2017 IOS Gull Frolic Field Trip Report

Scoping Lake Michigan

IOS hosted the 16th annual Gull Frolic on Saturday, February 11th, at the Winthrop Harbor Yacht Club in the northeast corner of the state. As temperatures soared toward 50F degrees and without any ice for the gulls to rest on, despite our best efforts to chum them in, it quickly became

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Common Loon

Join us for our annual LOONAPALOONZA with veteran “Loon Ranger,” David B. Johnson, as we travel in style on a mini-coach bus in search of migrating loons on the glacial lakes of Lake and McHenry Counties. Fee is $30/person. Space is limited to 24 participants.


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Rare Bird Alert – 4-Feb-2017

California Gull by Andrew Aldrich

California Gull: Cook (North) – On February 4th, a second cycle California Gull was photographed by Andrew Aldrich at Deadstick Pond in Chicago, Cook County.

Refinding the Painted Bunting

By Aaron Gyllenhaal, as told to Ted Wolff

The first thing I saw was a bird flying over me with a bright red belly. I got my binoculars on it and saw it land. The next thing I saw was a blue head and a green back, which is when I freaked out.

I went

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IORC Update – 31 Jan 2017

The Illinois Ornithological Records Committee (IORC) recently concluded evaluation of 23 records of occurrence of rare birds in Illinois, accepting 20 and not accepting three. For each record, we indicate the species or form, with number of individuals in parentheses if greater than one, followed by date or date range, location, and county. At the

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An Interview with Andy Stewart by Beau Schaefer

Lake County Big Year record holder, Andy Stewart

Beau: So tell us a little bit about who “Andy Stewart” is. Andy: Well, I grew up in Texas and have always been interested in natural history. Collecting has also always been an interest of mine. I have a sort of “hoarding gene” if you will.

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Rare Bird Alert – 21-Jan-2017

Prairie Falcon: Sangamon (Central) – On January 21st, a Prairie Falcon was observed Colin Dobson at Nipper Wildlife Sanctuary near Laomi in Sangamon County.

California Gull by Colin Dobson

California Gull: Peoria (Central) – On January 15, a first cycle California Gull was photographed by Colin Dobson at RiverPlex along Peoria Lake in Peoria

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Download the New IOS Field Checklist

The 5th Edition of the IOS Field Checklist of Illinois Birds is now available. Download the checklist now!

IOS Field Trip Report by Tyler Funk

Scoping for Snowy Owl

On January 7th, six hardened IOS members (Ted Wolff, David and Dale Kalina, Susan Zelek, Linda Foster and Tyler Funk) set out for a field trip this past weekend in search of Prairie Falcons and waterfowl. Leaving the house at 6:15am, my vehicle thermometer read -2° F. However, the sky

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'Tis The Season For Gull-watching

Amar Ayyash

In advance of the IOS Gull Frolic, Amar Ayyash gives some advice to those just starting to get bit by the gull watching bug. Read Amar’s tips on his blog, Anything Larus.