American Robins seem to build their nests in full view. This nest was at Rockefeller State Park.

Everyone has seen the Osprey nest in the statue in the southern zone.

Barn Swallows nesting under the eaves at the childrens area at NYBG a few years ago.

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

A Baltimore Oriole nest near Turtle Cove. These nests are amazingly strong and durable.

Great Horned Owls have already fledged in March or April. Note the large juvenile is on the left, while his siblings are somewhat visible in the tree cavity. It's likely mom is watching from a nearby location. This photo was taken in the southern zone.

An American Oystercatcher and chick. They nest in our park and can sometimes be seen on Danny Hat island.

Every year Cliff Swallows nest in the condemned bath houses at Orchard beach.

All photos and text by Jack Rothman. All rights reserved. No photo may be copied or duplicated without written permission.Copyright 2022

          Updated 6/6/22

City Island Birds

                          Since 2007

Welcome to City Island Birds. My name is Jack Rothman. I created this website and birding club because this area of New York City is little known and underutilized by birdwatchers and other nature lovers. Pelham Bay Park, with its woods and wetlands is a critical stopover and nesting area to many migratory species.

Birding News

City Island Birds was created in 2007 to bring birders, and would be birders, to the park. Everyone has always been and always will be welcome. Our walks are always inclusive, friendly, non-competitive, fun and free. We all love to see great birds, but without each other, it's never as enjoyable.

Saul's Science Watch

My birding buddy Saul has been writing wonderful science articles for the Hudson River Audubon Society. You can link for years of wonderful insights and information. Just scroll to the bottom of the page for a complete list of the articles.

A Ruby-throated Hummingbird nest near the City Island Traffic Circle. Its nest is made with spider webs and lichen and is tiny.

A Piping Plover chick, well camouflaged, at Nickerson Beach. This year Piping Plovers were seen at Orchard Beach.

Bird Walks

Bird Walk every Saturday at Van Cortlandt Park @ 9:00am.

On June 11 & 25, Jack will lead. On June 18, Joe will lead. June 25 is the last walk of the season.

Meet at the Nature Center. Sign up now at

It's time for wading birds and nesting species. Be on the lookout for Black and Yellow-crownwd Night Herons, Clapper and Virginia Rails, Great and Snowy Egrets and others. Lots of nesting species here as well, keep on birding!

Jack's talk , "The Joy Of Birding"

On March 26, 2022, I did a Zoom talk for the Crestwood Historical Society. If you would like to view it, it is available on YouTube, Just link here.

Walk Announcements

Our last walk was terrific. You can link above, Recent Sightings, to see our species account. We should be having another walk soon.

  Avoid Orchard Beach Parking Fees! Link Here.

Five Quick Beginning Birding Suggestions

1. Go out with a group or an experienced leader. You'll learn how to use binoculars, find birds, meet interesting and friendly people.

2. Wear appropriate clothes. Weather is always a little more extreme in open spaces. Don't wear your brand new $200 running shoes. It can be muddy.

3. Most leaders have binoculars to lend if you don't have your own. Opera glasses are pretty useless for birding. If you want to buy a pair, email me and I will make suggestions depending on your budget.

4. Bring a snack and water. Most walks are a few hours. You'll see that birding is not fast walking. Expect to be moving slowly.

5. Get a portable field guide to bring with you when you bird alone. Use it at home too. Look for the Peterson or Sibley guide.

A nesting Black-crowned Night Heron. There are usually lots of them at dusk near City island.