Seven Ponds Nature Center encompasses nearly 500 acres of woodlands, wetlands, lakes, ponds, prairies, and fields. There are over six miles of trails for you to explore and enjoy. Please check-in at the nature center prior to venturing out on the trails. Our trails are open to guests Tuesday through Sunday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and open to Seven Ponds members dawn to dusk, every day of the year.
CURRENT TRAIL CONDITIONS
September 26, 2023 - Autumn has arrived and fall colors are starting to blaze. The trails are in great condition, although with all the rain we had in August, mosquitos are worse now than they have been all year. Bring a bit of insect repellent just in case - but enjoy your walk in the brisk fall air.
NOTE: the boardwalk to and from the A-Frame Bridge, as well as the trail in Paul's Woods, is temporarily closed due to our boardwalk reconstruction. We encourage you to enjoy the other trails at Seven Ponds. Thank you for your patience.
- Our last summer bird walk started on a foggy morning, limiting our view of birds. But as the fog lifted the bird activity increased, and we ended our walk with a total of 31 species - not bad for a late summer walk. (8/16/23)
- Before the nature center opened this morning, we spotted a couple of hen turkeys escorting their young poults through the yard. It's always fun to see the young of the year. We're also seeing many spotted fawns. Drive slowly on Crawford Road as you get near the nature center! (8/3/23)
- Heavy rain last night left the grass and sidewalks wet this morning, resulting in a lot of slug activity. We found one slug slowly sliding along a window of our building, which gave us a great opportunity to see this creature from the underside. Nature is neat! (7/13/23)
- Today we had a bird walk at one of our satellite properties - Jonathan Woods Nature Preserve. It was a beautiful summer morning, cool and calm, and we saw more than 30 species of birds. This include nesting Northern Waterthrush and Louisiana Waterthrush. Jonathan Woods is one of the few places in Michigan where both of these warblers can be found on territory, as it's the very southern limit of the Northern Waterthrush range, and the very northern limit of the Louisiana Waterthrush range, and has appropriate habitat for both species - stream banks for Louisiana and pond/bog edge for Northern. (7/12/23)
- We watched this morning as a Chimney Swift circled our swift tower and dropped in - most likely to feed a nestling. How exciting is that?! Keep an eye out for these wonderful little birds the next time your are at the center. They have been described as a "cigar with wings" and their quick wingbeats and aerial mastery is unmistakeable. (7/11/23)
- The pair of Sandhill Cranes is still hanging out around the nature center building and the fields near Crawford Road. Check them out next time you stop out. (7/11/23)
- A pair of Sandhill Cranes has been hanging out in very close proximity to the nature center - often in the field between the building and the handicapped parking lot, sometimes in the garden area, occasionally very close to the front doors. We think this pair experienced nest failure or lost their fledgling, and are now just wandering around. Give them a wide berth as you enjoy these beautiful birds. (6/13/23)
- Eastern Bluebirds, Tree Swallows, and House Wrens are utilizing the nest boxes around the nature center building - check them out (from a distance) the next time you visit. These boxes are just a few of ~100 we have scattered around the nature center property. (6/6/23)
- While the nature center is open Tuesday through Sunday, 9-5 for the public, our members have the special privilege of visiting from dawn to dusk, every day of the year. Take advantage of your membership by enjoying the sunset at Seven Ponds. Great places to view the sunset include the A-Frame Bridge, Big Pond tower, North-80 tower, and Earl's Prairie tower. (6/3/23)
- We spotted one of our resident woodchucks sprawled out on the rock in our feeder area, enjoying the coolness the rock provided on this hot first day of June. (6/1/23)
- We enjoyed a wonderful morning bird walk at our satellite property, Jonathan Woods. Northern Waterthrush, Louisiana Waterthrush, Scarlet Tanager, Acadian Flycatcher, Red-shouldered Hawk, Great Crested Flycatcher, Yellow-throated Vireo, and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher were among the 40+ species we found. (5/24/23)
- Purple Martins have returned! After a pair of martins successfully nested in our colony box last year - for the first time in over 20 years - we were hopeful that they would return this year, and bring friends (martins prefer to nest colonially). Well, it looks like that will be the case, as several martins were observed flying around the nest box this morning. YAY! Check out the colony, located just north of the parking lot, next time you stop out. EDIT: apparently the martins have decided to nest elsewhere, as they have not taken up residence in our nest apartment. (5/12/23)
- Our morning bird walk at the nature center turned up 45 species of birds in just 2.5 hours! Among them were lots of Yellow Warblers, plus Common Yellowthroat, Blue-winged Warbler, Black-and-white Warbler, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Eastern Kingbird, Great Crested Flycatcher, Eastern Towhee, Pileated Woodpecker, Purple Martin, Song Sparrow, Swamp Sparrow, Field Sparrow, and Chipping Sparrow - plus a pair of trumpeting Trumpeter Swans! (5/10/23)
207 bird species have been observed at Seven Ponds! The most recent addition to our property list was Common Goldeneye, seen on March 12, 2023. For more recent sightings posted to eBird, click the eBird logo to the right.
Our satellite properties are visited less frequently, but offer different habitat for birds. Check out the eBird reports for these two areas below:
97 bird species observed
65 bird species observed