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ODFW WEEKLY RECREATION REPORT
Fishing, Hunting, Wildlife Viewing
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Southeast Zone Map

Weekly Recreation Report: Southeast Zone

April 26, 2016

 Southeast Zone Fishing

Blitzen River
The Blitzen River
-Photo by Reeseman, ODFW-

Weekend Fishing Opportunities:

  • Krumbo Reservoir in the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge has reopened and fishing for trout is fair to good.
  • Some lakes are frozen and access blocked by snow. Check for access before heading out.
  • Trout fishing on the Blitzen River near Page Springs has been good.
  • Angling at Lake of the Woods for trophy rainbow trout should be excellent later in the week.
  • Fishing the Klamath River below JC Boyle Dam and above JC Boyle Powerhouse is good using dry flies and black spinners such as rooster tail or panther martins.

If your favorite fishing spot is no longer listed

It’s probably because that river, lake or reservoir is closed for the season, inaccessible due to snow and bad roads, or offers limited fishing opportunities during the winter months. These water bodies will re-appear in the Recreation Report when they re-open next spring, or when access and/or opportunity improves.

Send us your fishing report

We’d love to hear about your recent fishing experience. Send us your own fishing report through ODFW Fishing Reports -- the information will be forwarded to the local biologist who may use it to update various ODFW resources such as the Weekly Recreation Report.

ANA RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

The boat ramp is usable for small boats 12-14 feet. The reservoir was stocked with legal rainbow trout for spring break. Recent angling reports from shore have been very productive. Ana Reservoir will be stocked again the week of May 16.

Hybrid bass are traditionally targeted using crank baits; however they can be caught in the reservoir using various methods including bait. Hybrid bass larger than 20-inches are not uncommon. A new state record hybrid bass (white and striped bass cross) was caught in Ana Reservoir on Dec. 10, 2014. The fish was caught using a Rapala crankbait on 10 lb. test line and measured 31½ inches with a girth of 24 inches. The fish weighed 19 lbs. 12 oz. The potential new state record is 1 ½ inches longer and 1 lb. heavier than the previous record of 18 lbs. 9 oz. caught in 2009. Angling is allowed 24 hours for hybrid bass.

ANA RIVER: trout

Ana River was stocked with trophy rainbow trout in late October. The Ana River is spring fed and rainbow trout are active throughout the year. Anglers can access these trout by floating the river in a float tube or by walking the banks. Caddis flies are the dominant invertebrate. Small blue winged olive (size 18) mayflies should be hatching. Ana River is a great match the hatch fly fishing river with good hatches throughout the winter. Hatches typically occur during the afternoon from 12-3 p.m. the best time. Small mayfly hatches are typically best on overcast days with light rain or snow. Tui chub and pit roach are abundant in the river therefore casting large flies or lures can be effective for catching larger fish. Ana River is a good TROUT 365 fishery – good trout fishing 365 days a year.

ANNIE CREEK: brook trout, brown trout and rainbow trout

Open to fishing with bait allowed. Fishing will be very slow due to cold water temperatures.

BALM CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, crappie

Balm Creek Reservoir was treated last fall with the chemical fish toxicant, rotenone, killing all fish in the reservoir. The reservoir will be restocked with rainbow trout in early May 2016.

BEULAH RESERVOIR: redband trout, hatchery rainbow trout, whitefish, bull trout

No recent fishing reports. The reservoir is currently at 93 percent of capacity and the boat ramp is currently useable based on the Bureau of Reclamation website.

USBR crews completed a tagging program in Beulah in 2011 and there may still be tagged fish in the reservoir. If you catch a tagged trout, please report it to the Hines office at 541-573-6582.

BLITZEN RIVER: redband trout

The Blitzen River has been flowing around 180 cfs with water temperatures fluctuating around 6oC. Flows can be checked on the USGS website.

Recent reports indicate that fishing has been fair to good on the Blitzen River around Page Springs and upstream to the weir. Fishermen have reported success swinging weighted streamers or other nymphs that are visible in non-clear water and some have been having good luck with small dry flies fished mid-day when a hatch is present. Fishing around the campground has been productive but higher flows make this a tough area to fish. Early spring can be a great time to fish the Blitzen if the conditions are right. Redband trout will be starting to migrate to upper spawning locations and will become aggressive. This is a good time to find them in riffles and other non-typical holding areas as they move throughout the system.

The South Steens Loop Road is currently closed at the first gate and the North Loop Road is closed at Page Springs. The Burns BLM usually opens the lower gates on the North and South Loop Steens Roads around May 15.

The Blitzen and Little Blitzen Rivers are open year round for catch and release only starting in 2016. Retention is still allowed in other tributaries. Please check the 2016 fishing regulations for changes in the Blitzen River system. It should also be noted that there has been some confusion over the fishing regulations for the Blitzen River as it pertains to rainbow versus redband trout. The regulations for the Blitzen River treat redband trout and rainbow trout as the same species. The confusion comes up because the new regulation states catch-and-release for rainbow trout and says nothing about redband trout.

rainbow trout
Katherine's first Trophy Trout in Grandpa's boat. -Photo by -Nathan Jones-

BLUE LAKE: hatchery rainbow trout

Access is limited due to snow. Blue Lake is a fantastic high elevation lake located in the Gearhart Wilderness between Bly and Lakeview. A three mile trail leads to the lake and it’s a 1-2 hour hike.

Fish were sampled by net and hook and line sampling the summer of 2015. Rainbow trout ranged from 6 to 16-inches and were in healthy condition.

The trout at this lake see little pressure and are easy to catch using flies, lures or bait. Fishing is excellent in June with rainbow trout targeting blue damselfly adults.

BIG ROCK RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

The reservoir was dry last year. The reservoir is 1/3 full and there is no snow pack above the reservoir. The reservoir will likely not fill. The reservoir will be stocked with fingerling rainbow trout this spring.

BULLY CREEK RESERVOIR: bass, crappie, yellow perch, catfish, trout

No recent fishing reports. The reservoir is at 98 percent of capacity and the boat ramp is useable based on the Bureau of Reclamation website.

BURNS POND: trout, bass

Fishing has been good for legal-sized rainbow trout. The pond has already been stocked with legal sized rainbow trout and anglers have been catching these and holdovers from last year in consistent numbers this spring. Spring conditions have filled the ponds up and the canal connecting them is also full. Spring is generally the best time to fish the Burns Pond for trout. There are bass in the pond but the water needs to warm up before they become more active.

