Organization: Audubon Society of Cincinnati
About this event:
Theme: Breeding Birds in Riparian & Mature Forests
Location: Boone County Cliffs & Middle Creek Park & Road. Boone County, Kentucky
Date: Sunday, June 05, 2022
Meeting Time & Place: At 7:30 AM in the Middle Creek Park Parking Lot, Boone County, Kentucky. (See directions below).
Leader: Ann Oliver, (513)-307-0929, firstname.lastname@example.org
Middle Creek Park (a 230 acre Boone County Park) and the Boone County Cliffs Preserve (a Nature Conservancy property) are both nestled in the wooded hills of western Boone County, Kentucky. The picturesque Middle Creek Road and Middle Creek run between these two locations and comprise one of the most beautiful riparian corridors in our region. Join our trip leader, Ann Oliver, as she explores this fascinating area on what should be a pleasant morning walk in early summer. Ann is an experienced and highly skilled birder and long-time ASO advocate and current board member. Ann has led many field trips for ASO and other organizations, including several to this location, so she knows this area very well.
Spring migration will be over by this date, but at least 13 species of warblers and many other birds breed along the Middle Creek and in the forested hillsides of this beautiful area. The birding in this area can be phenomenal.
The whole region is forested and contains some old-growth forest habitat reliable for breeding Worm-eating Warblers which is generally rare in most of our region. Other breeding forest birds are also expected, including Broad-winged Hawk, Cerulean, Hooded and Kentucky Warblers, Ovenbird, Louisiana Waterthrush and both Scarlet & Summer Tanagers. Middle Creek, which flows through the area, is loaded with Northern Parulas, Yellow-throated Warblers and numerous other breeding birds. Prairie Warblers & Yellow-breasted Chats are common in adjacent successional areas.
Ann plans to begin the trip at Middle Creek Park and spend some time walking and birding along the trails in this wonderful park. Ann then plans to make several driving stops along picturesque Middle Creek Road. Middle Creek Road is an excellent birding spot, but it is narrow and has limited space to pull off. Nonetheless we should be able to walk a good bit of this lovely secluded and little used road. We will finish this section of the trip near the (closed) Boone County Cliffs Preserve. The birding is excellent along the road fronting the Preserve. For those who wish, we’ll next drive a mile or so further out KY 18 to Belleview’s The Conservancy Park, a mix of forty-five acres of prairie, woodland, lake and hillsides on a reclaimed gravel pit. Yellow-breasted Chats, Orchard Orioles and abundant butterflies can be found here. Blue Grosbeaks can also be found in several places in the area.
This trip will end around noon and will consist mostly of moderate walking along the trails at Middle Creek Park, and a bit more along Middle Creek Road. Also note that there are no restrooms in any of these places, but a port-o-let is usually available at Middle Creek Park. If nature calls you’ll have to drive back to civilization or find a quiet spot. Comfortable shoes, water, sun screen and insect repellent will all make your trip more enjoyable. Contact Ann if you have any questions.
Directions to Middle Creek Park:
From I-75: from I-75 take Kentucky 18, exit # 18, at Florence and go west. When you reach Burlington, KY, continue for 6.5 miles to the Middle Creek Park entrance, which will be on your left (south side of KY 18). The entrance and parking lot is just a short distance past Middle Creek Rd.
Directions from the west: Take I-275 south and cross the Ohio River. After crossing the river take the first exit, which is KY 8, exit # 11. Turn right (west) onto KY 8, which immediately becomes KY 20 after a short distance. Continue west and then south on KY 20 for about 12 miles. At the intersection with KY 18, turn left or east onto KY 18 and go about 1 mile. The entrance to Middle Creek Park will be on your right (south side of KY 18). Middle Creek Rd. is just a short distance ahead.
For directions, a map and information about Middle Creek Park (a Boone County KY Park,) go here or here.
For further info on the Nature Conservancy’s Boone County Cliffs, go here.