White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla ©Surub - Wiki Commons
Birding Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

This Federal State of Germany lies to the north of Brandenburg, and is bordered on the east by Poland and in the north by the Baltic Sea (Ostsee). In the south of the State are gentle wooded hills and the many large lakes of the Müritz National Park. The remainder of the State is largely flat except for some tall coastal cliffs on the island of Rügen. As with the neighbouring State of Brandenburg, there are extensive forests, and many wetlands with rivers, lakes, fishponds, polders, and coastal marshes. In addition to the wide variety of birds that are attracted by this diverse habitat, the Baltic coast attracts many wintering sea duck.

The sandy shores and coastal marshes are an attraction for large numbers of migrating waders. In winter the visiting water birds include divers, particularly Black-throated, Whooper Swan, and geese, mainly Brent, Barnacle, Bean, Greylag and Whitefront. Slavonian Grebes and very large flocks of sea duck, sometimes in thousands, collect offshore. They include Scaup, Long-tailed Duck, Eider, Scoters, Goldeneye, Smew and other sawbills.

In the polders are colonies of Black-necked Grebes and all three marsh terns. Several sites have breeding Black and Whiskered Terns and a variable number of White-winged Black Terns.

Raptors are well represented. White-tailed Eagles breed and numbers increase in winter. Of particular interest are Lesser Spotted Eagles. They breed in the forests and along the river valleys. Although there are a few in Brandenburg, most of the German population is in this region. Ospreys and both Red and Black Kites are summer visitors in good numbers.

Breeding passerines are similar to those in Brandenburg, with Golden Oriole, Thrush Nightingale, Red-breasted Flycatcher, Icterine, Barred and River Warbler and in addition there are a few Greenish Warblers along the coast. Bluethroats and Rosefinches favour the surroundings of wetland sites and the coast.

Recently a guide to the best birding sites in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern has been published: ‘A Birdwatching guide to North East Germany and its Baltic Coast’. It describes more than 70 major sites and has colour maps and photographs, and details of habitats, access and species.

Number of Species
  • Number of bird species: 347

    (As at March 2019)

    State Bird - White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla

Useful Reading

  • A Birdwatching guide to North East Germany and its Baltic Coast

    | By Roger White | Roger White | 2018 | Edition 2 | Paperback | 214 pages, colour photos, colour maps | ISBN: 9780957169524 Buy this book from
Useful Information
  • Experience nature

    See: or A well-structured lead in to the environmental part of the state portal with detailed links to all nature reserves and the like.
Museums & Universities
  • Universität Rostock

    Institute for Biodiversity Research – general & specific zoology – catalogue of birds in the zoological collection…
  • Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Ornithological Association

    As a Baltic coastal state, with Germany's equivalent of the English Lake District, it is home to a great variety of birds including White Stork, Osprey, Common Crane and is the extreme western edge of the Lesser Spotted Eagle's breeding range…
  • NABU - Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

    Founded in 1899, NABU (Nature And Biodiversity Conservation Union), is one of the oldest and largest environment associations in Germany. The association encompasses more than 620,000 members and sponsors, who commit themselves to the conservation of threatened habitats, flora and fauna, to climate protection and energy policy.

Abbreviations Key

  • NP Jasmund

    InformationSatellite View
    The Jasmund National Park is a nature reserve on the Jasmund peninsula, in the northeast of Rügen island in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is famous for containing the largest chalk cliffs in Germany, the Königsstuhl (German = "king's chair"). These cliffs are up to 161 m (528 ft) above the Baltic Sea. The beech forests behind the cliffs are also part of the national park. A variety of birds live in the park: white-tailed eagle, kingfisher, house martin and the peregrine falcon.
  • NP Mueritz

    InformationSatellite View
    Bird tours and cheap hostel accommodation in the National Park (in English)
  • NP Western Pomerania Lagoon Area

    InformationSatellite View
    It is Mecklenburg-Vorpommern's largest national park, situated at the coast of the Baltic Sea. It consists of several peninsulas, islands and lagoon shore areas in the Baltic Sea, belonging to the district of Vorpommern-Rügen. All portions of the national park are famous for being a resting place for tens of thousands of cranes and geese.
  • NR Greifswalder Oie

    InformationSatellite View
    Greifswalder Oie is a small island in the Baltic Sea, located east of Rügen on the German coast. The island covers an area of about 54 hectares. As of the 2000s, the islet is an uninhabited sea bird reserve.
  • NR Bay of Pomerania

