Birding

Birding at Green Lane Park
Green Lane Park is for the birds…..and for birders!
Located in northwestern Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, Green Lane Park is a 3,400-acre County-owned tract of Open Space. Due to its large size and diverse land and water habitats, Green Lane Park has a long and storied history for birdwatching in southeastern Pennsylvania. Located between the Delaware River to the east and south, and the Kittatinny Ridge of the Appalachian Mountains to the north and west, the park and its surrounding environs are a natural attraction for bird life. With the 814-acre Green Lane Reservoir as its main feature, the park also includes two smaller lakes and 2 miles of the Perkiomen Creek, and its associated floodplain forest. In addition to the water resources, the park includes upland forest, old fields, meadows, extensive red-cedar stands, and conifer plantations. This diversity of habitats provides for a large variety of birds-both migratory and breeding. Some 288 bird species have been documented in the park and surrounding areas. Of these, 256 are considered regular in occurrence, the remaining species are considered “accidental.”
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While water birds including geese, swans, ducks, herons and shorebirds are the park’s most sought-after species, Green Lane also has a nice variety of raptors, woodpeckers, songbirds, and other species as well. In addition to the regular species, some of the super-rarities that have visited the park in recent years include Pacific Loon, Tri-colored Heron and American White Pelican, adding to the exciting potential Green Lane has for bird watchers. Who knows what our next surprise avian visitor will be?

Pennsylvania Important Bird Area
Because of its large size, location and diversity of habitats, Audubon Pennsylvania recognized Green Lane Park as a Pennsylvania Important Bird Area (IBA) in 1996-one of only 81 such sites in the Commonwealth. (To learn more about Pennsylvania’s IBA program, visit http://pa.audubon.org/pennsylvanias-important-bird-area-program )


Educational opportunities are offered year-round, through the park’s Environmental Education Program. Popular programs focus on waterfowl (March and November), and songbirds (May and October). In addition, several bird clubs run regular birding field trips to Green Lane Park, most notably Lehigh Valley Audubon Society (www.lvaudubon.org). A Green Lane Park Bird Checklist (revised in 2014) is available at the Main Park Office (2144 Snyder Road, Green Lane PA), Walt Road Day Use Area Office (1051 Walt Road, Pennsburg, PA 18073) or limited copies can be mailed by contacting the park. Green Lane Park maps are available at both locations as well. Green Lane Park’s rich wildlife heritage is celebrated on the last Saturday in September at the Upper Perkiomen Bird and Wildlife Festival held in Green Lane Park. This annual event features dozens of exhibitors and vendors, children’s activities, live music, and more, all intended to educate visitors about the bird and wildlife resources of Green Lane Park and surrounding areas. We hope you will join us this autumn!
In addition to the Park Office and Walt Road, other birding hotspots include Hill Road Day Use Area (2821 Hill Road, Green Lane PA 18054) and the Church Road Bird Sanctuary (1010 Church Road, East Greenville, PA 18041) The bird sanctuary is closed to fishing and boating, allowing migratory birds to rest and re-fuel undisturbed for their spring and fall journeys. This 80+ acre portion of the lake attracts a nice variety of ducks, geese and swans in early spring and late autumn. However, it is best known for attracting large numbers of shorebirds in late summer and early autumn. During dry years, most of the area has extensive mudflats, which have attracted over 30 species of plovers and sandpipers. Along with the more regularly occurring species, such rarities as American Avocet, Willet, and Least Tern have all made appearances in recent years. In addition to the water birds that visit the sanctuary, adjacent fields harbor such goodies as Rough-legged Hawk, Short-eared Owl and Eastern Meadowlark in the appropriate seasons. One really never knows what will pop up next at Church Road!