Fontenelle Forest is a privately funded non-profit organization encompassing approximately 1,500 acres of deciduous forest, oak savannah, prairie and wetlands along the Missouri River. There are 17 miles of maintained trails, including a one-mile, ADA-accessible Riverview Boardwalk offering year-round opportunities to observe wildlife and the changing seasons. This site attracts many migrants and breeding songbirds. During spring migration, a variety of warblers can be observed from forested paths, including Prothonotary, Kentucky, and Blackpoll Warblers. Watch for breeding Summer and Scarlet Tanagers, as well as Yellow-throated Vireos. Pileated woodpeckers have been found in the uplands as well as the floodplain. Winter birding is also popular at this location.
Where to go in the park
The 0.4-mile Marsh Trail offers great views of riparian birds, as well as forest birds. This trail can get muddy after rain. Park at the Wetlands parking lot and begin on the boardwalk to the bird blind where waterfowl can be viewed. Continue along to the Stream Trail and loop back to the parking lot via the Pond Trail.
Visit the nature center and raptor woodland refuge to view and learn about a variety of non-releasable raptors up close in a canopy-level exhibit. These raptors call Fontenelle Forest home and share their stories to help to educate the public about raptor conservation. From the nature center, take the ADA-accessible, 1-mile Riverview Boardwalk, to view the Missouri River without getting muddy.
Arrive early, to give yourself plenty of time to bird and enjoy this forest.
Site’s notable birds
Birds recently observed
1111 Bellevue Blvd N, Bellevue, NE 68005
Bathrooms, Hiking and Nature Trails, Nature Center