Waukesha County's Birding Hotspots

Under Construction - More Spots to be added soon!


Birds can be found anywhere, but some places are birdier than others.
While this is not a complete list, these are the places club members rely on to see
their favorite birds. Click on the name of each hotspot to access a map for the location.


These hotspots are organized in order of the number of species that have been reported at
each location as of July 2018. These numbers can be expected to increase as birders report more species

VERNON WILDLIFE AREA
"VERNON MARSH"

NOTE: Public hunting area – wear appropriate clothing for visibility. No facilities.

HABITATS: 4,655 acres consisting of mostly wetlands and flowages with the Fox River snaking through. Adjoining uplands consist of grasslands and woodlots. A calcareous fen is on the south side. The area offers excellent wildlife habitat, especially for migrating and nesting waterfowl.

TRAILS: The two main access points for birders are Frog Alley Road on the west side (turn east from Hy 83) and Benson Avenue on the east (turn west from Hy XX). The end of Frog Alley Road features a parking lot at the top of the hill; follow the trails that head down the hill to the north and then split – turn right to head into the marsh or go straight to traverse upland habitats. While the dikes are level for walking, they can often be overgrown with grass, so be prepared for ticks. The Benson Avenue access is reached by driving across the tracks into the parking lot (sometimes the gate is open, permitting driving to a second gate); walk on the road and dikes through the woods and into the marsh.

LOCATION: North of Mukwonago in eastern Waukesha County. Parking lots are located off of Hy 83, Frog Alley Road, Hy I, Hy NN, and Benson Avenue. See map on website for parking locations.

THE BIRDS: The general Vernon Marsh location has 201 species on eBird; Frog Alley has 194 species and Benson Avenue 218 species. Highlights include Trumpeter and Tundra swan, 20 duck species, Least Bittern, Black Tern, Yellow-headed Blackbird, and White-winged Crossbill (winter).

https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/lands/wildlifeareas/vernon.html

PARADISE VALLEY STATE WILDLIFE AREA -
BARK RIVER UNIT

NOTE: Public hunting area – wear appropriate clothing for visibility. No facilities.

HABITATS: Wetland, river, wood edge, grassland. Glacial Drumlin Trail forms the northern boundary of the property.

TRAILS: Viewing platform near parking lot and disabled-accessible blind approximately 2/3 mile from the platform. Main trail into the wildlife area is a combination of mowed grass, broken asphalt, and rough gravel. Going past the blind requires boots. Trail branches left before the blind, providing a one-mile (each way) trail that is sometimes covered with water. Trail north from parking lot goes toward the Glacial Drumlin Trail and then west to follow the river (2.5 miles each way); mowed grass to rough path. 500 yards from the viewing platform is a canal that may not be passable. The trail does not connect to the bike trail. The home on the northwest corner of Kincaid near Paradise Valley has several active feeders.

LOCATION: from Hy 67 in Dousman, turn west onto Hy Z (Ottawa Ave.), then turn west onto Kincaid Lane. Park in the lot at the end of the road.

THE BIRDS: 193 species on eBird, including Greater White-fronted Goose, Trumpeter Swan, 19 duck species, Least Bittern, Broad-winged Hawk, 16 shorebird species (including Black-necked Stilt), Caspian, Black, and Forster’s tern, five owl species, Red-headed Woodpecker, and Yellow-headed Blackbird.

https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/lands/wildlifeareas/paradisevalley.html