Bird Watching

Singing warblers and soaring Eagles share mountain skies

When you share an Ozark Mountain morning with the many feathered creatures who live in the mountains rich habitats, you can spot woodpeckers, warblers, soaring hawks and even the mighty eagle. Step outside of your mountain vacation home-away-from-home when the sun goes down or take a night stroll on a clear forested path; owls and whip-poor-wills will entertain you with their evening calls.

The vast areas of natural habitats that make up the Ozark Mountain region attract many different resident and migrating species. Your binoculars and love of birding are all you will need to experience thrilling bird watching experiences in the Ozarks.

Ozark National Forest 

When birding in the Ozarks National Forest look for the natural habitats that attract specific species.

Hardwood forests, pine forests, ridge tops, hillsides, stream sides and glades of this beautiful land provide excellent habitats for nesting warblers, tanagers, woodpeckers and vireos.

Boone County/Harrison 

Located in the middle of the Ozarks, north of the Boston Mountains, Boone County has wooded, developed, agricultural, stream and lake habitats. Over 100 species have been found with some evidence of nesting. With migrating species and winter residents includes, as many as 200 species may be found.

Lake Harrison 

Lake Harrison on Crooked Creek in downtown Harrison is easily accessible, even for those limited in activities. It has a resident population of ducks and among them there have been Wood Ducks at times. Wild species may be attracted in such as Yellow crowned Night Heron, Green Herons and Bufflehead. Even Ring-billed Gulls have been seen there, as well as at Bull Shoals Lake.

Baker Prairie 

This Natural Conservancy of tall grass prairie of approximately 65 acres at the western edge of Harrison. It is the most important example of the tall grass prairies that were once more abundant in this part of the state. Located on Goblin Drive, it can be found on both sides of the road. Many species of Birds are abundant in this area. Look for Grasshopper Sparrows nesting on the prairie and in the fields to the west. The Painted Bunting has been seen and heard in scrubby areas along the prairie borders. Bobolinks have been spotted in spring migration, late April and early May, and have been recorded annually along the Lone Oak Dairy road located two miles west of Baker Prairie off of highway 397. Baker Prairie is a point of interest for locals and visitors alike.

Cricket Creek Boat Dock Area 

Cricket Creek Boat Dock area on Table Rock Lake in the northwest corner of the county is a reliable location for nesting Prothonotary and Parula Warblers. Tree Swallows are there in good numbers due to some standing trees in the water. Scarlet Tanagers have been found in the large unbroken tracks of woods. A few Black Vultures are always present. Over 110 species have been found nearby.

Tucker Holler Boat Dock Area 

Tucker Holler Boat Dock area on Bull Shoals Lake in the central north border of the county is readily accessible. Bald Eagles are fairly common there in the winter. Mergansers have spent the winter there.

Ironstob Chapel to Bergman Road

These great country roads are known for wood warblers in the spring migration as is the road out of the Capps community known as the Terrapin Creek road.

Lead Hill Boat Dock Area 

Lead Hill Boat Dock area at Diamond City on Bull Shoals Lake in the Northeast corner of the county has been reliable for many species including nesting Painted Buntings, Orchard Orioles, Yellow Breasted Chats, and Prairie Warblers. Bald Eagles are found all along the White River Lakes in the winter. Even American Avocets and Caspian Terns have been seen here in the proper season of migration.