December Nature Happenings

  • Sumac, Bittersweet, Poison Ivy and other berries remain throughout the winter, providing food for many species of birds.
  • Winter raptors may show up, including Snowy Owls and Northern GoshawksSnowy Owls are often seen at the DNR boat launch in Harrison Township.
  • Chipmunks and raccoons hole up for the winter, but may reappear with mild winter weather.

  • Red-breasted Nuthatches, Pine Siskins, Common Redpolls and crossbills visit feeders now through March. This year is also turning out to be a good year for irregular migrants like Evening Grosbeaks. Keep your eyes on those feeders and share your sightings with us!

  • Eastern Monarch Butterflies finish reaching their central Mexican overwintering sites starting in late-December.
  • Bald Eagles arrive from the North to overwinter. Watch for them out on the lake, where they often sit on the ice hunting ducks.

  • This is a great time to teach Black-capped Chickadees, Red-breasted Nuthatches and Tufted Titmice to feed from your hand. It takes patience but it can be done!
  • Watch for late waterfowl migrants such as Northern Shovelers, mergansers, Ruddy Ducks and Common Goldeneyes.