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Bygholm Vejle. Photo, 16K Jpeg

Bygholm Vejle seen from Kraptårnet.


Vejlerne nature reserve is located in Northern Jutland, Denmark, at about 57°05'N, 9°E. The nature reserve covers an area of about 60 km² - meadows, reed beds, and lakes - and is the largest bird sanctuary in Northern Europe. Vejlerne is the result of an unsuccessful drainage project initiated around 1870. Since 1993 the area has been owned by the Aage V. Jensen Charity Foundation.

The main attraction of Vejlerne is probably the Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia). Vejlerne has the northernmost breeding colony of Spoonbills in the world. In 2002, the colony consisted of 7 pairs.

As the sanctuary is established for the benefit of the birds, there is no access to the area. The birds can be observed from public road and from the observation towers and hides built around the area.

Trip Report

We made a trip to Vejlerne 30th July 2002. As we only had one day to our disposal and we also wanted to visit Bulbjerg and other places that day, we only visited the eastern part of Vejlerne. We stopped at:

Kraptårnet - probably the most famous observation tower in Vejlerne - is situated on the east side of Bygholm Vejle. From the 33.4 km pole on Primary Route 11 follow the road towards "Klim Fjordholme". After 3.8 km there's a parking ground on your left hand. From the parking ground a trail to the tower. Best before noon. Most notable: Great White Egret 1, Grey Heron ~25, Marsh Harrier ~10, Golden Plover ~200, Lapwing ~1000, Starling ~1000.
Vejlernes Visitor Centre
Vejlernes Visitor Centre is situated close to the 30 km pole on Primary Route 11 (on the Bygholm Dike). Exhibition and hide. You can get a leaflet with map in the exhibition (or from a tourist office in e.g. Fjerritslev). Ducks and waders, most notable: Temminck's Stint 3, Curlew 4, Wood Sandpiper 1. The Temminck's Stints and the Wood Sandpiper were seen at close distance so we were able to study plumage details.
South-western corner of Bygholm Vejle
Parking ground at Primary Route 11 at the south-western corner of Bygholm Vejle. Most notable: Spoonbill ~20, Black-tailed Godwit ~40, Little Tern 1.
The Kærup Holme Hide
The Kærup Holme Hide is located west of Han Vejle at the old railway dam between Frøstrup and Vust. Greylag Geese, Water Rail heard, Lapwings, Black Tern ~5, Starlings.
The Han Vejle Hide
The Han Vejle Hide is also located at the old railway dam between Frøstrup and Vust. Coots, Common Terns, Arctic Terns, Black Terns, Bearded Tit heard.
Bulbjerg is located north of Vejlerne. Common (Black) Scoter ~10, Merlin 1, Kittiwake >200, Sandwich Tern ~5, Guillemot 1 dead on the beach. Unfortunately, we didn't see any Fulmars.

Systematic list

English name, Scientific name, Danish name - Notes


   Vejlerne. DOF
   Vejlerne. Danish Nature Agency
   Løgstør Bredning - the part af Limfjorden immediately south of Vejlerne. Danish Nature Agency
   Seneste observationer fra DOFbasen
   Latest observations from DOFbasen
   Bulbjerg - the only bird cliff in Denmark located just a few miles north of Vejlerne
   Vejlerne/The Vejler. Visit Denmark

Text and photo: Stig Linander, created: 2002-08-17, links checked: 2014-10-19, last revised: 2014-10-19