Eight great places for bird-watching in New England

Halibut Level State Park’s setting — alongside the Cape Ann peninsula that thrusts into the North Atlantic — couldn’t be extra dramatic (978-546-2997, mass.gov/places/halibut-point-state-park). Trails weave via woods and heathland, veering to the rocky shore the place harlequin geese bob in regards to the breakers. As you stand on the scenic overlook, an unlimited mound of granite blocks, deal with the rugged coast the place white-winged scoters surf the waves. The park’s interpretive path circling the water-filled Babson Farm Quarry educates historical past buffs on this former supply of granite; this venue can be alluring to bird-watchers who hear for the distinctive songs of the male chestnut-sided warbler and scan the water for inexperienced herons looking for small fish.


Positioned simply 4 miles from Newport, the Norman Hen Sanctuary (401-846-2577, normanbirdsanctuary.org) is threaded with picturesque ridges that make this birding paradise interesting to hikers as effectively. For birders, the woodsy trek alongside the Nelson Pond Path is very engaging, with alternatives to identify the rose-breasted grosbeak feeding on bugs and seeds alongside the forest ground. You may also discover the vivid hues of the Jap bluebird within the open fields the place artists take inspiration, establishing easels on the adjoining Mabel’s Studio garden.

Stroll the numerous, typically sun-dappled trails weaving via Trustom Pond Nationwide Wildlife Refuge, (401-364-9124, fws.gov/refuge/trustom_pond) residence to the state’s solely undeveloped coastal pond. Daybreak is very vibrant, the air alive with the refrain of warblers. Wander to the top of the Osprey Level Path and benefit from the statement deck overlooking Trustom Pond, the place pied-billed grebes dive for small fish. The botanically inclined can be within the native grasses — similar to massive bluestem — lining the Farm Discipline Loop Path. Right here, American woodcocks carry out their elaborate courtship show whereas in flight. Linger on the Farm Pond platforms, watching snapping turtles plow via the lily pads.


Stretching alongside a windswept peninsula, Hammonasset Seashore State Park (203-245-2785, portal.ct.gov/DEEP/State-Parks/Parks/Hammonasset-Seashore-State-Park) is blessed with greater than 2 miles of sand fronting Lengthy Island Sound. Fishermen can solid from jetties, hoping to snag striped bass, whereas geology nerds discover the Moraine Path, which is clustered with boulders from the area’s final glaciation. Within the spring, birders can be captivated by sightings of brilliant yellow male warblers excessive within the tops of oak timber alongside the shaded Willard Island Path. The Cedar Island statement platform is the place to identify iridescent shiny ibis probing for snails within the mud of the saltwater marsh, or pure white snowy egrets gliding throughout the foliage.

Peppered with myriad fishable ponds in addition to the sweeping Bantam Lake (famous for its water sports activities), the 4,000-acre White Memorial Conservation Heart (860-567-0857, whitememorialcc.org) is certainly one of Connecticut’s prime inland birding spots. If you happen to stroll alongside the Little Pond Boardwalk, you could discover green-winged teals foraging via the cattails. Horned grebes typically dive in Bantam Lake, whereas rusty blackbirds perch within the giant oaks and silver maples alongside the lake’s north aspect. Among the many 40 miles of multiuse paths, the Mattatuck Path offers alternatives to spy black-throated inexperienced warblers and ovenbirds within the densely forested Catlin Woods.


Useless Creek Wildlife Administration Space’s expansive property (802-759-2398, vtfishandwildlife.com/watch-wildlife/dead-creek-visitor-center), sliced by the slow-moving, canoeable Useless Creek, will be explored by automotive and on foot by way of the pedestrian-only East and West Department roads. First, cease on the guests middle for a brochure outlining a self-guided tour, then drive to the goose viewing space, listening for the curiously buzzy music of the male bobolink. Meander West Department Street and seek for black-crowned evening herons stalking frogs and fish alongside the marsh edges. Vibrantly coloured male wooden geese feed and mate in shallow coves, the place wet nights might convey out the elusive blue spotted-salamanders, a deal with for amphibian lovers.


At Pawtuckaway State Park, (603-895-3031, nhstateparks.org/go to/state-parks/pawtuckaway-state-park) the large draw for spring bird-watchers are the warblers — greater than 25 species go via — together with the gorgeous Blackburnian warbler that’s discovered excessive within the hemlocks alongside the Center Mountain Path. Climbing the Boulder Path (dotted with large rocks from the final ice age), you would possibly get fortunate and listen to the emphatic music of the uncommon Acadian flycatcher. The climb to 900-foot-high South Mountain on this greater than 5,000-acre state park gives sylvan views in addition to attainable sightings of dark-eyed juncos and hermit thrushes, species extra sometimes discovered farther north within the state. Mountain bikers are additionally keen on Pawtuckaway, thrilled by the only observe alongside the Woronoco Path.


Set on a peninsula fronting the Kennebec River and Whiskeag Creek, Thorne Head Protect (207-442-8400, kennebecestuary.org/thorne-head-bath), although petite and near the town of Bathtub, is a birding gem with water views aplenty. Stroll the Narrows Path and, from a scenic viewpoint, you could spot blue-winged teals foraging within the Kennebec shallows. One other path results in the a lot photographed concrete “Mushroom Cap,” a picturesque spot for picnicking and recognizing bald eagles hovering overhead. Attracting mountain bikers, hikers, and birders alike, trails course via woods dense with white pine, Jap hemlock, and maple, a really perfect habitat for black and white warblers feeding round giant tree limbs.

* Official COVID-19 steerage modifications ceaselessly. Test state and native rules earlier than touring.

Jeanine Barone is a journey author based mostly in New York Metropolis. Ship feedback to journal@globe.com.

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