CALAHAN CREEK (LONG CREEK-SYCAN AREA): brook trout and redband trout

Access is blocked by snow.

CAMPBELL LAKE: brook trout, rainbow trout

Access blocked by snow

CAMPBELL RESERVOIR: redband trout, largemouth bass, crappie

The reservoir is just outside of Bly on the road to Dairy Creek. Deming Creek irrigation ditch feeds the reservoir. Angling should be picking up for crappie and bass.

CHEWAUCAN RIVER: redband trout, largemouth bass, brown bullhead

Fishing is slow above Paisley and flows have dropped (258 cfs). The entire Chewaucan River is now open all year. Bait is allowed downstream of Hwy 31 at Paisley, however the use of bait is prohibited upstream of highway 31. Largemouth bass and brown bullhead are available to anglers at the first Hwy. 31 crossing just north of Valley Falls. Small boats can be launched at this site.

CHICKAHOMINY RESERVOIR: trout

No recent fishing reports but fishing is expected to be slow. The boat ramp is currently useable but recent high winds have resulted in rough and murky water. Chickahominy will be stocked this spring with both legal sized and juvenile rainbow trout to augment the fishery following multiple drought years.

CORRAL CREEK (SF Sprague): brook trout and brown trout

Access blocked by snow. Open to fishing, and use of bait is allowed.

COTTONWOOD MEADOWS: hatchery rainbow trout, brook trout

Access blocked by snow.

COTTONWOOD RESERVOIR (Lake County): native redband trout

No fishing reports. The reservoir is likely accessible.

COW LAKES: largemouth bass, white crappie, brown bullheads, rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. As of 2013, the lakes will no longer be stocked with rainbow trout due to poor habitat quality.

DEADHORSE LAKE: hatchery rainbow trout

Access to the lake blocked by snow.

DEEP CREEK (Lake County): redband trout and brook trout

Flows are high as snow is melting fast (295 cfs) and fishing is slow. Check the Oregon Water Resources Near Real Time Streamflow website for current flow information.

rainbow trout
Rainbow Trout
-Photo by Kathy Munsel-

DELINTMENT LAKE: trout

Fishermen have reported catching holdover trout this spring at Delintment. Fishing from the dock has been productive and fish have also been caught around the campground. The USFS 41 road is passable but there are some downed trees as a result of recent high winds. Most of these trees have been cleared but use caution when driving in the forest during high winds. Delintment Lake is a great place to fish in the spring and is also a great place to take the family.

DEMING CREEK: redband trout and bull trout

Open to fishing but closed to angling for bull trout. Any bull trout captured should not be removed from the water.

DEVILS LAKE (FISHHOLE CREEK): largemouth bass, black crappie, yellow perch, brown bullhead

No recent report.

DOG LAKE: largemouth bass, yellow perch, black crappie, brown bullhead

There have not been any current fishing reports. The lake is ice free. The road is currently plowed. Fishing is likely good for brown bullhead and yellow perch and picking up for largemouth bass.

DUNCAN RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

Duncan Reservoir is full and has been spilling. There have not been any recent fishing reports. Access is available to the reservoir.

FISH LAKE (Steens Mountain): rainbow trout, brook trout

The North Loop Steens Road is still closed for the winter making access to Fish Lake almost impossible. The Burns District BLM usually opens the lower gate on the North Loop around May 15.

FOURMILE CREEK (tributary to Agency Lake): brook, brown, and redband trout.

Open to fishing all year. Fourmile Creek off Westside road just north of Cherry Creek is open all year with bait allowed. A few large brown trout occur in the stream.

Access is available off Westside Road at Fourmile Springs. A small car topper boat or canoe can improve fishing access at this area. Anglers should be aware of private property around this area and can check Klamath County Land Ownership for information.

FOURMILE LAKE: hatchery rainbow trout, lake trout, kokanee, brook trout

Access is blocked due to snow. The lake can be reached by snowmobile and ice fishing should be good. Fourmile Lake is currently 43 percent full. The lake should fill this year.

GERBER RESERVOIR: crappie, yellow perch, brown bullhead and largemouth bass

No recent report. Conditions at the lake are unknown. The lake is 51 percent full. Crappie should be biting very soon but the population abundance is low.

HAINES POND: rainbow

The pond was stocked with rainbow trout the second week of April. ODFW is currently conducting an angler opinion survey regarding fishing ponds in the Baker Valley. Please take a moment to let us know what you would like for fishing opportunities at these ponds. Survey forms are available at each pond (Hwy 203, Haines and North Powder) or on the ODFW website.

HEART LAKE: rainbow trout, kokanee

Access is available to four-wheel-drive vehicles. No recent fishing reports. An illegal introduction of brown bullhead catfish will likely affect survival of trout and kokanee. Expect very slow fishing on this lake in the future.

HOLBROOK RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

Access is available to 4wheel drive vehicles. No recent fishing reports. All fish likely died the summer of 2015 due to drought. Holbrook will be stocked again in 2016 with fingerling, legal and trophy rainbow trout.

HWY 203 POND: trout, bass, bluegill

The pond is ice free. The first spring stocking of rainbow trout will be in the second week of April. ODFW is currently conducting an angler opinion survey regarding fishing ponds in the Baker Valley. Please take a moment to let us know what you would like for fishing opportunities at these ponds. Survey forms are available at each pond (Hwy 203, Haines and North Powder) or on the ODFW website.

JACKSON CREEK (UPPER WILLIAMSON RIVER): brook trout

Access is blocked by snow. Fishing is open and bait allowed.

J.C. BOYLE RESERVOIR (Topsy Reservoir): Largemouth bass, yellow perch, brown bullhead, pumpkinseed, crappie, goldfish

Fishing is has slowed for warmwater fish such as crappie, pumpkinseed sunfish and brown bullhead catfish due to the recent cold front. Water temperature is currently peaking at 53 degrees.

Fishing for largemouth bass is fair. Best bass fishing is from boat. The reservoir is turbidtherefore anglers should try lures with high visibility and scent. Boats can be launched in several locations in the reservoir. Unimproved ramps occur just north and south of the Highway 66 bridge crossing. No fees are required to launch at these locations.

