Austria, in the province of Vorarlberg, though most of the lake's shoreline is in Switzerland and Germany. During the last week, a Red Phalarope has been reported from the delta. I went there two days ago with no luck. I finally successfully twitched the bird today and although I only got fairly distant views I was extremely happy when I found this rare bird.

 I walked into the small viewing platform at the delta, where birders were lying on the floor taking pictures of birds. Finally, when the phalarope turned up on a mudflat, I managed to get a few pictures, albeit blurry ones . Unfortunately, the phalarope left the mudflat after that and was out of sight at times, although I did get to witness its strange feeding habit, where it spins around in circles to lift food from the bottom, creating a small whirlpool. Although the phalarope was by far the rarest bird there, I also got to see Water Rails and Spotted Crakes up close.

Red Phalarope

Red Phalarope

Water Rail

Spotted Crake

1 comment:

  1. Great post Ben! I am Lucia's brother in law, Pierce. I liked the whole story of going repeatedly and finally catching a glimpse of the pharalope. Never heard the of twitching a bird.