The fall migration season is one of the best times of the year for bird-watchers, both because of the sheer number of birds passing through northern Illinois and because many bird species look different in the fall than during their spring migration.
A large number of birds have more brightly colored plumage in the spring than they do in the fall, making them more difficult to spot this time of year.
“In the fall, many have molted out of their breeding plumage and have stopped singing, so many birders get excited for the challenge of trying to find and identify these birds,” Gutmann explained.
Forest preserves are a good spot for bird-watching because birds use these areas as stopping points to rest and refuel, he said. But of course, as with many things in life, timing is everything when it comes to bird-watching in the fall.
“The trick to finding certain species isn’t simply how or where to look, but when to look,” Gutmann said.
Check out this scene from last year when the American white pelicans arriveed at McKinley Woods in Channahon, which usually happens around the end of September.
Lead image courtesy of Paul Dacko
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