Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research
Royal Netherlands
Institute for Sea Research

WATLAS - tracking regional movements

With WATLAS (Wadden Sea Advanced Tracking and Localisation of Animals in real life Systems), we follow where Red Knots go in the western Dutch Wadden Sea. By investigating where red knots go and why, we can identify whether and how they can deal with threats such as sea level rise and habitat destruction.

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General information

In June and July, Red Knots breed in the arctic. The rest of the year, they live in coastal areas of western Europe in search of food and safety. The Wadden Sea is an important and unique site for Red Knots, where they moult their feathers and feed on shellfish like Baltic tellins and cockles. With WATLAS, we study how shorebirds move with the tide, on which intertidal mudflats do they feed and with whom, how individuals differ in where they go, and how long they stay in the Wadden Sea on their migratory journeys.

Project news

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Project blogs

Monday 13 July 2020
WATLAS fieldwork 2020 | Tracking Shorebirds in the Wadden Sea
The Wadden Sea is an important and unique site for many shorebirds. By tracking shorebirds, we study how shorebirds move with the tide, on which intertidal mudflats they feed, and how long they stay in the Wadden Sea on their migratory journeys. This…
Monday 09 December 2019
WATLAS | What do Red knots eat in the Wadden Sea?
The fieldwork of summer 2019 is over and we are back to our warm offices with lots of data ready to process. In total, 256 red knots were colour ringed and tagged this season. Thanks to WATLAS, we knew where the tagged birds were, but we didn’t know…
Thursday 15 August 2019
WATLAS | Where do Red Knots go in the Wadden Sea?
Blog 1: Now it is August and along with the other migratory shorebirds Red knots arrived in the Wadden Sea after breeding in the Arctic. The Wadden Sea is an important area for Red knots to mold their feathers and feed on bivalves, like mussels and…

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