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Home » Birds, Life in Holland, Nature » (Almost) whale-watching in IJmuiden

(Almost) whale-watching in IJmuiden

Posted on Sunday, November 18th, 2007 at 10:12 pm CET

Today we visited IJmuiden after seeing on that for the last three days they have been spotting a Humpback Whale just 20 meters from the South Pier. We weren’t lucky today and didn’t see it, but we did see some great birds, including three new lifers (Black-legged Kittiwake, Red Knot and Pomarine Skua)!

Black-legged Kittiwake

There were lots of Black-legged Kittiwakes (above) flying around as we walked down the two mile pier into the North Sea.

At the end of the pier dozens of scopes were lined up with people eagerly waiting for the whale:

Birders at IJmuiden Zuidpier

We stayed for about a half hour and then headed back again. At one point two Pomarine Jaegers (a.k.a. Pomarine Skua) came flying by chasing a gull and all telephoto lenses suddenly pointed up, clicking away.

Pomarine Jaegers chasing a gull

The place was also crawling with Turnstones …


… Oystercatchers …


… and we also saw a Common Guillemot (a.k.a. Atlantic Murre):


Here’s Amy on the pier:

Amy on the pier

Walking back to the car there was an extremely cold wind that made a really cool effect by blowing sand low over the beach (and almost freezing our faces off too). Here’s a crude animation of what it was like:

Cool sand animation at IJmuiden beach

So no whale unfortunately, but we still had a great day. 🙂



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