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Ottawa County Parks & Recreation

Recreational Activities


Welcome to the birding information webpage for Ottawa County Parks! For the casual backyard bird watcher to the most serious of birders, Ottawa County provides a wonderful setting to enjoy these avian wonders. Our hope is that Ottawa County Parks, in particular, can be a means by which you can enjoy birds all the more. From the resources listed on this page and bird-related programs we offer all year long to the variety of natural spaces we provide, our aim is to help you enjoy the wonderful diversity of birds our county has to offer! Please let us know how we’re doing and how we can improve in providing this service. Thank you!

Birding Resources

The best place to report sightings, keep track of your bird lists and research bird distribution:

The most comprehensive online birding identification (and more) guide:

Birding Programs

Ottawa County Parks offers year-round birding programs, walks, and outings. Many are free or have a very small fee. Check out our program calendar for all of our listings.

Coffee with the Birds is going virtual this year! Learn more and become a Mug Club member.

Local Clubs

Connect with other birders and find birding programs and outings by joining a local club.

Update & Photo Supplement to Birds of Ottawa County, Michigan

Birds of Ottawa County, Michigan: An Annotated Checklist, by Chip Francke and Carl and Judi Manning, was published in 2015 and covered bird records through April of that year. The Five Year Update includes bird records from April 22, 2015 through May 31, 2020 and should be considered an addendum to the original publication. In addition to the Five Year Update, there is a color photo supplement created by Judi Manning.

Ownership of the original book and update is needed to have all the information required for a full understanding of the data and information in the supplemental documents. If you already own Birds of Ottawa County, Michigan: An Annotated Checklist, then you can download the Update and Photo Supplement by clicking the following links:

Birds of Ottawa County: An Annotated Checklist is available to purchase ($14.95, plus tax) at the following locations: You can also purchase the book by phone by calling (616) 738-4810. You can choose to pick it up at the Administrative Office or have it shipped to you (please note a shipping fee will apply).

For more information on this book, watch the following video.

What a beauty! Oh how we love their song. Great photo of a wood thrush by @the_peck_deck! #birding #birdsofig #ottawacountyparks

A photo posted by Ottawa County Parks Dept. (@ottawacountyparks) on