The educational walkway consists of 5 information boards with QR codes, access steps, a stage, and a bosom paced walkway. The content of the tables is mainly concerned with observation nature, have specific themes: Hrušovská zdrž, bird watching, birds singing, migration and pacing. The boards are made of steel bearing structures and wood fillings that are directly suppressed by texts in Slovak and Slovak English language. 4 boards are located in the immediate vicinity of the DUNA observable on Hrušovská zdrži in the outskirts of the village Kalinkovo and one is located at the shelter of the the dykes closer to Hamuliak. By building these elements, it has strengthened recreational public space. The project is of a publicly beneficial nature and most of the work done to build an educational walkway was done voluntarily.
Hrušovská zdrž water reservoir on the Danube River at the outskirts of Bratislava is one of the most important wintering place for some species of waterbirds - for tufted ducks and black-headed gulls the most important in Central Europe and for common goldeneyes even in all Europe. More than 115 species of birds were registered in this area.
The catch basin of Hrušov (Hrušovská zdrž) appears to be most interesting in winter as far as bird species occurence is concerned. Thanks to the birds wintering within the Hrušov catch basin area, this place has become a part of the protected bird species area of the Danubian bottomland forests. In winter, the most numerous species are tufted ducks (Aythya fuligula), common pochards (Aythya ferina), common goldeneyes (Bucephala clangula) and smews (Mergellus albellus). If the winter is cold enough, more than 100 thousands birds can be encountered within this area. Apart from the above-mentioned species, rather rare pygmy cormorants (Phalacrocorax pygmeus) and also magnificent white-tailed eagles (Haliaeetus albicilla) are to be found here as well.
The migration period can be divided into two stages: spring migration beginning as early as in February and ending in May, and autumn migration beginning in August and ending in November. As a rule, birds linger longer during the autumn migration as they are not in a hurry to get home. In fact, the migration is one of the reasons why this area falls under the Protected Bird Species Area. Great numbers of various species are common, especially mute swans (Cygnus olor) as well as common pochards and tufted ducks (Aythya ferina, A. fuligula). In addition, practically all the types of the Anatidae family (including ducks, geese and swans) and huge numbers of terns (Chlidonias spp.) can be spotted there. The same goes for more precious species, as for instance Caspian terns (Hydroprogne caspia) or ospreys (Pandion haliaetus).
As the catch basin of Hrušov consists mainly of water, there are no sufficient nesting opportunities available. Thus it is not so interesting when it comes to bird nesting. However despite this handicap, there are various species that do actually nest there – and that is the reason why this area has been incorporated into the Protected Bird Species Area. For instance rare Mediterranean gulls (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) are to be found amongst the bird colonies of black-headed gulls (Icthyaetus melanocephalus) which nest on several local islands. In some places, common terns (Sterna hirundo) similar to gulls can be encountered, too. Nesting opportunities are sought out by other bird species as well, as for example tufted ducks (Aythya fuligula), red-crested pochards (Netta rufina) western marsh harriers (Circus aeruginosus, in cane in particular), little bitterns (Ixobrychus minutus) as well as various kinds of warblers (Acrocephalus spp.) In summer, the turquoise common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) can be seen flying over the water surface.
Birdwatching code of ethics
- promote the welfare of birds and their environment
- avoid disturbing birds when observing, photography and filming
- do not damage their environment
- observe birds only from a safe distance
- keep well back from nests and nesting colonies, roosts, display areas, and important gathering sites