Birds come to the Outer Banks for the exact same reason you do… warm weather, a comfortable place to relax, and excellent food.
A haven with close to 400 species of birds, the Outer Banks is an amazing place for birdwatching. The abundance of fish and sea life provides a great source of food, and the protected local eco-systems help sustain the magnificent indigenous and migratory bird population.
From Currituck County to Ocracoke Island you will find eleven distinct protected areas with an exceptional variety of birds to observe. This area is part of the Atlantic Flyway and is the resting, nesting, and wintering habitat for many migratory birds.
Bird watching is good year round, but the experts agree it is best in fall, winter and spring when you might see a larger diversity of birds including greater snow geese, Canada geese, tundra swans and 25 species of duck. Migratory waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds, raptors, and neo-tropical migrants can be found throughout the area as well. Keep an eye out for endangered and threatened species like the peregrine falcon and the piping plover.
Whether you wander the self-guided tours and boardwalks, or take a kayak and meander through the water ways, you will find the bird life on the Outer Banks to be spectacular. Keep your binoculars handy and a sharp eye out because the limited land here provides for a grand concentration of bird life from owls and osprey to egrets and swans to “little brown jobs”. You won’t be disappointed.