Bird Watching At the Pond

The migratory bird season is upon us, and we’ve been seeing all kinds of exciting new birds visiting Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo. Here are some of the species we observed just last week.

American Coot
The pond at Nature Boardwalk is the perfect place for this bird to rest and refuel, as its preferred habitat is wetlands with emergent vegetation around the edges. Some interesting features to look for are the red eyes and the forehead shield right above the beak. American coots can be seen foraging in the open water or looking for insects on land near the water’s edge.

These birds are a migratory species in Illinois, so we’re seeing them as they pass through on their way to their wintering habitat. This is a diving duck, and it will go to the bottom of the pond to eat snails and aquatic plants. It may also be seen dabbling on the surface looking for food to fuel its migratory journey.

Double-Crested Cormorant
This bird is very distinct looking, with its elongated neck and long, pointy “eyebrows.” These are diving birds that will search the depths of the pond for fish, amphibians, such as frogs and aquatic invertebrates.

We’re excited to see which new birds show up this week. There’s something new to see every day at Nature Boardwalk.

Vicky Hunt


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