Monday, September 14, 2009

Access to local birding sites

With many birders coming into northwest Ohio now for fall migration, and especially for the Midwest Birding Symposium scheduled for Sept. 17-20, here are a couple of notes about access to birding sites.

Pipe Creek Wildlife Area (on the east edge of Sandusky) is closed at the moment except for those with special use permits. It will probably be open again after September 20, but I don’t have confirmation of this.

At Magee Marsh Wildlife Area, there is currently some construction along the entrance road. (Please note, the timing is an unfortunate coincidence, and not the fault of the Division of Wildlife, which is making sure that the road stays open through this coming weekend.) You may have to plan a couple of extra minutes for driving back to the Sportsmen’s Migratory Bird Center, the Wildlife Beach, or the Boardwalk, but these areas will remain accessible through September 20. The road will be closed at its junction with State Route 2 on Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 21 and 22, so those would be good days to bird other sites. The trails at Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge or the woodlot at Metzger Marsh would be good alternate sites in the same immediate area to look for songbird migrants.

For those visiting before Sept. 21, note that BSBO’s Window on Wildlife and the trail behind the observatory (just north of SR 2 at the entrance to Magee Marsh)have had a lot of action during the last few days, with birds like Cape May, Magnolia, and Wilson’s Warblers, Ovenbird, Scarlet Tanager, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Yellow-throated Vireo, et cetera. With northerly winds, the birds seem to be well dispersed through woods a short distance south of the lake, and not concentrated in the woodlots on the immediate lake shore.

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