Notes, birds, nature, meanderings.

Musings about birds, nature, and our meanderings on the Central Oregon Coast

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge

While driving up to Whalen Island yesterday, we "discovered" Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge!  We've driven by many times, commenting that it was too bad there were few good places to pull off and observe.  Yesterday we saw a small road sign that said Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge, next left.  We missed the turn, but turned around hoping to find it.  Turned out to be a single-lane paved road called Christiansen Road.

The flooded fields were full of GEESE (Canada or Cackling)

and mixed flocks of dabblers (MALLARD, NORTHERN PINTAIL, and others).

We parked in a good sized parking area at the end of the lane, where a large sign told us more about the refuge.


A pair of large raptors circled overhead, calling.  The waterfowl below didn't appear to be too concerned.

Panoramic view looking east from main parking lot.

Taking a moment to take a brochure and read the sign board, we saw both walking and walk/drive paths leading off from the lot.  

We chose to drive, ending up at a tiny parking lot with a walking path leading up to a wooden viewing deck. 

The path meandered through grassy fields, where a sign warned non-avian interlopers to stay back. 

We guessed this little guy was offered an exception to the stern warning.

The vista was amazing!

Coming back we saw glimpses of birds in the grass, but were unable to get good looks.  A large flock of AMERICAN CROWS passed noisily overhead, and a STELLER'S JAY posed momentarily before following his partner.


Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge is on the south side of Nestucca Bay.  You can easily see the refuge from Highway 101, but take the time to find the little one-lane Christiansen Rd.  You won't be sorry!


  1. I love Wildlife Refuges! Great find and beautiful views. Love the Stellar's Jay! Thanks for sharing :)

  2. Looks like you had a great time. I love the spring's new arrivals.