Lake Mead National Recreation Area, located just east of Las Vegas (map), is a good place for southern Nevada birders because we can find waterfowl and other water birds (translation: it's a change from the desert). Most of the species at the lake should not be anything special for visitors (e.g., ducks, grebes, waders, shorebirds, and gulls) because these are the same species found elsewhere in North America, but the area is scenic, worth a visit, and there is always the chance of finding an interesting desert species or two. During winter, feeding the wild ducks at the Boulder Beach Marina provides a unique birding experience. Birders can make a nice spring or fall day out of starting out at Boulder Beach and birding north to Bowman Reservoir, then taking Interstate-15 home.
For More Information and details of getting to Lake Mead, fees, and other information, see the Lake Mead NRA Overview page.
Boulder Beach. Big old trees, a wide swimming beach, and a marina provide places to look for waterfowl, shorebirds, and wading birds.
Las Vegas Wash. Look for waterfowl and other waterbirds from bluffs overlooking the wash, and look for desert species in campground trees. With the lake level so low, take a spotting scope to see the lake.
Wetlands Trail. Walk into the narrow, steep-walled canyon of Las Vegas Wash to find the sounds of running water in southern Nevada.
Bitter Spring. A trickle of water forms a spot of green amid the vastness of the dry Mojave Desert attracts dryland birds.
Rogers Spring. Warm water spring and vegetation attract desert species and migrants.
Blue Point Spring. A narrow strip of green with a creek, shrubs, and palm trees that attracts desert species and migrants.
Overton Wildlife Management Area. Seasonally flooded marshes, large cottonwood trees, grassy fields, and ponds.
Bowman Reservoir. This reservoir with a ring of trees can be good for waterfowl, other water birds, and migrants.
Veterans Memorial Park. Suburban park with ponds that attract ducks; trails in desert habitat with desert birds.