Field Trips


There’s nothing we enjoy more than introducing you to birds or helping you find things in nature. Our volunteers who lead these field trips work hard to make sure we’re exposing you to a diverse amount of habitats throughout the entire greater Kansas City area and beyond. Field trips visit all the habitats that our birds rely on for their survival – wetlands, woodlands, prairies and grasslands, agriculture, urban, and savannah.  

Photo of a field trip enjoying sunrise at Hillsdale Lake

Sunrise at Hillsdale Lake during a fall Field Trip.

For all field trips, we recommend that you dress for the weather, in layers, and bring water, snacks and insect repellent. In the details, we’ll let you know if you need to bring lunch or lunch money. Almost everything that Burroughs Audubon offers is free, even to non-members.  

Some field trips are low-impact and are spent in the car, so if you own any FRS radios, we encourage you to bring them so that bird sightings can be shared between vehicles. Some of the trips are walking trails once you meet. Any questions you have regarding the trips can be answered by the field-trip coordinators or by the volunteer leader of that specific trip.

In addition to Burroughs Field Trips, other nature walks and bird walks are available around the Kansas City Area. Below is a list of locations offering additional trips for your consideration. If you would like your field-trips page listed below please contact Burroughs.


Upcoming Trips

Check back here for updates on trips if the weather is a concern. The website will contain the most up-to-date information. Additional field trips will be added to the website once they are finalized with trip leaders. We appreciate your excitement for upcoming field trips and appreciate that you check this website for more information as fall and winter trips are added.



Tuesday, December 7th – Overland Park Arboretum (Limited to 15 participants)
Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens – This is a free admission day at the Arboretum. Meet near the ticket booth at 9:00 a.m. We’ll focus on the natural parts of the Arboretum looking for migrant and resident songbirds as well as migrating raptors. PLEASE BRING A MASK FOR USE IF WE ARE UNABLE TO STAY SAFELY SPACED APART AND FOR ENTERING THE VISITOR CENTER.

Your trip leader is Mike Stoakes. Contact Mike to reserve your spot: email mstoakes AT juno DOT com or call/text 816-283-6258.




Brief reports from past Field Trips 

We encourage you to share your experience with others. Add your photos to the trip list within eBird, share them on social media, and invite your friends to an upcoming trip.

11/20/21 – A handful of individuals enjoyed the calm day scanning bodies of water and multiply location in Kansas south of Kansas City. Highlights included a large flock or Rusty Blackbirds, a bunch of Bonaparte’s Gulls, Red-tailed Hawks of varying appearances, and Short-eared Owls.

11/16/21 – The morning walk offered a nice variety of sparrows with excellent looks at Harris’s and Fox Sparrows, watching Red-headed Woodpeckers cache food for winter as well as Purple Finches and Northern Harriers among thirty two species at Stamm Field.

11/2/21 – Eight individuals enjoyed the free entry at Overland Park Arboretum, walked three miles of trails, and tallied nearly thirty species of birds including a nice diversity of sparrows.

10/14/21 – Eight individuals enjoyed a gorgeous calm fall morning walking the trails at Kill Creek Park and scanning for migrants from the tower. 

10/12/21 – A dozen individuals enjoyed a beautifully crisp calm morning at Jerry Smith Park to assist Sherry Leonardo with the fall census for KC Wildlands. The group found over fifty species, the highest for a fall count, including two Wilson’s Snipe that were new to the property list. 

10/9/21 – Sixteen individuals met up to walk the field below Clinton Lake. Sparrows were not very cooperative with only a single Nelson’s and LeConte’s. A cooperative Palm Warbler showed nicely for most of the group. Many Franklin’s Gulls were on Clinton Reservoir and a pocket of southbound migrants were fond at Baker Wetlands.

10/9/21 – Thirteen individuals enjoyed the free entry at Overland Park Arboretum and walked the Cottonwood and West Trails finding 29 species with a few southbound migrants mixed in among the resident species.

10/5/21 – A scan of Longview Lake and walk along the trails found a good combination of sparrows, warblers, and other birds. Two Osprey flew right over the group giving good looks.

10/3/21 – A group of eleven individuals checked out Lewis and Clark State Park and Little Bean Marsh with nearly 40 species of birds seen on this joint trip with MBS.

10/1/21 – A group of eleven individuals enjoyed the paved trails at Weston Bend State Park with over twenty species of birds seen on this joint trip with MBS.

9/30/21 – Seven individuals walked the trails at Burr Oak Woods and found a handful of migrants including good looks at a Blue-headed Vireo and a Black-and-white Warbler.

9/22/21 – Ten individuals walked the paved trails at Tomahawk Park and found pockets of migrants hanging out with Black-capped Chickadees. A flyover Broad-winged Hawk, numerous vireos, and challenging fall warblers were nice additions to the shared camaraderie. 

9/14/21 – The group of attendees walked three miles along the trails at Baker Wetlands from the Discovery Center to the Heron Hangout south to the Wakarusa River and up the Diagonal Trail finding a nice mixture of shorebirds, passerines, and other birds. 

6/15/21 – A dozen individuals enjoyed dragonflies, butterflies, prairie plants, and a decent variety of summer resident birds.  A pair of Yellow-breasted Chats sat up in the tree and sang nicely as did Blue Grosbeaks.

5/26/21 – A large group walked the trails at Blue Springs Wetlands without masks, enjoying the revised CDC guidelines for vaccinated individuals, and observed over 50 species of mostly resident species.  A couple of migrating flycatchers were mixed in as well on this humid morning. 

5/21/21 – Seven species of shorebirds were among the 30+ species seen at KCPL Wetlands during the last of the roughly weekly walks.  A Willow Flycatcher, and increased diversity in Swallows as is expected at the end of spring migration, were also observed. 

5/12/21 – Nine species of shorebirds were among the 40+ species seen at KCPL Wetlands during an early morning walk.

5/5/21 – A good variety of warblers, vireos, and other species were found along Tomahawk Creek trails in Leawood Kansas. 

4/28/21 – Ten individuals met for a mile walk around KCPL Wetlands in Gardner Kansas to scope shorebirds and search for passerines. 

10/20/20 – Five individuals wore masked and maintained social distancing while visiting Kill Creek Park in northwest Johnson County Kansas. A slightly larger and darker bird was observed flying with Tree Swallows over the lake, giving the impression of a very late Martin.  Careful study revealed it was a Merlin flying slowly among the Swallows hunting, a behavior that is not often seen with this species.


Trip Reports and Year Totals – 202020192018, 2017, and 2019 Trip to Sax-Zim Bog and MN Northwoods


Have ideas? Please share them with us.

If you love getting out in nature and are interested in leading or co-leading a trip, if you have ideas of where a group could visit, or perhaps if you have a specific species in mind that you would like to see then please contact Burroughs. Direct your inquiry toward the field trip coordinators and they will get in contact with you to see what can be done.

Field trip coordinators Mike Stoakes and Malcolm Gold

(L to R) Mike Stoakes and Malcolm Gold

Alternatively feel free share your ideas with the coordinators the next time you see them in the field. The coordinators are Mike Stoakes and Malcolm Gold.