Winnebago County

Carl & Myrna Nygren Wetland

This property is owned by the Natural Land Institute (NLI) of Rockford. It is open to the public 365 days per year. A parking lot is located at the intersection of Rockton Road and Hansberry Road west of Rockton. The parking lot is owned by Rockton Township, not NLI, and the township locks the

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Cook County - Cook County Forest Preserves

Burnham Prairie (including Burnham Prairie Marsh)

About

Purchased by the Cook County Forest Preserve District in 2003, Burnham Prairie Nature Preserve (BPNP) contains some of the highest quality wet prairie habitat in the state. Recently, the Army Corp of Engineers have completed restoration work on much of the east pond area. Plantings and herbicide application continues in the west pond area.

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DuPage County

Cantigny

The former McCormick estate hosts bird walks on the second Saturday of each month. These walks are free, so they are ideal to attend if paying the ($5.00 per car) entry fee into the park is undesired. The park borders the golf course, as well as has a couple good habitat edges. Resident Red-headed Woodpeckers

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DeWitt County

Clinton Lake

CLINTON LAKE BIRDING AREAS:

Salt Creek Bridge on 2545/2550E: Sedge Wren, waterfowl, shorebirds when water levels are lower, raptors, Song Sparrows.

S-3 Parking Lot and the Upper Lake Flats off of 2400E: Phenomenal spot for shorebirds (at least 23 species have been seen here) when levels are lower. Great spot for waterfowl, gulls (Little Gull

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Cook County

Birding the Lincoln Park Zoo area

The zoo grounds and surrounding park are an excellent place to bird during migrations. Chicago’s Lincoln Park, taken as a whole, is arguably the most popular birding destination in Illinois, and probably in the Midwest.

The zoo area has some challenges, such as parking and fences. If you can find a spot, the best place

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Mason County

Sand Ridge State Forest

Sand Ridge is a large expanse (over 7,000 acres) of mixed oak woods, savanna and planted pines. The habitats offer exceptional birding year-round.

Breeding species include Pileated Woodpecker, Broad-winged Hawk, Barred Owl, Whip-poor-will, Wood Thrush, Orchard Oriole, White-eyed Vireo, Northern Mockingbird, Blue Grosbeak. Pine warbler has bred in the pines near the parking lot west

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Mason County

Chautauqua NWR

Chautauqua National Wildlife Refuge is well known to Illinois birders for waterfowl and shorebird concentrations. The water in the various pools is regulated, and if dropped at the right time of year the habitat can be outstanding for shorebirds. Even if the water levels are fairly high, there are usually mudflats in the SW corner

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Lake County

Chain O Lakes State Park

COLSP is truly a birding haven. It’s best time is spring migration, but it is also a great spot for uncommon breeding birds, and in the winter is one of the best places to see Rough-legged Hawks in Lake County. It sports a wide range of habitats including riparian edge, open lake, mudflats, oak woodlands,

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Lake County

IBSP North Unit- Sand Pond and Sand Pond Rd.

Sand Pond is right at the west entrance to the North Unit and just south of the Hawkwatch. The pond itself is surrounded by wetland areas and some shrubland. The gated road can be walked to the lake or one can walk the trail around the pond. This area can be excellent both for migrants

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Fulton County

Emiquon National Wildlife Refuge / Thompson Lake

Thompson Lake is one of the magical birding spots in Illinois. The number of rarities and unusual species found here in recent years is too big to list here. Breeding or summering species include up to 16 species of ducks and geese, Black-necked Stilt, Black Tern, American White Pelican, Common Gallinule, Cattle Egret, Black-crowned Night

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