Dutch Serengeti

Controversial wilderness


The Oostvaardersplassen is a unique nature reserve located between Lelystad and Almere.


It’s comprised of 56 km2 of protected marshlands and fields, serving as a migration area for birds.


Its ‘locals’ include not just residents of the feathered kind but wild varieties of deer, cattle, foxes, hares and Konik ponies.


Nature lover's paradise

Oostvaardersplassen’s vast, magnificent fields, reed plains, rough grasslands and water courses are worth the journey alone, and it’s the perfect place to explore on foot or by bike.

Wild ponies

Along the way you can see huge herds of cows grazing on the grasslands, groups of wild ponies roaming the landscape and hundreds of birds soaring in the skies (as well as the chance to spot some birds of prey) including rare sea eagles.




Every year since the documentary film about Oostvaardersplassen; "De Nieuwe Wildernis", discussion erupts about the need to make choices between “humane shooting” and starvation.


As the protected area has no connection to other land where the animals could migrate and does not include predators...


The number of Konik and Heck cattle grazing during the growing season is determined by the number of animals that have survived the preceding winter. This has necessitated ‘control’ or ‘management’...


This management included animals being shot to prevent a slow death of starvation.

What do you think of this discussion?

"wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit"

Edward Abbey

Thanks for watching

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