Central Oregon.

Last week was kind of lame for me so I decided a weekend in the woods was in order.  I headed back to Sisters for a couple nights of camping and birding.  From what I hear, the weather was far better there than in Portland anyway, with stunning sunrises both mornings.

The first area I wanted to check out was near where I found a White-headed Woodpecker on my last visit, near the intersection of Forest Service Road 1018 and Highway 242.  I ended up visiting this area three times with great results.  First off, my first Black-backed Woodpecker!

Also in the area were lots of Hairy Woodpeckers:

...and a very cooperative White-headed Woodpecker!

And his other side...

I spent a lot of time letting the dogs drag me around the forest along Cold Springs Cutoff (FSR 1012).  I think they were just following chipmunk smells but we found some good birds too. 

My camera generally hates focusing on Western Bluebirds.  I don't get it really.  Here's one of the few shots I managed despite seeing dozens of them during my trip:

Yellow-rumped Warblers were by far the most abundant species...

Flickers were pretty thick too... [Oops, but this is not a photo of one... It's a female Williamson's Sapsucker.. thanks!]

I was stoked to find a Williamson's Sapsucker in practically the same spot I left one back in June, in a pose that seriously makes my neck hurt:

No wait, here's the painful one:

Ravens were everywhere, though not often posing for pictures. 

On this trip I found the local Pinyon Jays rather easily.  This one was digging deep under the bark of this branch...

Sadly, once again I found a Pygmy Nuthatch and only got terrible photos of it...

That was about it for birds, but I can't forget to mention the chipmunks, squirrels and deer that are everywhere...

And some other cool stuff around the area...

Oh and I lied, there's one more bird... On the drive home I stopped along the highway to look at some Gray Jays.  Bad photos.

Good times!!


  1. just one word - Jeh-Luss
    I've got to get back there! I am missing two of your woodpeckers from my list and that is not a good situation; it's a woodpecker wonderland over there. I may pester you for your sighting locations later on.

  2. What an awesome weekend! Great photos, especially the Pinyon Jay. I need that one.

  3. Wow, great birding, and your photos are amazing as always!

    I think your flicker may be a female Williamson's...

    Our flicker (red-shafted) has a gray face and spots on its breast/belly, while the female Williamson's shows a yellowish face and has barring on her breast and sides. Without referencing Sibley, I wouldn't have been able to describe these features, but there's just a GISS (General Impression of Size and Shape, or in this case, color and pattern) about her that doesn't ring flicker to me.

    Good birding!

  4. Jen, your photos are getting better and better!

    Rhett is right--your "flicker" is a female Williamson's Sapsucker. The males and females are so different that they were described as separate species for a number of years!


  5. @Rhett- thank you for the correction! I had actually considered female Williamson's but I didn't think it looked like the one in Sibley's...

    @Greg- interesting!!

    @Laura- pester anytime!

  6. Awesome series of photos. You've got two there that I've not been able to see yet...Black-backed Woodpecker and Pinyon Jay.

  7. Wow, I love all the woodies, especially the white headed one. And your mosaics are awesome. Your doggies are cute, I am glad you included their photos too.

  8. Jen, this post has to be one of your best in regard to number of species and quality of photos! Very impressive work! The second white-headed is my fav of the bunch but they're all really super.


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