Whitefish Point provides a phenomenal concentration spot for migrant birds. Here, land and water features create a natural migration corridor. Tens of thousands of birds are funneled to the Point every Spring and Fall while migrating through the Great Lakes region. For over 30 years, Whitefish Point Bird Observatory has been monitoring and documenting these annual migrations. Our mission is to document the distribution and abundance of birds in the Great Lakes Region, with special emphasis on migration.
Executive Director Tony Janisch is leaving WPBO and heading to Ashland, Wisconsin on the western end of Lake Superior. He has accepted the position of Executive Director for the Bad River Watershed Association. Tony's last day at WPBO was May 15.
The BRWA promotes a healthy relationship between the people and natural communities of the Bad River watershed, involving citizens in assessing, maintaining and improving watershed integrity for future generations.
At the 7th Annual Michigan Bird Conservation Workshop held in March; Dr. Alec Lindsay (Northern Michigan University) and Joe Kaplan (Common Coast Research) presented an analysis of 30 years of loon migration data collected by WPBO.
In the Spring: The peak and total numbers of Common Loon have declined over time. However, the numbers of Red-throated Loon have increased. The peak days, for both species, have occured earlier.
This April 26-28 marks the 25th annual WPBO Spring Fling, when members and their guests “migrate” to Paradise, Michigan and the Whitefish Point area to visit with old friends, both human and avian. Many activities have been planned for another refreshing weekend of birding experiences.
Birders can expect excellent birding along with opportunities to learn more about avian migration and conservation in the Great Lakes. Attendees will learn from fellow birders, field trip leaders, and guest speakers.
Unlike 2012, Spring was late in arriving this year and the lingering winter weather had an impact on our tour as many of the expected “hot spots” along the bay shore were still frozen over. In spite of this and the low water levels of Saginaw Bay, our group of six participants led by Jerry Ziarno was able to find most of the early migrants and some of the lingering winter visitors.
While the temperatures are cold and the snow is deep; these staff are set to record the Spring migration. Check out their blogs (to your right), to find out what's happening at Whitefish Point.