The Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) partnered with local conservation organizations to celebrate Bird Ohio Day last week, showcasing the species and habitats of the Warbler Capital of the World that make Magee Marsh Wildlife Area a world-famous birding destination.
Chief Kendra Wecker of the ODOW joined area birding groups and conservation leaders for the celebration. The group birded the boardwalk and Crane Creek Estuary Trail, two of Magee Marsh’s most prominent birding trails. A tour of Gov. Mike DeWine’s H2Ohio project at Turtle Creek was also provided.
Bird Ohio Day was sponsored by the ODNR and the Division of Wildlife, which partnered with Black Swamp Bird Observatory, Friends of Magee Marsh, Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, and the University of Toledo to make the event a success.
May is an excellent time to bird the Lake Erie marshes and woodlots. Spring migration brings large concentrations of songbirds and shorebirds as they rest and refuel on their journeys to summer breeding grounds. Prothonotary warblers, black-throated blue warblers, and yellow-throated warblers, among others, are familiar sights. A variety of vireos, thrushes, flycatchers, and orioles are typically found, as well.
Magee Marsh is world-renowned as one of the best places to view these migrating songbirds. The popular boardwalk recently received repairs and improvements following extensive damage from a storm in August 2021. Additional improvements are scheduled to take place later this year. Find more information about birding at Magee Marsh at wildohio.gov.
The surrounding southwest shore of Lake Erie has many prime birding locations that can be explored this spring. Metzger Marsh Wildlife Area, Pickerel Creek Wildlife Area, Maumee Bay State Park, East Harbor State Park, Howard Marsh Metropark, and Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge are just a few birding hotspots to visit. Additional locations can be found by visiting the Lake Erie Birding Trail page.
Birders can support wildlife conservation by purchasing a 2022 Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp, featuring a bald eagle. Proceeds from the sale of the stamp are used to support endangered and threatened native species, habitat restoration, land purchases, conservation easements, and educational products for students and wildlife enthusiasts.