    InformationSatellite View
    The reserve was created to preserve and reinstate the sea region's function as a feeding, over-wintering, moulting, migration and rest area for the species living there, especially for red-throated loon (Gavia stellata), black-throated loon (Gavia arctica), horned grebe (Podiceps auritus), little gull (Larus minutus), common tern (Sterna hirundo), Arctic tern (Sterna paradisaea), red-necked grebe (Podiceps grisegena), long-tailed duck (Clangula hyernalis), scoter (Melanitta nigra), velvet scoter (Melanitta fusca), common gull (Larus canus), lesser black-backed gull (Larus fiscus), guillemot (Uria aalge), razorbill (Alca torda) and black guillemot (Cepphus grylle).
  • NR Die Insel Walfisch

    InformationSatellite View
    Since 1977, Rolf Nessing has voluntarily invested much of his time in the conservation team managing this seabird island and nature reserve on the Mecklenburg Baltic coast near Wismar… Email:
  • NR Fährinsel

    InformationSatellite View
    Fährinsel is a small Baltic Sea island off the eastern shore of the island of Hiddensee and which belongs to the Insel Hiddensee municipality. It is separated from Hiddensee by the narrow Bäk, only 120 metres wide in places. It forms the western part of the border between the Schaproder Bodden and the Vitter Bodden. The island is 1.23 km long and up to 580 metres wide. It is a roosting place for thousands of birds and the grazing area for a herd of Gotland sheep. Shelduck nest between the juniper bushes nest and it is one of the most important breeding sites for red-breasted merganser in the Hiddensee area. On the Roschen there are breeding colonies of many black-headed, common and Mediterranean gulls. teal also breed here
  • NR Görmitz

    InformationSatellite View
    The island is a nature reserve, which is managed by the Jordsand Society for the Protection of Seabirds and Nature (Verein Jordsand zum Schutze der Seevögel und der Natur).
  • NR Kirr

    InformationSatellite View
    The island is covered by salt marshes and dissected by creeks. It is an ideal breeding ground for numerous birds, especially waders like dunlin, ruff, redshank, black-tailed godwit, oystercatcher, avocet and lapwing as well as the black-headed gull. In autumn the island acts as a resting place for several thousand crane over several weeks as they migrate south. As a consequence of its natural importance, walking on the island or landing boats there without permission is forbidden.
  • NR Lake Boissow & Lake Neuenkirchen South

    InformationSatellite View
    Highly protected bird species here include the bittern, marsh harrier, crane, kingfisher and river warbler as well as the middle spotted woodpecker, red kite, red-backed shrike. The greylag goose, greater white-fronted goose, bean goose and tufted duck are also at home here.
  • NR Lake Tetzitz, Liddow Peninsula and Banzelvitz Hills

    InformationSatellite View
    The area under protection is a section of the North Rügen Bodden (bodden are shallow lagoons typical of the region) which has a great variety of habitats and is an important roosting and breeding area for the bird world.
  • NR Langenwerder

    InformationSatellite View
    The island is a nature reserve, due to the birds that live on the island, and therefore access to the island is not usually allowed.
  • NR Neuendorfer Wiek and Beuchel Island

    InformationSatellite View
    The island of Beuchel is an important breeding ground for many bird species, such as ducks, geese, swans, mergansers, waders, gulls and common and Sandwich terns. The Neuendorfer Wiek protects the island from disturbance and is also of great importance as a breeding ground for other species such as great crested grebe, coot, pochard, marsh harrier, reed warbler, bearded and penduline tit. In the autumn and spring, thousands of individual migratory birds use the area as a resting, roosting and feeding area. White-tailed eagle, crane and otter also occur in the area. The nature reserve is used by fish as a spawning ground. The reserve may be observed from the surrounding roads.
  • NR Riether Werder

    InformationSatellite View
    Rare bird species such as the common tern and the snipe may be encountered here. White-tailed eagle, Montagu's harrier, marsh harrier, red kite, black kite, kestrel, hobby, honey buzzard and common buzzard are also found here. Access to the island is forbidden.
  • NR Wreechener See

    InformationSatellite View
    The breeding birds in the reserve are the reed warbler, reed bunting as well as various ducks. The reserve is of outstanding importance as a roosting area for ducks like the mallard, pochard, tufted duck, goldeneye and pintail as well as red-breasted merganser, goosander and smew. In spring and autumn Caspian terns may also be seen. The Wreecher See is a large cove with a short, narrow channel linking it to the Rügischer Bodden to the east, a large bay on the coast of Rügen. A wide belt of reeds surrounds the lake, which acts as a breeding, resting and overwintering area for many birds.
Guides & Tour Operators
  • Birding tours in Mecklenburg and Poland

    Tour Operator
    Organised tours of the National Parks in the Northeast of Germany and Poland…
Other Links
  • Germany Birding

    Birdwatching in Berlin and East Germany - This website will provide information and advice for visitors to Berlin and the east of Germany. The area covered is bordered by Poland in the east, and the Baltic sea in the north. Berlin is within the State of Brandenburg. North of here is the State of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and the Baltic coast and islands. In due course I will be posting Trip reports, and news of recent sightings. See information page for bird guides to the region...

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