Birding Quivira

American Avocet

Quivira is consistently rated as one of the top birding destinations in the United States.  To date, 344 species have been recorded here.

What to see

Quivira is uniquely located in the center of the United States, so it features both western and eastern specialties.  In addition, its location in the center of the Central Flyway places it in the path of some of the highest concentrations of migrating shorebirds and waterfowl in North America.  In the middle of the Great Plains, here is a place to view birds such as herons, egrets, shorebirds, and waterfowl - groups of birds typically thought of as coastal.  

When to visit

The table below shows a three-year average of bird species observed per month, 2010-2012.  Spring and fall abound with shorebirds, waterfowl, and migrating songbirds.  Shorebirds even abound through most of the summer, from late June onward.  Winter is typically a good time of the year for hawks and other raptors.


 Month Species
July    109

To find out about recent bird observations, click on the link below:


Recent Bird Sightings at Quivira

Quivira staff and volunteers conduct various surveys throughout the year.  Click the following link to see the most recent survey results:  

Biological Surveys


Where to go

Birds abound throughout the Refuge, but are especially abundant around Quivira's numerous wetlands.  Mudflats and shorelines attract shorebirds and long-legged waders such as herons, egrets, and cranes.  Emergent marshes are frequented by summer residents such common yellowthroat, yellow-headed blackbird, and several species of rails.  Upland Sand Prairie residents include upland sandpiper, dickcissel, and grasshopper sparrow.


Click on the link below to learn about Quivira's Top Ten "Hot Spots":

 Good birding is also to be found in various woodlots and shelterbelts throughout Quivira, any time of the year.  Under Quivira's upcoming Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP), there are over a dozen areas (equaling more than 200 acres) that are not to be removed for prairie restoration.  With the exception of  Migrant's Mile, these areas are not developed (i.e. trails or other facilities), but are open to public use all year.  Click here to see a map of the Woodlot locations. 


 Map of Quivira Woodlots