Willem Vandenameele

Uitkerkse folder

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Author: Willem Vandenameele

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Source: Willem Vandenameele

The Uitkerkse Polder is a European Natura 2000 nature reserve and is located between Blankenberge, Wenduine, Nieuwmunster and Zuienkerke in the province of West Flanders. Natuurpunt now manages 650 hectares of grassland bird sanctuary here. It is the most important meadow bird area in Flanders.

Interspersed with many ditches and dotted with dozens of cattle troughs, this area is an oasis of calm along the busy coast. But appearances are deceptive, because thousands of geese settle here in winter , while spring is the stage for hundreds of meadow birds.

The Uitkerkse polder is a real coastal polder of 1,400 hectares . 1500 years ago there was an extensive area of mud flats and salt flats , but human interaction with the tidal landscape has given us the polders. The canals were silted up , so the salt pans developed into salt marshes on which medieval towns grazed sheep and built farms . They protected the farms with local ring dikes, the beginnings of today's Oostkustpolder. In the fight against the water , man built a labyrinth of ditches, canals and ditches.

Source: Willem Vandenameele

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