Test Your Eggspertise!

Take a look at the eggs on this page. They all belong to breeding birds in Michigan. Take a guess and see the answers below!


Stay tuned for updates on exciting avian programs coming up this summer! KNC will blend avian science with art from July to September in our newly renovated Visitor Center. The exhibit will feature the beautifully precise work of illustrator Olivia Mendoza. And, on September 12, we’re thrilled to host Dr. J. Drew Lanham, a Clemson University ornithologist and best-selling author of the memoir “The Home Place.” His book explores race, environmentalism, and Lanham’s family legacy on a farm once worked by his enslaved ancestors. He writes about what it means to be “the rare bird, the oddity”— a Black man, scientist, and birder in a profoundly White profession.

Of course, birds aren’t all we care about at KNC. Our Education, Conservation Stewardship, and Research programs run the gamut from invasive species control to forest carbon surveys and butterfly propagation. In all these areas, we continue to grow in scientific knowledge and human understanding. Yet our work with birds illustrates nicely how a KNC focus area can evolve and deepen over time.

With your support, we’ll help conserve birds, healthy forests, clean waters and so much more on our KNC properties and beyond. We’ll stay true to our roots, even as we put down new ones to sustain us in the seasons ahead. We are grateful for your support!

1. House Wren Troglodytes aedon

While these little brown birds weigh the equivalent of around two quarters, they pack a big singing voice. House wrens have one of the largest ranges of songbirds, calling many a backyard home across the Western hemisphere. Learn more and listen to their song here >

House wren

2. Gray Catbird Dumetella carolinensis

The gray catbird gets its name from its mewing call, which can sometimes last up to ten minutes. The medium, gray bird sports a darker gray “cap.” Their nests consist of twigs, bark, mud, and other materials. Learn more and listen to their song here >
Gray catbird

3. Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus

The male red-winged blackbird with its red and yellow shoulder patch is a common site across wetlands and along roadsides. The female, however, looks more like a large sparrow, with a white stripe on the head. The conk-a-lee! song is a welcome sound in spring. Learn more and listen to their song here >
Red-winged Blackbird

4. Blue Jay Cyanocitta cristata

This large blue, black, and white songbird is a year-round resident of Michigan and a common sight to many backyard birders. Known for their noisy calls and blue feathers, they are intelligent birds and have complex social systems.  Learn more and listen to their song here >
Blue Jay

5. American Robin Turdus migratorius

The American robin is a well-known resident of many a backyard, where they can often be found hopping along the ground in search of an earthworm. They can have three successful broods of chicks in a season and can be found in much of North America.  Learn more and listen to their song here >
American Robin

6. Killdeer Charadrius vociferus

These plovers are brownish tan with black bands, long legs, and long wings. They’re known for running short distances along the ground and leading predators – and people – away from their nest by affecting a wing injury. These robin-sized actors can be found away from water, in dry open areas ranging from pastures and fields to golf courses and driveways. Learn more and listen to their song here >
Killdeer chick and eggs

7. American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos

The American Crow is an intelligent, all-black bird with a distinctive cawing sound and can even sometimes make and use tools. They congregate in very large groups in winter, roosting in the same trees for safety. Learn more and listen to their song here >
American Crow

7. Common Loon Gavia immer

These beautiful, large, black and white birds are known for water, and many northern lakes are home to their haunting calls. The loon averages in size between a crow and a goose, and have big appetites to support their size.  According to the Cornell Lab, biologists estimate that loon parents and their 2 chicks can eat about a half-ton of fish over a 15-week period! Learn more and listen to their song here >
Common Loon

KNC is a private, non-profit organization (501(c)(3)) formed in 1960. We are supported by membership and admission fees, monetary and in-kind donations, program and service fees, foundation grants, and endowment earnings.