Saturday, January 23, 2016
Audubon Nature Reserve in West Salem. They were part of a group of almost twenty Willamette University students that spent the afternoon volunteering their time at the Reserve. They worked on a variety of tasks, spreading wood chips on the trail, cutting back English Ivy, moving and placing logs along the trail, and digging up new flower beds to plant milk weed to be able to attract butterflies. Their upbeat attitudes were a stark contrast to the bitter dissension of the continuing Republican Party circus, and the discouraging militant take over of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. I saw no smoking, or tattoos, or piercing. These were wholesome, upbeat young persons, curious about nature and the community, positive about life, and confident in their ability to complete their education and move forward. It was a wonderful respite from the above mentioned concerns that seem to currently consume my thoughts both day and night. A thank you to this group of kids. They provided a glimmer of hope for the future.
Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Saturday, January 16, 2016
Tundra SwanWe have sort of prided ourselves in our rather relaxed birding style. After all, our trips are focused on taking Buster for a walk, a leisure stroll, and counting and photographing any birds we happen up on. We are not the type to "chase" after birds, driving miles and miles to seek out an unusual species, or spending dawn to dusk in search of our prey, or attempting to identify owls in the dark of night. But yesterday we might have crossed over to the dark side, --- we birding in three different counties, through two rainstorms and turned in six different observation lists. The weather forecast for a dry day sent us out the door early around eight o'clock, by 8:28 we had spotted a Northern Harrier on Bethel road en route to a couple of ponds in Yamhill County. Despite a dry weather forecast we were forced to venture out of the car in rain at Sheridan South Side Park to check out the pond for water fowl, 15 species there. After thirty minutes we fled to the car and ventured on to Willamina to note the birds at Huddleston Pond, again walking in the rain, we tallied 17 species. We were wet and cold, but warming up in the car we decided on going south to Arlie Road in Polk County to see if we could find some recently reported swans. Although a flock of 40 had been reported we only found one lonely Tundra Swan. We were so close to Camp Adair at that point we decided to make a stop at the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife office and check out Adair Pond. The volunteer site which we occupied for a couple of summer overlooks this pond. We made a circle of the pond and some of the surrounding trails for a bird count of 18 species, our first of the year for Benton County. It seemed like a productive, but long day for us. Oh, I almost for got, my day actually started at 3:22 AM when I identified from my bed two Great Horned Owls doing a duet out in the dark. Perhaps we are more addicted than we would like to admit.
Thursday, January 7, 2016
here to see my bird list for the morning.
Sunday, January 3, 2016
We woke up to snow on the ground this morning, and it has continue to snow a little all day. We elected to stay inside and observe the birds in our back yard from the comfort of our living room. In total we had 21 different species show up to sample the seed, juice and suet offerings. Below are photos of some of the birds we enjoyed watching.
female Anna's Hummingbird
male Lesser Goldfinch
male Downey Woodpecker
Saturday, January 2, 2016
Western Scrub Jay - - Audubon Nature Reserve
Northern Shoveler & Mallards - 9th hole pond
Greater Yellowlegs - 9th hole pond