Map Interactive local COVID-19 tracker
Contact Us
Fairfield Daily Voice serves Fairfield & Southport
Return to your home site

Menu

Fairfield Daily Voice serves Fairfield & Southport

Nearby Towns

Breaking News: Snowfall From Merging Storms Now Expected In Wider Part Of Region
Lifestyle

It's A Bird! It's A Plane! It's Both! Birds Find Home At Area Airports

Many birds are unfazed by the heavy plane traffic around John F. Kennedy International Airport. Photo Credit: William Haffey
Hook Creek Wildlife Sanctuary is a great place to find birds. Photo Credit: William Haffey
Waterfowl are abundant in the area's waterways. Photo Credit: William Haffey
Fields around the airport are great for sparrows and warblers. Photo Credit: William Haffey

While it is common knowledge that large metal “birds” are easily seen around airports, many people are surprised to learn that feathered ones are often equally as abundant. 

One of the busiest airports in the world, our very own John F. Kennedy International Airport, is home to a wide variety of species that can be easily spotted just outside the airport’s restricted grounds. For many reasons the surrounding scrub, marsh and waterfront remains undeveloped, providing ideal habitat for waterfowl and land birds alike. 

Hook Creek Wildlife Sanctuary, just to the northeast of the airport across Rockaway Boulevard, is home to a great diversity of marsh birds despite the frequent plane traffic just overhead. On a recent visit I spied a Northern Harrier scanning the salt marsh for potential prey, while Black Ducks paddled in the many ditches that crisscross the sanctuary. 

Another great site for birding near JFK is Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. This preserve has more open water than Hook Creek, and is home to large numbers of waterfowl and breeding wading birds that can easily be spotted from shore.

As large jets depart and arrive from all over the world, many birds similarly use this part of Queens as a place to refuel on their annual migration. Large numbers of migrating songbirds can be found in both the spring and fall darting through the scrub forests and copses that surround the airport. 

Fall and winter brings impressive numbers of geese and a wide variety of ducks, not to mention the steady stream of raptors overhead. The open habitats are full of wintering sparrows and several hardy warbler species. 

So, next time you have a flight out of JFK, get to the airport a few hours early and enjoy easy access to one of our region’s premiere birding sites.

to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.

Welcome to

Fairfield Daily Voice!

Serves Fairfield & Southport

Hi! You've read our articles so we know you like our reporting. To keep reading please join our mailing list.

Get important news about your town as it happens.