Posted by: atowhee | May 28, 2010

Oregon Transect

Eight of us drove from Ashland to Burns, Oregon today.  That’s an east-west transect of nearly 250 miles and habitat that goes from damp forest to sagebrush steppe.  Our day began with the upper Ashland Creek Dipper nest, then a peek at the Granite Street Western Screech.  Thence up Dead Indian Memorial Road to Howard Prairie for Sandhill Crane, Western Bluebird, Vesper and Chipping Sparrow.  A brief birding blitz at Rocky Point on Klamath Lake for Red-breasted Sapsucker, three small flycatchers, a couple warblers, distant views of Black and Forster’s Tern, Yellow-headed and Red-winged Blackbirds, and this Western Grebe.

Also at Klamath, a pair of Mountain Chickadees in the willows.

Altogether we had over 60 species. Passing through Lake County we found Sage Thrasher, an Osprey near a small reservoir surrounded by sagebrush, a distant Prairie Falcon, Coots and Western Meadowlark. Once we reached Harney County we added Swainson’s Hawk, Black-necked Stilt, Cassin’s Finch and some very good looks at Mountain Bluebirds at the Sage Hen Hill Rest Stop on US 395 & 20 west of Burns.

Mammals of the day: plenty of stub-tailed Belding’s ground squirrel.  Wild horses.  Pronghorn.

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