De Biesbosch

Bikes were on the road before the sunrise to get to an early tour 40 km away

by Jenna Bragdon

Today’s journey started off bright and early with a 5am roll-out from Wallwijk. As exhausted as we were, it did not stop us from enjoying a beautiful sunrise on our 40 km journey to Dordrecht to see the the Biesbosch, a National Park in the Netherlands.

Upon arriving, we met our tour guide Mik, who shared with us about the history and purpose of the Biesbosch, as well as many interesting facts about the plants and animals that reside within the park.

Mik teaches the group about the biodiversity and history of De Biesbosch

Particularly, Mik mentioned two different species and their relationship to the park. One was an indicator species similar to the dragonfly. We learned that this particular species lays its eggs in the water and will only do this when the water is healthy enough to support its young. The other species was the beaver, which was wiped out in the area around the 19th century and had to be reintroduced later on. However, the waters had become so polluted that they could only import beavers from an equally polluted area or they would not be able to survive, so the beavers in the Biesbosch originated from Germany.

So far we have been having a blast exploring sustainability and being exposed to the Dutch culture. I am looking forward to see what tomorrow brings. Houdoe!

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