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.
7:00 am
Warblers, vireos and more at popular migrant stopover. Directions: Meet at the Willow Rd. entrance just east of the Edens Expressway (the sign says Erickson Woods). From the north you should take Edens X-way south[...]
Erickson Woods
7:00 am
Fall migration continues. Leader: Rena Cohen (847) 971-1107 Directions: From Deerfield Rd., enter preserve and follow the signs to Brushwood Visitors Center. Meet in the Brushwood parking lot. NOTE: The gates open at 6:30 am.[...]
Ryerson Conservation Area
Sep 28 @ 9:00 am – 11:00 am
9:00 am
Our next chapter workday Lake Forest Openlands’ 770 Westleigh property is from 9-11 am on Tuesday September 28. Bring your own clippers and gloves if desired; otherwise they will be provided. BIG NEWS on this[...]
Lake Forest Openlands
7:30 am
Registration Required Fall migration is in full swing! We’ll check the beach for migrating shorebirds and the nearby pines area for warblers and other passerines on the way to their wintering grounds. Bring scopes if[...]
Waukegan Municipal Beach
7:00 am
Fall Magic! Everyone’s favorite migrant hotspot. Join us to search for late warblers, early sparrows and shorebirds from the Magic Hedge to the shoreline. Directions: From Lake Shore Dr. take the Montrose Ave. exit east,[...]
Montrose Point Bird Sanctuary
7:30 am
A fall sparrow spectacle awaits (we hope!) with special finds in previous years including Harris’ Sparrow, Purple Finch, Pine Siskins and more. Directions: From Rt. 60, take Rt. 43 north to Westmoreland Dr./Middlefork Dr. Turn[...]
Middlefork Savanna Forest Preserve
Oct 24 @ 7:30 am
7:30 am
NEW! One of Lake County’s newest forest preserves. “You’ll be taken in by this preserve’s rolling hills and scenic vistas.” The most prominent natural features of Raven Glen are Timber Lake, which is a glacial[...]
Raven Glen Forest Preserve
8:00 am
Lakefront birding at Calumet Harbor, Steelworkers Park, Park 566, Rainbow Beach, LaRabida and more. We’ll be looking for winter ducks, scoters, loons, special gulls and anything else we can find. Leader: Josh Engel  (224) 213-2280[...]
Rainbow Beach
Nov 13 @ 8:00 am
8:00 am
Multi-stop trip begins at Forest Park Beach in Lake Forest and heads north to Waukegan Harbor and other Lake Michigan overlooks. Directions: From northbound US 41, exit Deerpath Road and turn right (east). Continue east[...]
Forest Park Beach
Nov 19 – Nov 20 all-day
12:00 am
The Illinois River hosts an incredible number and diversity of waterfowl in November. The top spot of all is Dixon Waterfowl Refuge, known by birders as Hennepin. We’ll meet Red Hill Birding’s Josh Engel at[...]
Dixon Waterfowl Refuge
12:00 am
This event is a placeholder for a potential “flash event.” NO DATE has been set. Winter waterfowl in the harbor and nearby Stateline Beach, plus a chance for Snow Buntings. January birding can yield great[...]
Jan 12 – Jan 17 all-day
12:00 am
The Lower Rio Grande Valley is home to 540 bird species with specialties ranging from Green Jay, Great Kiskadee and Almatira Oriole to Buff-bellied and Black-chinned Hummingbird, Curve-billed and Long-billed Thrashers, Aplomado Falcon and many[...]
Lower Rio Grande Valley
Feb 19 @ 9:30 am – 4:00 pm
9:30 am
Annual Illinois Ornithological Society event. Pre-registration required. Watch the Lake Cook Audubon email or visit for details.  Attendance is limited. Members of Illinois Ornithological Society get advance opportunity to register. The Gull Frolic is[...]
Gull Frolic at Winthrop Harbor Yacht Club
Mar 27 @ 8:00 am
8:00 am
Our annual search for migrating loons and other waterfowl will be a multi-stop tour that begins at Diamond Lake in Mundelein and proceeds to other lakes in the area based on scouting reports. This is[...]
Diamond Lake
Apr 10 @ 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
5:00 pm
  Check out Lake Glenview for migrating waterfowl, one other waterfowl stop, then drive a short distance to Air Station Prairie to listen and watch for American Woodcocks ‘peenting’ and doing their mating displays at[...]
Meet at Glenview Park District's Park Center
Apr 18 @ 7:30 am
7:30 am
Target birds are Smith’s and Lapland Longspurs, plus the first wave of shorebirds. Directions: Take I-55 to Exit 279A, Route 45-LaGrange Rd. south; turn west on 179h St., then south on 104th Ave about two[...]
Orland Grassland South
Apr 22 @ 5:00 pm – Apr 24 @ 1:00 pm
5:00 pm
Save the Date – April 22 -24, 2022. Details to come at Illinois Audubon Society website. Read more...
May 1 @ 7:00 am
7:00 am
One of the jewels of Chicago birding, thanks in part to massive volunteer restoration efforts, LaBagh can be teeming with migrants on a good day. Pre-registration required. Send an email to Your participation will[...]
Labagh Woods - Picnic Grove #3
May 7 all-day
12:00 am
Every year since 1972, volunteers have participated in this one-day count across the entire state of Illinois to help measure bird populations. If you’re interested, contact Read more...
Adam Sell Lake County; Alan Anderson Cook County
May 14 @ 7:00 am
7:00 am
Best spot in Chicagoland for Black Terns, Yellow-headed Blackbirds, Common Gallinules and more. Directions: From IL 137 (Buckley Rd.), turn slight right onto W. Peterson Rd., right onto IL 60, left onto IL 120/Belvidere Rd.,[...]
Glacial Park
7:00 am
Migration should be peaking, Montrose should be jumping, and if we’re lucky, Piping Plovers, will have returned to nest in the dunes. Leader: Ted Wolff (312) 498-5559 Directions: From Lake Shore Dr. take the Montrose[...]
Montrose Point Bird Sanctuary
7:00 am
Over 116 species of birds have been observed in the preserve including resident populations of waterfowl and herons. The site contains an interesting wet meadow which is dominated by sedges, rushes and a few wetland[...]
Reed Turner Woodland Preserve
12:00 am
Located on Lake Huron, Tawas is one of the busiest migrant spots in the Midwest and also home to breeding Kirtland’s Warblers. Limit 12. Member priority. Email for details. Read more...
Tawas, Michigan
May 21 @ 7:00 am
7:00 am
This Lake County Forest Preserve property is a great spot for lingering migrants and nesters, with species including Blue-winged, Hooded and Cerulean warblers spotted singing and possibly breeding at the same time last year. Directions:[...]
Lyons Woods
7:00 am
Woodland trail loops around through multiple habitats that can be filled with songbirds, savanna birds and water birds. Prior years walks here included Hood Warbler and a Brewster’s Warbler, which is a hybrid Blue-winged and[...]
Sedge Meadow Forest Preserve
May 26 @ 7:00 am
7:00 am
NEW! One of Lake County’s newest forest preserves. Considered a birdwatcher’s paradise, more than 116 species of birds have been observed here, including a resident population of waterfowl and herons–the site’s namesake. Six state endangered[...]
Heron Creek Forest Preserve