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Elbe Floodplain

Natural river landscape – the Elbe floodplain

The Elbe floodplain is a unique natural event. Here nature is allowed to shape a whole landscape. The Elbe regularly floods meadows and forests, creating a unique floodplain landscape over time.


About 150 different species of birds breed in the Elbe floodplain – even the very endangered cranes and the corncrake can still be seen here. Everywhere the white stork struts or flies around, because a quarter of the white storks that breed in Lower Saxony live in the Elbe floodplain. In autumn, thousands of taiga bean goose and greater white-fronted goose, as well as whooper swan and Bewick's swan migrate in large flocks to the Elbe to over-winter. The Elbe floodplains are protected almost everywhere: Lower Saxony Elbe Floodplain Biosphere Reserve.

Buhne Elbe Herbst © Wolfgang Herbst.jpg

©Wolfgang Herbst

Beavers are back

The diverse habitats offer a protected home not only for the many species of birds but also to rare frog species and salamanders. Even the bats, such as the great mouse-eared or the noctule, have survived in the Elbe floodplain. As a symbol of this beautiful river landscape, the beaver has reclaimed its territory; for a long time the beaver was considered almost extinct. Now you can sometimes watch it at work on the riverbank at dusk. 

Leaflet on tracks and signs of the Elbe beavers.pdf

Flora and fauna

This wonderful landscape is protected as a biosphere reserve.

Find out more at:

Beavers in the Elbe region

© Wolfgang Herbst

Fruit tree avenues – fruits of the Elbe floodplain

The Roman goddess of fruit and garden fruits, Pomona, only had in mind the flowering and maturity of her fruit trees. In the fruit tree paradise of Neuhaus, she watches over more than 6000 fruit trees which line the road for sixty kilometres. These avenues are an experience in every season. In spring they bloom in all colours, in autumn they bring blessings as apples, pears, and plums. Twelve nature trails tell you about the old fruits and their use. 

Leaflet about Fruits of the Elbe floodplain.pdf

More information about the Elbe floodplain and the biosphere reserve Lower Saxony Elbe Floodplain:

Obstbäume im Amt NeuhausLischke Christa Tosterglope 2-lpr.JPG

©Lischke Christa

Guided tours of the Elbe floodplain

It is just nice to be in the Elbe floodplain. Every season has its own beauty. Anyone who stalks through the diverse Elbe floodplain with one of the most well-trained nature and landscape guides will learn all about people, past and present, the Elbe, beaver, birds, and amphibians. Such competently and clearly explained nature with many intense observations and experiences.

An up-to-date overview of natural history guides can be found here 

or here:

Wildgänse an der Elbe ©HelmutSchneider

©Helmut Schneider

Marsch hooves landscape

Many communities in the Elbe floodplain, such as Hittbergen with its districts, lie in a Elbe marsch. Parts of this area are characterized by agricultural businesses. Following the farms is the farmland, which is divided into long strip parcels. These are separated by an extensive ditch system to drain the water. Often the parcels end at the dike or at a wooded area. The size of these areas was formerly indicated in an old unit of measure, the hooves. The hoof size was usually 30 acres from the 9th to the 19th century. 

Marschhufenlandschaft ©Ralf Meister

© Ralf Meister

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