Try the bay just south of the BLM campground for crappie and pumpkinseed. Also try the rocky areas near and under the bridge. Goldfish dominate the fish assemblage in the reservoir. Anglers should mimic the goldfish with bronze or copper lures or plugs to catch largemouth bass in the reservoir.

Bass
Redband trout with radio tag.
- ODFW Photo -

UPPER KLAMATH AND AGENCY LAKES: native redband trout and yellow perch

ODFW and Oregon State University have begun to radio tag redband trout in Upper Klamath Lake. Any redband trout capture with a radio tag needs to be released immediately unharmed. There will be a long antennae sticking out of the side of the fish. The antennae looks like heavy 50 lb test fishing line (See attached picture). Please report the catch of these radio tagged redband trout. The lake is at full pool. Catch rates for trophy redband trout have slowed due to the recent cold front. The wind has increased turbidity on the Lake. Most anglers are trolling but some are casting with success. Water temperature has increased to a high of 52 degrees. Success angling from shore is similar to past weeks. Most anglers fish with dead minnows from shore.

Visibility is improving slightly with approximately 12 inches in most locations.. The outlet of Upper Klamath Lake is a location to try from shore at Putnams Point or near Link River Dam. Angling should continue to improve

Anglers are also fishing at areas where water is being pumped into lake. Please remember that angling is prohibited within 200 feet of Link River Dam.

KLAMATH RIVER: native rainbow-redband trout

Keno Dam to J.C Boyle Reservoir

The section from Keno Dam to J.C. Boyle Reservoir opened to fishing on Oct. 1. Flows are a little above optimum fishable level at 1470 cfs and fishing should be slow as fish begin to move back up river from spawning. Access can be challenging due to muddy road conditions.

Redband are typically feeding on caddisflies, leeches, mayfly, and minnows this time of year. Water temperature is currently peaking at 52 degrees.

J.C. Boyle Dam to J.C Boyle Powerhouse

Fishing on the Klamath River between JC Boyle Dam to JC Boyle Powerhouse is very good at this time and likely your best bet for catching trout in the Klamath Basin.

Most fish in this section are small and average 10-inches. Below the springs this section remains near a constant 360 cfs of flow and water temperatures are warmer in this section in the fall and winter. Fishing is best below the spring inputs. The springs start to discharge into the river approximately 1 mile below J.C. Boyle Dam.

This section of river requires a hike down steep grade to the river with the exception of the area just above the powerhouse. Fishing is excellent for small redband for those willing to hike. Attractor dry flies and nymphs work well in this section. Black spinners cast upstream into the pools is also a great technique.

J.C. Boyle Powerhouse to State Line with California

Below the JC Boyle powerhouse the fish get slightly larger than the aforementioned reach and average 12-inches but rarely exceed 16-inches. Most fish are in the 6 to 8-inch range. River flows in this section are typically quite high during the day. Flows are currently peaking at 1690 cfs. If flow levels are 900 cfs or lower the river is fishable. Dead drifting rubber legged stonefly patterns and/or bead head pheasant tails can be good.

Flows below the powerhouse will typically be high during all daylight hours. Flow release estimates are no longer available and will be posted again next May 2016. Check the USGS real time website for flow information. Klamath River is a good TROUT 365 fishery – good trout fishing 365 days a year.

KRUMBO RESERVOIR: trout, bass

Fishing at Krumbo Reservoir has been fair to good this spring with bank and boat anglers reporting rainbow trout over 20 inches being caught. Bass fishing in Krumbo will pick up when the water starts to warm up. Krumbo was stocked with legal sized rainbow trout this month and anglers have already reported catching these fish in consistent numbers, especially from the rocky areas near the inlet.

Krumbo Reservoir can be a spectacular spring fishery and regularly produces rainbow trout over 18 inches. Warmer weather will help to get both the rainbow trout and bass moving around and actively feeding.

LAKE OF THE WOODS: hatchery rainbow trout, kokanee, hatchery brown trout, yellow perch, brown bullhead, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, crappie, tui chub

Lake of the Woods is ice free. The lake will be tocked with 1,000 trophies this week before Friday at 5 p.m.

Take an active role in the management of Oregon fisheries! If you catch a tagged rainbow trout, please report it ODFW. Some tags include rewards of up to $50, and fish can be kept or released. If you release a fish, please write down the tag number and release the fish with the tag intact. If the tag includes a reward, the tag must be removed from the fish and returned to ODFW to receive the reward. Anglers should report and return tags to ODFW Klamath Falls Field Office at 1850 Miller Island Road West Klamath Falls, OR 97603. Phone number is (541) 883-5732. Anglers can also report tagged fish online. Reporting forms will also be available at Lake of the Woods Resort and Store. Fourteen anglers have returned tags worth $50 each.

Call Lake of the Woods Resort for recent reports Toll Free at 866-201-4194.

LOFTON RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

Access is available to four-wheel-drive vehicles. No recent fishing reports.

Redband Trout
Redband Trout
-Photo by Bob Hooton, ODFW-

LONG CREEK (Sycan River): brook trout, redband trout, bull trout

Most roads are blocked by snow but some logging is occurring in the area with the 27 road plowed.

LOST RIVER: largemouth bass, brown bullhead, yellow perch, Sacramento perch

Angling for largemouth bass is very good if you can find where they are concentrated.

Lost River is open to fishing all year. Public access is available at Crystal Springs day use area. Boats can be launched from an improved boat ramp at Crystal Springs. Angling for brown bullhead is fair. Bait fished just off the bottom is the best method to catch fish at this point.

Sacramento perch have been captured below Horseshoe Dam. This is one of the only locations in the state to capture this fish.

LUCKY RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

Lucky Reservoir is full and spilled into Big Lake. Access is unlikely due to extremely saturated road conditions.

MALHEUR RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. The reservoir dam was repaired and starting holding water again in November of 2015 but very few fish are expected to be in the reservoir. This is because the reservoir completely dried up this past summer. Malheur Reservoir is filling up and there is a portion of the boat ramp that is submerged so it may be possible to launch boats this spring. The reservoir will be stocked with legal sized rainbow trout this spring to get the fishery started again following multiple drought years.

