Domaine des Silex/Vuurkeiendomein

A. de Ville de Goyet ©

Formerly known as Nieuwenvijver, the Domaine des Silex/Vuurkeiendomein was once owned by King Leopold II, who gifted it to the Belgian State in 1901. It now belongs to the Royal Trust. Since 1999, the Commission Ornithologique de Watermael-Boitsfort/Commissie voor Ornithologie van Watermaal-Bosvoorde (COWB) has been working to restore biodiversity on the site, which covers 4 hectares and has been given nature reserve status. The banks of the pond have been reshaped and the Vuilbeek stream has been daylighted. Nesting boxes have been installed for kingfishers, which frequent the pond, along with great crested grebes, little grebes and mandarin ducks, while reed warblers nest happily in the reed bed. A sand wall has been created for swallows and the area of mown lawn reduced to a minimum in favour of tall-grass meadows cut once or twice a year, allowing wild plants and flowers to recolonise the area, which in turn attract insects and birds. An educational botanical trail was created on the site in 2008. In early 2017, some 174 species of birds were recorded there. The private area is open to the public every Saturday, and COWB organises a guided nature walk every first Sunday morning of the month. (Listed 18/11/1993)

Practical information

Chemin des Silex/Vuursteenweg 10, Watermael-Boitsfort/Watermaal-Bosvoorde
8 Boitsfort Gare - Bosvoorde Station
17 International School