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Birding Lapeer County: Hotspots west of Flint

 

(A) Holloway Reservoir Park ★

Covering nearly 2,000 acres, Holloway Reservoir’s best birding spot is a small park on the lake’s southern shore which offers several trails for visitors to explore. The reservoir is a water impoundment of the Flint River. Many kinds of ducks can be seen in the spring and fall, including Canvasback, Redheads, and Blue-winged Teals.

Directions: Click here

CanvasbackCanvasback

 

(B) Lapeer Prairie and Ponds ★★

Protecting nearly 200 acres of riparian forest and wetlands, Lapeer Prairie and Ponds comprises important waterfowl nesting habitat. The highlight is a paved trail system which loops around ponds and through wetlands. There are also observation mounds, boardwalks, and teaching stations positioned throughout to educate visitors on wetland ecology. Swamp Sparrows, Eastern Meadowlarks, and Great Blue Herons are all common sightings at Lapeer Prairie and Ponds.

Directions: Click here

Eastern MeadowlarkEastern Meadowlark

 

(C) Metamora-Hadley Recreation Area ★★

Encompassing 80-acre Lake Minnawanna, Metamora-Hadley Recreation Area is a heavily wooded park with many amenities available, including a large campground and modern restrooms. The lake is an excellent spot to look for Pied-billed Grebes, American Coots, and other waterfowl species. The best time to visit is during the spring before crowds of vacationers arrive.

Map: Click here
Directions: Click here

(D) Ortonville State Recreation Area ★★

Composed of 5,300 acres dedicated for public use, Ortonville State Recreation Area features hilly forests and many small lakes, providing visitors with opportunities for canoeing, fishing, picnicking, swimming, hiking, and more. Because of the recreation area’s habitat diversity, many kinds of birds can be seen within its boundaries. The preserve’s woods are an especially good spot to watch migrating songbirds. Hooded Warblers can be found occasionally. Be sure to print out a map before visiting the recreation area, which can be confusing to navigate.

Website: goo.gl/vIHUdc | Map: Click here
Phone: (810) 797-4439
Directions: Click here

Hooded WarblerHooded Warbler

 

(E) Seven Ponds Nature Center ★★

Deep glacier lakes and a Passenger Pigeon exhibit are among the many interesting things visitors will enjoy at Seven Ponds Nature Center. Other areas of interest include a Herb Garden, Wildfowl Feeding Area, and a Butterfly Garden. Visitors to the nature center will enjoy exploring the sanctuary’s many bridges, boardwalks, and observation towers.

Local naturalists have reported seeing over 160 species of birds at Seven Ponds Nature Center. The edge of the lake is a good area to listen for Sora and Virginia Rails in the spring and summer. Wild Turkeys eat corn and sunflower seeds at the Nature Center's feeders from November to March. Another local specialty is the Barred Owl, which lives on the property. Every year, the Nature Center hosts an owl prowl, providing visitors with an opportunity to see one of the secretive nighttime birds.

Website: sevenponds.org | Map: Click here
Phone: (810) 796-3200
Hours: The nature center is open Tuesday through Sunday from 9am to 5pm. It is closed on Monday. The trails are open to members only from dawn to dusk.
Fees: The entry fee for adults is $3 and the fee for children is only $1.
Directions: Click here

 

(F) Jonathan Woods Nature Preserve ★★

Jonathan Woods Nature Preserve is a 145-acre nature preserve that features many kinds of habitat, including stands of aspen, a swamp forest, a tamarack bog, and a mixed hardwood forest. Some of the birds which nest within the preserve’s boundaries include Scarlet Tanagers, Acadian Flycatchers, and Ovenbirds. The staff of Seven Ponds Nature Center maintain the preserve, keeping it updated. Occasionally, horse enthusiasts use the trails.

Directions: Click here

OvenbirdOvenbird