Luik, Belgium & Eifel, Germany - April 2023
From 13-14 April 2023, my twin brother Rick and I spent 2 days in the Luik area (Belgium) and Monschau area (Germany) to look for birds and other wildlife.
We stayed one night in a nice hotel in Monschau, Germany.
Below are the locations that we visited.
1 Platwijers - Groot Wijven
Parking: GPS 50.986519, 5.313708
Very beautiful area with a lot of waterbirds in a nice habitat for birding with watch tower and bird hide. We made a lovely walk and saw a decent number of birds, including Cett’s Warbler, Spotted Sandpiper, Green Finch and one spectacular Osprey.
2 Platwijers - Grote Platwijer
Parking: GPS 50.974994, 5.344600. Directly south of Groot Wijven
Nature reserve with many ponds surrounded by meadows. Many trails to walk. The ponds held a good number of ducks and Little Grebe.
3 Nature Reserve Haut-Geer
Parking: GPS 50.668280, 5.200484
Nature preserve with several ponds and reed beds. Well known to Belgian birders, one of the richest spots in the area. Good visibility on all the ponds and a beautiful new lookout cabin built a couple of years ago. Here also a good number of ducks, including Northern Shoveler, Eurasian Teal and Common Shelduck but also Little Grebe, Black-necked Grebe and one Mediterranean Gull in a group of Black-headed gulls.
4 Signaal van Botrange
Parking: GPS 50.501297, 6.093327
Located at the highest point of Belgium lies the country’s largest nature reserve (part of Nature Reserve Hoge Venen) with the last Belgian location to see Black Grouse. It's possible to walk around the area, although the best place to observe birds is at the wooden platform. When we visited, there was not much to see other than Meadow Pipits and Green Finches.
5 Herzogenvenn et Nesselo
Parking: GPS 50.492293, 6.131389. A few km south of Botrange. During a walk on the trails of the Herzogenvenn et Nesselo you can see the majority of bird species that Nature Reserve Hoge Venen has to offer. We made a nice walk through the peat land. Beste birds here were Long-tailed Tit and European Stonechat.
6 Dreiborn Highlands (GPS: 50.545971, 6.360631)
There is a parking from where you walk right into the highlands: GPS: 50.540001, 6.394629 and a nearby bird hide with a nice view over the highlands: GPS: 50.551216, 6.406501. Eurasian Skylarks, Meadow Pipits, Black and Red Kite and Yellowhammer are common. We also saw Eurasian Linnet, Tree Pipit and Song Thrush.
7 Perlental and the Fuhrtsbachtal (near Monschau)
The area surrounding the beautiful town of Monschau is known for its many butterflies. For a walk through the valley of the Perlenbach it is best to go to the heart of the area and start at the hotel Gut Heistert (GPS: 50.504594, 6.246644) near Kalterherberg and the German/Belgium border. This is one of my favorite places to go in this region and I have been here twice last year (see this Trip Report). Mistle Thrush, Coal Tit, Firecrest, Willow Warbler, Black Redstart, European Goldfinch, Black Kite and Red Kite are common here. We made a beautiful walk here of about 2 hours.