Birding in Place

Quarantined birding for me isn’t much different from non-quarantined birding. We live on a bluff overlooking a creek, river, and ash-dominated floodplain, and I’ve worked from home full-time, in this location, for nearly 1 year. It’s backyard birding as usual except that now it’s spring, so the migrants are passing through (north [or up]) and the residents are setting up territories and building nests.

My office view of my backyard; April 14, 2020; Camas, WA.

On March 24, 5MR Jen kicked off a yard challenge. This generally means counting birds you see or hear in or from your yard. Because I work from home, this feels like one very long birding point count, but with long, nighttime breaks for sleep and many breaks during the day for cheese and crackers (many).

I’ve been participating in this yard challenge since March 24. My office window faces our backyard and my feeders. During the day, I catch what I can while I’m working. After work, I sit outside and catch the late afternoon/evening bird activity.

As of today, April 14, my yard challenge list since March 24 is 47 species.

Here’s a selection of yard birds that I was able to capture with my pretty basic camera. Check out my YouTube channel for videos of a Varied Thrush and a Fox Sparrow.

White-breasted Nuthatch; Camas, WA; April 2020
Golden-crowned Sparrow; Camas, WA; April 2020
California Scrub-Jay; Camas, WA; April 2020
Dark-eyed Junco (Oregon); Camas, WA; April 2020
Golden-crowned Sparrow; Camas, WA; April 2020
Northern Flicker; Camas, WA; April 2020
Downy Woodecker; Camas, WA; April 2020
Spotted Towhee; Camas, WA; April 2020
Black-capped Chickadee; Camas, WA; April 2020
House Finch; Camas, WA; April 2020
Bald Eagle; Camas, WA; April 2020
Canada Goose; Camas, WA; April 2020
Song Sparrow; Camas, WA; April 2020
Chestnut-backed Chickadee; Camas, WA; April 2020
Bald Eagles; Camas, WA; April 2020
Black-capped Chickadee; Camas, WA; April 2020
White-crowned Sparrow; Camas, WA; April 2020
Downy Woodpecker; Camas, WA; April 2020

August 26, 2018

Cabin Lake, Lake County, Oregon

Cabin Lake is a birding hotspot that is maintained by the Eastern Cascades Audubon Society (ECAS) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). In the middle of nowhere, in a sea of ponderosa pine, juniper, and sagebrush, the ECAS (and/or the USFS?) built two bird blinds and installed two cisterns to attract birds. They did this for birders. #bless. Thankfully I did not pack my swimsuit because the lake at Cabin Lake has been dry for more than a century.

I took a lot of photos, and it’s easier (i.e., quicker) for this post to omit captions for now. I’ll revisit soon and update them! What follows is my full list of bird species from this site.


White-headed Woodpecker
Clark’s Nutcracker
Mountain Chickadee
White-breasted Nuthatch
Pygmy Nuthatch
Western Bluebird
American Robin
Red Crossbill
Green-tailed Towhee (new species!)
Yellow-rumped Warbler

New Birds for 2018: 1
2018 Year-to-Date Talley: 218