small bird on a branch
small bird on a branch
arrow iconTrip Ideas


Three Reasons to Go Bird Watching This Month

While winter may not be your first thought for the best months to go bird watching in the Pacific Northwest, Tualatin Valley’s bird watching scene truly is hopping (or should we say soaring?) every month of the year. 

Just minutes away from the urban buzz of Portland, there are the chirps and tweets in Tualatin Valley’s wetlands, nature preserve and nature parks. Celebrate National Bird Day in Oregon on January 5…or any time, really.

  1. Great views! Less foliage means there are fewer leaves to obstruct your view of migrating birds. Spotting not only birds, but also their tracks and signs of foraging, is much easier in the winter months.
  2. Lots of flocks! With fewer resources (i.e. food!), the winter months encourages several species of birds to congregate in a mixed flock. Check multiple birds off your “must-see” list at once. This phenomenon is best seen, well, now.
  3. Many birds! Winter is great to An average of 20,000 waterfowl—including Canada Geese, northern pintails, mallards and even Bald Eagles—can be observed in one day at the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge. That’s a lot of birds. Additionally, Jackson Bottom Wetlands is a hangout for American Wigeon and Great Blue Heron, while Killin Wetlands Nature Park. is known for its large congregation of American Bittern. 

Bring your coat, binoculars and cameras, but leave your pets at home, as they are prohibited at Tualatin Valley’s nature parks.