Best Bird Watching Spots in the US for all Four SeasonsMay 7, 2014
The biggest benefit of retirement is being able to slow things down and take in life’s simple things. Bird watching is a hobby that embraces this notion and there are wonderful locales across the US for finding and watching Earth’s most graceful creatures.
This list gives you the best bird watching spots by season so no matter what time of year, you can travel somewhere in the US to discover amazing birds. If traveling causes you to have motion sickness, remember that Motioneaze can help. It’s an all-natural remedy that works in 3-5 minutes and comes in a small travel-size bottle. Now you can get out and explore the nation’s top birding spots without any worry!
Location: Chimney Rock, NC
Bird sightings: White-breasted nuthatches, Carolina chickadees, ruby-crowned kinglets, rose-breasted grosbeaks, yellow-rumped warblers, and more
Reason to go: The Appalachian mountains are home to a wide variety of birds and Chimney Rock State Park in North Carolina is one of the best places to see them. While all four seasons are good, the spring migration through Hickory Nut Gorge is particularly impressive and one not to miss!
Location: Great Bend, KS
Bird sightings: Whooping cranes, gray sandhill cranes, sandpipers, snowy plovers, avocets, dowitchers, killdeer, ducks, geese, and more
Reason to go: About twenty minutes north of Great Bend, Kansas is the Cheyenne Bottoms Refuge, the nation’s largest interior wetlands. It claims to receive 45% of all shorebirds during the annual spring migration, so it’s quite amazing if you enjoy seeing birds flock in and out by the thousands.
Location: Hog Island, ME
Bird sightings: Atlantic puffins, black-throated green warblers, black guillemots, blackburnian warblers, ospreys, bald eagles, and more
Reason to go: While some people might say the more northern Great Desert Island is the best place to see birds, others prefer this smaller lesser-known island, especially during the peak summer. In addition to its stunning setting, there are almost a dozen birding programs for people of all ages including field ornithology, conservation and family camp.
Location: Apostle Islands, WI
Bird sightings: Bay-breasted warblers, piping plovers, sandhill cranes, great blue herons, bald eagles, loons, hawks, mergansers, ducks and more
Reason to go: There are plenty of great spots along the southern coastline of the Great Lakes in summertime, but the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore wins for beauty, serenity and bird watching opportunities. You can only get to the islands by cruise boat or kayak, so if seasickness is a common issue, remember to bring along your Motioneaze!
Location: Cape May, NJ
Bird sightings: Bobolinks, warblers, swallows, eastern kingbirds, northern flickers, hawks, ospreys, falcons and more
Reason to go: Cape May, at the Southern tip of New Jersey is a beautiful shore town with colonial architecture and a charming Main Street. From September through November, countless migratory birds funnel into this area that separates the large Delaware Bay from the vast Atlantic Ocean. The Cape May Bird Observatory hosts workshops to help you spot them all!
Location: McAllen, TX
Bird sightings: Yellow-billed cuckoos, reddish egrets, northern shovelers, red shouldered hawks, vireos, tanagers, blackbirds, warblers, thrushes and more
Reason to go: Bordered by the Rio Grande and near the Gulf Coast, the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge has an abundance of birds that fly here to escape from the coming winter. Also, due to its proximity to Mexico, you can see many birds here that you might not see in other parts of the US.
Location: Merritt Island, FL
Bird sightings: Bald eagles, roseate spoonbills, wood storks, blue herons, peregrine falcons, ibis, hawks, coots and more
Reason to go: Located opposite Cape Canaveral, this island is mecca for bird watching during the winter months. Every January, the island also acts as host to the Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival so you can enjoy field trips, presentations, photography and exhibits all based around birding.
Location: Morro Bay, CA
Bird sightings: Cinnamon teals, northern fulmars, spotted sandpipers, ring-billed gulls, great egrets, white-tailed kites, hummingbirds, woodpeckers, and more
Reason to go: Morro Bay is along the Pacific Coast about halfway between LA and San Francisco, where winter temperatures are remarkably pleasant. Every January the nearby town hosts the family-friendly Morro Bay Winter Bird Festival that features artwork vendors, field trips, equipment sellers, and so many great birding activities.
Image courtesy: www.freedigitalimages.net and digidreamgrafix
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