Birds at North Chicago Wetland

The North Chicago Wetland Mitigation Site serves as an important bird area for spring and fall migrants.

In Spring 2016 we conducted 21 person hours of line transect surveys and and 14.8 person-hours of intensive searches and detected:

– 90 bird species.
No threatened and endangered species.
Possible breeding populations of American Woodcock, Sedge Wren, and Willow Flycatcher.

The most common species were

American Robins
Red-winged Blackbirds
Song Sparrows

Substantial populations were found of

Brown-headed Cowbirds
Common Grackles
Common Yellowthroats
Willow Flycatchers
Yellow Warblers

Summer bird densities were high compared to sites in our larger study.


During fall of 2016, we conducted 22.96 hours of line transect surveys and detected:

67 species
Northern Harrier – Endangered Species
Brown Creeper – Forest Listed Species

The most commonly detected species were:

Red-winged Blackbird
American Goldfinch
American Robin
Song Sparrow

Substantial numbers of migrating Palm Warblers were also found.

Continued monitoring will help us further understand how bird communities during spring, summer, and fall may be affected by ongoing restoration efforts. In future fieldwork seasons, we will continue to derive seasonal density estimates of birds for between-years comparisons. Continued monitoring will allow us to better assess to what extent NCWMS functions as an effective preserve for resident and migratory birds.