[Tweeters] WOS Conf. Oregon Butte trip (long)
bellasoc at isomedia.com
Wed Jun 8 10:03:09 PDT 2016
I led the Sunday Oregon Butte trip at the WOS Conference in Walla Walla on
the 5th. We got an early start, but it was already warm. As we left town we
saw ROCK PIGEON, EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVE, HOUSE SPARROW and EUROPEAN
STARLING. We drove to Dayton and turned south on S. 4th. As we drove we saw
CALIFORNIA QUAIL, BARN SWALLOW. We made our first stop at the bottom of
Hatley Gulch and walked the road. We immediately saw a WESTERN KINGBIRD on a
wire (near it's nest on a transformer). A LAZULI BUNTING was singing nearby,
with a WESTERN MEADOWLARK up the hill. We could tell we would have to work
for birds as a crop duster was flying back and forth dusting the pea fields
on the hillside to the north. We spent the next couple of hours walking the
road for about a mile. In spite of the noise of the plane, we saw or heard
GREAT BLUE HERON, RED-TAILED HAWK, AMERICAN KESTREL, MOURNING DOVE, NORTHERN
FLICKER, WESTERN WOOD-PEWEE, DUSKY FLYCATCHER, WILLOW FLYCATCHER, EASTERN
KINGBIRD, COMMON RAVEN, NORTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW, BLACK-CAPPED
CHICKADEE, HOUSE WREN (lots singing), AMERICAN ROBIN, GRAY CATBIRD, CEDAR
WAXWING, YELLOW WARBLER, MACGILLIVRAY'S WARBLER, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT,
WESTERN TANAGER, SPOTTED TOWHEE, SONG SPARROW, BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK,
BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD (many), BULLOCK'S ORIOLE, HOUSE FINCH, LESSER GOLDFINCH
(male and female), AMERICAN GOLDFINCH. Fortunately, after about an hour the
duster finished and we had quiet for the rest of the walk. Temperatures had
climbed to near 80 and we were glad we would be at a higher elevation for
the rest of the day,
We picked up the cars and continued up Hatley Gulch. Near a house we saw
MOURNING DOVE, CHIPPING SPARROW, and further along at another ranch we saw
SAY'S PHOEBE (perched on the end of a barn), KILLDEER (on the ground of the
yard). As we continued up the road to join with Skyline Rd. we saw WESTERN
Along Skyline we saw more WESTERN BLUEBIRDs and MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRDs, WESTERN
MEADOWLARK, SAVANNAH SPARROW, and TURKEY VULTURE just leaving what it was
We pulled into the SnoPark for a quick break and more birds. Singing birds
included YELLOW WARBLER, MACGILLIVRAY'S WARBLER, WESTERN WOOD-PEWEE,
CASSIN'S VIREO, WARBLING VIREO, AMERICAN ROBIN, TOWNSEND'S WARBLER,
HAMMOND'S FLYCATCHER, DUSKY FLYCATCHER, PACIFIC-SLOPE FLYCATCHER,
BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, MOUNTAIN CHICKADEE, RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH,
GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, HERMIT THRUSH, ORANGE-CROWNED
WARBLER, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, WESTERN TANAGER, CHIPPING SPARROW, CASSIN'S
FINCH, PINE SISKIN and RED-NAPED SAPSUCKER. We walked the road for several
hundred yards searching for Great Gray Owl reported the day before, but were
not able to find it. A ways further along Skyline we stopped at a likely
spot with some snags and saw HAIRY WOODPECKER.
We continued working along Skyline seeing many of the birds we had already
found, and at a likely spot on Forest Road 46 (having moved into the
Umatilla National Forest) stopped to listen for possible woodpeckers. We
heard American Three-toed Woodpecker several times and followed the sounds.
While listening at one spot we also heard a PILEATED WOODPECKER call and
drum, and then saw it working a log over.
At Stockade Spring we pulled over to work the area - a CALLIOPE HUMMINGBIRD
was perched in its favorite spot on a small snag. Across the road a
BLACK-CHINED HUMMINGBIRD was present. MACGILLIVRAY'S WARBLER was in the
shrubs and ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER. WESTERN TANAGER's were here.
We made a lunch stop at Midway Campground and heard MOUNTAIN CHICKADEE,
RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, and got very nice looks at a WHITE-BREASTED NUTHATCH.
A ways further along we stopped and scanned the snags and saw a pair of
WILLIAMSON'S SAPSUCKERs making visits to a nest tree. MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRDs
flew back and forth. A distant RED-TAILED HAWK was perched on a snag. An
OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER was at a treetop. Still further along on FR46 we saw
a distant bird on a snag that seemed different - an all gray bird with a
long bill and when it flew white wing patches - a CLARK'S NUTCRACKER!
We stopped at Godman Campground and heard FOX SPARROW, and had a SWAINSON'S
HAWK overhead. We saw NORTHERN FLICKER (red-shafted race).
We returned the way we had come, and went back down Hatley Gulch a saw a
GREAT HORNED OWL in a conifer. On the way back to Dayton we stopped at the
rocky cliff area and saw VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOW and CLIFF SWALLOW.
At various spots during the day we saw COOPER'S HAWK, STELLER'S JAY,
AMERICAN CROW, TREE SWALLOW, CHESTNUT-BACKED CHICKADEE, BROWN CREEPER,
TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE, RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD, BREWER'S BLACKBIRD.
We had a great day with lots of super birds, good looks at them, good
companions and finished up with 84 species.
It was another excellent WOS Conference!
Brian H. Bell
mail to bell asoc a t iso media dot com
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