Dallas County Public Lake is a compact site housing a good variety of habitats around a 100-acre lake-emergent lakeside edge, both second-growth and mature woodland and open pine-oak woods. Upon leaving AL-41, look to the left on County Road 6. The cut-over area is full of Eastern Towhees, Eastern Bluebirds, Yellow-breasted Chats, Prairie and Palm Warblers, Blue Grosbeaks, American Goldfinches, Field, Song and White-throated Sparrows, all in the proper season.
Soon after, look to the right at the pond bounded by willows. This pond can host Green Herons, as well as Black-crowned and Yellow-crowned Night-herons. You’ll often find Eastern Phoebes and Yellow Warblers.
The main lake is just ahead. Eastern Bluebirds, Eastern Phoebes, and swallows (mostly Barn) perch on the power wires by the fishing center. Herons and egrets are regularly found around the weedy edges of the lake. You will also see Little Blue and Green Herons, Snowy Egrets and White Ibis in late summer and fall. Purple Martins and Rough-winged, Cliff, and Tree Swallows all breed in the vicinity and may be found here any time from late March through early October. Their numbers increase during migration. Some waterfowl appear on the 100-acre lake in the colder months. Follow the clay road around the lake. There is an extensive second-growth area to the south and to the west is open pine-oak woods; look for Wild Turkeys and Northern Bobwhites, as well as Pileated Woodpeckers, Red-tailed Hawks, Great Horned Owls and Mississippi Kites.
As the road turns northward, look for the waders, including Least Bitterns and American Bitterns (migration and winter) in the thick vegetation along the lake’s edge. Follow the road into a copse of mature hardwoods bordering the northwestern and northern portions of the lake. This is the area to find songbirds, such as Eastern Wood-Pewees, Orchard Orioles, Great Crested Flycatchers, Northern Parulas. You will also find Yellow-throated Warblers, Yellow-throated and Red-eyed Vireos, Red-headed and Red-bellied Woodpeckers and Red-shouldered and Broad-winged Hawks. Wood Thrushes, Hooded and Kentucky Warblers, and Common Yellowthroats may be found in the thicker understory to the left (north and northwest) side of the road.
The Dallas County Lake is just minutes from Selma and off a major highway. The site has a variety of habitats with good birds, clean restrooms, and concessions. This site can be included as a half-day stop in any birding venture in the Selma area. The lake is closed on Mondays and every day from November 27 to January 31. Call (334) 874-8804 for further information.
Directions: From Selma (Dallas County) follow AL-41 south for 11 miles. Turn right (north) on County Road 6 to reach the lake.
GPS N 32.214108 W -87.023485
Dallas County Lake
800 County Road 6
Sardis, AL 36775