Win a ZEISS Victory SF

Welcome to the new ZEISS Nature Blog where you will find the latest stories about nature observation and birding.
Discover the unique world of birds, exciting travel destinations and helpful tips and tricks from our nature and birding experts - your outdoor adventure starts here.

To help you experience nature at first hand, we are giving away a pair of the latest ZEISS Victory SF binoculars. Look and identify the birds to be in the image with the chance of winning a pair of the latest ZEISS Victory SF binoculars.

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Digiscoping on Germany’s waterways.

The ground is steaming all around me. Last night’s cooling thunderstorms have done nothing to quell yesterday’s high temperatures. At around 5 a.m. the stunning beauty of the natural world unfolds in the offshoots of the Rhine river.

I’m making my way through the waterways, forests and meadows to discover orchids, observe nature as it is roused from its slumber, and above all to capture magic images of birds using my new spotting scope, the ZEISS Conquest Gavia.

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ZEISS Victory SF 42

Whether it is for spotting or observing birds, when it comes to identifying individual species nature viewers have every reason to rely on the Victory® SF 42 by ZEISS.

That’s because the large field of view (148 m to 1,000 meters) guarantees that you see as much as possible.

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Fascinating and irreplaceable: bird species such as the steppe eagle, the Rüppel’s vulture and the great knot are one of a kind – but they may soon disappear if we don’t take action now:

on the 2015 Red List for Birds, BirdLife International stated that population numbers are dwindling at a faster rate than they were just one year earlier. ZEISS has pledged to be a Red Listing Sponsor in the interests of conserving bird species diversity.

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The race

Champions of the Flyway is an international bird race for conservation. All teams are competing to raise the greatest amount of conservation funding. Its primary purpose is to celebrate the extraordinary miracle of bird migration. The teams arrive in Eilat a few days prior to the race day.

There is one full day of touring the best sites in the Negev and the Arava Valley enabling all participants to get a good feel of the “playing field” and practical and logistical issues, led by Israel’s top birders. The following days, the teams explore the field on their own to plan their route for the race day.

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More than 100 million of birds on their journey to the south

Every fall, more than 100 million birds head to southern Europe and Africa. They journey not to evade the harsh winter but primarily in pursuit of accessible food. While sources of food abound in the spring, making the northern climes ideal for raising their young,

sub-zero temperatures, snow and shorter days in winter render their search for nourishment much more difficult. Migratory birds are therefore almost genetically predisposed to fly off to warmer climes.

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Eilat, in southern Israel, is one of the most exciting birding sites of the western Palearctic region. The only overland bridge between Europe, Asia and Africa acts as a bottle-neck hosting hundreds of millions of migratory birds. Moreover, the birds passing through Eilat, are preparing themselves for the strenuous task of crossing the foodless and hostile Saharan desert.

The first sight you will probably get here in spring is the steady stream of Raptors hovering over the beautiful desert mountains that surround the town of Eilat. Raptor counts conducted here in the spring documented up to 20,000 Steppe Eagles, 50,000 Levant's Sparrowhawks (almost all the world's population), 500,000 Steppe Buzzards and 850,000 Honey Buzzards.

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A Champions’ account

The Zeiss Arctic Redpolls was one of the three teams sponsored by Zeiss Sports Optics in the famous Champions of the Flyway bird race and conservation event, on 29th March in southern Israel. Our team of four enthusiast birders and ornithologists (team captain Roni Väisänen, Jarkko Santaharju, William Velmala and Vilppu Välimäki) from Finland,

at the northern end of the Eurasian–African flyway, hooked up for the second time in this year’s race. With silver medals in our pocket from last year, some pressure for winning was put on our shoulders by other contestants.

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