Zwart Water

Limburg  >  Netherlands

The "Zwart Water" area consists of a large water body and several smaller damp meadows, surrounded by forests. Very good area for woodpeckers and waterfowl.

Added* by Bas Engels
Most recent update 12 February 2020


The "Zwart Water" area consists of a large water body and several smaller damp meadows and pastures. The area is surrounded by mixed forests of mainly deciduous forest with smaller patches of pine forests. The lake draws many waterfowl to the area. Large groups of ducks, geese and swans kan be found on the lake, like Gadwall, Common Teal, Common Pochard, Greylag Goose and Mute Swan. Many waders and herons forage on the banks of the westside of the lake, like Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Green Sandpiper, Common Greenshank and Great Egret. There's a large roosting area of waterfowl in the northwestern part of the lake and also harbours a large resting tree for Great Cormorant. If you're lucky, you can find Spoonbill or even a beaver.

There are several semi open pastures and damp meadows on the eastern side of the lake. Especially in early spring, these damp meadows can be very interesting for waders, like Little Ringed Plover and Ruff. The surrounding bushes are used as breeding habitat by Yellowhammer, European Stonechat and Common Redstart.

The surrounding forests of the large lake are used as breeding habitat for many species of songbird and, especially, woodpeckers. Due to the fact that the forest consists of mainly deciduous forests with patches of pine forests, the biodiversity is high. Species like Eurasian Nuthatch, Short-toed Treecreeper, Crested Tit and Willow Tit can be found here. Even Eurasian Treecreeper has been present for several years. All species of woodpecker can be found within the forests and surrounding pastures: Great Spotted Woodpecker, Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Eurasian Green Woodpecker and Black Woodpecker. If you're lucky, you can even find a Wryneck during spring.

During winter, the lake is often frozen, so no waterfowl is present. The forests are, nonetheless, still in use by many birds. Large mixed flocks of tits, finches and thrushes are present. In the patches of pine forests, species like Goldcrest and Firecrest can be found. Also, within the large flocks of birds, species like Willow Tit, Marsh Tit and Coal Tit are present. Common Crossbill and Brambling also feed on the pine cones in these parts of the forest.



There are several parkingspots in the area, but the best one lies in the center of the area (P on the map). From here, you'll be able to walk around the lake and the damp meadows and will take you about an hour. The total length of the walk is about 3 km long. The southern part of the lake is directly visible from near the parking spot. The resting area of the waterfowl is best visible from the north. You'll be able to walk around the pastures and the damp meadows will be visible from these paths.

Terrain and Habitat

Forest , Scattered trees and bushes , Wetland , Grassland , Moors/heathland , Lake , Agriculture



Circular trail


Is a telescope useful?

Can be useful

Good birding season

Winter , Spring

Best time to visit

Winter , Spring


Unpaved road , Paved road , Wide path , Narrow trail

Difficulty walking trail

Average walk

Accessible by


Birdwatching hide / platform



View other birding spots in the area that are published on Birdingplaces


Top 5 birds

Other birds you can see here