MALHEUR RIVER (Warm Springs Reservoir downstream to South Fork Malheur River): redband trout and hatchery rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. Water releases from Warm Springs Reservoir have been around 280 cfs according to the USGS stream data. Fishing is expected to be slow. Large streamers and nymphs can be productive in the spring on the Malheur, as the water tends to be a little murky and fish can see the larger presentations.

MALHEUR RIVER (from the South Fork Malheur River near Riverside, downstream to Gold Creek): redband trout and hatchery rainbow trout.

No recent fishing reports.

MALHEUR RIVER, NORTH FORK: redband trout, whitefish, and bull trout

No recent fishing reports.

MALHEUR RIVER, MIDDLE FORK: redband trout, brook trout, and bull trout

No recent fishing reports.

MANN LAKE: cutthroat trout

Recent high winds in the area have caused the water at Mann Lake to become muddy and fishing is expected to be slow. Some fishermen have reported catching consistent numbers of cutthroat trout recently and that they were all in the 18-24 inch range. Larger fly patters pulled in a jerking motion appear to be working well this spring at Mann Lake. ODFW staff sampled Mann Lake a few weeks ago and found plenty of large cutthroat trout available for fisherman.

MILLER LAKE: brown trout, kokanee, rainbow trout, brook trout

Access is blocked by snow. Access is available by snowmobile.

MUD LAKE: hatchery rainbow trout

All fish died in the drought last year. Fingerling rainbow trout will be stocked in the spring if water levels increase. Water levels are very low and reservoir will likely dry again later this summer.

MURRAY RESERVOIR: trout

The reservoir has been stocked with legal and trophy-sized rainbow trout.

NORTH POWDER POND: rainbow trout

The pond was stocked with rainbow trout the second week of April. ODFW is currently conducting an angler opinion survey regarding fishing ponds in the Baker Valley. Please take a moment to let us know what you would like for fishing opportunities at these ponds. Survey forms are available at each pond (Hwy 203, Haines and North Powder) or on the ODFW website.

OVERTON RESERVOIR: rainbow trout

Access is blocked by snow.

Yellow Perch
Yellow Perch

OWYHEE RESERVOIR: largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, catfish

The reservoir is at 60 percent of capacity. The county boat ramp will be closed indefinitely due to low water levels creating unsafe conditions. The Indian Creek boat ramp has been closed for repairs but is currently open.The Gordon Gulch boat launch is also currently open and people have been launching from it. Recent fishing reports indicate that fishing has been slow with water temps around 50-60oF. Some bass have been found close to shore but they are still very lazy this early in the season.

OWYHEE RIVER (Lower): brown trout and hatchery rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. Water releases below the dam have been around 150 cfs. Water clarity can fluctuate throughout the day so having a ride range of flies or lures can increase success in spring fishing on the Owyhee River.

OWYHEE RIVER (Upper): smallmouth bass and channel catfish

No recent fishing reports, but fishing is expected to be slow.

Paiute Reservoir: hatchery rainbow trout and Lahontan cutthroat

The reservoir is very low and there currently are only approximately 1-2 surface acres of water. Piute Creek is flowing into the reservoir but expect reservoir levels to be low and fishing poor. Most fish likely perished last year due to drought.

PHILLIPS RESERVOIR: trout, perch

Reservoir storage is at 46 percent of capacity and rising. Legal-sized rainbow trout were stocked in late March. Holdover rainbow trout are available in modest numbers and are in better condition than they have been in many years. Yellow perch are post-spawn.

2,000 trophy-sized rainbow trout will be released into the reservoir the week of May 2nd. To measure the catch rate of these fish, ODFW will mark approximately 200 of these with an orange colored tag, just under the dorsal fin. If you catch one of these tagged fish, please report the tag number to Tim Bailey, District Fish Biologist at 541-962-1829. Some of these tags will have a $50 reward available.

Anglers are reminded that tiger muskie are catch-and-release only.

PILCHER RESERVOIR:

Due to a rule change for 2016, the reservoir is open to fishing year-round. Fishing for rainbow trout up to 16 inches has been good. The water is getting high enough for the high water launch to be functional.

Pine Creek and tributaries (Snake River tributary): rainbow trout, brook trout

Beginning January 1, Pine Creek and tributaries will be open to trout fishing year-round, with a 5 rainbow trout bag limit. This is a new regulation for 2016.

POISON CREEK RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports but Poison Creek Reservoir can be a great place to fish in the spring. Fishing can be slow but those fishermen that are willing to put in the time often catch trout over 20 inches. The reservoir has an abundant macroinvertebrate community and a population of especially large freshwater shrimp. If you can find out what the fish are feeding on and then match your flies or lures to that, it will greatly increase your chances of catching fish at Poison Creek Reservoir.

POLE CREEK RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. Ice fishing this past winter on Pole Creek Reservoir was productive and large fish were caught so spring fishing should also be productive with holdover trout available.

POWDER RIVER: rainbow trout

Effective January 1, the Powder River is open to trout fishing year-round, with a 5 trout bag limit. This is a new regulation for 2016.

PRIDAY RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

Priday Reservoir is a reservoir on mostly BLM property between Plush and Adel. Please respect the private property on the reservoir. The reservoir was dry in 2015. This is great news as several illegally introduced species, crappie and brown bullhead catfish, occurred in the reservoir and have now perished. The reservoir is nearly full and expected to fill this year. This very productive reservoir was stocked again with legals and trophy rainbow trout during spring break. The reservoir is turbid but visibility is better than most reservoirs in the area. Fishing with bait from shore is the best method. Fly and lure fisherman should fish from shore as most fish cruise the shoreline looking for food. Fishing should be good.

SAND AND SCOTT CREEKS: brook trout and brown trout

Sand and Scott creeks are very small spring fed streams west of Hwy 97 near the Silver Lake highway junction. Fishing on these small streams is open year-round with bait allowed. Most fish are less than 8-inches long.

SEVENMILE CREEK: brook trout, brown trout, redband trout

Fishing is open. Anglers can access Sevenmile Creek at Nicholson Road and fish upstream of Nicholson Road. Bait is allowed upstream of Nicholson Road. Flows are fishable. Angling is best above the large irrigation canal upstream of Nicholson Road.

SKY LAKES AND MOUNTAIN LAKE WILDERNESS: brook trout and rainbow trout

Access to the wilderness lakes is blocked by snow.

