Posted by: atowhee | September 23, 2015


CORRECTION:  Not muskrats, as George Neavoll pointed out…those flat heads and long bodies sadly indicate these are nutria, an invasive species first brought to the Pacific west for the fur business.

A few days back there were Greater White-fronted Geese migrating over before dawn.

Yesterday I drove down to Eugene to talk about Great Gray Owls at Lane County Audubon.  I had time for two brief birding stops.  At Ankney there were hundreds of Taverner Canada Geese and some Cacklers in a separate pond.  Then at the Lane Community College ponds a handful of Cackling Geese.CCKLR FOUR (1280x960)Two of the Cacklers had the nifty white collar.  CCKLR1 (1280x960) CCKLR2 (1280x960)This photo shows size comparison with an American Wigeon, a modest-sized duck. CCKLR-AMWI (1280x960) CCLKR FOUR1 (1280x960)Here is just a small portion of the loafing  at Cacklers Ankeny NWR. TAVERNERS (1280x960)Wigeon:AMWI MALE-GUD (1280x960) AMWI TOO (1280x960)A congress of egrets, Ankeny. EGRET CONGRESS (1280x960)Yellowlegs, Ankeny. GY GRP1 (1280x960) GY INTO WATR (1280x960) GY STRIDE (1280x960)Greater yellowlegs near dowitchers. GY WITH LBD (1280x960) GY WITH LBD2 (1280x960) L-BD C-U (1280x960)LB Dowitchers into their beloved mud. L-BD1 (1280x960)Front row: Mallards.  Middle row: nutria.  Back row: yellowlegs. M-RAT AT SEE (1280x960) M-RAT ON LAND (1280x960)


Today on the eastern slope of the Coast Range I watched a Goshawk soaring above the treetops.  The bird was hunting above the monoculture of Doug-firs in a regenerating clear cut.  The trees were each about twenty feet tall and shoulder to shoulder.  This was along Meadow Lake Road in northern Yamhill County, about twelve miles west of Westside Road and a mile east of McGuire Reservoir.

Posted by: atowhee | September 20, 2015


ACWO-MICLBKAcorn Woodpecker in McMinnville. Belo9w: mammals in Rotary Park: P2530299 (1280x960) P2530313 (1280x960) P2530316 (1280x960)   WHT RBT2 (1280x960) YNG BUK (1280x960)Toggenberg near Wapato Lake, part of Tualatin River NWR.P2530386 (1280x960)Quilt barn, Yamhill: QUILT BARN (1280x960)Young Robin enjoys bath in our garden:ALRO SPLASH3 (1280x960) AMRO BATHS (1280x960) AMRO BATHS2 (1280x960) AMRO SPLASH1 (1280x960) AMRO SPLASH2 (1280x960) AMRO WET (1280x960)Angus eating hay, necessary becuse drought has reduced pasture, ANGUS (1280x960)Bearded oaks: OAK BEARD (1280x960)D-CON BE GONE

We met a local rancher today who’s stopped using D-con around  his place…after two of the family cats succumbed to the deadly mammal killer.  He’s now gone to repellents and his favorite for rats and mice is this one:freshcab

Click here to find the manufacturer’s website.

Fresh Cab is composed of really strong smelling botanicals which are not poisonous to any creature.  It will not kill the local Barn Owls, or barn cats or gopher snakes like D-con.  It’s long been known that rats and mice cannot stand peppermint, hot peppers and numerous other non-toxic botanical odors.  Fresh Cab just rolls a bunch them into one strong repellent.

Note: I have no financial interest in this company or product but I do love Barn Owls and even some barn cats.

Posted by: atowhee | September 20, 2015


I couldn’t get out this morning, but did some birding around Yamhill town this afternoon.  No shorebirds, no passerine migrants.

The Acorn Woodpeckers this far north are very spotty and localized in their occurrence.  I have now become acquainted with four places where they can be found in Yamhill County:  Yamhill town, esp. Beulah Park area…Michelbook and 13th Street in McMinnville in a grove of stately white oaks…Wortman Park in McMinnville…near the Brigittine Monastery in south county.

Most interesating lesson of the day: Don’t perch on the end!  I was watching a collection of Bushtits that I think were all siblings in a recently fledged family group.   When I first spotted them in the thicket four were sitting side-by-side, tightly packed together as is their wont.  Then the others scattered in the bushes nearby began to move onto the same branch.  Each time one joined the row of perchers the tiny newcomer would land on the backs of those on the branch and then wiggle its way down in between, never landing on either end of the row.  Don’t perch on the end!

