Overall, this spring's weather was more normal than 2012, when trees leafed out early (making birds hard to see) and the early warm fronts threw migration patterns out of wack.
I have 117 species on my Illinois 2013 list to date. Spring migration is the top opportunity to build a list, but birds can still be added with a few strategic trips. Last weekend, we went to Illinois Beach State Park. It's not far (about an hour), and we had never been there before even though it's pretty much the only natural Great Lakes beach/dune habitat in the state. I knew we had a shot to see some typical Midwestern birds that had escaped us at Montrose. And we did: belted kingfisher, eastern bluebird, eastern meadowlark and tree swallow were all added to the list. Then we added a goody: a Brewer's blackbird in the juniper-covered dunes.
We may do some camping in coming weeks and can look for more Illinois breeding species then. And there will be opportunities in fall migration, too. But the sightings will become more scarce as fall ends and winter approaches.