Making our communities healthy for birds... and people

City of Racine

Community Achievements

Habitat Creation, Protection, and Monitoring

A. Comply with Wisconsin's "Smart Growth" law for land use planning and resource management. This criterion is an option only for applications submitted before July 1, 2017.

The City of Racine is in compliance with Wisconsin’s “Smart Growth” law for land use planning and resource management.

C. Provide evidence (e.g., official designation of natural areas, easements, etc.) that existing bird habitat within community limits has legal protection. (Exclusions: Leash laws; prohibitions against disturbing nests and wildlife; areas consisting primarily of mowed grass)

The protection of existing bird habitat is written in as a part of Racine’s Municipal Code.

G. Document that there is a segment of the Great Wisconsin Birding and Nature Trail or a designated Important Bird Area within or adjacent to your community.

Racine has two locations listed in the “Great Wisconsin Birding and Nature Trail, Lake Michigan Region” and both are also designated as Important Bird Areas.

Community Forest Management

A. Demonstrate that your community has been awarded Tree City USA status by the National Arbor Day Foundation.

The City of Racine continues to be recognized as a Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation following its initial award in 2007 (also 1976-1977, 1979-1983, and 1986-1991). As of 2012, the City of Racine is also a recipient of the Growth Award.

Limiting or Removing Threats to Birds

A. Describe your community’s educational program to control free-roaming cats and/or the manner in which you actively publicize the Cats Indoors! initiative.

The City of Racine has an ongoing program that provides the community with information on controlling free-roaming cats and the “Cats Indoors!” program. This is also supported by Racine veterinarians, the Racine Humane Society, and Hoy Audubon Society.

Public Education

C. Demonstrate that your community is represented in at least one citizen science bird monitoring program (e.g., the Christmas Bird Count, Great Backyard Bird Count, Swift Night Out).

Racine has been active in multiple bird counts throughout the calendar year:  Christmas Bird Count, Great Backyard Bird Count, and also the Swift Night Out counts.

International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD)

B. Document and describe your event that incorporates the annual IMBD theme in some fashion. If the event has not yet occurred, please share your detailed plans. For information on the current year’s theme and event materials, please visit the International Migratory Bird Day website. To see what other Bird City communities have done in the past, please view some other profiles on our website.

Recently, Racine approved a resolution proclaiming May 13, 2017 as International Migratory Bird Day and urges all citizens to observe and support the efforts to protect and conserve migratory birds and their habitats. Typically this is also the day that Racine does the “Big Sit”.


Hoy Audubon also hosts the “Big Sit” bird count at a publicized location each year in September. The “Big Sit” is an event where an effort is made to count all birds seen in one day while staying within a 17-foot diameter circle. During the day forum discussions about both migratory and urban birds were conducted. The “Big Sit” is also a worldwide event. Those interested in further information about the local “Big Sit” can contact (262) 637-4359.

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Community Details

Joined Bird City: 2011

Population: 78,199

Incorporated: 1848

Area: 18.68 mi2

Community Website

Community Map