Sunday, Oct. 8, 2023
7 am – 5 pm, Sunday, October 8
Marsh Overlook at Lost Valley Visitor Center
Glacial Park, Ringwood, Illinois
Results:  46 species 

McHenry County’s The Big Sit Birding Event Celebrates Its Tenth Anniversary on Sunday!

The Big Sit is an international birdwatching event when folks around the world tally the different birds they identify throughout a day. This is the 10th year The Big Sit will be held at Glacial Park.

The concept is simplicity itself: find a good place for bird watching and count all the bird species you see or hear. Adults and children are invited to join in the fun for as little or long as they like anytime on Sunday. The Big Sit will take place at the marsh overlook at the north end of the Lost Valley Visitor Center. Take Harts Rd west off of Rte 31 between Ringwood and Richmond, Illinois and follow the signs to the Lost Valley Visitor Center parking lot.

Attendees are invited to bring a lawn chair and their binoculars, drinking water, hot drink and snacks. This is an outside event so please come dressed for the weather. The Lost Valley Visitor Center will be open so folks will be able to warm up if it is cold in the early morning. Bathrooms are available in the center.

Experienced birders will share views through spotting scopes, and there will be binoculars to borrow for those who do not bring their own. In 2022, sixty-three different species of birds were counted at this site, the most ever in the history of The Big Sit in McHenry County. Organizers will share info about the birds that attendees are most likely to see and hear near their homes.

Sponsored by McHenry County Audubon, McHenry County Conservation District, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Friends of Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Here are the results of The Big Sit 2023:

1. Sandhill Crane
2. Canada Goose
3. Mallard duck
4. Golden-crowned kinglet
5. Red-winged blackbird
6. Great blue heron
7. Wood ducks
8. American crow
9. Morning dove
10. European starling
11. American goldfinch
12. Northern cardinal
13. American robin
14. Belted kingfisher
15. White-breasted nuthatch
16. Downy woodpecker
17. Red-bellied woodpecker
18. Blue jay
19. House finch
20. Tree swallow
21. Black-capped chickadee
22. Dark-eyed junco
23. Northern shoveler

24. Northern flicker
25. American coot
26. Ruby-crowned kinglet
27. Swamp sparrow
28. Northern harrier
29. Turkey vulture
30. Wild turkey
31. Grackle
32. Rock pigeon
33. Bald eagle
34. Cooper’s hawk
35. Double-crested cormorant
36. Red-tailed hawk
37. Kestral
38. White-throated sparrow
39. Great egret
40. Eastern bluebird
41. Black-throated green warbler
42. Song sparrow
43. House sparrow
44. Chimney swift
45. Eastern meadowlark
46. Ring-billed gull

Other visitors:

Chipmunk, squirrel, deer


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