The inventory of breeding avifauna on the Rohrschollen Island nature reserve (LPO 2000) has helped to identify 54 species in the forest massif and 30 species on alluvial meadowland.

Among the latter, we find heritage species indicative of the habitats in which they live and of the integrity of these habitats.

Forest habitats

The forest habitats (from pioneer forest to hardwood forest) enable 6 species of lowland woodpecker to live on the site: Black Woodpecker (Dryocopus martius), Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis), Grey-headed Woodpecker (Picus canus), Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major), Middle Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos medius), Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos minor).
The forest massif also shelters several species of birds of prey, including the Black Kite (Milvus migrans), attracted by the water courses and stands of stagnant water, which constitute its fishing grounds. The Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis) and the Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) are species typically attracted to the forest habitat itself, which provides them with an excellent hunting ground.
And the trees uprooted by the storm in 1999 are a godsend for the Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis), which can hollow out its nest in the slabs of earth thus formed.

Aquatic habitats

The internal hydrographic network (as well as the Old Rhine) and the stretches of water connected to it allow the nesting of waterfowl such as the Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula), the Coot (Fulica atra), the Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) and the Mute Swan (Cygnus olor). Perhaps, one day, we will witness the return of a species absent from the site since 2005, the Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis).

Meadow habitats

Thanks to the mosaic of habitats available and the preservation of certain groves, the alluvial meadow too enables some remarkable bird species to nest.
The Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio) is doubtless the species that best represents the alluvial meadow, where it seeks out tall, herbaceous vegetation dotted with groves where it can find nesting sites and the numerous animal species (Orthoptera, small mammals) necessary to its diet.
Other species nest at the very heart of the tall herbaceous vegetation or even in the reed beds (palustrine species): Grasshopper Warbler (Locustella naevia) (absent from the site since 2005-2006), Marsh Warbler (Acrocephalus palustris), Reed Warbler (A.scirpaceus), Reed Bunting (Emberiza schoeniclus).
This open habitat is also favourable to the Kestrel (Falco tinunculus), which hunts here and also takes advantage of the pylons on the meadows to nest.

Scientific surveys

To provide an overview of the effect of the management in place in the alluvial meadowland on the species living in this habitat, the City of Strasbourg, thanks its annual spring survey (survey using binoculars), maps the territory to produce a census of the number of specific breeding pairs and locate the nesting sectors of the Kestrel (Falco tinunculus), the Yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella), the Marsh Warbler (Acrocephalus palustris), the Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio)… and the Grasshopper Warbler (Locustella naevia), should the latter ever return.

As of 2012, an inventory of forest avifauna will be compiled every five years using listening posts to monitor the avifauna (IPA). Uniformly spread throughout the massif, they will provide data on the exact number of breeding pairs for each species as a result of two series of monitoring missions at each listening post in the course of the season (mid-April and mid-May).

Finally, surveys by canoe throughout the summer period (6 passes from mid-June to mid-August) help to track the populations of breeding waterfowl by counting the broods and/or breeding pairs along the internal hydrographic network and the Old Rhine.

Green Woodpecker © Sylvain HELLIO
Little Grebe © Sylvain HELLIO
Red-backed Shrike ©Sylvain HELLIO
Coot eggs © Camille HELLIO