Sunday, April 06, 2008

Best Spring Birding Spots

A few days ago, USA Today ran an interview with John Flicker about his top ten places to experience spring migration. As might be expected from the president of the National Audubon Society, his list ranges over the continent and incorporates many natural spectacles. It includes:

  1. Kern River Preserve (Weldon, Calif.)
  2. Francis Beidler Forest Sanctuary (Harleyville, S.C.)
  3. Rowe Sanctuary (Gibbon, Neb.)
  4. Waunita Lek (Gunnison, Colo.)
  5. High Island (Texas)
  6. Eastern Egg Rock (Muscongus Bay, Maine)
  7. Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge (Oak Harbor, Ohio)
  8. Central Park (New York)
  9. Souris Loop National Wildlife Refuges (Minot, N.D.)
  10. Tara Wildlife (Vicksburg, Miss.)
When I think of spring birding experiences, I think first of Rock Creek Park, which is as much of a migrant magnet as Central Park, but without the crowds. I also think of Hughes Hollow, Bombay Hook NWR, and Great Swamp NWR. After spending a full spring in New Jersey, I will probably be able to add some new places to that list. As you can see, my list has a much more limited geographic scope than Flicker's.

So what are your favorite places to experience the coming of spring?