[Tweeters] crane talk and FOYs

Randy Hill re_hill at q.com
Mon Mar 20 21:10:01 PDT 2017

They've been talking lately, dancing too. Yesterday a tour around the
Woodland Bottoms in Cowlitz County, about 700 Sandhill Cranes in the big
pasture between the RR tracks and the Holland America tulip location south
of town, viewed from the gravel dike road along the Lewis River. Also had
FOY Rough-winged Swallow at the big expulsion pumps on Dike Road at the
north end, and two occupied Great Horned Owl nests in cottonwoods along Dike

Today I verified that the north end of Lower River Road along Vancouver
Bottoms north of Vancouver Lake is vacated, therefore not accessible to the
public without permission north of the gate that has been in place for the
last year+. (There is also a visible active Great Horned Owl nest directly
east of the gate; scope needed.) So Post Office Lake is not accessible for
viewing other than walking the road NE along the north end of the Shillapoo
Wildlife Area and viewing from a very long distance. I had specific access
from the owner to walk in and look at the flooding into Post Office Lake
(bottom end of Ridgefield NWR), where waterfowl numbers were pretty low
since there was water everywhere, but did see my FOY Cliff Swallow. On the
way was a Say's Phoebe around the buildings before the house at the end
before the barricade, and several (FOY) Wood Ducks in the flooded
cottonwoods. On the drive out, around 4:50, there were more than 1150
Sandhill Cranes east of the Fazio Sand piles, and another 350 west of LRR in
the field south of the turnoff into Frenchman's Bar Park.

More cranes to come, but in Othello. The 20th Sandhill Crane Festival
begins Friday afternoon and through the weekend. Many people there that you
will recognize by name As many as 8 presentation an hour outside of the
crane viewing tours, and with so many pertinent topics some tough decisions
about which to attend! Info at

Randy Hill


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