Wayne County Shorebird Drive
Ohio Birding Drives are routes for birding trips which can be accomplished in one day, stopping to walk and bird at various eBird hotspots. For each birding drive, a Google map is provided with the route and suggested stops at eBird hotspots. You may save the link to the Google map on your smartphone or tablet, or print a copy on paper to take with you. Links are provided with information about each eBird hotspot. Follow those links for more information about birding each location.
There are five locations on this drive that can be productive for viewing shorebirds during migration. Water levels are variable at each of these locations in the spring and fall.
Click on the hotspot names below to view the page about that hotspot.
While not within the wildlife area itself, Wilderness Road is adjacent to Funk Bottoms Wildlife Area. The fields and ponds on Wilderness Road west of the intersection with Elyria Road are worth checking in all seasons. Please, note that Wilderness Road traverses private properties. Please be respectful and bird from the roadside.
At the east end of Wilderness Road near a bridge, there are several peat pits on the north side of the road which often are drawn down in the fall to mine peat. The drawdown of water can create extensive mud flats which attract many shorebirds. Depending on water levels, the fields on the south side of the Wilderness Road near the bridge can also hold waterfowl and shorebirds.
Further west on Wilderness Road, across from and just west of a farmhouse, the fields often flood and then dry up, producing habitat for migrating shorebirds. A scope is helpful in viewing birds all along Wilderness Road.
Funk Bottoms Wildlife Area
This 1,498-acre wildlife area in northeastern Ohio is in portions of Wayne and Ashland counties. OH-95, running east-west, goes through the middle of the area, from Blachleyville (east), through Funk and Lake Fork (west). The area lies in the glaciated central hills region of Ohio, with flat to moderately rolling topography. The vast majority of the wildlife area consists of seasonally flooded moist soil meadows and bottomland hardwoods.
There is an observation tower which provides views of birds on the marsh which is accessed by a gravel road from OH-95. Shorebirds are sometimes visible with a scope from this tower. Birds can often be observed at the edge of the marsh along OH-95. This is a very busy state highway and it is not safe to stop on the roadway. There are three pull-off areas on the south side of OH-95 which can accommodate 1 or 2 vehicles. The is also one pull-off area on the north side of the highway.
Ashland County Road 1950
Just across the county line, Ashland County Road 1950 can attract shorebirds. Take Funk Road north from OH-95. Turn left onto Angling Road. Veer to the left onto County Road 1950 and go past the golf course. Just before the crossroads at County Road 175, check both sides of the fields for shorebirds.
Shreve Fish Pond
The Shreve Fish Pond is privately owned but may be viewed from Kistler Road. It is located across Shreve Road from the parking area for Wright Marsh.
Killbuck Marsh Wildlife Area–Wright Marsh
The Wright Marsh parking area on Shreve Road (OH-226) provides walking access to the dikes and impoundments in the marsh. This involves a longer walk but allows for closer views of birds. A spotting scope is also helpful for viewing distant birds on the ponds. Often the water at Wright Marsh is too high for good shorebird habitat, but some years the ponds have been drawn down enough to expose mudflats.