The Donkmeer is one of Flanders biggest lakes of which a large portion of the lake and adjacent meadows are nature reserve. It's an excellent place during the wintering months to spot the mystique Great Bittern. In the center of the lake there is a mixed breeding colony of Grey Heron and Great Cormorant. The Common Tern and Black-headed Gull als breed in the area on natural and artificial breeding islands. Irregular breeding birds are the Little Bittern, Black Kite and Black-crowned Night-Heron . From wide reed beds the songs of Cetti's Warbler , Bluethroat and Sedge Warbler can be heard in the spring and early summer. During the spring migration it's an excellent site to spot Osprey and rare migratory terns like Black Tern , White-winged Tern and Whiskered Tern if you are lucky. In the swamps around the lake you have a good chance to see Lesser Spotted Woodpecker , Golden Oriole and Willow Tit . Quite spectacular during winter months (best period is January) are the massive amounts of gulls who come to overnight at the Nieuwdowk. Depending on the wintry weather over 15.000 Black-headed Gull , 2.000 Common Gull and 500 Herring Gull can be seen.
Parking spaces can be found at the Nieuwdonk and north of the lake at the restaurants and pubs.
Terrain and HabitatWetland, Lake, Forest
Is a telescope useful?Can be useful
Good birding seasonAll year round, Spring, Winter
Best time to visitWinter, Spring migration, Autumn migration
RoutePaved road, Unpaved road, Wide path
Difficulty walking trailEasy
Accessible byFoot, Bicycle, Wheelchair
Birdwatching hide / platformYes
Kalkense Meersen, Lokeren - Molsbroek, Berlare - Paardeweide, Wichelen - Bergenmeersen.