Northwest Indiana Birding Opportunities - Reynold's Creek Gamebird Habitat Area

Reynolds Creek Game Bird Habitat (GBH) offers a complement to the birding experience that you find along Lake Michigan. Bird watchers can easily exit off of I-94 in Michigan City and pick up new species here. 

Through a property transfer from the Department of Correction, Reynolds Creek GBH was established as under the Division of Fish & Wildlife just a few short yeras ago.  The property is primarily large grasslands scattered with wetlands which supports a high diversity of birds along the Lake Michigan migration corridor.

The grasslands and fallow fields are the best place to observe grassland songbirds. Because of the county roads that intersect Reynolds Creek GBH and the scattered parking lots, this site is easy to bird without walking too far into the property. Most of the area does not have mowed trails, but look for increased access in the upcoming 50 acre pollinator planting that is being established on the north end of the property.

Reynolds Creek GBH is an excellent site to visit for grassland birds. Nesting species include Bobolink, Sedge Wren, Grasshopper Sparrow, Henslow’s Sparrow, Dickcissel, Eastern and Western Meadowlark and Brewer’s Blackbird. In migration, the site has hosted grassland species such as American bittern, Loggerhead Shrike, Northern Shrike, Clay-colored Sparrow, LeConte’s Sparrow, and Smith’s Longspur. Springtime brings shallowly flooded fields that play host to migrating ducks and shorebirds such as Black-bellied Plover, Dunlin, Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs, Short and Long-billed Dowitcher, and Wilson’s phalarope. Check the permanent wetland areas for marsh birds including Sandhill Crane, Virginia Rail, Sora, and Common Gallinule. Raptors are a highlight at this site, which famously hosted a rare White-tailed Kite in May 2018 during the Indiana Dunes Birding Festival.

Snowy Owl and Short-eared Owl are found here annually, along with Northern Harrier, Rough-legged Hawk, Bald Eagle, American Kestrel and Merlin. Southern Units include wooded sections that are good for migratory songbirds in spring and fall.

eBird Hotspot Link:

Total Birding Time:
1-3 hours.

Best Times to Bird: 
Mid to late spring is best, while summer through early fall are also very good.  Winter visits produce raptors. 


1275 North 600 East
Westville, IN 46391
Through parking lots exist throughout the property.  The main parking and check in box is contained at the address above. 
Hours:  Property open 24 hours, 7 days a week.
Ownership: Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fish & Wildlife.
Admission: Free.
Restrictions:  From October 1st to January 10th archery deer hunters may be using the property. On Sundays and Wednesdays during waterfowl season, waterfowl hunters may also be using the property. Birders can safely park in a lot or along a county road and bird from there any time of year.
For further information on property specific regulations contact the Kingsbury property office at 219-393-3612.
Parking: Recommended parking is as per the address above.
Accessibility: Not ADA accessible. But as noted, the path is hard packed gravel, with accessible foot bridges.
Nearby Amenities: Michigan City is only 5 miles away from Reynolds Creek GBH and you can find countless hotels and restaurants in this community. Reynolds Creek is located near Indiana Dunes State Park and National Park. If you’re planning to explore the Indiana Dunes National Park Heron Rookery, plan to visit Reynolds Creek GBH, which is adjacent.

Written by: Amy Kearns
Photo by: Brad Bumgardner