A woman with a braid in her hair looking through binoculars at a scrubby landscape


Over 300 species of birds can be found at Horicon Marsh throughout the year. The marsh has been designated as both state and internationally significant areas for birds. 


Common winter birds include northern harriers, red-tailed and rough-legged hawks, snow buntings, horned larks and great-horned owls. Occasional sightings of snowy owls.


Red-winged blackbirds start to appear, sandhill cranes, coots, pied-billed grebes, great blue herons, egrets and night herons, Canada geese, and numerous species of ducks and warblers. Expect unique bird species such as black-necked stilts, shorebirds, and on occasion the appearance a glossy or white-faced ibis


Summer is nesting season so birds are not as visible as during the spring and fall migration seasons. Many species of ducks including mallards, wood ducks, blue-winged teal, and redheads; Canada geese, Forster's and black terns; yellow-headed blackbirds and American white pelicans. Late summer (August) is typically a good time for migrating shorebirds.


Fall (mid Sept - mid-Nov) brings the most impressive numbers of migrating ducks, sandhill cranes and Canada geese for viewing. An occasional sighting of a rare Whooping crane is possible.

Related Documents
Horicon National Wildlife Refuge bird checklist

Listing of bird species found on refuge by season and abundance