Field Trips

Please join us on a field trip. There is no experience required. You should bring binoculars for each participant and dress for the weather. Trips function rain or shine.

  • Unless otherwise noted, there is no charge for participation. Some trips have participation limits with prior registration required and are identified as such. At times, members may receive priority due to participation limitations. But you do not have to be a member of Illinois Audubon Society or the Lake Cook Chapter to participate in most of  our events. Good deal, huh? If you like our field trip programming, here are ways to support our organization.
  • Young people who can participate without supervision are welcome. For field trips and programs geared for budding young birders and naturalists we recommend investigating the Illinois Young Birders
  • Learn about membership in the Lake Cook Chapter of the Illinois Audubon Society here.
  • If you wish to be notified about upcoming field trips and programs please register to receive email updates. Field trip details listed on this website are subject to change.
  • Please! Leave your pets at home.

In the calendar below, please click the “+” to expand the view. Once expanded, click “Read More” for more event detail and map.

May
22
Wed
Wadsworth Canoe Launch / Sedge Meadow Forest Preserve – Wadsworth @ Sedge Meadow Forest Preserve
May 22 @ 7:00 am
Wadsworth Canoe Launch / Sedge Meadow Forest Preserve - Wadsworth @ Sedge Meadow Forest Preserve | Wadsworth | Illinois | United States

The trail beginning at the Des Plaines River canoe launch loops through woodland, savanna and wetland habitats that can be filled with a wide variety of bird species. One previous chapter walk here even yielded a Brewster’s Warbler, a hybrid Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warbler that is rarely reported in the Chicago area.

Directions: Preserve is on Wadsworth Rd., just east of US 41. Park at the Canoe Launch entrance.

Leader: Donna Kenski 847-347-3474

May
24
Fri
Openlands Lakeshore Preserve at Fort Sheridan – Highwood @ Openlands Lakeshore Preserve at Fort Sheridan
May 24 @ 7:00 am
Openlands Lakeshore Preserve at Fort Sheridan - Highwood @ Openlands Lakeshore Preserve at Fort Sheridan | Highwood | Illinois | United States

Now part of the Lake County Forest Preserves and reopened in 2023 after several years of being closed to the public, this 72-acre site along the shoreline of Lake Michigan is one of the few publicly accessible ravines and blufftop ecosystems in the area and a great stopover for migrants on the way to their breeding grounds.

Directions: The preserve is located at 24256 North Patten Rd. From downtown Highwood, turn east on Walker Ave., then north on Patten Rd. to the parking lot just south of the bridge. The lot is small. You can also park on street. Observe street signs, if any.

Leader: Nancy Tikalsky 773-655-0269

 

May
25
Sat
The Grove – Glenview @ The Grove
May 25 @ 7:00 am
The Grove - Glenview @ The Grove | Glenview | Illinois | United States

This National Historic Landmark spans 150 acres of oak-hickory savanna and wetland pools that provide an oasis for spring migrants.

Directions: The Grove is located at 1421 Milwaukee Avenue, south of Lake Street and north of Abt Electronics). Enter the property and drive to the last (easternmost) parking lot adjacent to the Redfield Estate.

Leaders: Ed and Rebecca Rice 847-420-0734

May
26
Sun
Illinois Beach State Park North Unit – Winthrop Harbor @ Fisherman's Parking Lot
May 26 @ 7:00 am
Illinois Beach State Park North Unit – Winthrop Harbor @ Fisherman's Parking Lot | Winthrop Harbor | Illinois | United States

Great spot for lingering and late migrants, including star skulkers like Mourning and Connecticut Warblers.

Directions: From Sheridan Road/Route 137 turn east on 7th Street. Follow 7th street toward the North Point Marina. At the stop sign, turn right and then, almost immediately, turn right into the fisherman’s parking lot.

Leader: Beau Schaefer 847-337-3602

 

 

May
30
Thu
Chain O Lakes State Park – Spring Grove @ Chain O’Lakes State Park - Spring Grove
May 30 @ 7:00 am
Chain O Lakes State Park – Spring Grove @ Chain O’Lakes State Park - Spring Grove | Spring Grove | Illinois | United States

Our closest state park is a multi-habitat migrant trap that has recorded nearly 250 species, including over 80 in one outing in late May in 2023.

Directions: From I-94 tollway, exit IL-173/Rosecrans Rd, turn left on Rosecrans, drive 13 mi, turn left on Wilmot Rd.. then left into park. Meet at the pull-out/overlook on the right side of the entrance road.

Leader: Beau Schaefer 847-337-3602

Jun
9
Sun
Illinois Beach State Park North Unit and Whip-poor-wills – Winthrop Harbor @ Fisherman's Parking Lot
Jun 9 @ 6:30 pm
Illinois Beach State Park North Unit and Whip-poor-wills – Winthrop Harbor @ Fisherman's Parking Lot | Winthrop Harbor | Illinois | United States

We’ll bird the IBSP North Unit trail heading south from the “fisherman’s parking lot” at North Point Marina, then wind up near the parking lot shortly after 8 pm to be in place when the Whip-poor-wills begin chanting their endless whip-poor-will breeding call at dusk. Sunset is at 8:24 pm so be prepared to stay until 8:45-9 pm.

Directions: From Sheridan Road/Route 137 turn east on 7th Street. Follow 7th street toward the North Point Marina. At the stop sign, turn right and then, almost immediately, turn right into the fisherman’s parking lot.

Leader: Nancy Tikalsky 773-655-0269

 

 

Jun
27
Thu
Liberty Prairie Nature Preserve – Libertyville @ Liberty Prairie Nature Preserve
Jun 27 @ 7:00 am

NEW! This small natural area connects Independence Grove with Oak Openings. It packs a lot of different habitats into a short 2-2.5 mile walk, including rolling prairie, woods, creek and pond habitats, providing opportunities for a wide range of birdlife.

Directions: Take Route 41 north to Buckley Rd./Route 137. Turn west and drive 5.6 miles to Butterfield Rd. Turn right on Butterfield (NOT left, ignore the arrow on the street sign) and park on Castleton Rd near the trail head. There is a portable toilet on the property or use the restrooms at the McDonalds on Peterson Rd before arriving.

Leader: Wanda Supanich 224-433-1675

 

Aug
14
Wed
Native Seed Nursery Tour @ Lake County Forest Preserve Native Seed Nursery
Aug 14 @ 9:00 am
Native Seed Nursery Tour @ Lake County Forest Preserve Native Seed Nursery | Grayslake | Illinois | United States

Join us for a one-hour tour of the Lake County Forest Preserve Native Seed Nursery, located at Rollins Savanna Forest Preserve in Grayslake. The site includes a greenhouse, seed processing facility and nursery grounds, with a 5-acre mix of woodland, wetland and prairie plants located just outside the greenhouse. Rare and hard-to-collect seeds of different native species are grown there and used to restore native habitat throughout the forest preserves.

Optional 7 am bird walk before the tour plus breakfast nearby afterward.

Limit 25 people with priority to Lake/Cook members. Email renabird3@gmail.com to register.