Montrose Point is a big place. For the purposes of my online guides it includes all the land east of Lake Shore Drive between Lawrence Avenue on the north and Buena Avenue on the south. Obviously not all of this space is a dedicated bird sanctuary, though many areas are good for birds and birding, like the boat harbor and north end of the Marovitz Golf Course. The Montrose Point Bird Sanctuary is a subarea of Montrose Point. It includes the Magic Hedge, Magic Clump, Meadow, peripheral plantings, and woods at the east end of the Point. This is a much smaller area compared to the whole of Montrose Point. The graphic shows the approximate boundaries of the sanctuary. Also see the Montrose Glossary for descriptions of the birding landmarks used in this guide,
The Dunes are completely fenced off and inaccessible to protect the nesting Piping Plovers. You can bird the periphery of the Dunes and scan the beach from the fishing pier and east end of the public beach. We’ve also been seeing shorebirds along the inlet next to the fishing pier. Again, the pier is the best place to check the inlet and beach, especially in the morning as the sun will be behind you. In the afternoon and evening, the east end of the public beach is the best place to check the beach inside the protected area.
The Bird Sanctuary
The main parts of the bird sanctuary, including the Magic Hedge and peripheral plantings, are still closed due to construction of the paved walkway and will likely remain closed for the foreseeable future. You can walk around and bird the entire periphery but entering the sanctuary isn’t allowed.
We’ve been seeing migrant shorebirds at Montrose Beach almost daily since late June. Most have been Least Sandpipers, but we’ve also had Lesser Yellowlegs, Willet, and American Avocet. On July 14 I had a Short-billed Dowitcher, my first of the year. These are all expected early summer shorebirds.