Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Memorial Day weekend at Malheur: Part 12

Loggerhead Shrike Loggerhead Shrike at Malheur NWR, Oregon on 29 May, 2010 by Greg Gillson.


[Click to read all Memorial Day weekend at Malheur posts.]

There are several good birding locations near Refuge Headquarters and the north end of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

The Narrows is a stream between the two huge alkaline lakes of Malheur Lake to the east and Mud Lake to the west. I remember a time in the 1980's where these two lakes merged and filled the Blitzen Valley for many miles. Recently, however, water at The Narrows has dried up and you can no longer even see the shore of the two lakes. West of The Narrows 2 miles is a cliff that has hosted a nesting Golden Eagle and Barn Owl for many years. The sage flats below host all Oregon's desert sparrows.

The Malheur Field Station is a group of mobile homes and buildings providing an educational setting for Evergreen State College students and others. Birders can rent the old mobile homes during Memorial Day weekend, though they are usually reserved far in advance. The trees and lawns here are not as well-developed as Headquarters, but sometimes interesting birds show up.

The graveled Central Patrol Road (CPR) takes off south through the center of the refuge following the river canal and ponds. Highway 205 parallels the refuge to the west.

About 12 miles to the south of Headquarters is Buena Vista Station and the fantastic overlook there.

Field Station Steens Mountain backdrops the Coyote Buttes with the Malheur Field Station below on 30 May, 2010 by Greg Gillson.

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