[Tweeters] another great birding trip with Khanh Tran: 5 owls, 6 woodpeckers

Will RIsser wlrisser at gmail.com
Mon Apr 4 07:25:12 PDT 2016

Jan and I traveled with Khanh Tran over the weekend to the Umatilla and La

Grande areas. He did his usual great job of leading and finding us birds.

On Saturday, we saw a pair of barn owls in a cliff opening ( and some others

in barns); a pair of great horned owls near their nest in the woods; an

almost invisible female long-eared owl on a nest, with her mate nearby (and

another pair); a pair of burrowing owls near their nest opening in an

agricultural field; and a female great gray owl on eggs in a nest box in the

Spring Creek corridor near La Grande, with her mate perched nearby. Sunday

morning we returned to the great gray owls: this time the male was hunting.

We saw him fly to his mate after hooting; she responded with other calls.

He dropped prey in the box and flew off to continue hunting; after several

minutes she grasped the prey, a pocket gopher, by the head and swallowed it

whole in about 10 gulps. We saw the male perched at times and flying at

times: a wonderful show.

In the area were 4 black-backed woodpecker pairs, allowing for great photos;

a pair of Williamson's sapsuckers; hairy and downy woodpeckers; a calling

pileated woodpecker, and flickers. The day before we got great looks at a

white-headed woodpecker.

There were other good birds but these were the highlights. It was terrific

that Khanh had located these birds previously by scouting trips and then

could show them to us. You will greatly enjoy this experience; get in touch

with Khan -

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