A Last Look at the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge

If I haven’t already convinced you that you need to visit the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge, I’m probably never going to, but here’s a final attempt to show what a magical place it is, no matter what your favorite birds are.

Although I usually think of geese when I’m looking forward to a visit, I’m always pleasantly surprised when we are invariably greeted by Meadowlarks singing, even if I can’t always manage to see them singing.

Meadowlarks are rare in the Puget Sound Area, so it’s exciting just to spot one, even when I can’t get as striking of a photo as I’ve captured here in the past.

Black Phoebe’s are another bird we don’t see in the Puget Sound. They’re hard to miss as they fly out from branches to catch insects, but it’s much easier to capture them when sitting on a branch than flying out.

I used to occasionally see Pheasants at Theler Wetlands, but I haven’t seen one there in years.  Leslie, who captured this shot, is always on the lookout for them when we are here.  

She outdid herself with this shot.

American Pipits are common in our area, but somehow I miss seeing them, perhaps because I confuse them with the more common Robin and never really look at them closely enough.

Yellowlegs certainly aren’t rare in the PNW, but they are seldom seen as close as they were here.

I seem to see Killdeer everywhere I travel, but I still can’t resist taking a good shot of them when I see them.

I have nearly as many shots of Marsh Wrens as I do of Great Blue Heron, but it’s impossible to ignore one when it’s singing its heart out a few feet away.

I often say that I’m not really a “birder” because I don’t chase birds.  I don’t go to places looking for specific birds; I go to places that are magical,  so full of life that they make me feel more alive when I’m there.  The Sacramento Wildlife Refuge is definitely one of those places for me.  Of course, the Redwoods, our other route to Santa Rosa, is also one of those places, but that’s another post.

3 thoughts on “A Last Look at the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge”

  1. Hi Loren, This is a great post and although I will never see any of the birds you photograph, I find it uplifting to see your photo’s and read your posts.
    Bob – Southern HIghlands NSW Australia.

    1. I’ll have to admit that I’ve never had any great desire to travel outside the Pacific Northwest, but when I see birds that I will never see here in the United States I wish I had traveled more.

      I’m sure you have birds outside your backyard that I would love to see.

  2. For the life of me I’ve never been able to get a photo of a marsh wren hiding in the reeds. I’m impressed.

    Excellent photos as always. I appreciate your writing here just as much. You put this so beautifully in saying that you go to places that are magical, and marveling at nature around you. You don’t have to make life lists or drive 500 miles to see a rarity to be a birder. It’s enough to just appreciate them.

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