Day 2: June 30, 2002
Morning: Whitehorse County Park
Orange-crowned Warblers are common at Whitehorse Park.
Brown Creepers are common in Whitehorse Park, but I never located a nest.
MacGillivray's Warblers are quite common in Josephine County. This female comes out of the tangles to look at me.
Ospreys are very common along the Rogue River.
Don't mistake this juvenile Spotted Towhee for the rarer Rogue Valley specialty, the California Towhee.
Whitehorse County Park is one area where Yellow Warblers can be found regularly in Josephine County.
Birded from dawn to mid-morning in Whitehorse County Park. The local Audubon Society maintains a trail through the woods from the campground to the river and through moist riparian areas. Unfortunately, it had been a couple of months since the trail was last cut. The blackberries were terrible, as the scratches on my leg attested to for several days. Fortunately, there is an old riverfront road that is relatively brush-free, leading east from the boat landing.
The area along the river to the east of the boat landing is mostly open grassy areas interspersed with willow and cottonwood thickets. The trail continues about one quarter mile and is excellent birding. I recorded 46 species this morning in the park. This morning I estimated 15 Yellow-breasted Chats singing along the river. Another of my target birds was here, Black Phoebe. The Rogue Valley Bewick's Wrens are a bit paler than those found to the north in the Willamette Valley, but I really didn't notice too much difference in appearance or song. But I really didn't give it as much attention as I should have. I was surprised to hear Ash-throated Flycatcher along the river here, but I guess they really aren't that unusual in this area. I recorded lots of video this morning, including a Cassin's Vireo that was more cooperative audibly, than visually. Listen to a Cassin's Vireo song
Next we packed up camp and prepared to go on and explore the Illinois Valley. As we cleaned up we found the source of yesterday's yellowjackets. They had built their underground nest directly under the water faucet! When anyone turned on the water it would flood their nest. No wonder they didn't like it.
Note on birds not seen: In Evanich's "The Birder's Guide to Oregon" (1990) the author mentioned a couple of summer birds that I did not see, including Oak Titmouse, Common Merganser, Mallard, and 5 species of swallows.
A mother Western Bluebird looks over her spotted fledgling...
...then takes flight.
A Long-tailed Weasel senses something is not right...