A few goodies from out east (Union, Baker, Malheur and Gilliam Co; 6/2-6/3/2012)

This last weekend my goal was to clear 100 for Baker Co. Well, I did. Comfortably.

When I pulled into Spring Creek (Union Co) Friday night, I was surprised to hear a Flammulated Owl near the intersection of FR21 and FR2155. It was the only owl I would encounter all weekend.

The highlights from Baker Co include (see sites on http://birdingoregon.info/Home/BakerCounty/tabid/180/Default.aspx):

Lots of Green-tailed Towhees on Dooley Mtn and along FR1680 SE of Unity
Ferruginous Hawk and a PEREGRINE FALCON just east of Unity
Flammulated Owl (2-3 at Long Creek CG)
Bobolink (1 singing male in Bowen Valley along Elk Creek Rd)
Gray Partridge (a pair at Hole-in-the-wall)
Chukar (several near/at Hole-in-the-wall)

This morning I drove Willow Ck Road from Ironside (coming from Unity) and birded Malheur Reservoir before sneaking back into Baker Co south of Bridgeport. I tallied 64 species on this short excursion. The west end of the reservoir was plastered with waterfowl. 4 Caspian Terns, many Cinnamon Teal, several pairs of Western Grebe and 8 Greater White-fronted Geese were unexpected.

En route back home, a brief check for Veery and Gray Catbird at Red Bridge SP in Union Co was unsuccessful.

Back in Gilliam Co, I stopped at Willow Creek Wildlife Area. 2 Lark Sparrows were still in Morrow Co on the approach. The (excellent) mud flats held 3 White Pelican, 12 Caspian Terns, 4 American Avocets and 1 Bonaparte’s Gull. All decent birds for Gilliam Co … Beware of the mosquitoes, they are bad here.