Virginia Bird Watching

Virginia is​ among the​ premier bird watching spots in​ the​ mid-Atlantic region of​ the​ USA. Virginia has a​ wide variety of​ environments and is​ visited by many species of​ birds.

Song birds

Virginia is​ home to​ large numbers of​ song birds. Along the​ coast,​ marshes,​ wildflowers,​ fields and areas of​ brush provide ideal nesting and feeding habitat. Other songbirds inhabit the​ tall pine forests there. Warblers,​ nut hatches,​ sparrows,​ red wing blackbirds and others nest near the​ Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic coast in​ the​ summer,​ while cardinals,​ jays,​ woodpeckers and finches reside there during the​ winter months.

Shore Birds

Herons,​ egrets,​ ibises,​ oyster crackers,​ march hens and other shorebirds are frequently spotted along the​ marshes in​ places like Chincoteague,​ Assateague and the​ other barrier islands. on​ the​ beaches,​ dozens of​ species of​ sandpipers,​ plovers,​ gulls and terns feed,​ nest and raise chicks.

Birds of​ Prey

A number of​ birds of​ prey visit Virginia. Ospreys arrive in​ the​ spring to​ raise young and feed on​ the​ abundant fish stocks. as​ seasons change,​ some ospreys migrate south while other birds of​ prey arrive. American eagles,​ red tailed hawks and other large hunters are present in​ the​ fall thru spring. Other hawks such as​ sparrow hawks may be found year round.


Ducks,​ geese,​ brant and swans all make stops in​ Virginia. in​ the​ refuge,​ geese and swans take up residence year round. Other full time residents include black ducks,​ wood ducks and mallards which raise their young on​ the​ marshes of​ Chincoteague Island,​ Wallops Island and much of​ the​ Chesapeake. as​ autumn arrives,​ ducks and geese migrate into the​ refuges and surrounding areas of​ Virginia. Shoveler ducks,​ pintails,​ mallards,​ widgeons,​ teal,​ rudy ducks,​ canvasbacks,​ redheads,​ ring necked ducks,​ bluebills,​ and others fly in. Mergansers,​ buffleheads,​ goldeneyes and other diving ducks show up in​ the​ bay waters as​ cold weather sets in. Off the​ coast,​ rafts of​ sea ducks and small groups of​ oldsquaw ducks forage along the​ shoals over the​ winter.

Pelagic Birds

The waters off the​ coast are visited by up to​ 30 species of​ pelagic birds including albatrosses,​ petrels,​ shearwaters,​ storm-petrels,​ phalaropes,​ skuas,​ jaegers,​ gulls,​ terns and alcids. These birds migrate along the​ offshore waters far from land. Many pass off the​ coast and never see Virginia's beaches.
Virginia Bird Watching Virginia Bird Watching Reviewed by Henda Yesti on January 17, 2018 Rating: 5

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