Reed banks

The main area for the researches at the birdringing station schlammwiss provides in the reed banks. Schlammwiss has with almost 20ha one of the biggest reed banks in the grand duchy of Luxembourg. The reed banks are an important breeding habitat for many birds, mammals and insects species. Furthermore it’s an important stopover for migrating birds to fill up their reserves.



The reed banks are very variable structured with wetlands, lakes and succession. For this reason the red banks create many different habitats for animals. The main species using the reed banks are reed warblers (Acrocephalus scirpaceus), marsh warblers (Acrocephalus palustris), reed buntings (Emberiza schoeniclus), roe deers (Capreolus capreolus), wild pigs (Sus scrofa) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes).

Beside the breeding birds the reed banks are good stopover places for bluethroats (Luscinia svecica), penduline tits (Remiz pendulinus), bearded tits (Panurus biarmicus), savi's warblers (Locustella luscinioides), great reed warblers (Acrocephalus arundinaceus) sedge warblers (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) and aquatic warblers (Acrocephalus paludicola).



As a part of the “Plan National Protection de la Nature” (PNPN) of the year 2010, an action schedule for the aquatic warbler got evolved which provide mixed zones of reeds in different ages and wetlands. For this reason the station is working in cooperation with different farmers to hold the specific zones open. These mixed zones also create special breeding habitats for stonechats (Saxicola rubicola), red-backed shrikes (Lanius collurio), goldfinchs (Carduelis carduelis), common whitethroats (Sylvia communis)  and common grasshopper warblers (Locustella naevia).

They are as well good stopovers for larks (Alauda arvensis), quails (Coturnix coturnix), whinchats (Saxicola rubetra), meadow pipits (Anthus pratensis) and northern wheatears (Oenanthe oenanthe).



The river Syr flows from the northeast to southwest through the reed banks of the Schlammwiss and affect the wetlands with periodic flooding. To protect the banks against erosion willows (Salix sp.) are planted along the river. This special habitat are perfect for treecreepers (Certhia sp.), long-tailed tits (Aegithalos caudatus), Kingfishers (Alcedo atthis), chiffchaffs, (Phylloscopus collybita), willow warblers (Phylloscopus trochilus), marsh tits (Poecile palustris), willow tits (Poecile montanus), ducks (Anas sp.) and sparrowhawks (Accipiter nisus).



About 4 ponds got attached at the station for compensatory measurements of the highway between Luxembourg-Trier. The ponds are fundamental breeding places for fishes, dragonflies, mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), coots (Fulica atra), moorhens (Gallinula chloropus), little grebes (Tachybaptus ruficollis), water rails (Rallus aquaticus) and muskrats (Ondatra zibethicus).

Furthermore the ponds are important stopovers and feeding place for all migrating birds, especially all shorebirds, herons, rails, swifts and swallows during the spring and autumn migrating.



About 40.000 barn swallows (Hirunda rustica) with sand martins (Riparia riparia) arrive every year around the same period (August-September) in the reed banks of Schlammwiss and create a very special natural spectacle who attract predators like Hobby (Falco subbuteo), Peregine Falcon (Falco pereginus), Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis) and some Owls.

Futhermore big groups of starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) - about 20.000 each year - and waterpipits (Anthus spinoletta) – about 100 each year – are using the reeds as sleeping or over wintering place too. As well small groups of white and yellow wagtails (Motacilla sp.) and yellowhammers (Emberiza citrinella) are using the reed as sleeping place.


Photos of the reed banks