ABOUT THE NORTH POND NATURE SANCTUARY
Escape the stress of city living with a visit to the North Pond Nature Sanctuary, a place where you can experience the connection between native mid-western plants and the wildlife that depend on them. You'll find waterfowl, butterflies, dragonflies, frogs, turtles, and over 200 species of resident and migratory birds. If you're very quiet and move slowly, you may even catch a glimpse of an occasional red fox, coyote, opossum, raccoon, and other small mammals.
Each summer, we celebrate the return of our seasonal residents — the herons. Three heron species frequent the North Pond Nature Sanctuary: the Great Blue, the Green, and the Black-Crowned Night Heron.
Once a Victorian era man-made lake used for leisure activities, the North Pond was rehabilitated in 1999 by the Chicago Park District and the Lincoln Park Conservancy. What was once a landscape that consisted of Kentucky blue grass and lilac bushes became a thriving natural ecosystem built around a diverse palette (over 150 species) of plants native to the Chicago region that provide food, shelter and breeding habitat to wildlife.
The beautiful wildflowers and grasses found at the North Pond Nature Sanctuary today pay homage to Illinois' heritage as "The Prairie State." Around the pond, you'll find plants that once dominated Chicago's landscape before European settlement including plants common to prairies, savannas, woodlands, and wetlands.
The North Pond Nature Sanctuary is managed by the Lincoln Park Conservancy and the Chicago Park District. Docent tours are available through the Lincoln Park Conservancy, as well as volunteer opportunities in our North Pond Gardeners Program.
The North Pond Nature Sanctuary is open everyday from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. and admission is free.
Click on the links to the left to plan a visit or for more information.
Learn about the North Pond Nature Sanctuary's wildflowers with our Google Map showing the location and species of the native flora!
North Pond Plant Map