This winter was without or hardly any snow or frost. The Western Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio at Alblasserdam was still present into February. A Common Swift Apus apus or Pallid Swift Apus pallidus was seen at Terneuzen Zld on 2 January 2022, but could not be identified with certainty. The Belgian Spotted Eagle Clanga clanga appeared at Kwade Hoek ZH on 10 January 2022 and again on 16 January but disappeared again without a trace. On 22 January a White-billed Diver Gavia adamsii was found at Stellendam ZH and was seen on 23 January too, but passed away and was collected (without head and feet) on 26 January. Nearly 1000 birders went to see it when it was alive (for me my first since 1995). Also on 22 January 2022 a male Baikal Teal Sibirionetta formosa was found at the Groene Jonker ZH, most probaly the same bird as in April-May 2021. The Dartford Warbler Sylvia undata at the Hondsbosse Zeewering between Camperduin and Petten NH was found again and planned to winter there. On 31 January 2022 a live Thick-billed Murre Uria lomvia was picked-up alive on Texel NH. On 14 February 2022 a Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia was discovered at Prosperdorp in Belgium, 100 meters from the Dutch border. Fortunately the bird also visited the Netherlands occasionally, making birders in both countries very happy. At the end of March I went 11 days to Vietnam to find some missing pitta's. On the day I came back on 5 April 2022, a Little Crake Porzana parva was found at Heiloo NH, some 2 kilometers from my house. On 15 April 2022 it became known a possible Italian Sparrow Passer italiae was staying for a month already at Garderen Gld, but the DNA-results showed it was actually a House Sparrow P. domesticus. On 17 April at Western Subalpine Warbler Curruca iberiae was found at Woerden U and on 20 April a Calandra Lark Melanocorypha calandra was found south of Bergen aan Zee NH. Highlights in May were an Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus on 7 May 2022 at Grolle Dr by a single observer, the second Caspian Stonechat Saxicola maurus hemprichii for the Netherlands on Texel NH also on 7 May 2022, a Turkestan Shrike Lanius phoenicuroides on 14 May 2022 at Hargen aan Zee NH, a Rock Thrush Monticola saxatilis on 10 May at Delfzijl GR and a Collared Flycatcher Ficedula albicollis between 29 May and 6 June 2022.
The months June and July were without any special sightings and this void was during till the end of August, when two Arctic Warblers Phylloscopus borealis were found: one on 29 August 2022 trapped at Vlieland Fr and on 30 August one (heard only) on Ameland Fr. In September things got better: an Eleonora's Falcon Falco eleonora was photographed by a single observer on 8 September 2022 at Waddinxveen ZH, but could not be found the next day. Two Arctic Warblers were trapped: one on 5 September 2022 at Castricum NH and another on 25 September 2022 at the Kornwerderzand Fr. A Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla was discovered on Vlieland on 22 September 2022 and on 23 September 2022 a Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler Locustella certhiola was trapped at the Ooijse Graaf Gld. A Pterodroma spec passed Westkapelle Zld on 26 September 2022, the second record for the Netherlands, if accepted. Another report of an Eleonora's Falcon came from Texel NH on 30 September 2022, but again only seen by a single observer. Both records in September would be the third and fourth record (if considered separate birds) for the Netherlands. On 3 October a Paddyfield Warbler Acrocephalus agricola was trapped at Wassenaar ZH. On 10 October 2022 an Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellinus was found on Vlieland Fr and another on Texel NH on 20 October 2022. The fifth Arctic Warbler of 2022 was discovered on 11 October 2022 at the Eemshaven Gr.
The biggest shock so far this month happened on 12 October 2022 when a Yellow-billed Cuckoo Coccyzus americanus was found on the Maasvlakte ZH, the first for the Netherlands! To the greatest disappointment possible from birding perspective, the bird flew into the water and drowned, so not many birders were in time. A few days later on 15 October 2022 a possible Eastern Yellow Wagtail Motacilla tschutschensis was discovered on Texel NH and stayed till 19 October 2022 and could be the second record for the Netherlands if accepted (if it will ever be admitted). On 18 October 2022 near Zevenhuizen ZH a Bobolink Dolichonyx oryzivorus was photographed by two observers, but it only became known on 21 October 2022 and then the bird proved to be gone! On that same 21 October 2022, however, a well cooperative Yellow-browed Bunting Emberiza chrysophrys was found at Bunne Dr, the second record for the Netherlands (if accepted of course). This bird stayed till 24 October 2022 and was seen by hundreds of observers. The last week of October a record number of Pallid Swifts Apus pallidus appeared with at least 6 birds at Texel NH and 7 birds on Vlieland Fr. On 26 October 2022 a White-rumped Swift Apus caffer was seen and photographed by three observers at the Marlijn, Schiermonnikoog Fr, the third new species for the Netherlands (if accepted) in two weeks time! More disaster was the appearance of a female Siberian Thrush Geokichla siberica in recreation area Buytenpark near Zoetermeer ZH on 14 November 2022, eating berries, but could not be relocated again.

16 February 2022, birders looking at the Song Sparrow of Prosperdorp Zld; © Pim Julsing.

22 October 2022, birders at dawn waiting for the Yellow-browed Bunting to arrive; © Jan van der Laan.

Song Sparrow
Eastern Yellow Wagtail
Yellow-browed Bunting

Do you like to go to the main index or to the next year 2023?