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Hunting, an unpopular sport

Posted on October 25th 2006 by Amy in Life in Holland, Nature

Boar-hunting season in the Netherlands officially began on 15 October. Besides wild boar, hunters in Holland may shoot hares and rabbits, pheasants, wood pigeons and mallard ducks. With this in mind the Dutch animal rights group Dierenbescherming requested statisticians from Blauw Research to survey the population on the subject of hunting. The group surveyed 1278 people. The result: 97% of Dutch residents disapprove of hunting as a sport. More »

Balloonist fined for disturbing birdsexternal link

Posted on October 7th 2006 by Arthur in Birds, Life in Holland, Nature

A hot air balloonist who disturbed hundreds of breeding birds when flying too low over the Nieuwkoopse Plassen, here in the Netherlands, has been fined € 300 by a judge in the Hague. The 36-year-old man had started his flight in Woerden in June last year, and had accidentally drifted toward Schiphol Airport. To evade the airport the man changed his heading and flew just 25 meter over the nature reserve, where hundreds of birds were startled by the loud burner of the hot air balloon and flew away. The judge decided that the balloonist had not properly prepared the flight. More »

New at IKEA: Bat-caves

Posted on October 6th 2006 by Arthur in Life in Holland, Nature

The IKEA in Delft, here in the Netherlands, has recently expanded their store, doubling its size and destroying an important nesting habitat for bats. To provide shelter for the displaced bats, the city of Delft is funding the construction of a special bat-cave behind the IKEA store. More »

Yet more record weather in the Netherlands

Posted on September 28th 2006 by Amy in Life in Holland, Nature, Weather

Following our record-breaking heat in July and the record rainfall of August we are now experiencing the warmest September in 300 years, according to the Dutch weather agency (KNMI). More »

Did you know there is beef in Pop-Tarts, M&M’s and Mentos?

Posted on September 15th 2006 by Arthur in Food, Nature, Shopping & Stuff

I didn’t realize this, but many food products like Pop-Tarts, M&M’s, Cupcakes, Snicker bars, etc. have beef or pork gelatin in them. More »

Car-free Sunday in Leiden

Posted on September 13th 2006 by Amy in Leiden, Life in Holland, Nature

This Sunday, 17 September, the center of Leiden will be closed to all car traffic. The city is closing the streets for an autovrije dag, or car-free day. Each year across Europe and the rest of the world such car-free days are organized; this year marks the first time Leiden will be closed to car traffic since the 1970’s. More »

New bird species discovered in Indiaexternal link

Posted on September 12th 2006 by Arthur in Birds, Nature, News

A new bird species has been discovered in a remote forest in northeastern India, conservationists announced today. The strikingly multi-colored bird has been named Bugun Liocichla and it is the first new bird species discovered in India in more than half a century. More »

More record weather – this time rain

Posted on August 29th 2006 by Amy in Life in Holland, Nature, Weather

We’re having another extreme weather record-breaking month here in the Netherlands. After the extreme heat of July, we are now having one of the wettest Augusts ever. As of last Friday, we have had thirteen ‘heavy rain’ days this month. Over 50mm of precipitation in one day is considered a ‘heavy rain.’ More »

Heatwave strikes NL with hottest July ever

Posted on July 24th 2006 by Amy in Life in Holland, Nature, News, Weather

The Dutch national weather agency (KNMI) has already announced that July 2006 will go down in the record books as the hottest month ever. It has been so hot that the announcement was made more than a week before the end of the month. More »

Birding, our new hobby

Posted on June 24th 2006 by Arthur in Birds, Life in Holland, Nature

In the last months we have been having a lot of fun going to bird hides and nature reserves here in the Netherlands. It turns out that this country is great for bird watching, and we have suddenly turned into serious birders! It’s incredible how many easy-to-spot birds there are that I had never even noticed before; just this morning we saw four spoonbill from the car along the A4 highway! More »