Friday, March 12, 2021
Early Morning at Ft Yamhill
A report of a couple of birders finding two Northern Pygmy-Owls at Ft Yamhill State Heritage Area sent us on an early morning chase yesterday in hopes of finding them. Arriving at 7:30AM, shafts of sunlight were penetrating the morning fog as they cut through the forest revealing a land of frost. We did hear a couple weak calls, possibly from a Northern Pygmy-Owl, but our lack of experience kept us from claiming them as an official observation. However, Jeanette did spot a flock of ten Red Crossbills high in the tree tops. And here the story comes full circle. Our first sighting of a Northern Pygmy-Owl was seven years ago while serving as volunteers at the Beaver Creek Welcome Center, and Red Crossbills played a pivotal role in finding the owl. You can read about that event here.
We spent a couple of hours on the interpretive trail, hanging out in spots of warm sunshine, scanning the trees for any sighting of an owl. Although we came up empty, we were pleased with the birds we could identify and photograph which you can see here.