Deschutes Land Trust Stewardship Director, Amanda Egertson has what some (myself included) would consider to be one of the best jobs in existence. Most days, Amanda spends her time out in the field working on restoration projects out at our Preserves. With all of that field time, she gets to see some of the more subtle changes and interesting wildlife sightings.
Now that spring has finally arrived in Central Oregon, here are a few of the things Amanda has witnessed recently at Whychus Canyon Preserve.
"When Nugget reporter Craig Eisenbeis and I were out hiking around Whychus Canyon Preserve yesterday, we got to watch a tiny, brand new fawn nursing down by the stream. Its twin was hiding in nearby bushes. Once we saw the family, we were very careful to walk quietly out around the area and leave the family undisturbed. It was an awesome nature moment!"
"I’ve also seen LOTS of spotted towhees flitting all over the place out there. Even saw a pair copulating – which is a sure sign they’re nesting on the Preserve. Darin Stringer and I watched golden eagle soaring high above the rimrock a couple weeks ago when we were scouting out forestry restoration units. And just two days ago I watched a kestrel hunting in the open meadow. It is potentially inhabiting the kestrel box that Don McCartney recently installed on the meadow’s edge."
"Also, despite the cold and wet spring we’ve had, I’ve already spotted all of these butterflies at Whychus Canyon Preserve: mourning cloak, spring azure, Sarah’s orangetip, California tortoiseshell, common ringlet, and a comma (not sure which species – but it’s a type of “anglewing” butterfly with jagged edges and brown mottled coloring for blending well with tree trunks). Observing so many different species, so early in the season, is a sure sign that this property is going to be a butterfly hot spot! I’m really excited to see what different butterflies emerge over the next few months."
If you have yet to experience Whychus Canyon Preserve, please join us for its dedication on June 18. When you RSVP for the event, you can also register for a tour of the property, and discover some of the wonders of Whychus Canyon Preserve for yourself.