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 Harry Fuller Birding Tours

Birding in Ashland

There are good birding spots in the town of Ashland itself. Best is probably North MountainPark which is on Mountain Street. From the center of town go south on Highway 99, turn left on Mountain and go east, or downhill. You will notice the baseball diamonds and high fencing on your right. There is restored and protected habitat along Bear Creek in this park.

Great Blue Heron, Canada Geese, Common Merganser, Wood Duck nest here, American Kestrel, Red-tailed Hawk, Acorn, Downy and possibly Lewis's Woodpecker,Northern Flicker, Red-breasted Sapsucker, Band-tailed Pigeon, California Quail, Killdeer, Bewick's Wren, Bushtit, Lesser and American Goldfinch, Brewer's and Red-winged Blackbird. In spring and summer: Western Kingbird, Warbling Vireo, Yellow-breasted Chat, Wilson's, Yellow and Orange-crowned Warbler, Robin, Swainson's Thrush, Western Tanager, Black-headed Grosbeak, Bullock's Oriole, Song Sparrow, Golden-crowned and White-crowned Sparrow, Junco. During migration any of the local accipiters, Cedar Waxwing (I've seen hundreds in the trees here in May) and summering warblers such as Nashville and Macgillivray are possible.

This park has toilets and running water.

Ashland Pond is worth a visit. From Highway 99 west of the center of town, take North Laurel to the north, turn left on Nevada, then right on Glendower. Park at the end and walk down the dirt path. The pond is in the Bear Creek Riparian corridor. In addition to the birds at North Mountain Park, here you could find Cassin's Vireo, Western Wood-pewee, Lazuli Bunting, Anna's or Rufous Hummingbirds, Green Heron, Pacific-slope Flycatcher, Hutton's Vireo.

A walk around the perimeter of Lithia Park in central Ashland is always worthwhile. In the park itself you can look for Dipper under the or around the foot bridges. There are nesting Wood Duck here as well. For the rest of the birding, walk uphill from downtown on Granite Street then loop around the park and return to downtown on the dirt road which you see heading east after you reach the swimming reservoir. This is about a four miles circuit altogether. To shorten it, turn left off Granite just uphill from the park maintenance yard, cross the bridge, and turn left (east) in front of the park headquarters, cross the cul-de-sac and walk east on the dirt path.

Spring and summer: Macgillivray's Warbler, Anna's and Rufous Hummingbird, Black-headed Grosbeak,Tree and Barn Swallows, Vaux's Swift, Flicker, Hairy and Pileated Woodpecker (on the slope north of Granite Street), Lesser Goldfinch, White-breasted Nuthatch, Western Scrub-jay and Steller's Jays, Band-tailed Pigeon, Spotted Towhee, Nashville Warbler, Western Tanager. In May and June the hills must hold hundreds of Western Wood-pewee, their drooping whistle is almost as constant as the nasal buzz of the Spotted Towhee.

At night I have seen and heard Western Screech-owl in Lithia Park.


TOWHEE.NET:  Harry Fuller, 820 NW 19th Street, McMinnville, OR 97128