ODFW District staff sampled Como, Harriette, Echo and South Pass Lakes in the Mountain Lakes Wilderness this summer. Como Lake is the first lake encountered from the Varney Creek Trail and is a 5.5 mile hike up a moderate incline.

Best fishing appeared to be using spinners particularly size two panther martins in black with gold blades. Six to 10-inch brook trout seemed common along the shoreline and are easily accessible by fly fisherman. Fish in all lakes were feeding on water boatmen/ back swimmers. Brook trout in Echo Lake were very common and schools of four to five could be observed feeding. Some large rainbow trout mortalities were observed on the shoreline of Como and Harriette. Como Lake appeared to have had a minor fish die off during the summer.

District staff also sampled Badger, Woodpecker and Long lakes off the Fourmile Lake trailhead. No fish were observed in Long Lake. Numerous brook trout were observed in the spring fed pond feeding Badger Lake. Fishing was good in this pond. A large school of 14-inch brook trout were observed in Badger Lake under a large tree that had fallen in the lake. Fishing was very slow in Badger and Woodpecker lakes.

SHERLOCK GULCH RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

The reservoir is full. Fingerling rainbow trout will be stocked this spring.

Sid LUCE ReSERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

The reservoir is full and spilling. Fishing should be good once access is available.

Spaulding Reservoir: hatchery rainbow trout

The reservoir was dry in 2015 and surprisingly remains dry.

Redband Trout
Redband Trout
-Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife-

SPENCER CREEK: redband trout and brook trout

Spencer Creek is closed until May 22.

SPRING CREEK: redband trout, brown trout, brook trout

Closed to fishing until May 22, 2016. Large redband trout can be observed spawning.

SPRAGUE RIVER: redband trout, brown trout, largemouth bass and yellow perch

Fishing is slow. River flows are 10700 cfs at the mouth and water is turbid. ODFW encourages the release of spawning redband trout. Water temperature is peaking at 52 degrees.

NORTH FORK SPRAGUE RIVER AND ALL TRIBUTARIES: brook trout, redband trout, brown trout, bull trout

The North Fork Sprague River is open to angling. Access on public property blocked by snow. Flow is high (286 cfs).

SOUTH FORK SPRAGUE RIVER AND ALL TRIBUTARIES: brook trout, redband trout, brown trout, bull trout

The South Fork Sprague River is open to angling. Access on public property blocked by snow. Flow is very high (166 cfs).

SUN CREEK: brook trout, bull trout, brown trout

Sun Creek is closed to fishing for bull trout. Only bull trout occur in upper Sun Creek just above the Sun Pass Forest bridge crossing. The road into Sun Creek is closed to protect wildlife until July 1.

SYCAN RIVER: brook trout, redband trout, brown trout (below marsh)

The Sycan River is open to angling. Access is very challenging. Angling is very slow below the marsh as most of the river desiccated in summer of 2015. Flows are high at 421 cfs

THOMPSON VALLEY RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth bass

Access to Thompson Reservoir is unknown but likely. Angling for trout will be very slow as most likely perished due to low water levels last year. The Reservoir will be stocked the week of May 16. Angling for largemouth bass should be fair as most should be moving into the shallows to feed.

THIEF VALLEY RESERVOIR: trout

The reservoir has now been stocked with both legal and trophy-sized rainbow trout.

The reservoir was drained over the summer of 2015 so holdover trout are not available.

UNITY RESERVOIR: trout, bass, crappie

Reservoir storage is at 99 percent of capacity. Fishing has been fair to good for 10”-19” rainbow trout.

VEE LAKE: rainbow trout

Access is blocked by snow.

WARM SPRINGS RESERVOIR: smallmouth bass, crappie, catfish, perch, rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports but fishing is expected to be slow. The reservoir is currently at 62 percent of capacity. The roads to Warm Springs Reservoir can be treacherous during the winter and spring months with snow and mud making it difficult to reach the reservoir.

UPPER WILLIAMSON RIVER: Redband Trout and Brook trout

Closed to fishing until May 22, 2016. When the Upper Williamson River opens catch and release will be required for redband trout the entire season. There is no size or bag limit on brook trout. No bait is allowed.

LOWER WILLIAMSON RIVER: redband trout and brown trout

Closed to fishing until May 22, 2016. When the Lower Williamson River opens catch and release will be required for redband trout the entire season. A bag limit of two brown trout per day will be allowed. No bait is allowed.

Bass
Zachary Hanson with his largemouth bass
-Photo by Josh Hanson-

WILLOW VALLEY RESERVOIR: largemouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, bluegill, Lahontan cutthroat

Conditions on the reservoir are unknown.

WOLF CREEK RESERVOIR: crappie, trout

The reservoir is nearing full capacity. The boat launch is functional but the dock is not installed.

WOOD RIVER: redband, brown, brook and bull trout

The Wood River opened April 22. Fishing was slow. Brown trout are gorging themselves on worms. Lures and flies that mimic worms should be successful. Bag limit is catch and release for redband trout, two brown trout per day and no limit on brook trout.

YELLOWJACKET LAKE: trout

The road to Yellowjacket Lake is clear of snow and is passable by cars. Fishermen have reported consistent catches of rainbow trout in the 12-15 inch range with an occasional bigger fish being caught. The lake is full and is spilling water down the overflow. It will be stocked with legal sized rainbow trout in early May. Yellowjacket Lake is a great place to fish in the spring and throughout the summer and has plenty of bank access for those without a boat. It has a great campground and is a perfect family destination.

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  Southeast Zone Hunting

OPEN: COUGAR, CONTROLLED SPRING BEAR (see regs), SPRING TURKEY

Wolves and coyotes can look alike

Most wolves in the state today are in northeast Oregon but a few have dispersed further west and south. Wolves are protected by state and/or federal law and it is unlawful to shoot them. Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

Use the Oregon Hunting Map to see where to hunt.

Turkey

Wild Tom Turkey in Eastern Oregon
-Photo by Lance James-

HARNEY COUNTY

Spring TURKEY season is on thru May 31. Turkeys can be found in the northern portion of the county on or near national forestland.

Coyote populations are good throughout Harney County. They will be widely scattered on breeding territories this time of year. Barking can be very effective for locating coyotes during the breeding season. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species.

