Steigerwald Lake NWR.

Yesterday morning I took the dogs for a long walk along the dike trail at Steigerwald Lake NWR.  The first birds I was psyched to see were three Purple Martins checking out some of the gourds.

The rain picked up for most of the walk to the end of the trail, but on the way back the sun came out and I found a few Western Meadowlarks...

There are a few old barns along the trail as well as a corral kind of thing...

A couple of Mallards flew up from behind the corral and I raised my bins to look at them and found the recently reported Loggerhead Shrike perched on the fence!

Awesome!  This bird make up for the complete lack of phoebes and bluebirds.  Along the Columbia River were scattered clusters of Caspian Terns making their way eastward.  Once in awhile I would have my back to the river and get startled by one of them squacking (sqwacking? squawking? Why the hell can't I spell that word right now??).  Anyway,  I am glad they are back!

I made my way back to the gourds where I had seen the martins and found they (and the nearby nest boxes)  were overrun by Tree Swallows..

It was a nice long walk despite the rain... Good times!!


  1. Cheers! Purple Martin is an awesome bird.

  2. Nice birds! Are you sure you're not breeding and releasing Loggerheads in whatever state you need them?

    And no bitterns? "The Bittern Lady" was bitternless at Steigerwald? ;-)

    I believe this is the absolute best location to watch breeding bitterns, in the marsh of course, not necessarily near the dike. I once had 9 separate birds on one walk, 4 or 5 of which were displaying. If the weather holds up (fingers crossed), I may get some video today. Wish me luck!

    1. Haha, nope no bitterns, but I only walked the dike because I had my dogs with me... The weather seems to be holding up rather nicely, good luck with your video!

  3. Jen, great walk and birds. What luck to see the shrike, they are cool birds. I hope the Purple Martins find a home. I love the meadowlark and the tern shots. Happy Birding!

  4. Glad you got to see the shrike, and you got great shots of LOTS of cool birds!! Hope the sun shines on your tomorrow.


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