Look for Lewis’ Woodpeckers
With their distinctive flight pattern, magnificent coloring and preference for open country with scattered trees, Lewis's woodpeckers are not too difficult to spot if you are looking in the right place this summer. ODFW biologists suggest targeting burned forest areas and open juniper woodlands with snags. As secondary cavity excavators, these woodpeckers often move into a nest built in a previous year by a flicker or hairy woodpecker, so focus on burned areas that are several years old.
A medium-sized woodpecker with black upperparts and hood, it has a red face, gray collar pale red belly. Named after explorer Meriwether Lewis who first saw the bird in July 1805, species populations have been declining.
For information on Lewis’s woodpeckers in Central Oregon, visit the U.S. Forest Service Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests Web Site. To see a photo and listen to its call, visit Whatbird.com.
There is a wide range of migratory and resident shorebirds and waterfowl using the shoreline and reservoir. Broods of Canadian Geese and waterfowl are visible with the best viewing opportunities at the eastern end of the Wildlife Area along the shoreline. Nesting osprey, bald eagles, golden eagles and red-tail hawks are present in the wildlife area as well. Motorized traffic within the management area is restricted to the north side access road and designated routes into dispersed camping sites.
In addition to wildlife viewing, the management area offers hiking and wonderful scenic views of the Crooked River and reservoir. The slopes to the north have steeper and more challenging hiking terrain and offer the best vantage for observing soaring raptors and panoramic views. Good footwear is a must as conditions can vary from steep and rocky, to muddy and wet.
For directions, visit ODFW’s Web site.
The Dalles, Mid-Columbia Region and Northern Wasco County
Many different passerine species are moving through the area. Focus your attention to the oak woodlands, where spring conditions are first to appear, and where many species will stop during migration.
Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area
Many different species frequent the Deschutes Canyon at this time of year with opportunities to view a wide variety of waterbirds, passerines, deer and bighorn sheep.
Bighorn ewes are now beginning to congregate, bringing with them their new lambs. If you can find a group of ewes, watch closely and you should be able to spot young lambs that are hiding nearby. In the coming weeks as lambs get older, expect to start seeing them become more mobile and visible.
Waterfowl broods are a common occurrence now throughout the canyon, as are osprey, kingfishers, great blue herons, and Bullock’s Orioles.
ODFW’s Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area is located in The Dalles. Directions and more information about the Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area.
White River Wildlife Area
Blacktail does are now starting to travel about with their fawns, making this a great time to see young deer. Visitors looking for fawns should focus their efforts in the forested sections of the area, especially at dawn or dusk.
Visitors to the area can also see a wide variety of birds, including Lewis’ Woodpeckers, Cooper’s hawks and Pileated Woodpecker’s.
Hood River Valley
Early summer is an excellent time to take advantage of the many trails throughout the Hood River Valley. For a guide to birding trails, visit the Mount Hood Loop Web site, http://www.oregonbirdingtrails.org/mt_hood.pdf