LISTEN: Tim Keyes, wildlife biologist with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, talks about some of the bird species found on the coast of Georgia.

American oystercatchers in flight (Tim Keyes_Georgia DNR)

American oystercatchers are seen in flight. Georgia's coast is home to many species of birds — and host to many more species as they migrate during the changing seasons.

Credit: Tim Keyes / Georgia DNR

When it comes to autumn in Georgia, many may think about Friday night lights, the changing colors of the leaves, or maybe even those pesky Joro spiders.

But with millions of birds migrating south, autumn is also a great time to view the many species of birds that spend some time along Georgia’s coast.  

“Fall migration is typically the most birds moving because you've got all the adults that have nested and then all of their young,” said Tim Keyes, a wildlife biologist with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. “There's a lot of really visible migration even if you're not avidly going out looking for it.”

Some 300 species of birds have been spotted along Georgia’s Colonial Coast Birding Trail, which spans 122 miles and has 17 sites.

Keyes said experienced birders can enjoy the sites along the trail, in addition to those with a newfound interest in bird watching or who are looking for a good entry point to enjoying the Georgia coast.

“You know, we often can live our lives pretty disconnected from the natural world around us,” Keyes said. “We obviously notice as it gets colder and warmer, but the migrating birds are really a nice visual marker of the changing seasons and really a great avenue to some of the beautiful natural places that the Georgia coast offers.”

For more information on which birds to look for or how to access the Colonial Coast Birding Trail, go to