BIRDS

Birds in the Vendée

In the Vendée there are two bird sanctuaries which are certainly worth a visit. One is where we live in the area around Bourgneuf, Bouin and Beauvoir-sur-Mer (Marais Breton), with the island Noirmoutier, and the other is in the bay of Aiguillon in the south of the Vendée.

Marais Breton (Bourgneuf, Bouin, Beauvoir-sur-Mer) and Noirmourtier

We live in the middle of in this splendid nature area, and without much effort we have been able to observe quiet a few different birds (Little Egret, Sacred Ibis, storks, owls and buzzards.) The best way to discover this area is to start in Bouin. From there you can start your discovery to the west (port du Bec or port of the Champes). In the many salt pans you can see a large diversity of species. Especially during the migratory periods the number of species which can be seen here is very impressive. In autumn the seawatching from the far point of the island Noirmoutier can be excellent with southwesterly wind . Terns, black tailed godwits, sacred ibises, redshanks are regularly seen birds on this island. In the pine forests of St-Jean-de-Monts you will find Bonelli’s Warblers, Woodlarks, Hoopoes and Tawny Pipits.

The bay of Aiguillon

This area lies south of les Sables d’Olonne and is one of the best water areas for bird watching in Western Europe. Water is very shallow here, so at low tide almost the whole bay is without water. This attracts a broad variety of species. The marsh area is ideal for birds such as the black stern and several sorts of Harriers. This area is most interesting in the autumn (during migration) and in the winter. During the passage in the autumn approximately 250,000 birds come along. Half of these birds stay during the winter, so then you can see for example the bar tailed godwit and the spotted Redshank.

Lac the Grand Lieu

In the north-east of Beauvoir-sur-mer, direction Nantes for round about 30 kms lies the “Lac the Grand Lieu”. From the village Passay you can discover this region very well. The black kite is well known bird in this area.

The Sacred Ibis

This is a very exotic bird in our region, which is not very often seen in Western Europe. His normal habitat is Greece and the Middle East. We have already seen several groups (even groups with more than 20). Particularly impressive, because the adult birds, mainly white with bald black head and black wing ends are almost 70 cm high.

We of course have all the documentation ready at your disposal. As well as an overview of which birds were seen where and when in our region. What kind of birds to expect where and in what season, you can see below. So for the real bird lovers there is nothing to miss.

period Marais Breton(Bourgneuf, Bouin, Beauvoir-sur-Mer)
 Summer Little EgretShoveler
Montagu’s Harrier
Marsh Harrier
Black Kite
Quail
Black-winged Stilt
Avocet
Kentish Plover
Black-tailed Godwit
Curlew
Short-toed Lark
Wood Lark
Tawny Pipit
Hoopoe
Pied Flycatcher
Bluethroat
Bonelli’s Warbler
Sacred Ibis
 Migration Kentish Plover
Spotted Redshank
Greenshank
Avocet
 Winter Brent Goose
Wigeon
Grey Plover
Curlew
Sacred Ibis

Source: Where to watch birds in Britain and Europe, John Gooders

period Baie d’Aiguillon
Summer Montagu’s Harrier
Marsh Harrie
Garganey
Black-tailed Godwit
Black Tern
Migration WimbrelRuff
Black-tailed Godwit
Bar-tailed Godwit
Little Stint
Golden Plover
Winter Brent Goose
Shelduck
Pintail
Wigeon
Golden Plover
Grey Plover
Black-tailed Godwit
Bar-tailed Godwit
Spotted Redshank
Dunlin
Knot
Avocet

Source: Where to watch birds in Britain and Europe, John Gooders