Cougar hunting is open year around. Populations are healthy and distributed throughout the district in any area with a big game prey base. Cougars at this time of year are generally concentrated along with their primary prey of deer and elk on big game winter ranges. Some hunters have reported limited success with calling at this time of year.

Don’t forget successful hunters must check-in cougars no more than 10 days after harvest; please bring cougar in thawed and with mouth propped open so that field staff can quickly process the animal and get you on your way.

Ground squirrels are becoming more active on warmer days. Be sure to obtain permission when entering private lands.

KLAMATH COUNTY

BEAR hunting is open controlled spring bear season in southcentral Oregon. Best prospects will be in the Cascade Mountains or in the Interstate Wildlife Management Unit. Some higher elevation areas will not be accessible until later in the season due to snow.

Spring Turkey season continues thru May 31 statewide. Prospects for hunting in the south Keno Unit should be good this year.

Cougar hunting is open year around. Populations are healthy and distributed throughout the district in any area with a big game prey base. Cougars at this time of year are generally concentrated along with their primary prey of deer and elk on big game winter ranges. With recent snowfall, hunters can find tracks much easier and do some calling when they find fresh sign. Don’t forget, successful hunters must check-in cougars no more than 10 days after harvest; please bring cougar in thawed and with mouth propped open so that field staff can quickly process the animal and get you on your way.

Coyote populations are average throughout Klamath County. At this time of year, mimicking prey distress sounds can be an effective tool to bring coyotes within range. Mule deer and elk are still concentrated on winter ranges as lower elevations begin to flush with the first spring greens. Coyotes and other predators follow these concentrations of prey, and also can become concentrated. Focus on low lying areas where grasses and forbs are beginning to green up. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species.

Ground Squirrels – Ground squirrels and marmots are emerging now with the nice weather. Best prospects are on private lands although good opportunities exist on some public lands as well.

MULE DEER bucks have shed their antlers and the interest in hunting sheds is increasing. Due to extremely variable road conditions and the effect of increased harassment on mule deer survival, shed hunters are urged to keep ATV’s on existing roads or trails and minimize disturbance to wintering big game herds. Many wintering areas in Klamath County are closed to motor vehicle access during the winter months to protect vulnerable big game herds from harassment. Please respect these efforts on both public and private lands.

KLAMATH WILDLIFE AREA

This section was updated on April 19, 2016.

All Hunting seasons are now over on the Klamath Wildlife Area. Discharging firearms is prohibited, except by special access permit.

If you have any questions, please contact Klamath Wildlife Area at (541) 883-5734.

LAKE COUNTY

Coyote are forming pair bonds and coyote vocalization calls will be effective through late winter and spring. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species.

Ground Squirrels are starting to be active. At this time of year their activity above ground increases on clear, calm days. Almost all hunting opportunities occur on private land and permission is required.

Black Bear
Black Bear
-Oregon Fish and Wildlife-

Spring Bear season opened on 15 April. All spring bear seasons in the county are limited entry. There is still a substantial amount of snow at higher elevations and road conditions get muddy the closer you get to the snow line. Access during the early part of the season will be restricted due to snow or mud. To reduce damage to road surface please keep vehicles on all weather roads at elevations above 5500 feet.

Turkey season opened on 15 April. There are very few wild turkeys in the Lake District and hunter success is extremely low. That said there are a few birds on public land on the western edge of the Goose Lake Valley. Access during the early part of the season will be restricted due to snow or mud. To reduce damage to road surface please keep vehicles on all weather roads at elevations above 5500 feet.

SUMMER LAKE WILDLIFE AREA

This section was updated on April 25, 2016

ALL GENERAL HUNTING SEASONS ARE NOW OVER, AND DISCHARGING FIREARMS IS PROHIBITED, except by special access permit.

Please contact Summer Lake Wildlife Area at (541) 943-3152 or email martin.j.stlouis@state.or.us for additional information.

MALHEUR COUNTY

Bighorn sheep: There will be no tags for the Owyhee Unit in 2016 due to a disease outbreak. Learn more

Remember not to pick up horns of bighorn sheep. These can only be taken with a valid tag. More info

Spring TURKEY season is on thru May 31. Turkeys can be found in the northwest portion of the county on or near national forestland. There are increasing numbers of turkeys associated with the river corridors in the Treasure Valley. Hunting in this area will require some work to obtain private land access.

Cougar hunting is open. Populations are healthy and distributed throughout the district in any area with a big game prey base. Successful hunters must check-in cougars no more than 10 days after harvest; please bring cougar in thawed and with mouth propped open for easier tissue sampling, teeth collection and tagging.

Coyote hunting is available throughout the district. Reproduction this year appears to be good which should enhance calling opportunities. Calls mimicking coyote vocalizations are most effective this time of year. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species.

Ground squirrels are becoming more active on warmer days. Be sure to obtain permission when before hunting private lands.

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 Southeast Zone Wildlife Viewing

Ross' Goose

Ross' Geese
- Photo by Randy Shipley-

HARNEY COUNTY

Spring migration is well underway and large numbers of snow geese, ross’s geese, and sandhill cranes can be found in agricultural fields throughout the Harney Basin. Pintail, shoveler, wigeon, goldeneye, mallard, green-winged teal and cinnamon teal can also be found throughout the basin.

Shorebird migration is just beginning and should improve over the next few weeks as spring migration progresses. Lesser yellow legs,killdeer, avocets, black-necked stilts, white-faced ibis, curlews, willets, pelicans and western grebes are some species that have arrived. A large number of franklins, ring-billed and california gulls can also be found.

Wintering passerine species (dark eyed juncos and house finches) are still fairly active around the county. Spring passerine migrants should be increasing in diversity and number as the season progresses. Spotted towhees, red-winged blackbirds and white-crowned sparrows are a few that have already started to show up.

Raptors continue to be found throughout the area. You should be able to view golden eagles, bald eagles and a variety of hawks perching on telephone poles and fence posts throughout the district. Resident raptors such as northern harriers and red-tailed hawks are very easily observed in open agricultural areas along with rough-legged hawks and an occasional ferruginous.

Sage grouse are actively attending leks. Binoculars or spotting scopes are needed to observe sage grouse as getting close to the leks will flush the birds.

Viewing opportunities around Burns/Hines and at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge will continue to improve as migration continues to develop and more species of passerines and breeding water birds arrive in the area.