Only obviously new migrant today for me was the tiny teal among the big guys in the sewer ponds.

Beulah Park, Yamhill town, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 20, 2015 3:30 PM – 3:50 PM.  6 species

California Quail (Callipepla californica)  12
Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)  9
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  8
Bushtit (Psaltriparus minimus)  9
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus)  6

Yamhill Sewage Ponds (restricted access), Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 20, 2015 4:00 PM – 4:45 PM.  13 species

Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)  5
Gadwall (Anas strepera)  2
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  12
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)  75
Green-winged Teal (Anas crecca)  1
Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)  2
Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)  1
Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)  1
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  1
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)  1
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  2
White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)  1
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X

Posted by: atowhee | September 19, 2015


Well it was the first day of the national count aimed at migratory birds and around here I think most of the songbirds are long gone.  Drought meant an early end to summer.  I did get some migrants: TV, Shoveler, Coot, swallows.  The latter were the only obvious migratory songbirds I found.  Nary a Junco nor Fox Sparrow.

These American Goldfinches could well be local breeders.  Goldfinches, quail and Barn Swallow flock were along Goodin Creek Road.

AMGOL-PARE (1280x960)There were swallow flocks in several spots and these Barn Swallows along the north edge of Yamhill County are likely just passing through. BAR-WIRE1 (1280x960) BAR-WIRE2 (1280x960)One of a small covey of California Quail, this one female did not immediately dart into the roadside thicket so I took this pic thru the windshield. No migrant she, probably never been more than a quarter mile from the very spot in the road where she was standing. CAQU (1280x960)These jungle fowl originated on the far side of the world, but were probably born not far from this barnyard in the town of Yamhill. JNGL FOWL (1280x960)Let’s face it, the face with THAT beak can only be a Shoveler.  Very nosey, those ducks.  Dozens on Yamhill sewer ponds and they are legitimate migrants. SHOV-A SHOV-B SHOV-CResident Steller’s Jay attending to his plumage in Rotary Park. STJ FRONT (1280x960) STJ PREENS (1280x960)My most entertaining bird of the day was a White-breasted Nuthatch busily foraging in the dense moss on a tree at the Yamhill Sewer Ponds.  Note how he works upside down and in every possible angle, what incredible arteries he has to keep blood flowing in defiance of gravity. WBN BACK  WBN LEFT (1280x960) WBN LFT2 (1280x960) WBN LFT3 (1280x960) WBN UNDER (1280x960) WBN UNDER2 (1280x960) WBN UNDER3 (1280x960) WBN UNDER4 (1280x960) WBN UPSID (1280x960)WBN BACKSIDE (1280x960)

McMinnville Rotary Park (Tice Park), Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 19, 2015 10:00 AM – 10:30 AM.  9 species.

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  1
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  1
Red-breasted Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus ruber)  1
Steller’s Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri)  3
Common Raven (Corvus corax)  2
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)  1
Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)  2
Bewick’s Wren (Thryomanes bewickii)  2
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)  1

Yamhill Sewage Ponds (restricted access), Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 19, 2015 11:10 AM – 11:55 AM.  11 species

Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)  2
Gadwall (Anas strepera)  1
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  12
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)  60
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  1
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  1
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  60
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  1
White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)  1
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)  3

Wapato Lake NWR (restricted access), Washington, Oregon, US
Sep 19, 2015 1:00 PM – 1:20 PM
Comments:     best viewing is from Flett Road on south end of marsh
9 species

Gadwall (Anas strepera)  1
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  6
Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps)  2
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  1
American Coot (Fulica americana)  2
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  20
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  40
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Brewer’s Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus)  1

Goodin Creek Road, Yamhill County, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 19, 2015 1:40 PM – 2:10 PM.  5 species

California Quail (Callipepla californica)  8
Steller’s Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri)  3
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  2
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  40
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  3

The quail and sapsucker were new county birds for me, running my year’s list, and hence lifelist, for Yamhill County to 88.  Been in the county almost 70 days now.  Still missing the usual winter sparrows and many waterfowl.


Posted by: atowhee | September 18, 2015


I had the enjoyment of talking to the Corvallis Audubon Society last night about Great Gray Owls–over sixty humans in attendance.  No owls seen.  On the way down Hwy 99W from McMinnville I visited some of the hot spots.  Baskett Slough was my first stop, dry but not completely arid.  The ponds were busy places.

