Bay Area Birding: Four Awesome Birdwatching Spots Near San Francisco

I've developed an appreciation for birds recently that only deepens with every trip I take to San Francisco.  Here are four hidden gems in the South Bay that are a birdwatchers paradise. 

Bayfront Park

Bayfront Park sits right next to the San Francisco Airport.  I often stay at an airport hotel when I first land in the Bay Area so that I don't have to drive far when I'm tired and jetlagged from the long flight to Dublin.  An added side effect of this is that I'm often up early the next morning which is the perfect time to take a stroll through Bayfront Park.  This time, I saw huge flocks of American Avocets and a variety of ducks and other waterfowl against a backdrop of departing and arriving aircraft.
Flock of Avocets at San Francisco Airport
American Avocets at Bayfront Park
Birds of Bayfront Park

Alviso

Alviso in San Jose is another great weekend destination.  Driving there, I almost felt that I would plunge into the far reaches of the San Francisco Bay as the road snakes dangerously close to water's edge.  There are a variety of trails through the marshlands and it's amazingly quiet, peaceful, and relaxing.  I spotted huge groups of pelicans in flight and many other waterfowl.  I even spotted an Osprey thanks to the help of a fellow birder who was also appreciating his surroundings.
Alviso - Pelicans in Flight
Heron at Alviso
Birds of Alviso (including Osprey)

Bay Marsh Trail

During the week, I tend to stay close to Mountain View when I'm in California for work. This doesn't mean that I can't do a bit of birdwatching.  I worked in this area for a good few years and there are still trails and birdwatching spots that I'm only now discovering.  The Bay Marsh Trail is one good example.  It's an easy 15 minute hike behind my office and is a spur of the Stevens Creek Trail. 
One morning was particularly foggy and I spotted this snail soaking up the moisture (hard to come by in California these days!) on a stalk of wild fennel.
Snail on wild fennel
Continuing on, I came to a gate that was sending mixed messages.  It was wide open but covered with barbed wire.  After a moment's hesitation, I passed through and entered an extension of the Don Edwards National Wildlife Refuge.  This area is also used as a hunting ground for ducks during certain times of year.
Entrance to Bay Marsh Trail
I saw a wide range of birds including ducks, loons, pelicans, and other shorebirds.
Birds of Bay Marsh Trail

Shoreline Park

Shoreline Park is also about a 15 minute walk behind my office through a rather posh golf course.  I like walking between the lake and bay as you never know what you will spot.  On this trip, I was lucky enough to see some hummingbirds holding still long enough to photograph.  I also spotted a belted kingfisher.  Before the trip, I thought twice about bringing my 'good' camera as it can be a bit heavy to lug around.  However, I'm so glad I did as I never would have gotten these photographs without the 50x zoom.  I'm going to bring my 'good' camera on all my trips to California from now on!
Birds of Shoreline Park
The most amazing thing I witnessed in Shoreline Park during this past trip was a Red-tailed Hawk making a kill.  I caught a glimpse of a bird of prey high in a tree but it flew away before I could get a picture.  Five minutes later, I found it working away at what I think was a large coot or Canadian goose.  Truly amazing nature...
Red-tailed Hawk with a kill in Shoreline Park
Here's a handy map of all the sites mentioned above if you'd like to see for yourself the amazing array of birdwatching opportunities in the Bay Area.  I hope I have a chance to add to this on future trips!

Sharing is caring...

