Clayton, North Carolina

 

 

Top 20 Birding Sites In North Carolina

Click on the Hyperlink to view maps and get directions

#1. Birding on Cape Hatteras National Seashore

The Cape Hatteras National Seashore harbors an incredible variety of birds, making it one of the East Coast’s year-round birding hotspots. The park’s open spaces provide habitat for birds who live her...

From the guidebook "Exploring Cape Hatteras and Cape Lookout National Seashores"

Buxton, NC - Birding

 

 

#2. Roan Mountain

The Roan Highlands sit on the border of North Carolina and Tennessee and form the highest of the Unaka Mountains at 6,286 feet. Roan Mountain has several striking features, including the world’s large...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Bakersville, NC - Birding

 

 

#3. Salem Lake

Salem Lake is a 365-acre municipal water source for the city of Winston-Salem and surrounding Forsyth County. Habitats: Reservoir, mixed pine-hardwood, upland hardwood, freshwater marsh. Key birds: Su...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Winston-Salem, NC - Birding

 

 

#4. Duke Forest

 Duke Forest is owned by Duke University and comprises nearly 8,000 acres of recovered farmlands and patches of forest purchased during and since the mid-1920s.The forest is sectioned into six division...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Durham, NC - Birding

 

 

#5. Birding on Cape Lookout National Seashore

The open wild lands of Cape Lookout National Seashore are excellent places to see a variety of birds, especially during spring and fall migrations. The diversity and numbers of birds at this national s...

From the guidebook "Exploring Cape Hatteras and Cape Lookout National Seashores"

Harkers Island, NC - Birding

 

 

#6. Big Ivy, Craggy Gardens, and Balsam Gap

Big Ivy refers to a kidney-shaped region in the Craggy Gardens that forms the headwaters of the Ivy River. This is a dense, cove-hardwood forest with a well developed herbaceous layer, myriad wildflow...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Asheville, NC - Birding

 

 

#7. Mount Mitchell State Park

Mount Mitchell rises above the adjacent Blue Ridge Parkway to an elevation of 6,684 feet. Mount Mitchell State Park encompasses 1,469 acres of predominantly red spruce and Fraser fir forest. The moder...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Marion, NC - Birding

 

 

#8. Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve, Ritter Park, and Swift Creek Bluffs

Hemlock Bluffs is a state nature preserve that is managed by the Town of Cary through a lease arrangement with the state of North Carolina. The bluffs, which harbor a disjunct population of Eastern he...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Cary, NC - Birding

 

#9. Devil's Courthouse and Black Balsam

This area offers superb high-elevation birding, with excellent opportunities for some of the more sought-after species in North Carolina, including Peregrine Falcon, Alder Flycatcher, and Northern Saw...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Waynesville, NC - Birding

 

 

#10. Amphibolite Mountains and Elk Knob Game Land and State Natural Area

 The Amphibolite Mountains of northwestern North Carolina form a large chain containing some ten peaks stretching from Rich Mountain near Boone in the south to Mount Jefferson and Phoenix Mountain in t...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Boone, NC - Birding

 

#11. Davidson River and Pink Beds

This section of the Pisgah National Forest provides outstanding spring birding in areas easily accessible by car as well as several excellent trails. Elevation ranges from 2,000 to over 4,000 feet and...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Brevard, NC - Birding

 

 

#12. Riverbend Park and Lower Lake Hickory

 Riverbend Park is a 400-acre park owned and operated by Catawba County. It includes a mile of shoreline on the Catawba River just below Lake Hickory. Habitats: Pine forest, mixed hardwood-pine, upland...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Hickory, NC - Birding

 

 

#13. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Area

McDowell Nature Preserve, encompassing over 1,100 acres, contains relatively large expanses of various second-growth forest habitats in a variety of successional stages. The preserve contains moderate...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Charlotte, NC - Birding

 

#14. Greenville Area

River Park North is 324 acres of varied habitats. These include 250 acres of bottomland forest, over 20 acres of open grassland, and 45 acres of small lakes. The park is managed by the Greenville Recr...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Greenville, NC - Birding

 

 

#15. Linville Gorge and Surrounding Area

  Linville Gorge and the wilderness area that surrounds it are among the most spectacular natural features in the eastern United States. The gorge, formed by the Linville River and starting at the Linvi...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Morganton, NC - Birding

 

 

#16. Eno River State Park

The Eno River winds its way through Durham County, along a corridor of parklands forming a lush green barrier on the north side of the main populated areas of the city of Durham. Historic mills in var...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Durham, NC - Birding

 

#17. Croatan National Forest

These 160,000 acres are administered by the U.S. Forest Service. In addition to extensive birding opportunities, visitors can enjoy a diversity of wildlife and plant life. Habitats: Pine forest, mixed...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

New Bern, NC - Birding

 

#18. Green Swamp Preserve and Lake Waccamaw State Park

The Green Swamp Preserve is of national significance in botanical circles. It lies within the highly restricted native range of the Venus flytrap and hosts the highest diversity of carnivorous plant g...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Bolton, NC - Birding

 

 

#19. Cape Hatteras National Seashore

More than 300 species of birds have been documented at Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Hurricane Isabel dramatically changed the topography and plant cover in 2003, removing the artificially construc...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Hatteras, NC - Birding

 

#20. Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

 Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) is 152,000 acres managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The refuge consists primarily of wet swamp forest and pocosin with smaller areas of sligh...

From the guidebook "Birding North Carolina"

Manteo, NC - Birding