Notes, birds, nature, meanderings.

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

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Springtime in Lincoln City

It's been awhile since my last blog and I have ideas singing around in my head - an entire smorgasbord of birdy blogs. On Friday, I went gallivanting around the town - I had an idea for a blog on nest-holes.  You know, those wonderful round holes of varying sizes that you see in dead or dying trees?  I was going to call my blog - Nobody's Home or something like that...

Northern Flicker Nesting

I started my quest for spring warblers and nest holes at D River Open Space, where I found a perfect tree with a large, perfectly round hole.  As I focused my camera on the hole, I noticed a head pop out of the hole below it.

Realizing the cavity was occupied, I snapped another with the focus a little better.
Northern Flicker

The male NORTHERN FLICKER was quite interested in my project. 

My next stop was Spring Lake Open Space - I parked at the top so I could wander down through the woods on the west side of the lake.  Outstanding, another splendid double set of nest holes -- these were in a large, seemingly living tree.  Awesome.  

Hairy Woodpecker

Again, I focused my camera, and wow - guess who flew into the frame?  I promise, this is a true story!  This is the first photo I snapped (cropped) of the nest hole.

I watched him make two deliveries while I stood in amazement.  
Hairy Woodpecker
I continued my hike around the lake, and on my way back up to the car I heard a drumming.  
Hairy Woodpecker

Rounding a curve in the path, there he was - I had found his source of grubs!

Cutler City Wetlands was my next stop, one of my favorite spots. I decided to try to cover the entire maze, so drew a quick little map from the one on the sign-board and started out.  I was about half-way done walking each of the little trails when a flash of red, white and black caught my eye flying past.  What was that!?!  
Pileated Woodpecker

My first Lincoln County PILEATED WOODPECKER - and what a beauty! I tracked him up and down the various paths, not caring about finishing the maze!  I wasn't ready when I found him suddenly right in front of me.  

I included this picture so you could see how close I came to having a great shot :o)  I was too close, and he heard the camera, and flew.

Not giving up, I tracked him some more, until I found him through the trees in the deeper woods.  This was about the best of the photos - I didn't retouch them, not sure why this set of shots look so much like paintings rather than photos!  

Must have been the light, or lack thereof.  The blooming Rhododendron certainly add to the effect!

Whew, what a day so far - and my very favorite spot was still to come.  Salishan Nature Trail, which runs along the south edge of Siletz Bay.  The trail has recently been graveled (hurts my feet through my flip-flops) but it's still my fav. I have many blogs about this area (a complete list of the places I've blogged is at the very bottom of this page).  

This time I was hoping for Green Herons, so I walked down to a little marshy area where I've seen them before.  No luck, but on the way back I saw a CHESTNUT BACKED CHICKADEE with a bug in his beak.  He landed on a dead tree, and guess what!?!  Another nest hole!
Chestnut-backed Chickadee

Since Chickadees are opportunistic nesters, the hole was neither perfect, nor round, but it did the job!  He made several trips.  I never did figure out if he, or the Woodpecker above, were feeding a sitting female or babies.

I should mention that I also saw brilliantly yellow WILSON'S WARBLERS, the first arriving YELLOW WARBLERS,  and ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLERS at each of my stops.  There were BUSHTITS and a SWAINSON'S THRUSH at Cutler City.  Everywhere the birds were singing - MARSH and BEWICK'S WRENS, SONG SPARROWS and BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAKS.  

It was a beautiful, delightfully birdy spring day!


  1. Very nice! Maybe you should have titled the post "Somebody's Home!" Haha. I really love that second Pileated shot- the flowers being in focus gives it an interesting look..

  2. Glad you are back to blogging. Really appreciate your posts and pictures here and on OBOL. Linda Berkemeier, PDX

  3. What an exciting day! So glad you're blogging again. I love your stories and your photos.