BIRD OF THE DAY:  My first Fox Sparrow of the season, just before the summer deadline when the calendar claims it  is officially autumn. The sparrow was in the thickets along one of the paved roads weathering away at E.E. Wilson Wildlife Area north of Corvallis.FOX-S (1280x960) FOX-S FOX-S2 (1280x960)


The last storm clouds from the overnight front were moving north on the face of a gusting wind.  The afternoon was mild with occasional bursts of sun through gaps in the thinning clouds.  Swallows were on the wing.  A hundred Barn Swallows for every Violet-green.  Scrub-Jays naturally observed my intrusion, making comments as required by Scrub-law.  BASKETT SCRUB (1280x960) BASKETT SKYOn one ridegetop stood this tall, dead tree.  I dubbed it “TV antenna” in honor of its tenants.  Like the swallows, these birds are moving south.TV ANTENNA2Also on migration were my only shorebirds of the afternoon, a half dozen Red-necked Phalarope.  No Killdeer but six phalarope.RNP SWIM-A RNP SWIM-B (1280x960)On the move, if not exactly migrating, a woolly bear. WOOLLY BEAR (1280x960)Great Blue Heron flying off whist dropping ballast.GBH FLIZ (1280x960)At least ten muskrats were motoring around two large ponds and the narrow canal connecting them. M-RAT CANAL1 (1280x960) M-RAT CANAL2 (1280x960)This muskrat was shuffling, or even shambling.  I heard no saxophones and certainly would not call this a “Muskrat Ramble.”M-RAT1 (1280x960) M-RAT2 (1280x960) M-RATY SWIMS (1280x960)

PEAVY ARBORETUM BEW IN LEAVES (1280x960)There was a determined pair of Bewick’s Wrens, accompanied by their neighbors, S. Towhee Esquire and wife, who were going to be certain that I did linger along the trail next to their particular patch of lush undergrowth.   BEW1 (1280x960) BEW2 (1280x960)They made a few short comments but mostly they gave me their best “get outta here” stare.  I am contually glad I am not an inch-long caterpillar trying to hide. BEW3 (1280x960)BEW BLURD (1280x960)

Baskett Slough NWR, Polk, Oregon, US
Sep 17, 2015 1:15 PM – 2:15 PM
20 species

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)  X
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  7
Great Egret (Ardea alba)  7
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  17
Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus)  1
Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus)  6
Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)  X
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  2
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)  5
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  8
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  20
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  500
White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)  1
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis)  1
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)  2
Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)  1
Western Meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta)  1
Brewer’s Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus)  4
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  40

E.E. Wilson WMA, Benton, Oregon, US
Sep 17, 2015 3:30 PM – 4:15 PM.  12 species

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  4
Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)  3
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  2
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  2
Common Raven (Corvus corax)  4
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  X
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)  2
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)  1
Fox Sparrow (Passerella iliaca)  1     first of the season for me
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)  1
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  40

Peavy Arboretum, Benton, Oregon, US
Sep 17, 2015 4:30 PM – 5:10 PM.  5 species

Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo)  3
Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)  1
Steller’s Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri)  1
Bewick’s Wren (Thryomanes bewickii)  2
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)  2

Posted by: atowhee | September 15, 2015


I was in Silver Falls State Park this afternoon.  Didn’t see many birds, but there were two that attracted long views.  A Pileated was busy recycling portions of a tall snag, and was carefully studying the trunk for possible food.PIWO AIMS (1280x960) PIWO ATOP (1280x960) PIWO ATOPP PIWO BACK (1280x960)In this next iage you clearly see the spiked tail feathers that act as “third leg” to brace against the trunk when the bird leans back or is hammering at the wood. PIWO BELLY (1280x960) PIWO BLUR (1280x960) PIWO CU34 (1280x960) PIWO FLAPS (1280x960) PIWO FOLOS (1280x960) PIWO FROM BHND (1280x960) PIWO GOOD (1280x960) PIWO GUD (1280x960) PIWO LEAN (1280x960) PIWO LOOKS (1280x960) PIWO LOOKS OUT (1280x960) PIWO LOOKS3 (1280x960) PIWO PROBE (1280x960) PIWO STUDCIES (1280x960) PIWO U PP (1280x960) PIWO UP SIDE (1280x960)At one point something overhead drew the bird’s attention.  I couldn’t see what it was because of the dense canopy. PIWO UPP2 (1280x960) PIWO UPPS4 (1280x960) PIWO VERT (1280x960) PIWO-1 (1280x960) PIWO-2 (1280x960) PIWO-PROBES2 (1280x960)South Falls: SOUTH FALLZUpper North Falls where the Dipper was. UPR NORTH (1280x960) UPR NORTH2 (960x1280)UPR NORTH2 (960x1280) DIPPER PERFECT (1280x960) LEAVS1 LEAVS2Silver Falls SP, Marion, Oregon, US
Sep 15, 2015 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM.  8 species

