This past weekend, my Birding Associate and I took a trip over the Cascades to some wonderful birding areas in Central Oregon. Our original plan was to head to Bandon, on the southern coast, but when the high temp was forecast at 59 degrees I reconsidered. We ended up on the much warmer side of things and visited several new birding spots for us. We started in Sisters, at a well known place nicknamed Calliope Crossing. It's out of town a ways at the intersection of a couple of back roads and a nice creek. See the book, Birding Oregon by John Rakestraw for directions.
The first thing we saw when we pulled in was a woodpecker-ish bird actively flycatching from a telephone pole. We soon ID'd it as a Red-naped Sapsucker and were transfixed as it easily darted through the air filling its bill with insects.
Eventually, we wandered down through the trees along the creek. Soon we heard an incessant peeping and quickly found the nest of the busy sapsucker.
You can see the darkening of the bark where the sapsucker always lands. In the next photo, without the bird, you can see the two spots where its tail feathers rest.
Finally, we had to tear ourselves away to continue driving south. Who would want to leave this scene? We saw a number of different birds here, including the namesake, Calliope Hummingbird. Tanagers, Hairy Woodpecker, House Wren (at a nest), Common Yellowthroat, several flycatchers all made the list.
Great views of the Three Sisters along Hwy 20. More vistas were yet to come.
We tried to find that sapsucker nest last month, but the nestlings were too quiet to lend a hand!
Leave it to Laura the Nest Hunter to find it! Very cool and what a treat to see the action. The perfectly round nest hole is amazing.
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