South Eastern Ontario is a paradise for fans of feathered friends. Grab your binoculars, field guide and camera to discover some unique spots for birding in South Eastern Ontario!
1. Prince Edward County
Venture towards Prince Edward Point National Wildlife Area to experience untamed wildlife and bountiful birds. Located about 20 km southeast of Picton, it’s a sprawling 518 hectare park that provides crucial habitat of grassland, forest and wetland which is home to many species. The Prince Edward Point Bird Observatory is a migration research station at Prince Edward Point, that also conducts research to monitor and observe population. The organization is also caretaker to the Prince Edward County South Shore Important Bird Area. Both areas are publically accessible and even operate trails which are open all year round.
The Upper Canada Migratory Bird Sanctuary near Morrisburg is wild – literally. Immerse yourself in 9,000 hectares of wildlife habitat and be rewarded with seeing diverse bird species in one place. The sanctuary offers self-guided hiking trails and nature awareness programs, complete with an interpretive centre that features informative displays. Take the birding experience a step further here and stay in the Robin’s Roost: a tree-top cabin that sleeps six people – complete with a wrap-around deck. Imagine unwinding in this oasis, dining outdoors and trying to spot as many of the 150 bird species as possible!
The St. Lawrence River is a spectacular draw for waterfowl throughout all seasons, but especially during migration. From Bald Eagles to Osprey, to many species of ducks, herons, and even loons, the river and islands provides the right balance of water, land and food to make Thousand Islands National Park between Gananoqueand Brockville a veritable channel for migrating birds. Watch water birds on land from viewing areas along the 1,000 Islands Parkway, near Ivy Lea and the park’s visitor centre at Mallorytown Landing. Traverse the river by boat, kayak or SUP to one of the park’s islands and get up close and personal with some unique species!
Mac Johnson Wildlife Area is a special place that’s just north of Brockville, but surrounded by nature. It includes more than 500 hectares of wetland, field and forest – and is even home to nesting Trumpeter Swans! The reservoir here maintains water levels for the Buells Creek System and is a Class 1 provincially significant wetland, which means an abundance of wildlife, as well as an interesting collection of wading birds and waterfowl. There are trails and access to the “Back Pond” to get a good view of the birds who call this area home.