Birdwatching or birding is the observation of birds in their natural habitats as a recreational activity. Birding can be one of the quieter and more relaxed outdoor activities. It can be done with the naked eye, through a visual enhancement device like binoculars and telescopes, photography equipment, and by listening for bird sounds. Birding often involves a significant auditory component, as many bird species are more readily detected and identified by ear than by eye.

Some birders are avid rare bird seekers and will travel long distances to see a new species to add to one of their "lists", e.g., state list, county list, life list, etc. The NC Birding Trail is more than just lines on a map. It physically links great bird watching sites and birders with communities, businesses and other local historical and educational attractions. Wilkes County has many sites on the NC Birding Trail

Wilkes Co. Birding Trails:                             BirderFriendlyCommunity

Northern Blue Ridge Parkway             Northern Foothills

  - Stone Mountain State Park                - Yadkin River Greenway

  - Thurmond Chatham                           - W Kerr Scott Reservoir 

New River                                              - Whippoorwill Village                              

  - E B Jeffress Park


Binoculars to rent:0binoculars

  • Binoculars can be used for free for up to one day (must be returned to Town Hall within 24 hours)
  • A $20 Deposit is required for each pair of binoculars. A maximum of 2 pairs may be borrowed by any one person.
  • If binoculars are not returned within 24 hours, or are returned damaged, the $20 deposit will not be refunded. 

guide-booksBooks to purchase:

A display copy of the Mountains Guide for the NC Birding Trail is available for review in Town Hall. This guide is not available for “rental;” however, mountain guides are available for sale.

1.   NC Birding Trail Mountain Series Guide - $15

2.   Beginner's Birdwatchers Book with Stickers - $6

3.   Young Birder's Guide - $15

4.   A Field Guide to Birds - $10