Hundreds of bird watchers traveled to Texel on Sunday and Monday to catch a glimpse of a rare black-headed warbler.

As far as is known, this is the first time that the songbird has been spotted in the Netherlands.

The police are displeased because many amateur ornithologists do not respect the corona rules.


Noordhollands Dagblad

reports that the police had to intervene on Monday because too many birdwatchers from the Netherlands and Germany did not comply with the corona rules.

About twenty bird watchers were sent away from the cemetery where the animal now resides.

The black-headed warbler has been spotted in De Cocksdorp, a place on the northern tip of the island.

Local photographer René Pop was one of the first to capture the animal on camera.

Incidentally, the specimen on Texel does not have black, but a yellow-green head.

This indicates that it is a female or a very young bird.

Local ornithologists are calling on colleagues not to flock to the island.

They try to ensure that the viewings run smoothly by allowing bird tourists to enter the cemetery in small groups.

They stress that it is only allowed to walk on paved paths - out of respect for the graves - and that a mouth mask is mandatory.

Police warns against fines for more excesses

"It is well intended, but contrary to the current COVID-19 measures to gather with more than four people," a spokesperson told the

Texelse Courant


In addition, many bird watchers behave remarkably disrespectfully towards the police.

"One bird watcher asked for what authority we requested them to leave."

The police have warned in the event of subsequent violations that people will be fined for not following the corona rules.

The bird can travel thousands of kilometers in one go

The small bird is known for the enormous distances it can travel.

The songbirds leave North America at the beginning of autumn and then fly to warmer places in one go.

They then cover many thousands of kilometers in a few days.

As far as is known, the Black-headed Warbler is the only small bird capable of this.

Another big difference is that gulls and albatrosses, which sometimes fly long stretches over water, can land on the water.

If the black-headed warbler ends up in the sea, the land bird dies immediately.

Mostly the animals migrate to South America or the Antilles, but sporadically they also cross the Atlantic Ocean.