Home > Recreation > Birding

Birding Sites in the Finger Lakes


Fort Hill Cemetery

Fort Hill Cemetery Association

19 Fort St.

Auburn, NY 13021

Coordinates: 42.552685°N 76.341445°W

Google Earth View


Fort Hill Cemetery is on a high point overlooking the City of Auburn.


Habitat: A Finger Lakes birder once said one spring that she had seen every warbler known to frequent the region just by visiting a cemetery not far from her house. What it is about cemeteries that attracts birds we'll probably never know. But many cemeteries are good birding sites, and Fort Hill is no exception.


Fort Hill is the highest point in the City of Auburn, which is located at the northern end of Owasco Lake. It was thought to have been, at one time, an old Indian fort. The cemetery itself is very The grave of Harriet Tubman Davis is located in the West lawn C section at the base of a large spruce.old and is the resting place of many people who are nationally and locally well know, including William H. Seward, an abolitionist who, as a U. S. senator, encouraged the purchase of the Alaska Territory from the Russian Empire, and Harriet Tubman, an ex-slave and well-known abolitionist. The two were friends and residents of Auburn.


The cemetery is very hilly with many old trees. Paved paths and one-lane roads wind through the area, providing good birding for individuals with mobility limitations. The grass is mowed throughout the area with no "wild" spots. Birding will be either on the ground or in the trees.


Seasons: Spring and autumn when the birds are migrating will be the best time for you to visit this spot. Any other time will most likely be unrewarding as the cemetery during breeding season has only the most common birds. (The cemetery probably has a few interesting owls but is closed at night.) Look for warblers; vireos; American robins and other thrushes, chipping and fox sparrows; dark-eyed juncos; indigo buntings; towhees; blue jays; white-breasted nuthatches, chickadees, red-winged blackbirds; common grackles; finches like the goldfinch, house finch, and purple finch; small hawks like the sharp-shinned; and small falcons like the merlin. The common crow will be common. Auburn has a large population of wintering crows some of which roost in the cemetery, but most choose trees along the Owasco (Lake) Outlet.


Access: The main entrance to the cemetery is a fancy gate on Fitch Avenue just west of State Route 38 (also called South Street).


Nearby Birding Sites:

Cayuga Community College Nature Trails


Created 12 October 2010








Your ad could go here!


Your ad could go here!