Central Park is in the heart of Manhattan, New York City. It is an urban park in New York City located between the upper west side and the upper east side of Manhattan. It is not your typical birding experience and often overlooked! It is the most visited urban park in the United States with an estimated 38 million visitors annually.
Central Park is divided into 3 sections, the North End, extending above Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir, Mid-Park, between the reservoir to the north and the lake and conservatory water to the south, and the South End, below the lake and conservatory water. The park covers 843 acres. There are 3 forested areas, 7 bodies of water, meadows, gardens, and rock outcroppings. Though overlooked, birding in central park is widely popular with avid birders and professional photographers. Central Park yields a surprising number of species, more than 200 species of birds visit Central Park every year. The Ramble, central park’s wooded area, by the stream nicknamed “The Gill”, is the single most popular area for bird watching.
Birders come each spring for migration and keep coming back for the migrating warblers. Though the Cedar Waxwings and Northern Flickers are popular visitors in the fall. During September and October, over the Belvedere Castle, a dozen species of raptors migrate directly over the park. The Winter season brings in a variety of waterbirds as well. Though famous for its migrating warblers in the spring, each season has its perks when visiting! When visiting New York City, make sure to check out Twitter’s #birdcp hashtag for local birding hotspots within Central Park. Birders have established park landmark nicknames over the years that you do not want to miss. Owen visited Central Park in February 2016 and photographed over a dozen birds like the Yellow-throated Warbler, Red-tailed Hawk, Cooper’s Hawk, and the Eastern Phoebe.