North Shore bird list

Download the
bird list for Gooseberry Falls State park.

Common birds

Some birds are present year-round, others are seasonal.

  • Black-capped Chickadee (black cap & bib, white cheeks, smaller than a sparrow, "chick-a-dee-dee-dee" voice)
  • Pine Siskin (heavily streaked brown finch, some yellow on wings & tail base, pointed bill, social bird)
  • American Goldfinch
  • Purple Finch
  • American Crow
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Ruffed Grouse
  • Herring Gull (red spot on bill, pink legs, black wing tips with white spots)
  • Eastern Phoebe
  • Red-eyed Vireo
  • Veery
  • Cedar Waxwing
  • Song Sparrow
  • Common Yellow Throat

Other birds include (partial list)

  • Bald Eagle
  • Sharp-shinned Hawk
  • Broad-winged Hawk
  • Killdeer
  • Spotted Sandpiper
  • American Woodcock
  • Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • Northern Flicker
  • Pileated Woodpecker
  • Alder Flycatcher
  • Blue Jay
  • Northern Raven
  • Red-breasted Nuthatch
  • Golden-crowned Kinglet
  • Ruby-crowned Kinglet
  • Nashville Warbler
  • Chestnut-sided Warbler
  • Magnolia Warbler
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler
  • Black-throated Green Warbler
  • Blackburnian Warbler
  • Black-and-White Warbler
  • American Redstart (warbler)
  • Ovenbird (warbler)
  • Mourning Warbler
  • Canada Warbler
  • White-throated Sparrow
  • Chipping Sparrow
  • Rose-breasted Grosbeak
  • Evening Grosbeak

Bird identification tips

When you see a bird make at least 3 observations*, such as:

Location: where exactly did you see the bird (water, forest, field, feeder, tree top, tree trunk, lower branch, on the ground, roadside, trail side, shoreline, etc.)

Body size: compare to a known bird (smaller than a...bigger than a... plump like a...slender like a...)

Colors & markings: on wings, tail, back, belly, rump, head (stripe above, through, or below eye, eye ring, etc.)

Other: shape, length & color of tail, legs, bill (long, short, thick, thin, curved, straight) sounds or movements (travel alone or in groups, in-flight wing position--soaring, flapping, flap & glide, etc.)

*Jot down observation notes as soon as possible to help in identification.

Diagram showing the parts of a bird, particularly those to use in bird identification.

North Shore birding year highlights


The first spring migrants arrive in early April with the "big push" of migration in late May, when over 150 species may be present in the park at once.


Summer nesting specialties along the North Shore include Bald Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, many wood warblers, and more.


During fall look for the Common Nighthawk migration in late August, when thousands can fill the sky on warm evenings; the flood of songbirds heading south in early September; the peak of raptor migration in September and October, when the North Shore is one of the best places in North America to see migrating hawks; and the Arctic birds beginning to arrive in late October.


In winter, northern owls and winter finches such as redpolls, crossbills, Pine Grosbeaks, and Evening Grosbeaks sometimes visit from Canada.

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