The Audubon Society of Kalamazoo values its birding areas and does not condone the use of any device used to entice birds into view. We appreciate your cooperation in protecting our birds in this regard.
Kleinstuck Preserve – City of Kalamazoo
From the I-94/Oakland Drive exit (#75) drive north on Oakland Drive about 1-3/4 miles and turn right at Chevy Chase; park in designated area at the curve at the bottom on the hill. Note that parking on Chevy Chase Blvd is no longer allowed. If the spaces are full, parking is available on Hudson Street near the YMCA which is located at 1001 W. Maple Street. Access the preserve on the right where Hudson Street ends. Kleinstuck is the place to be in spring, from the first of April to late May, with the peak time late April and early May, before trees leaf out. In 31 years of spring surveys, 205 species have been recorded, including 38 warbler species. On a good day in May, 60-70 species can be found. Fall and winter can also be pretty good.
Asylum Lake Preserve – City of Kalamazoo
From US-131, take Stadium Drive east to Drake Road. Turn right. Near top of hill, turn left into parking lot. Habitats include lake, deciduous woods, restored native grassland, and some marsh area. There are many trails. Due to the variety of habitats, bird diversity is often good from spring through fall, though spring has the largest number and variety. [Please note: parking is no longer allowed at Winchell Avenue entrance to Asylum Lake Preserve.
Wolf Lake State Fish Hatchery – M-43 and Fish Hatchery Road
Located on M-43 about six miles west of the M-43/US-131 interchange. Turn left at Fish Hatchery Road and park at the Visitor Center. Walk the dikes of the ponds behind the Visitor Center. Best in spring and late summer-early winter for ducks and other migrants. Shorebirds are mainly found in spring and late summer through fall when and if a pond is drawn down. The shrubby dikes and edges of the woods host a number of migrant songbirds. In recent years 196 species have been recorded here, including almost 30 species of warblers.
West Lake Nature Preserve – City of Portage
Located near the intersection of South Westnedge Avenue and South Shore Drive. Drive 3-2/3 miles south of I-94 on South Westnedge to South Shore Drive (about 1-1/4 miles south of Centre Street), turn left and park in parking lot (on the left). Shallow pond, marsh, deciduous woods, nice tamarack bog with boardwalk, and a view of west side of West Lake. Spring and fall can be good for warblers and other passerines and for waterbirds.
Kal-Haven Trail State Park – North 10th Street
10th Street is the first traffic light on M-43 west of the M-43/US-131 interchange. Drive north on 10th Street about 1-3/4 miles, and the entrance will be on the left. A good stretch of diverse habitats is from the trailhead to the 8th Street marsh, about five miles round trip. Additionally, the trail can be accessed from most intersections all the way to South Haven. There is no access fee. The trail is mostly wooded and/or shrubby. Good for perching birds. In 2022, and the 27th year of record keeping, 163 species, including 30 warbler species, have been recorded from the first 2.5 miles of the trail. Please enjoy this article – Twenty-two Years of Kal-Haven Trial Walks, written by Ilse Gebhard in April 2018.
Portage Creek Bicentennial Pathway – City of Portage
Off South Westnedge Avenue on Garden Lane. Main entrance: Take South Westnedge 1-3/4 miles south of I-94 to Garden Lane and turn east. Parking area is 1/4 mile on the left. Paved pathway along Portage Creek, about three miles round trip. Lots of wet, shrubby habitat. In nice weather, it is best to go early. May be busy late in the day. Mostly perching birds and is best from spring through fall.