Who does not know them – the small, iridescent hummingbirds, which flap their wings faster than our eyes can see. In the new “Hummingbird House” at Weltvogelpark Walsrode, visitors can observe the fascinating life of these birds. Hummingbirds live in southern North America, Central America and South America, and because of their exceptional beauty and special flight characteristics, are considered to be jewels in the world of birds. With a high frequency of 10-80 wing beats per second and the ability to fly backwards and sideways, the flight of a hummingbird is fascinating to watch. Hummingbirds can even hover in the air like a helicopter while taking nectar from a flower.

Hummingbirds have special environmental requirements that makes it very difficult to keep and breed them. Therefore these birds are not represented in most zoological institutions- only a few European zoos have hummingbirds and even fewer show them to the visitors. Since the end of 2011, some of these extremely sensitive birds have been living in Weltvogelpark Walsrode in a special breeding center behind the scenes, where they are observed and cared for around the clock.

Now, just in time for our 50th anniversary, these amazing birds can also enchant our visitors. The Green-tailed Trainbearer (Lesbia nuna) and the Amazilia Hummingbird (Amazilia amazilia) can now be found in the visitor area of the new Hummingbird-house. The Green-tailed Trainbearer lives at heights up to 3,800 m abovel sea level in western South America. Although males and females are both green in color, only the male has a long (10 to 12 cm) forked tail. This species is seen very rarely in European zoos, and only in Weltvogelpark Walsrode within Germany. The Amazilia Hummingbird inhabits steppes or deserts with thorn bushes in western South America, but is also found in populated areas, even in urban parks and gardens. Males and females are similar in appearance.

In the new Australian world “Toowoomba” free-flying Loris receive our visitors. In a new area of Paradise hall, named for a place in the Australian outback, visitors can experience a blend of exotic plants and colourful birds. The special attraction of new contact aviary are the hand-tame Loris, which are accustomed to people. There is the possibility to get direct contact with colourful birds. Visitors can allure the birds with special bird food.

They are one of the main attractions of Weltvogelpark Walsrode, the Humboldt Penguins (Spheniscus humboldti). Their homeland is the Chilean coast of South America. This is why they don’t mind our local temperatures. As they are highly endangered in the wild, Weltvogelpark Walsrode makes an important contribution to the preservation of this species.

The long and deep water basin enables the Penguins to reach high speed when diving and jumping – a speed that most of the visitors would never assume for Penguins.

When catching prey, they are able to dive up to 50 – 60 m deep – when being fed in the bird park they don’t need to make this effort: Every bird in a tailcoat will get enough fish during the Penguin parade on the wall of the enclosure as well as in the water. They are not the only ones being cared for during this parade – feathered visitors such as Storks come along to scrounge some of the fish on offer.

But can Penguins be counted as birds? Yes, they can. When closely looked at you can see that they have feathers. Many of our Penguins are not shy at all so you can get an up close and personal look at their wonderful world. They look forward to your visit!

The scary “Owl Castle” rises up at the end of the Wiesental. Here you can enjoy the diversity of European Owl species!

Next to the Eurasian Eagle-Owl, the largest European Owl species, you can discover Great Grey Owls, Snowy Owls and Barn Owls. Not only large individuals can be spotted, but you can also admire a small representative – the Little Owl, which reaches a maximum length of just about 20 cm.

Did you ever listen to the different calls of various Owl species? Unfortunately, our Owls do not call at a touch of a button, however be prepared to be impressed by the great diversity of Owl calls, which can be experienced at our sound board in the Free Flight.

The rain forest hall of Weltvogelpark Walsrode is a registered project of the EXPO 2000 under the motto “World Forum Forest”. It was realized by the bird park in cooperation with the Government of Indonesia. Both partners participating in this project conjointly realized their ideas. Next to the construction and the conception of this extraordinary Rain Forest Hall, programmes for the preservation of endangered bird species in Indonesia and the exchange of know-how between the zoos of Indonesia and Weltvogelpark Walsrode were agreed upon.

Apart from the original constructions such as the Toraja House from the Sulawesi Mountains (former Celebes) and a Balinese Temple Wall made of Igneous Rocks, more than 80 different bird species form the special attractions of this stunning hall.

Knobbed Hornbills with their impressive bills live in a huge aviary. They belong to the great Ornithological Treasures in Zoological Gardens. Further highlights are the giants among the pigeons, the Crowned Pigeon and a huge covey of Crested Wood Partridge. The air is filled with several species of fruit doves, White-eared Catbirds, Chestnut-backed Scimitar-babblers, Woodswallows and Orioles, Emerald doves and Asian Fairy-bluebirds, only to mention a few of the many species.

In different aviaries and a large free flight hall the visitors can admire the bird species diversity of different continents and will be delighted to watch weaver birds building their nests, a large group of Carmine Bee-eaters, several Doves, Great Blue Turacos, Currassows, and the ambassador of Weltvogelpark, the Toco toucan.

Europe’s greatest flight show »