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  1
Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)  3
Steller’s Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri)  1
American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)  2
Common Raven (Corvus corax)  1
American Dipper (Cinclus mexicanus)  1
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  2
Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)  10

Posted by: atowhee | September 14, 2015


CRANE TALKThis first sequence of pics are from eastern Oregon, taken by my good friend, Kirk Gooding, on a trip with his wife Shannon Rio.  She’s president of the Klamath Bird Observatory Board of Directors. CRANE UP CRANES3 GHO GOOSEEmpid to puzzle over. gry flycHarrier:harrierDuo discusses the menu: MENUDuncan Evered of the Malheur Field Station with his mindful birding class.   Buena Vista overlook at Malheur, truly a buena vista. MINDFULI suspect this fellow of being a Pacific-slope. pac slopePeregrine. PEREGreater Sage Grouse in eastern Oregon where there are fortunately no buried fossil fuels so corporate greed cannot impinge on the range there.  Fire, western juniper and cattle ranching are the major threats to the species there. SAGE-GRSShorebirds along the shore: avocet and yellowlegs: SHOREStilt tilt: STILT TILTSummer Lake in summer: SUM LAKE


These next three images are from Tom Kuhn, a backyard birder who keeps a small water feature running in his small garden in San Francisco.  This Pygmy Nuthatch is a neighbor as SF is one of the few places where this species is found at sea level.  Here in Oregon the bird is generally found only on the eastern slope of the Cascades.  Pygmy NuthatchThe Yellow Warbler appears in transit every spring and again in late summer. warbler 2e warbler1-tk

Posted by: atowhee | September 14, 2015


GGO LOOK-WWIT (958x1280)I’ve checked with biologists in Oregon and Washington State and so far the results of this year’s terrible forest fires in both states have NOT been too bad for Great Gray Owls.  Only in north central Washington was there some habitat destruction.  There higher elevation forests where the owls are known to hunt some areas have been heavily burned–that is by hot fires.  Yet a biologist there told me he was already trapping some insect life in burned areas where smoke still rises from smoldering hot spots.

Reports from Medford and La Grande show the fires in those regions did NOT impinge on known GGO habitat. Inthe southern Cascades there was considerable fire destruction in known Spotted Owl habitat north and east of the Rogue River Valley.

If you;re interested in the Great Gray Owls of the northwest, here’s some info on my book about them.

Posted by: atowhee | September 11, 2015


I got to go birding with Paul Sullivan this morning.  He is one of the local birders wh0 really knows Yamhill County where I am almost reaching novice stage.   We went to several places I had never even imagined, much less visited.  This is a smallish, land-locked county with little marsh, no saltwater marshes nor any large natural lakes.  So did we find migratory shorebirds?  Just look:PECT-A (1280x960)We found our first two Pectoral Sandpipers at a large farm pond on Patty Lane east of Hwy 99 and south of Amity.  The water level was low enough to provide plenty of mudflats. PECTWO-B (1280x960)Also on the mudflats were five other species of shorebird.  In this picture there are three plus two wannabes we identified as Brewer’s Blackbirds just pretending to be shorebirds.  On lower right is our Semipalmated Sandpiper for the day.  Just left of center is one of the Least Sandpipers and then there’s a big, bold plover on the far left.  You may want to click on the pic for a larger view.SEMIP PLUS (1280x960)Best images of the day were of this unafraid Pectoral Sandpiper on the rip-rap at the Sheridan Sewage Ponds.PECT-BEST (1280x960) PECT-BEST2 (1280x960) PECT-SIDEVU (1280x960) PECT-WINGVU (1280x960)Out on the water there, a lone Red-necked Phalarope. RNP (1280x960)Patty Lane image showing Semipalmated next to the Least SEMIP-LESA2 (1280x960)At Sheridan the Least was neighborly with a Western: WESA-LESA3 (1280x960)Here’s the Wilson’s Snipe Paul spotted in the much at the shallow end of the Patty Lane pond: WS1 WS2 WS3

Also at that same farm there were hundreds of Barn Swallows, leavened with a dash of Violet-greens, feeding over the pond and its accompanying cattails.

