Dunedin Hammock City Park
This heavily wooded city-owned park has an impressive checklist of over 180 species, many of which are the always sought-after migrant warblers. Because of its close proximity to the Gulf and Honeymoon Island many spring and fall migrants land here, especially after major weather disturbances. It’s a great place to bird with many trails to investigate.
FALL: Some of the locally rare birds that have been reported here in recent years include Alder Flycatcher (banded), Black-billed Cuckoo, Canada Warbler and Nashville Warbler. During a typical fallout day in late September or early October the park may be alive with Eastern Wood-Pewees, Hooded Warblers, Red-eyed Vireos, Summer and Scarlet Tanagers and Indigo Buntings. Reports of Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers are almost annual. In other words, visiting this park during the fall season could produce almost anything.
WINTER: This park doesn’t get much attention in winter, but it should. Ruby-crowned Kinglets, American Robins, American Goldfinches and Hermit Thrush are always present. There are lots of Eastern Screech-Owls at the Hammock, as well as a resident pair of Barred and Great Horned Owls. December and January are the months when they are most active and can be heard calling at daybreak and/or late in the day.
SPRING: Like the fall season many migrants pass through the Hammock and are most often reported during April and the first week in May. Look for American Redstarts, Magnolia Warblers, Blackpoll Warblers and Black-throated Green Warblers starting around April 20th. But, again, anything might show up.
SUMMER: Just recently a pair of Short-tailed Hawks have utilized the area for nesting. So, keep your eyes to the sky and watch, too, for Swallow-tailed Kites, which haven’t been confirmed nesting here but might just be. Northern Parulas seem to be everywhere singing their hearts out for you as you walk the trails. Other expected, and worth seeing, nesting species here include Cooper’s Hawk, Red-shouldered Hawk, Monk Parakeet (check the light poles at the ballpark along the park’s north side), Northern Flicker, Pileated Woodpecker, Carolina Wren and Brown Thrasher.
INSIDER TIPS: There is a new restroom facility (2016) at the parking lot. Local residents like to walk their dogs, unleashed, at Dunedin Hammock. Fortunately, they tend to use the outer trails.