A Birdwatcher’s Guide to the Niagara Benchlands

A popular birdwatching park in the Niagara Benchlands

Embrace the scenic beauty and incredible biodiversity of the Niagara Benchlands when you stay with us at Inn On The Twenty! Many dedicated birders proudly call the Benchlands their home base for extraordinary birdwatching. Walk the many surrounding trails, spot some of our favourite native species, and return to five-star service, luxurious accommodations, and upscale dining. Our lovely countryside inn is a luxurious home base for all your outdoor adventures in the Benchlands.

Spot the Beautiful Birds of Southern Ontario Year-Round

The Niagara Benchlands are prime real estate for Ontario’s most beautiful birds! Check out some of our favourite birdwatching spots in the Benchlands.

Ball’s Falls, a popular birdwatching location in the Niagara Benchlands

Ball’s Falls

Ball’s Falls features a magnificent waterfall you won’t want to miss, and numerous popular trails, such as the Cataract Trail and the Bruce Trail. It’s also home to many historical structures like a blacksmith shop, flour mill, and the Ball family home.

Sixteen Mile Creek, a popular birdwatching location in the Niagara Benchlands

Sixteen Mile Creek

Located along the Sixteen Mile Creek, Louth Conservation Area provides access to the Bruce Trail, scenic valley views and two breathtaking waterfalls. It’s common to see and hear various songbirds along this trail, so keep your eyes open!

Cave Springs Conservation Area, a popular birdwatching location in the Niagara Benchlands

Cave Springs Conservation Area

Image courtesy of Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority

Finally, Cave Springs Conservation Area features fascinating folklore and stunning natural views. Visit its magnificent underground lake, explore the wartime hideout, and check out its mysterious rock carvings. Access is only available via the Bruce Trail.

Bird to See in the Niagara Benchlands By Season

A heron, one of the birds to see in the Niagara Benchlands


When spring has sprung, look to the skies for sweet songbirds of all kinds! Returning from their winter migration, they nest in the Benchlands to lay their eggs. Listen for their musical voices at night or look for them in the trees on hiking trails.

Between the end of April and the end of May, you’ll spot swallows, sparrows, flycatchers, herons, Scarlet Tanagers, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, and warblers. With over 30 species of warbler alone, there’s plenty to see! Watch for rarer species like the Short-Eared Owl and the Red-headed Woodpecker around sites like Old Fort Erie.

A Peregrine Falcon, one of the birds to see in the Niagara Benchlands


The summer months are ideal for viewing species that rarely travel further north! Head down to the Niagara River to catch a glimpse of Heronry, Great Egrets, and Black-crowned Night-herons. Black Vultures can be seen near the Queenston-Lewiston Bridge—the only reliable place to see them in Canada.

Thanks to recent conservation efforts, Bald Eagles and Peregrine Falcons now appear, most commonly in areas between Queenston and Niagara-on-the-Lake. Watch them on the hunt and take in their breathtaking beauty as they swoop low to catch prey.

Waterfowl in the Niagara Benchlands

Fall & Winter

As summer turns to autumn, many birds head south for the winter, so you may be delighted to learn that you can still see many species of ducks and gulls in the Benchlands. There are over 25 species of gull in the Niagara region, making it the most diverse area for gulls in the world, including many rare species that avid birders are eager to seek out.

The Niagara River Corridor has been designated an international Important Bird and Biodiversity Area, chiefly because it is home to approximately 25% of the world’s population of Bonaparte Gulls. Look for gulls like Herrings and Ring-billed Gulls, along with other species like waterfowl, Greater Scaups, and Red-breasted Mergansers.

Discover the Natural Beauty of the Benchlands with Vintage Hotels

The Benchlands are a world of natural beauty just waiting to be explored! For casual hikers and avid birders alike, birdwatching has never been so scenic, and it’s only improved by the comfortable accommodations at Inn On The Twenty. Book with us today to plan your next birdwatching adventure!

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