Bighorn sheep have moved up into the steeper country to begin lambing. Sheep can be viewed with a good pair of binoculars or spotting scope along rocky outcroppings south of Frenchglen and along the east side of the Steens. 4/11/16

KLAMATH COUNTY

Shorebird migration is mostly complete and many species are now on breeding territories. Excellent viewing opportunities exist for American avocets and black-necked stilts near very shallow waterbodies where they can be found foraging for aquatic insects and small crustaceans. Nests are generally found in open grassy areas adjacent to shallow waterbodies.

A number of grebes can be found in area lakes and rivers including pied-billed grebes, eared grebes, western grebes and clark’s grebes. One red-necked grebe colony exists at Pelican Bay near Rocky Point. This colony only numbers approximately 30 birds. They have also been known to nest at Howard Prairie and over at Malhuer National Wildlife Refuge.

Canada geese are well into their nesting season and many goose broods are beginning to appear. Many duck species are just initiating their nesting season.

Greater sandhill cranes have returned from southern wintering areas. Best viewing opportunities are at Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge. Cranes are just beginning their nesting season. Cranes build nests made of dead aquatic vegetation on the ground.

The Link River offers great viewing for common merganser, bufflehead, common goldeneye, lesser scaup, and great blue heron. The Link River trail provides great viewing opportunities. The Wingwatcher’s Trail along Lake Ewuana is another great opportunity to view many species of aquatic wildlife.

Bald eagles well into their nesting season with most pairs back on their breeding territories and beginning incubation. Bald eagles generally nest in large live pine trees usually in the top 1/3 of the tree. Nests are usually located in close proximity to waterways.            

Please watch for game and use caution while traveling on area highways and county roads. Recent research indicates that highway collisions are a significant source of mortality for migrating deer. Traffic volumes on Highway 97 are increasing over time with corresponding effects on big game populations. PLEASE USE CAUTION WHILE TRAVELING. 4/25/16

KLAMATH WILDLIFE AREA

This section was updated on April 25, 2016

From February 1-April 30 public use is restricted to public roads and parking areas to minimize disturbance to migrating waterfowl. The short birding trail next to the check station and the dog training area remain open.

Running or training of dogs is prohibited from February 1-July 31, except on the designated dog training area. Leashes are required while walking dogs on roads and on the birding trail.

Water levels in most wetlands are high, except areas that will be dried up this summer for habitat work.

A Wildlife Area Parking Permit is required to park on the Wildlife Area. Cost is $10 daily or $30 annually. Free with purchase of hunting license. Buy online or at an ODFW office that sells licenses or at a license sales agent.

Waterfowl

Spring migration is slowing for waterfowl with the recent departure of Ross’s and snow geese, however white-fronted geese can still be found using the area. White-fronted geese can be observed using the area’s agricultural fields and pastures, early morning and late afternoon are the best times to observe geese.

Canada geese pairs can be found scattered throughout the area, many have started and are continuing to nest. Large numbers of goslings have been observed over the past week. There are still good numbers of migrant dabbler species and they can be found scattered around the area, but continue to decline in numbers. Mallards and cinnamon teal have started nesting and the year’s first mallard brood was seen this week.

Mallards, northern pintail, northern shoveler, American wigeon, green-winged and cinnamon teal, wood duck and gadwall area common sight on the area. Many different diver species can been observed using the Klamath River along the Miller Island Unit stretch, sometimes in significant numbers. Common and barrow’s goldeneye, lesser scaup, ring-necked duck, canvasback, redhead, ruddy duck, bufflehead and common and hooded mergansers have all been seen over the past week.
 

Black-crowned Night-Heron
Black-crowned Night-Heron
-Photo by David Bronson-

Shorebirds, waders and other waterbirds

Great blue herons, great egret, black-crowned night-herons and American bitterns can be observed on the area.

American white pelican, and double-crested cormorant have been observed flying over the area during the past week, their numbers should increase as the weeks go on, look for them on the Klamath River. Ring-billed gulls continue to increase in number. Caspian and forster’s tern can be seen but numbers remain low. Franklin’s gulls have recently arrived.

There are still a few Sandhill cranes scattered throughout the area and have initiated nesting. Killdeer and snipe can be observed all across the area now. Black-necked stilt, yellowlegs, spotted sandpipers, long-billed dowitchers, white-faced ibis and American avocet are becoming more common as spring progresses. Several flocks of peeps were observed in the Hooper Lowlands HMU over this past week. A long-billed curlew was observed over this past week.

Pied-billed grebes are becoming a common site in wetland areas while western grebes continue to grow in numbers and are most common along the Klamath River.

American coot numbers continue to increase and Virginia rails can be heard throughout the area but can be hard to spot.

Raptors

Great horned and barn owls can be seen at dusk. Red-tailed hawks, northern harriers, cooper hawks, sharp-shinned, American kestrels, prairie falcons can be seen foraging throughout the wildlife area. A peregrine falcon was also seen this past week. Osprey can be observed flying around the area or resting on old power poles.

Bald eagles use of the area has decreased over the past few weeks with the departure of the white geese, but can still occasionally be found. The red-shouldered hawk is another that has been recently seen.

Turkey vultures are commonly seen scavenging throughout Klamath WA Miller Island Unit.

Upland Game Birds

California quail and ring-necked pheasant can be found scattered around the old homesteads and the headquarters area.

Passerines

Mourning and Eurasian collared dove can be found scattered over the area. American and lesser goldfinches, house finches, mountain chickadees, American robins, white crowned sparrows, golden-crowned sparrows, western meadowlark, spotted towhee, black-billed magpies and Northern flickers continue to be a common site throughout the area. Tree, cliff and barn swallows can now be observed on the area.

Marsh wrens and song sparrows can be found in dense stands of tall emergent hard stem bulrush and broad-leaf cattail and are very numerous. Red-winged, brewers and Yellow-headed blackbirds are now very common and scattered across the area.

Reptiles

Western pond turtles can be found sunning themselves on pond edges, on logs and on small hard stem and cattail tuber islands. Gopher and garter snakes can be found throughout the area. 4/26/2016

Overnight camping is not allowed on the Miller Island Unit. If you have any questions, please contact Klamath Wildlife Area at (541) 883-5734.

SUMMER LAKE WILDLIFE AREA

This section was updated on April 25, 2016.

