Back to All Events

Wooded Island Bird Walk Report

Submitted by Jennie Strable on Wed, 10/31/2018 - 12:23pm

Event date:

Saturday, October 27, 2018 - 8:00am 



Hello to All,

The yellow metal swing gates to the Museum south parking lot were locked, as they were last week.  I gained access by car, from the road in front of the Museum and driving east and then south past the IMAX theater entrance.  I spoke with two Chicago Police officers who were patrolling the lot in a marked police car.  An officer gave me the telephone number to the Chicago Park District Security Department(312) 747-2193. It would be good to have this number in your cell phone contacts.  I made a call. Spoke with John and explained the need to have the gate opened at least by 7 a.m., not only for birders, but for the dog owners who used the Jackson Bark area, and the boaters. John said that he would give the information to his supervisor.

On to birding – We had some late migrants and pleasant surprises.  Jennie S. spotted a group of Eastern Bluebirds across the East Lagoon, as we scanned from the Japanese Garden.  Randy S. identified a Blackpoll Warbler eating berries in a Wahoo shrub in the center of Wooded Island.  George G. spotted a small heron, on the east side of Heron Island.  The heron was shy and hid in the reeds, but would occasionally stand on the shore to reveal itself – a Green Heron!

BIRDERS:      11        (1) Rick R., (2) Bruce McC., (3) Randy S., (4) Jennie S., (5) Karin D., (6) Yvette C. Hyde Parker – new birder, (7) George G., (8) Cathy F., (9) Rachel P. (10) Catherine G., (11) Pat D. Brief visit from our birder dog Copper and his human guide Doug S. Copper loves birders, and shows no interest whatsoever in birds.

TIME:             8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

PLACES:        Wooded Island, Lagoons, Soccer Field & Bobolink Meadow

DISTANCE:    2 miles

WEATHER:    Mostly Sunny. Temperature 51 – 54 F., Humidity 80%, Wind NW 5 – 18 mph

TOTAL SPECIES COUNT:  33 (+3 other taxa)

  1. Canada Goose  180

  2. Mallard 1

  3. Chimney Swift  7     Stubby tail, sickle shaped wings, dark brown/black overall.

  4. Ring-billed Gull  2

  5. Larus sp.  6

  6. Double-crested Cormorant  4

  7. Great Blue Heron  4

  8. Green Heron  1

  9. Cooper's Hawk  2

  10. Buteo sp.  1

  11. Belted Kingfisher  1

  12. Red-bellied Woodpecker  1

  13. Downy Woodpecker  2

  14. Northern Flicker  3

  15. American Crow  6

  16. Black-capped Chickadee  5

  17. White-breasted Nuthatch  2

  18. Winter Wren  1

  19. Golden-crowned Kinglet  7

  20. Ruby-crowned Kinglet  2

  21. Eastern Bluebird  5

  22. Hermit Thrush  5

  23. American Robin  45

  24. European Starling  640

  25. House Finch  2

  26. American Goldfinch  7

  27. Dark-eyed Junco  3

  28. White-crowned Sparrow  2

  29. White-throated Sparrow  15

  30. Song Sparrow  1

  31. Swamp Sparrow  1

  32. blackbird sp.  1

  33. Blackpoll Warbler  1     Yellowish throat with distinct dark streaks on each side extending and spreading on the sides of the breast, white belly, olive back with dark streaks, olive top of head with faint dark streaks, black beak, dark line through eye splitting eye-ring, two white wing-bars. Did not get view of legs and feet.  It was eating European Spindle berries (I saw it swallowing one) along with several White-throated Sparrows, A. Robins and Hermit Thrushes.

  34. Yellow-rumped Warbler  1

  35. Northern Cardinal  3

  36. House Sparrow  1


This is a group report, with many birders contributing to the list. Most of the birds were seen by at least several or all of the birders.

Corrections, additions and comments are welcome.

Recordings are not used to attract birds.

This report will be documented on eBird as a group report for the Wooded Island Bird Walks.

The Walks are free and open to one and all. They are held year round. Newcomers are warmly welcomed. 

Darrow Bridge: Darrow Bridge has been barricaded by the Department of Transportation. A high black metal iron fence has been erected on all four sides. The fence will remain in place until Darrow Bridge is completely rebuilt, which could be several years away. The Bridge has been deemed unsafe.

Birders meet on the east side of Darrow Bridge.

Saturday morning walks: Start at 8:00 a.m. covers a distance of two miles.  Birders walk counterclockwise around the Columbia Basin (North Lagoon) onto Wooded Island. Exiting Wooded Island at the south end, the birders walk along the soccer field and enter the south end of Bobolink Meadow. The Meadow’s path leads to the Music Bridge and back to the East Parking Lot. In late fall, winter and early spring, the birders check for birds on the lakefront and Outer Harbor near LaRabida Hospital, and the Inner Harbor.

Metered parking is available in the East Parking Lot that is accessible from South Lake Shore Drive. There is a Stop Light at Science DriveThis Stop Light is approximately 200 yards south of the major intersection with signs for Museum of Science and Industry. Make a turn at the 57th Street and Science Drive Stop Light towards the Museum. Turn Left (south) at the intersection of Science Drive and Columbia Drive. Go through the parking lot to the west end.

Birders meet in the southwest corner of the East Parking Lot.

Parking and Lots: The East Parking Lot is preferred. There is also unmetered parking along Stony Island Avenue from 56th to 59th Street.

Best of Birding to All,                    

Patricia Durkin

Chicago Audubon Society Representative

Earlier Event: October 20
Wooded Island Bird Walk Report
Later Event: November 10
Wooded Island Bird Walk Report