Wonderful birding opportunities throughout the year.

Birding in Benzie County

The majestic Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) represents the enduring spirit of American wilderness, and often graces the tops of tall pine trees throughout Benzie County. Here an eagle is seen taking off near its nest on Pearl Lake.

With its rolling hills covered by forests and fields, and interspersed with numerous lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, marshes, and a long coastline along Lake Michigan, Benzie County is ideally situated for spring and fall migrants.

The spring migration begins slowly in March, builds from mid-April until early May and peaks in the middle of May. The Benzie Audubon Club hosts a Big Day Count each year and has recorded, as a group, as many as 168 species on one day. Individual birders have recorded as many as 132 species in a day. The Benzie Audubon Club and the Manistee Audubon Society just to the south have consistently recorded the highest species total on their Christmas bird counts of any other county in northern Michigan. After the peak, the migration winds up quickly so that by the end of May it is essentially over.

In the fall, migration actually begins as early as July when a few shorebirds, having already completed their nesting in the tundra, begin a leisurely southward trek. The entire fall migration is much less frenetic than the spring migration and will actually last into December. The peak migration now is difficult to define as different species seem to peak at different times, but usually the best overall birding may be had from mid-September through mid-November.

Through the early part of the spring migration and most of the fall migration, weather is extremely variable and birders should be prepared for a wide variety of conditions.

 

Scarlet Tanager (www.carlfreeman.com)

Download a Map and Guide for Birding in Benzie County.

Benzie County, the smallest of the 83 counties in Michigan, offers wonderful birding opportunities throughout the year, especially in the spring and fall.  About 270 species have  been recorded in the county and about 220 of these may be seen in a given year.

For additional information, please contact the following:

Map
FILTERS
Close

Refine Search

By Category:
By Name:
Benzie Audubon Club

P.O. Box 804
Frankfort, MI 49635

Region: Frankfort / Elberta
Website

More Info
Betsie River Pathway - Pere Marquette State Forest

King Road & Longstreet Road
Thompsonville, MI 49683

Phone: (231) 922-5280
Region: Thompsonville
Website

Shorter loop climbs wooded, hilly terrain, descends to Betsie River. Longer loop is hardwood forest and meadow.
More Info
Sleeping Bear Birding Trail

Walks & Trails
County, MI 49635

Phone: (231) 929-7485
Region: Benzie County
Website

More Info
Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy - Coastal Nature Preserve Trails

3860 N Long Lake Rd., Suite D.
Traverse City, MI 49684

Phone: (231) 929-7911
Website

Protecting Significant Natural, Scenic and Farm Lands, and Advancing Stewardship, Now And For All Future Generation ...
More Info
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Outdoor Activities

Empire, MI 49630

Website

hiking, biking, trails, snowshoe, cross country ski, dunes
More Info

List of Businesses

Businesses found: 5

Previous page Next page
showing 1 through 5 of 5

Benzie Audubon Club

P.O. Box 804
Frankfort, MI 49635
Region: Frankfort / Elberta

Betsie River Pathway - Pere Marquette State Forest

King Road & Longstreet Road
Thompsonville, MI 49683
Phone: (231) 922-5280
Region: Thompsonville
Shorter loop climbs wooded, hilly terrain, descends to Betsie River. Longer loop is hardwood forest and meadow.

Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy - Coastal Nature Preserve Trails

3860 N Long Lake Rd., Suite D.
Traverse City, MI 49684
Phone: (231) 929-7911

Protecting Significant Natural, Scenic and Farm Lands, and Advancing Stewardship, Now And For All Future Generation ...

Sleeping Bear Birding Trail

Walks & Trails
County, MI 49635
Phone: (231) 929-7485
Region: Benzie County

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Outdoor Activities

Empire, MI 49630
hiking, biking, trails, snowshoe, cross country ski, dunes

Previous page Next page
showing 1 through 5 of 5