Birds in Fall

This page has photos of some of the birds that passed through Douglass Park during fall migration (and a few that liked what they found here and wound up staying for the winter).

The warblers that pass through Douglass Park in fall continue south, sometimes all the way to Central or South America.

Most flycatchers head south fairly early, but Eastern Phoebes sometimes linger. Somehow they still find bugs to eat even on cool fall mornings.


Eastern Phoebe (October, 2016)

Thrushes move south from forests in Wisconsin and Canada, stopping by Douglass Park to fuel up on bugs and fruit.

American Robins are a type of thrush. Their numbers peak in mid fall, when crab apples are ripe. As long as there is fruit to eat, robins can survive the cold. A few even stay all winter.


American Robin (October, 2016)

Some woodpeckers migrate, too, joining the resident Downy Woodpeckers for at least a few weeks (and sometimes for the full winter).

The blackbirds that nested in Douglass Park usually leave the park by September. However, blackbirds that nested further north stop by the park during their southward migrations.

Green Herons and Black-crowned Night-Herons usually head south by early fall, but Great Blue Herons may stay at Douglass Park until late November, as long as the lagoons don’t freeze solid.

Hundreds of Canada Geese fly south to Douglass Park each fall. Many spend the winter if the snow is not too deep. If you search the goose flocks carefully, you might find some specially marked Canada Geese or some different species of geese in the mix.

Raptors include falcons and hawks. The three types of raptors shown below can be found at Douglass Park all year. but they are much easier to see once leaves fall off the trees.

American Goldfinches can also be found in Douglass Park year round. Large flocks visit the sanctuary each fall to eat seeds from dried wildflowers.


American Goldfinch eating Evening Primrose seeds. (October, 2016)

Many types of sparrows stop by Douglass Park during fall migration. You can sometimes see more than a hundred individuals on the golf course foraging for seeds.


Dark-eyed Juncos foraging on the lawn north of the lagoon. (November, 2016)

Dozens of Dark-eyed Juncos arrive at Douglass Park each fall. Many juncos stay all winter, along with 20 other kinds of birds. To learn more, go to