Posted by: atowhee | October 18, 2019


Traveled to Bend to speak to East Cascades Audubon.  It was their annual biz meeting and about 70 people showed up. Then I got to spout off about Great Gray Owls for almost an hour.  But, best of all, I found myself among the pygmies. On the east slope of the Cascades the Pygmy Nuthatch is a common resident. At Robert Sawyer State Park I encountered  a flock—unlike the larger nuthatches, these guys move around in a flock. Among the nuthatches were a quartet of Mountain Chickadees, a couple juncos and a Brown Creeper.  Throw in an overhead flock of waxwings, a Merlin fly-by, a singing Townsend’s Solitaire,  a Dipper in the Deschutes River and a Great Blue Heron stalking the riverside marsh.
Later at my motel I walked onto the riverside balcony and there were chickadees and nuthatches six feet away, eye level in the nearest ponderosa.

ECAS has members active in efforts to save the Oregon Sage Grouse population.  it is likely that cattle grazing is to blame for the dropping population.  Cows eat all the forage that young grouse would need to thrive. A report at tonight’s meeting: fewer than 15,000 grouse still alive in the state.  Less a half million left on earth.
Recently a federal judge in Idaho stopped the Trump Administration trying to open grouse habitat to extraction industries and environmental demolition.

One of the “pinenuts:” pynu bend2des rivr (2)dipflySawyer Park, Deschutes, Oregon, US
Oct 18, 2019
15 species

Mallard  X
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)  X
Great Blue Heron  1
Merlin  1
Steller’s Jay  1
California Scrub-Jay  3
Mountain Chickadee  6
Pygmy Nuthatch  10
Brown Creeper  1
American Dipper  1
Townsend’s Solitaire  1
American Robin  10
Cedar Waxwing  30
Lesser Goldfinch  2
Dark-eyed Junco  1

Shilo Inns, Deschutes, Oregon, US
Oct 18, 2019
7 species

Mallard  X
Eurasian Collared-Dove  1
Downy Woodpecker  1
Steller’s Jay  1
Mountain Chickadee  X
Pygmy Nuthatch  X
American Robin  X

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