Birding in the Netherlands

The Netherlands has a coastline of over 451 km, wide open to the north sea. Much of its land has been reclaimed from the sea and is below sea level, not surprisingly its coastal wetlands make up some of the best birding hotspots, apart from the inland nature reserves. Close to 500 bird species are recorded in the country, much of them are waders and water birds due to its geography.

As a non-resident birdwatcher it was not an easy task to locate the right bird watching spots, whilst ebird helped considerably, the rest was on me to explore the Dutch lands. Nevertheless, the country is much safer to explore and the good facilities such as birding hides at the right places, easy access to most reserves makes it a birder friendly country.

I have explored two of the birding hotspots, the Texel Island and Oostvaardersplassen nature reserve. Apart from these, I found bird watching and bird photography can be interesting in the neighborhood city parks and also tourist places such as Zaanse Scans and Keukenhof.
Water birds:
Some of the widespread birds which can be seen commonly are the water birds comprising of ducks, geese, and other marsh birds. Perhaps the most common species are the Mallard, Canada Goose, Barnacle goose, Graylag Goose, Mute Swan, Great Crested Grebe, Eurasian Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Great Cormorant and Egyptian Goose. Much of these can be spotted within the innumerable canals across the country.
Barnacle Goose
Barnacle Goose over the flowering ground
Graylag Goose, Utrecht
Egyptian Goose
Egyptian Goose, Eye in focus. Came across these fabulous birds in the neighborhood of Amsterdam 
A male Gadwall getting ready for takeoff

Eurasian Moorhen
Eurasian Moorhen - a common bird found in marshy regions. This dull colored bird also has a striking feature if you look closely, it's frontal shield, a red bill with yellow tip which is highlighted in this photograph.
Mallard Chick
Mallard Chick
Great Crested Grebe enjoying it's afternoon catch
Great Crested Grebe enjoying it's afternoon catch
Waders and Seabirds:
Apart from the water birds, the waders and seabirds are also widely spotted across the coastline and wetlands of Netherlands. Some of them can be spotted within the city, such as the Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, White Stork, Gray Heron, Great Egret and even Eurasian Oystercatcher.
Black tailed Godwit
National Bird of the Netherlands, Black tailed Godwit. Classified as a "Near Threatened" species under IUCN 3.1 conversation status
Common Tern
Common Tern, Flevoland
Herring Gull
Herring Gull, South Holland
Passerine birds:
Some of the passerine birds can also be spotted withing the city limits, such as the Eurasian Magpie, Eurasian Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Rose-ringed Parakeet, Eurasian Jay, European Starling, Eurasian Blackbird, Rock Pigeon, Common Wood-Pigeon and the tiny beauties Eurasian Blue Tit, Great Tit, House Sparrow.
Eurasian Magpie
Eurasian Magpie, Amsterdam
Eurasian Blackbird
Eurasian Blackbird, South Holland
Eurasian Jackdaw
Eurasian Jackdaw, North Holland
Common Wood-Pigeon
Common Wood-Pigeon, Rotterdam
Common Chaffinch
Common Chaffinch, Overijssel
Common Sparrow
Common Sparrow, Overijssel
European Greenfinch
European Greenfinch, Utrecht
Eurasian Bullfinch
Eurasian Bullfinch, Utrecht
Great Tit
Great Tit, North Holland
The colorful little Eurasian Blue tit
The colorful little Eurasian Blue tit