Join park rangers for an evening of owling!
We will begin with an indoor presentation, “All About Owls,” and an owl pellet dissecting activity, for those who are interested. After the sun has set, we will embark on a short, ½-mile round trip hike to call for owls. This can require some patience, so it may not be suitable for children under 5 years of age. This portion of the event usually lasts 30-45 minutes, so be sure to dress warmly and be prepared for the weather. A flashlight is also recommended, as we will be walking over some even terrain.
These events are free but require preregistration, and space is limited. Register at the park store here.
The February 24 and March 24 Owl Prowls will be held at the Old Ranch; the March 10 Owl Prowl will be held at the North Falls Meeting Hall.
This park requires a day-use parking permit, which may be purchased at the park for $5. You also may purchase a 12-month or 24-month parking permit from the online Park Store.
Below are some photos from our 39th annual Mother’s Day Birding and Wildflower Festival. Due to cold, rainy weather, crowds were small, but everyone seemed to enjoy the activities offered.
We are gearing up for our 39th Annual Mother’s Day Birding and Wildflower Festival this weekend, May 13th and 14th. Most of the activities this year will take place on Saturday, however there will be guided walks and nature sketching classes offered on Sunday as well. The native plant display in the South Falls Lodge, bird nest box building with the Salem Audubon Society, and the native plant sale will take place both Saturday and Sunday. Most activities take place in the South Falls Day-Use Area, but two guided bird hikes will be held elsewhere in the park – those locations are noted on the map below.
The event is free, but please note that a $5 daily parking permit is required; in addition, the Audubon Society charges a $5 materials fee for building bird nest boxes.
We look forward to seeing you for another great year of birding and wildflowers!
We recently hosted our first Owl Prowl for the season at the Old Ranch. We had a very enthusiastic group of 27 (mostly first time) owlers. We had perfect weather and were rewarded by hearing a pair of Barred Owls who responded when we called them. They were very vocal – and barred owls have a very unique call! Click here to hear the sound of a pair of barred owls “caterwauling” – one of the calls they make when communicating with each other.
We are hosting a second owl prowl on Saturday, March 25th. As March 2, all spots have been filled, but we can add you to the waiting list in case somebody cancels.
It’s a hairy woodpecker! Park staff heard a knocking on the outer wall of the South Falls Lodge, and looked outside to find a hairy woodpecker (Leuconotopicus villosus) pecking around the wall looking for bugs. Note the bird’s powerful beak, zygodactyl (X-shaped) claws, and stiff tail feathers supporting it while it clings to the wall – all of which are adaptations that help woodpeckers in their daily lives.
For more information on these fascinating birds, look here.
The 37th Annual Mother’s Day Birding & Wildflower Festival is less than 2 weeks away! Check out what we have in store this year:
No registration is required for any event activities but please arrive early as hikes leave promptly at listed times.