Helgoland, some 70 km off the coast, is the red sandstone outcrop of the island group belonging to Germany that lies furthest from the mainland. It is the perfect place for relaxed nature observation, far from the street noise and the hustle and bustle of the big city. Thanks to its location and the favourable maritime climate assured by its proximity to the Gulf Stream, a unique set of flora and fauna has evolved on the island and its neighbouring island "Düne".
OAG-Helgoland, the Ornithological Working Group of Helgoland, an extremely young and dynamic association, has made it a mission since 1991 to research and protect the unique birdlife and variety of species found on Helgoland and to bring it closer to nature lovers. The many tasks of OAG-Helgoland include counting gannet nests, collecting, ringing and releasing many little guillemot chicks at the base of the Red Rock during the famous "Lummensprungtage" in summer, and systematically recording migratory birds in spring and autumn. For nature lovers, OAG-Helgoland is one of the first contact points on the island when they want to get valuable information about where rare visitors to the island can be found or where the best birdwatching is to be had. All this, naturally happens with a firm eye on the needs of the vulnerable animals and plants found on the island. The annual report of OAG-Helgoland describes the progress of the birdlife on the island and lists the rare birds that have found their way onto the island that year. The large book "The Birdlife of Helgoland Island" was compiled by members of OAG-Helgoland and charts all birdwatching experiences since the time of the great nature observer and Helgoland inhabitant, Heinrich Gätke. The result is one of the most comprehensive books ever to be written about the birdlife of an island and its more unexpected avian visitors.
For many years Carl Zeiss has supported the work of OAG-Helgoland in preserving the beauty of the natural world, protecting the vulnerable flora and fauna and bringing enthusiasts closer to nature. Many of the members of OAG-Helgoland use the high-performance optics of Carl Zeiss for their field work. Even identifying sea birds at many kilometres’ distance is no longer a problem for top ornithologists with the Victory DiaScope 85 T* FL and the Vario eyepiece D 15 – 56 x/20 – 75 x. The binoculars in the Victory FL range are particularly good at smaller magnifications for viewing the landscape of the island with its many hedges. There are very few other places in Germany where you can get so close to songbirds without disturbing them. Here you can watch, from just a few metres away, robins, goldcrests or song thrushes looking for food in among the rose hips on the island and see even the smallest details in their plumage through the high-contrast, sharp and brilliant images produced by Carl Zeiss optics.
OAG-Helgoland also organises one of the most important events for birdwatchers, the "Helgoländer Vogeltage" (Helgoland Bird Days). Every year in autumn, this event attracts both professional birdwatchers and enthusiastic amateurs, with interesting lectures given in the evenings about birds of the world. During the day, you can discover the birdlife of the island by means of guided tours or individual excursions. Wherever a unique natural environment is ripe for observation, leading-edge optics are much in demand. That is why Carl Zeiss is always represented with a stand at the "Helgoländer Vogeltage". There you can rent out a pair of Victory FL binoculars, a Victory DiaScope or even a Victory PhotoScope for a few hours of relaxing birdwatching on the island.