Whidbey Audubon Society's Guide to 15 Special Spots
Whidbey Island lies in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains. It
is part of the San Juan archipelago of over 100 forested
islands. Wildlife habitats include old growth and mature second growth
Douglas fir forests, old orchards and open fields, fresh and salt-water
wetlands, and miles of scenic coastline.
Species noted are representative and not a complete list. Gray
whales and many of our birds are migrants and may be seen only part of
the year. Field guides can help determine seasonal patterns. Complete
island bird lists are available at local libraries and inns and
Bed & Breakfasts.
H-habitat M-mammals B-birds
- Deception Pass State Park
Off Hwy 20. Old growth
forest, wetland, rocky/sandy shore, lakes, tide pools.
Loons, grebes, murrelets, other waterfowl, eagles,
kingfishers, warblers, swallows.
- Dugualla Bay & Lake
From Hwy 20, E on Frostad
Rd, N on Dike Rd. Sheltered bay, mud flats, brackish
lake. Swans, dabbling ducks including canvasbacks,
other waterfowl, wading birds.
- Swan Lake, Joseph Whidbey State Park
From Hwy 20,
W on Swantown Rd to West Beach Rd. Rocky/sandy
beach, freshwater lake, cattail marsh. Eagles, harriers,
wading birds, loons, grebes, sea ducks including harlequin
ducks, dabbling ducks, oystercatchers, yellowthroats,
- Fort Ebey State Park
From Hwy 20, W on Libbey Rd,
S on Hill Valley Road. Second growth forest, thickets, lake,
high bluff, beach. Seabirds and waterfowl, kingfisher,
crossbill, woodpeckers, other forest birds including
nuthatch, creeper, kinglets.
- Kennedy Lagoon
From Hwy 20, E on Madrona Way.
Sheltered lagoon. Kingfishers, waterfowl including
hooded mergansers, goldeneyes, bufflehead, scaup,
- Penn Cove, Coupeville Wharf
From Hwy 20,
N on Main St, W on Front St. Large saltwater cove.
Kingfishers, herons, loons, goldeneyes, bufflehead, scaup,
pigeon guillemots. Look for river otters, harbor seals,
jellyfish, sea stars.
- Ebey's Landing
From Hwy 20, SW on Ebey Rd.
High and low bluff, beach, farm fields, hiking trail. Loons
grebes, waterfowl, meadowlarks, blackbirds, raptors.
- Fort Casey
From Hwy 20, S on Main St, becoming
Engle Rd. Rocky beach, forest. Loons, grebes, auklets,
guillemots, mergansers, gulls, great horned owls,
passerines including chickadees, nuthatches, creepers,
winter wrens, warblers.
- Crockett Lake
Adjacent to Fort Casey (see #8).
Brackish lake, large sandy spit, open bay. Lakeside:
abundant wading birds, waterfowl, eagles, harriers,
peregrine falcons, other raptors. On spit: swallows,
savannah sparrows. Open bay: auklets, cormorants,
- Port Townsend Ferry
Adjacent to Fort Casey
(see above). Take a break and walk aboard the ferry for
30 minutes each way on the water. Cormorants, loons,
grebes, gulls, guillemots, murrelets. Watch for sea lions
and harbor seals.
- Pacific Rim Institute for Environmental Stewardship
From Hwy 20 S of Coupeville,
N on Parker Rd. Open prairie and fringing woods.
White crowned and savannah sparrows, swallows,
harriers, kestrels, eagles, woodpeckers, occasional
- Greenbank Farm
From Hwy 525, E on Wonn Rd.
Open grassland, cattail marsh, farm pond, viewing
platform. Harriers, eagles, red tailed hawks, yellowthroats,
marsh wrens, red winged blackbirds, swallows, herons,
- South Whidbey State Park
From Hwy 525, W on
Smugglers Cove Rd. Old growth forest, beach. Osprey,
varied thrush, woodpeckers, swallows, passerines including
nuthatches, creepers, winter wrens.
- Lone Lake
From Hwy 525, N on Bayview Rd, then
W on Andreason Rd, then S on Lone Lake Rd. Lake,
woodlot, thickets. Stellers jay, bushtit, quail, waterfowl
including mergansers, shovelers, scaup, bufflehead.
- Langley City Beach and Marina
Beach access off
First St, and Marina at E end of Wharf St. Saltwater,
thickets. Loons, grebes, cormorants, eagles, waterfowl
including mergansers, scoters. Look for harbor seals,
gray whales in spring. Sea stars, jellyfish visible from