A Birders’ Eye View of Life in the Wasatch

While Utah is renowned for breathtaking landscapes and a true revelation of Mother Nature’s beauty, it also inspires a symbiotic relationship between humans and the creatures who call this state home. This is especially true of the interaction between people and birds.

A spectacular locale for observing some of the most unique species year-round, birders have been known to flock to the state, especially to the Wasatch Range, only to find themselves right at home.

Long Billed Curlew Bird

Rare Bird Sightings in the Wasatch

Utah residents and visitors alike know that the Wasatch Range is among the top Utah regions for spotting hard-to-come-by birds. No matter when you visit, the range is known for having bird sightings that other parts of the country would find entirely rare. Families include:

  • Wilson’s Phalarope
  • Long-billed Curlew
  • Cinnamon Teal
  • Swainson’s Hawk
  • Broad-tailed Hummingbird
  • Greater Roadrunner
  • Green-tailed Towhee
  • Blue Grosbeak
  • Juniper Titmouse
  • Prairie Falcon

The Wasatch Range, which is east of the Oquirrh Mountains, is a vast watershed of the Jordan River and a favorite for birds. Living in the area offers birders the opportunity to continually observe this diversity soaring over and residing within the mountainous landscape.

Q: What is Utah’s State Bird?

A: The California Gull became Utah’s state bird after saving Salt Lake from a plague of crickets in 1848, proving that birds and Utah are a pair that Mother Nature intended.

Sanctuaries Among Us

According to the Wasatch Audubon Society, 30 percent of Utah residents actively participate in wildlife watching activities, and much of this takes place in the state’s five national parks. The “Great Five” afford birders sightings of unique birds like the Greater Roadrunner or the Long-billed Curlew spending winters in the grasslands or nesting in pastures.

Great Migration

Because each year millions of birds migrate to rest and feed in the Great Salt Lake region, there’s no shortage of magnificence. Ducks, grebes, gulls and other water birds make their way to the area year after year—an impressive and noteworthy show for residents and visitors alike.

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