Eurasian Wigeon Anas penelope ©Ashley Beolens Website
Birding Hauts-de-France

Hauts-de-France is a Region of France created by the territorial reform of French Regions in 2014 by the merger of Nord-Pas-de-Calais and Picardy. The new region came into existence on 1 January 2016. The region covers an area of more than 31,813 km2 and has a population of 5,973,098. The region borders Belgium (Flanders and Wallonia) to the northeast, the English Channel and the United Kingdom (England) to the northwest, as well as the French regions of Grand Est to the southeast, Île-de-France to the south, and Normandy to the southwest.

Top Sites
  • Canche Estuary

    Satellite View
    The dunes and slacks to the North of the mouth of the Canche river down Etaples way is a superb area, which is hard to find, and is likely to be of equal interest for it's plants and insects.
  • Cap Gris-Nez

    Satellite View
    One of the best Sea Watching spot in Europe also good for passerines (visible migration and Falls)
  • Jetée du Clipon

    Satellite View
    (Dunkerque) - The best sea watching spot in France.
  • Oye-Plage & Platier d'Oye

    WebsiteSatellite View
    Oye-Plage and Platier d'Oye just East of calais consists of wet scrapes and scrub-covered dunes which are good for Little Bittern, Black-Necked Grebe, breeding Kentish Plover and migrating summer visitors.
  • Raismes NE of Valenciennes

    Satellite View
    The forest and lake at Raismes NE of Valenciennes great for Honey Buzzard, Osprey, and lots of woodland goodies including Black Woodpecker.
  • Reserve Naturelle de la Baie de Somme

    WebpageSatellite View
    Good marshland habitat with a nice Reserve (Mercanterre) local speciality include Spoonbill and Bluethroat.
  • River Slack Valley

    Satellite View
    The valley of the little river Slack just inland from Ambleteuse holds Bluethroat, Black Kite and Garganey and Bee-Eaters bred for a couple of years in the late 1990s.
  • Romelaere Lakes and Rihou/Clairmarais Forest

    WebpageSatellite View
    Romelaere Lake and Rihou/Clairmarais Forest E of St Omer - is like a French Stodmarsh - it has breeding Night heron, Bluethroat, lots of Golden Oriole and breeding Honey Buzzard.
  • Rumacourt/Ecourt

    Satellite View
    The lakes and woodland at Rumacourt/Ecourt NE of Cambrai are good for Bluethroat, Great Reed Warbler, Black Woodpecker & Purple Heron.
  • Sailly-Bray & Ponthoille

    Satellite View
    The wet fields and dykes around Sailly-Bray and Ponthoille down Rue way, inland from the Marquenterre reserve, absolutley reliable for Bluethroat, and Savi's warbler, too.
  • Tardinghen Marsh

    Satellite View
    Tardinghen Marsh and beach, just West of Calais is an area of scrubby dunes and reedy ponds, ideal for lots of migrants spring & Autumn.
  • Peter Wells

    | p.wells@zen.co.uk

Festivals & Bird Fairs
  • Festival de l'Oiseau et de la Nature

    Since 1991, the Bay of Somme (North of France), an internationally recognized migratory site, has celebrated the return of spring and birds on the occasion of the Bird and Nature Festival. If for 33 years, the Festival remains an unmissable event for nature lovers, the 2 competitions it organizes have allowed it to obtain international recognition: The Photo Competition (only dedicated to the bird) is one of the 10 most renowned in Europe, and the documentaries received as part of the Film Competition come from 47 countries.
  • Maison de l'Oiseau - Baie de Somme

    Observatory WebsiteSatellite View
    Discover the traces of the former estuary of the Somme, which has now been polderised. This territory offers a true diversity of environments and constitutes an important stop-over for the birds.
  • Centre de Sauvegarde et de Soins des Oiseaux Sauvages

    Centre de Sauvegarde et de Soins des Oiseaux Sauvages affilié à l`UNCS Certificat de Capacité N° 60-046 Association Loi 1901 , présidé par M. Eric Desesquelles Siège Social : 11, rue du Crocq, 60480 FRANCASTEL Tél : 03-44-46-90-01 Email : blin.did@wanadoo.fr
  • French National Sea Experience Center

    NAUSICAA, the French National Sea Experience Centre, is much more than a mere aquarium; it is a unique place where visitors can discover the marine environment. At once entertaining, educational and scientific, the Centre derives its originality from its main focus on the relationship between Man and the sea.
  • Ornithologie des Hauts de France

  • Remarques de l’Association Le Clipon

    PDF Report
    L’association "Le Clipon", créée en 2002, a pour objet :■ de réaliser le suivi de la migration des oiseaux de mer depuis la jetée du Clipon, située dans le Port-Ouest de Dunkerque ;■ de diffuser largement les résultats de ce suivi migratoire, au moyen d’internet ou de la publication de rapports ;■ de promouvoir, en France et à l’étranger, l’ornit

Abbreviations Key

  • Marcanterra

    WebsiteSatellite View
    With the experience gained over many years in the areas of public reception in natural areas and use of plant solutions for the management of wetlands , plants and Marcanterra Bois today offers a range of Products and techniques adapted to your environmental constraints.
  • Parc Nature Regional des Caps et Marais d'Opale

    WebsiteSatellite View
    In front of you, the sea. In the distance, the cliffs of England seem unreal. The air is invigorating. The lights are silver. You are in the Regional Natural Park of the Caps and Marshes of Opal.
  • Reserve Naturelle Nationale du Romelaere at Clairmarais

    WebpageSatellite View
    A former site of peat extraction, the ponds of the Romelaëre form a landscape of ponds and rivers connected by channels of access, formerly bused by market gardeners. The nature reserve protects about one hundred hectares of land and water.
Sightings, News & Forums
  • Naturalist Observations in Picardy is a Restricted group with 419 members. Naturalists' Observations in Picardy

    ObsPicardie is a Picard list of amateur naturalists from all walks of life. The subjects dealt with are exclusively related to the fields of naturalist observation. Nature protection topics are welcome even though they are not the main focus of the list. ObsPicardie is open to enthusiasts of observation, study and protection of wildlife and wild flora: birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects, mollusks, botany ...
  • ornitho59-62

    Liste d'observations ornithologiques et naturalistes de la Région Nord-Pas-de-Calais
Trip Reports
  • Cross Channel Birding - John Cantelo

    The Calais/Boulogne area harbours some very interesting species and has superb birding sites (despite many areas being heavily shot over). For birders based in south-east England the area makes a very good day trip, but a long weekend is really needed to explore all the sites mentioned. Visiting two or three sites in one day is usually quite enough. The new A16 (E402) south from Calais has greatly improved travel times southwards and makes it easier to reach sites like Sailly Bray...
Places to Stay
  • Hotel Le Fiacre

    On the Somme bay, ideally located between the sea and the countryside, a warm welcome awaits you in one of the fourteen rooms and suites of our delightful former farmhouse, beautifully restored with relaxation in mind, as well as in the restaurant renowned for its local gastronomy.
  • FauNeO

    Blog photos d'animaux et plus particulièrement d'oiseaux. Photos prises principalement dans la région Nord-Pas-de-Calaisâ€

Fatbirder - linking birders worldwide... Wildlife Travellers see our sister site: WAND

Skip to content