The Wadden Sea is characterized by intertidal mud and sandflats between the mainland and the barrier islands. The flats are traversed by deeper water channels. There are coastal marshes grazed by sheep and cattle and reclaimed coastal marshland behind the dykes with permanent grass and some arable land.
An extremely important staging area: at least 20 waterbird species congregate in internationally important numbers in winter or on passage, totalling hundreds of thousands of birds. Circus aeruginosus, C. pygargus, Recurvirostra avosetta, Philomachus pugnax, Sterna hirundo, S. paradisaea and S. albifrons, listed on Annex I of the EC Birds Directive, breed at the site, some in large numbers.
National High International High115,850 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Vadehavet, 115,850 ha). 115,850 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Vadehavet (Wadden Sea), 140,830 ha).
BirdLife International (2019) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Vadehavet (Wadden Sea). Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 16/10/2019.