The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Max Erikson

County-wide Migration Count will feature unusual species


Contributed: Linda Steider

BREAKFAST IS SERVED: The annual Klickitat County Spring North American Migration Count is on, and ornithology enthusiasts are flocking to count up all the species. Linda Steider of Goldendale took this prize-winning shot as part of a previous Migration Count.

The 2018 Klickitat County Spring North American Migration Count is coming up May 12, and there is still time to sign up with a team to take part in this county-wide event with a chance to spot unique, and rare birds migrating north for the summer.

There will be many birds that are common to the area, but organizer Bob Hansen says there will also be six very unique and colorful birds to keep an eye for.

"We expect to spot at least 160 different species of birds on the day of the count," Hansen says. "We get some really colorful birds during that will knock your socks off."

The birds Hansen wants to see is the Lazuli Bunting bird that he describes as looking like "electric blue". Another colorful bird to look for is the Bullets Orioles that have a bright, yellow-orange rust color, and the Western Tanager that has a bright-red head. The Black-Headed Gross Beak is one to look for and it has a very large bill and will sing until the cows come home. The Western King Bird and Ash Throated Fly Catcher will also be rare birds Hansen hopes to spot.

"We will have 10 teams of four spread across the county, from Trout Lake to Alderdale and Bingen to Bickleton, Hansen says. "It's a great way to get to know the birds of Klickitat County and is also a great social experience."

There will be 10 sectors throughout the County, and each team will have an experienced bird watching leader. It will be a mixture of driving thru rural back roads and some hiking into the woods. Each volunteer will be assigned to the sector that they live closest too.

The count is only for one day but Hansen says that if a person spots a rarer species a couple days before or after it needs to be reported. Hansen also requests that people who are interested in participating should contact him as soon as possible so the teams can be set.

For more information, or to be assigned to a team, call Hansen at 503-881-5889. Visit the website to see the results from last year and from previous years.

Year over year results:

2017 results can be found here:


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