Four Awesome Birdwatching Spots in the San Francisco Bay Area

COMMENTS

Name

#DrJSabbatical Adriatics Africa Americas Ann Arbor Argentina Asia Asia Pacific AUNZ Australia Austria Baltics Barcelona Belfast Belgium Berlin Best of Beyond Dublin Big Island Bologna Boston Brazil Bruges Brussels Bucharest Budapest Buffalo California Cambodia Canary Islands Canterbury Cape Town Cardiff Central Europe Chile China Christmas Market Commute Chronicles Copenhagen Cork Costa Brava Croatia Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Dresden Dublin Dublin_Archive Dusseldorf Eastern Europe Edinburgh El Calafate England Eruption Essen Estonia Europe Europe_Archive Evora Faro Faversham Financial District Finland Fisherman's Wharf Flanders Florida Food France Frankfurt Fringe Festival Galway Gdansk Georgian Dublin Germany Girona Glasgow Granada Greece Greece and Cyprus Guest Posts Guiness Storehouse Hamburg Hangzhou Hanoi Hawaii HCMC Helsinki Ho Chi Minh City Hobart Hoi An Honolulu Hungary Hurling Iceland India Ireland Ireland_Archive Italy Itinerary Jackson Square Jaipur Japan Kaunas Kilauea Kilkenny Kilkenny Cats Kiluaea Kona Krakow Kuala Lumpur Kyoto Languedoc Lanzarote Las Fallas Latvia Leinster Leipzig Lemesos Liechtenstein Lima Limerick Lisbon Lithuania Liverpool Ljubljana Lloret de Mar London Los Angeles Louisiana Lucerne Machu Picchu Mackintosh Madeira Malaga Malaysia Mallorca Malta Marrakech Marrakesh Marseille Massachusetts Med Mendoza Menton Miami Modena Monaco Monte Carlo Montenegro Montpellier Morocco Muenster Munich Munster NA_Archive Naples Netherlands New Orleans New Year 2011 New Years Eve 2010 New York New Zealand Nice Nob Hill Noe Valley Nordics Norrkoping North America North Beach Northern Ireland Nuremberg Oahu Oakland Ollantaytambo On The Road Osaka Outer Sunset Palafrugell Palma Paris Parma Patagonia Pearl Harbor Pennsylvania Perth Peru Philadelphia Pingyao Piran Pittsburgh Poland Porto Portugal Potrero Hill Prague Puerto Natales Punta Arenas Queensland Recent Regensburg Reykjavik Riga Rio de Janeiro Rochester Romania Rotterdam Rovinj Rugby Russia Russian Hill San Francisco San Sebastian Santiago Scandinavia Scotland Seattle Segovia Seoul Seville SF - Further Afield SF_Archive Sicily Siem Reap Singapore Sligo Slovenia South Africa South America South Beach South Korea Spain SPWC St. Petersburg Stockholm Strasbourg Street Performance Stuttgart Sweden Switzerland Sydney Tallinn Tasmania TBEX Telegraph Hill Temple Bar Texas Thailand Thames Festival The Mission ThisIsAthens Tipperary Tokyo Torres del Paine Transylvania Trieste Uganda UK Union Square United States Uruguay Valencia Valparaiso Vienna Vietnam Vilnius Volcano Volcanoes National Park Waikiki Wales Walking Warsaw Washington Waterford Western Australia Westfield Where's Wally? Whitsundays Wicklow World Record World War II Wroclaw WWI WWII Xi'an Zurich
false
ltr
item
Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog: Bay Area Birding: Four Awesome Birdwatching Spots Near San Francisco
Bay Area Birding: Four Awesome Birdwatching Spots Near San Francisco
Learn about Bay Area Birding spots. Explore four awesome destinations to go birdwatching in the San Francisco Bay Area.
https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-rkwZRHS6btE/VvfwN7A6sPI/AAAAAAABDGk/ubp9PxjstcU-yVQklh99qNBxrFJofX2ZA/s640/hummingbird%2Bbay%2Barea.jpg
https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-rkwZRHS6btE/VvfwN7A6sPI/AAAAAAABDGk/ubp9PxjstcU-yVQklh99qNBxrFJofX2ZA/s72-c/hummingbird%2Bbay%2Barea.jpg
Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog
https://www.sidewalksafari.com/2014/12/awesome-birdwatching-spots-sf-bay.html
https://www.sidewalksafari.com/
https://www.sidewalksafari.com/
https://www.sidewalksafari.com/2014/12/awesome-birdwatching-spots-sf-bay.html
true
2802498442123035908
UTF-8
Not found any posts VIEW ALL Read more Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS CONTENT IS PREMIUM Please share to unlock Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy