Birding Sites in Gainesville and Alachua County, FL

great blue heron

Alachua County is a gateway location on The Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail and early 300 bird species have been spotted at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park alone. The Alachua Audubon Society organizes the annual Christmas Bird Count (CBC) each year in December. They have recently recorded record-setting numbers including 77,572 birds on a single day during the 62nd Annual CBC in 2021.

Explore Alachua County’s top birding sites:

  • Sweetwater Wetlands Park
  • La Chua Trail at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park
  • Bolen Bluff Trail at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park
  • Cones Dike Trail at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park
  • Lake Wauburg at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park
  • San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park
  • Newnans Lake
  • Morningside Nature Center
  • Chapman’s Pond
  • UF Hague Dairy
  • Barr Hammock Preserve
palm warbler at sweetwater wetlands park

Migratory birds call the Gainesville area home during winter months including Sandhill Cranes, Cedar Waxwings, American Robins and more.

Grab some binoculars and plan for upcoming events:

  • National Go Birding Day, Saturday, April 29
  • Sunrise Ranger Hike at Sweetwater Wetlands Park, Saturday, April 29, 7:30 a.m.
  • Birding Field Trip with Alachua Audubon Society at Palm Point Park, Saturday, April 29, 8 a.m.
  • Ranger-Led Walking Tour at Sweetwater Wetlands Park, Sunday, May 7, 2:30 p.m.
  • World Migratory Bird Day, Saturday, May 13
limpkins with wings spread in midair

Scroll down to explore more local birding sites and discover more in Alachua County:

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Alfred A. Ring Park

1801 NW 23rd Blvd.
Gainesville, FL 32605
Barr Hammock North Trail

Barr Hammock Preserve

14920 SE 11th Dr
Micanopy, FL 32667
352-264-6868 |
Bivens Arm

Bivens Arm Nature Park

3650 S Main St
Gainesville, FL 32608
352-334-5067 |
Cofrin Nature Park

Cofrin Nature Park

4810 NW 8th Ave
Gainesville, FL 32605
352-334-5067 |
John Mahon Nature Park

John Mahon Nature Park

4101 W Newberry Rd
Gainesville, FL 32607
352-334-5067 |
Flowers at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens

Kanapaha Botanical Gardens

4700 SW 58th Dr
Gainesville, FL 32608
352-372-4981 |
Little Orange Creek outside

Little Orange Creek Nature Park and Event Center

24115 SE Hawthorne Rd
Hawthorne, FL 32640
352-481-2432 |
Loblolly Woods Nature Park

Loblolly Woods

3315 NW 5th Ave
Gainesville, FL 32607
352-334-5067 |
Historic home and car at Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings State Park

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park

18700 S CR 325
Hawthorne, Cross Creek, FL 32640
352-466-3672 |
bridge over santa fe river at oleno state park

O’Leno State Park

410 SE O'Leno Park Rd
High Springs, FL 32643
386-454-1853 |
Palm Point Nature Park

Palm Point Nature Park

7401 Lakeshore Dr
Gainesville, FL 32641
352-334-5067 |