Best Places to Watch Birds in Vermont

Ellen P LaFleche-Christian

Check out these places to watch birds in Vermont. If you enjoy birdwatching or visiting nature preserves, you'll want to add a few of these places to your trip list this summer.

No matter what types of birds you enjoy watching, there are several spots in Vermont that you can visit. There are options to watch birds in the wild as well as nature centers you can visit that house birds for educational purposes.

Vermont is well known for it's green, wild areas. So, Vermont birding is a popular hobby for many people. You can visit wetlands, fields, mixed forests, and even shoreline to view and identify birds that make their home in those areas.

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chickadees on a tree branchDaniyal/Pexels

Dead Creek Wildlife Management Area in Addison

The Dead Creek Wildlife Management Area is located on Vermont Route 17 in Addison Vermont. It's a popular public viewing area for a wide variety of Canadian and Snow Geese. There are a variety of different types of habitats and access is easy for the public.

Plan to visit the fields in the area to see Rough-legged Hawk, Snowy Owl, Bald Eagle, and even shorebirds in the late summer.

Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge on Lake Champlain

Those in northern Vermont will want to visit Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge which is located on the eastern shore of Lake Champlain. This refuge is the only refuge located entirely in the state of Vermont.

You will be able to visit a variety of terrains including floodplain forest, wetlands, shrub, bog, and grasslands. They provide a home to many migratory birds and native plant species.

Be sure to stop by Maquam Bog which is a 900-acre pitch pine woodland bog on the northeastern section of Lake Champlain. In the winter it is the easiest to visit because you can walk on the ice. When you visit be sure to look for ruffed grouse, a variety of hawks, and great horned owls.

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a bald eagle flyingFrank/Pexels

Button Bay State Park near Vergennes

While Button Bay near Vergennes is a smaller birding area, it has a large variety of species you can observe. If waterfowl are your passion, this is the spot to visit.

While you're there, keep your eyes open for many different species of ducks as well as the common loon, osprey, and even bald eagles. In the winter, look for the snow bunting.

You can access this Vermont birding spot through the main park entrance or take the side road toward a boat launch site for another option.

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heron in a marshChris/Pexels

West Rutland Marsh in West Rutland

The West Rutland Marsh is one of my favorite spots in Vermont to bird watch. This cattail marsh has a boardwalk and an interpretive trail for visitors to walk. Plus, there are paths that go all around the perimeter of the marsh.

There are about 200 different species that have been observed in this area. Be sure to keep your eyes open for wood duck, great blue heron, Wilson's snipe, black and white warbler, and even scarlet tanager. Find out more here.

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pine siskin bird on the grassBrian/Pexels

Mount Mansfield in Underhill

Mount Mansfield is the highest mountain in Vermont with a summit that is 4,395 feet above sea level. So, it only stands to reason that it would be home to many Vermont birds.

One of the most popular birds found in this location is the famous Bicknell's Thrush. This high elevation bird only calls its home on the highest mountains in the northeast.

This area is generally open from May to October and there is a toll road that is well maintained to access the area. In addition to the Bicknell's Thrush, you can also look for the Northern Saw-whet owl, ruby-crowned kinglet, Canada Warbler, and pine siskin.

If you're interested in birdwatching in Vermont, I hope you'll visit a few of these locations.

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