SWALO-LIND (1280x960) SWALO-LINSZ (1280x960) SWALO-ROOF (1280x960)

Our total on the day–7 shorebird species.  Throw in hundreds of Shovelers, a few Woodies, Kestrels on the line and hundreds of swallows (mostly Barn) and we had ourselves a fine morning before the temps hit 90 degrees and everybody headed for the shade.  Kestrel, BTW, must be Paul’s totem bird.  That’s what his car license plate reads: “KESTRL.”  Here are two of the several we saw:KEST FAC (1280x960) KEST-POLD (1280x960)Before we hit the shorebird trail we birded a portion of the Eola Hills overlooking Amity.BEW CU2 (1280x960) BEW UC (1280x960)We only saw a single Bewick’s Wren but a quartet of Band-tailed Pigeons flew into the treetops while we watched. BTP ATOPP (1280x960)The sparrow family was well-represented in the roadside thickets.  Numerous Juncos and at least a dozen Spotted Towhees…here are two of the bolder ones. SPTO BRITE1 (1280x960) SPTO OPEND (1280x960) Amity, OR, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 11, 2015 8:50 AM – 9:20 AM
15 species

Band-tailed Pigeon (Patagioenas fasciata)  4
Anna’s Hummingbird (Calypte anna)  1
Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens)  2
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  1
Western Wood-Pewee (Contopus sordidulus)  1
Steller’s Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri)  2
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  1
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)  1
Red-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta canadensis)  1
Bewick’s Wren (Thryomanes bewickii)  1
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)  25
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)  15
Western Tanager (Piranga ludoviciana)  1–calling
Purple Finch (Haemorhous purpureus)  1

Patty Lane, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 11, 2015 10:10 AM – 10:55 A.  21 species

Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps)  6
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  1
Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus)  20
Least Sandpiper (Calidris minutilla)  1
Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)  2
Semipalmated Sandpiper (Calidris pusilla)  1
Western Sandpiper (Calidris mauri)  1
Wilson’s Snipe (Gallinago delicata)  1
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)  1
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  1
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)  2
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  1
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  12
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  300
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina)  1
White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys)  1
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)  1
Brewer’s Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus)  10
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  1
House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)  X

Montastery Pond and Lane, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 11, 2015 11:00 AM – 11:15 AM.  13 species

Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)  4
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  12
Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)  1
Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps)  1
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  1
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  1
Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus)  2
Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)  1
Western Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma californica)  1
Common Raven (Corvus corax)  1
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  X
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  X
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  1

Sheridan WTP Ponds (restricted access), Yamhill, Oregon, US
Sep 11, 2015 11:40 AM – 12:10 PM. 19 species

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)  X
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)  100
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)  500
Ruddy Duck (Oxyura jamaicensis)  3
Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps)  1
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  1
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  1
American Coot (Fulica americana)  70
Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus)  4
Spotted Sandpiper (Actitis macularius)  3
Least Sandpiper (Calidris minutilla)  3
Pectoral Sandpiper (Calidris melanotos)  1
Western Sandpiper (Calidris mauri)  2
Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus)  1
Black Phoebe (Sayornis nigricans)  1
Violet-green Swallow (Tachycineta thalassina)  X
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  X
Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis)  2
Brewer’s Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus)  20

Posted by: atowhee | September 8, 2015


Andy Huber tells me his family of Great Gray Owls have all grown up and are hunting now as individuals.  He sent me some mid-summer photos showing the youngsters as they got their adult plumage…some fine bath-tub shots, again.  Enjoy.  And thank you, Andy and yr Owlets.7.  GGO youngest chick on post 5 8 15 IMG_2998 8. GGO owlets in flight sort of 4480 IMG_2325 14. GGO owlets are you drowning 4113 IMG_2709 GGO owlet with vole on block 7 31 15 IMG_1647

Here’s Andy’s latest email:

“The old Cooper’s hawk nest that our great grays used here, was completely destroyed by the four chicks.  I would like to rebuild something at the same site, in case the female is able to nest again next spring.  I’d prefer it to be a little more natural looking than the standard boxes, but haven’t decided on a plan yet.
“All four of our owlets are now on their own.  I last saw the mother, in late July, and the four owlets together on August 14th.  Individuals have been randomly seen since then.
“The few [images] I’ve attached, are from late July and early August, to show their feather development.  They hatched during the first two weeks of April.”

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