Wildlife Area Parking permits are required for all users of Summer Lake Wildlife Area. Parking permits can be purchased at any ODFW license agent (pdf) or through the ODFW website. The cost is $10.00 daily or $30.00 annually and is valid on all ODFW Wildlife Areas. Locally, parking permits can be purchased at the Summer Lake Store, 1.3 miles north of Headquarters.

Motor vehicle access on major dike roads (Bullgate, Windbreak and Work Road) is closed to reduce disturbance to migrating and breeding waterbirds. The Wildlife Viewing Loop will remain open into early fall. A detour is in place, access around the loop is now on the Northside of Link Canal from Bullgate Campground to Link Corner. The traditional loop road on the south side of Link Canal is closed to motor vehicle travel. Please be aware of other vehicles along the Loop road. It is too narrow to permit passing, but turnouts are spaced about ½ to ¾ of a mile apart. Viewers please be aware, occasionally the Viewing Loop may be temporarily closed due to habitat management activities.

Wildlife viewing continues to improve with the arrival northward migrants. Spring migration is well underway. Breeding season is well underway for early nesting species such as Canada geese, killdeer and mallards.

Canada Goose
Canada Goose
- Photo by Dave Budeau -

Waterfowl

Waterfowl populations continue to stage and migrate through the area in fairly good numbers although a major portion of many spring migrants have already moved through the area. Western Canada geese are widely distributed across the area and most pairs have dispersed to breeding territories initiated nests, are incubating and many are rearing newly hatch broods. Lesser snow geese have largely departed the area, but a few individuals can sometimes be found. Greater white-fronted geese made a major exodus over the past week, but a few hundred still remain.

A few resident trumpeter swans remain widely scattered across the wildlife area. Most of these birds a part of restoration efforts and will be neck-banded with green collars and white alphanumeric symbols. Viewers are encouraged to “read” the collars and report them to wildlife area personnel. Collars will have the Greek letter Theta (Ѳ) or the symbol “@” and two numerals that are read from the body toward the head.

Migrant tundra and trumpeter swans have largely departed the area headed towards more northerly staging area. An occasional straggler can still be found.

Shorebirds, waders and other waterbirds

A variety of shorebirds has returned and is increasing in number. American avocets, black-necked stilts, dunlin, greater and lesser yellowlegs, killdeer, long-billed dowitchers and long-billed curlews continue to increase. Last week saw the return of snowy plovers and increasing numbers of other breeding species. Breeding is underway for several species and the season’s first killdeer chicks were observed over the past weekend. Other migrant and breeding species are expected to arrive soon. Large flocks of least and western sandpipers and other peeps were present last week.

American coot migrants continue to arrive in increasing numbers and are widely scattered across the entire wildlife area at this time. Virginia rails and soras continue to be found, occasionally seen and/or heard and are scattered across the entire wildlife area.

Sandhill cranes pairs continue to return, breeding pairs are on territories and have become very vocal during most of the day. Nesting is underway for most pairs. Migrant flocks and non-breeders continue to stage along the westside of the valley, especially at the Foster Place.

Grebes numbers are increasing, eared, pied-billed and Western are commonly found. Several Clark’s grebes were observed during the weekly count. A few eared grebes were observed in nuptial plumage.

Gulls (predominantly ring-billed) continue to increase in number and many have occupied the nesting island in E. Link Unit, and nest initiation is underway. Caspian and Forster’s tern and Franklin’s gull numbers are increasing.

Resident double-crested cormorants and American white pelicans are increasing in number at this time and can be found scattered across the larger open water ponds and features.

A small number of American bitterns and great blue herons continue to be observed during the weekly survey and past week. Great egret and white-faced ibis numbers are increasing. Turkey vultures are becoming fairly common now and readily observed throughout the day.

Cooper's Hawk
Cooper's Hawk Male
-Photo by Cathy Nowak-

Raptors and others

Northern harriers and red-tailed hawks are common this time of the year. All raptors are well into nesting and many pairs are rearing chicks at this time. Bald and golden eagles, American kestrel, peregrine and prairie falcons as well as accipiters (Cooper’s and sharp-shinned hawk) can occasionally be found. Nearly all rough-legged hawks have departed north now and Swainson’s hawks returned over the past week.

Great horned owls were found scattered across the entire wildlife area, especially in the trees at campgrounds and remain very vocal at night. Nearly all nests have chicks at this time.

Upland game birds

Fair numbers of California quail can be found and pheasants can sometimes be observed, especially around old homesteads on the north end of the wildlife area. Crowing pheasants are commonly heard most of the day. California quail coveys are beginning to break-up and pairs can be found scattered across the area.

Passerines

Eurasian collared doves remain very numerous at Headquarters Complex. Mourning doves are increasing in number.

American goldfinches and sometimes lesser goldfinches are observed at Headquarters. Song, golden-crowned and white-crowned sparrows and spotted towhees have been observed recently. Over the past weekend, a white-throated and chipping sparrows were observed. American robins remain fairly common and occasionally cedar waxwings are sometimes observed around Headquarters. Steller’s jays can usually be found around Headquarters. House wrens and Western kingbirds were recent arrivals. Tree swallows are present in increasing numbers at scattered locations in the marsh; some are beginning to explore nest boxes. Cliff swallows are increasing and many are constructing nests. The season’s first barn swallows were observed last week. Evening grosbeaks are common at the Headquarters feeder now. Yellow-rumped warblers are becoming more common at this time and other warbler species are expected to arrive soon.

Marsh wrens and song sparrows can be found in dense stands of hardstem bulrush and broad-leaved cattail along dikes and levees throughout the wetlands and are fairly numerous. Marsh wrens are beginning to sing during sunny days.
Blackbirds (Brewer’s, yellow-headed and red-winged) are becoming more numerous and several groups have been observed in tall emergent vegetation throughout the marsh and a few are visiting the feeder at Headquarters. Brown-headed cowbirds made their first of spring arrival over the past weekend. European starlings are increasing number and are actively singing and exploring nest cavities.

Facilities and Access

Please remember: Calendar year 2016 parking permits are required beginning on January 1, 2016! Summer Lake Wildlife Area requires a $10 daily parking permit or a $30 annual parking permit. Parking permits can be purchased at any Point of Sale Agent or through the ODFW website. Locally, parking permits can be purchased at the Summer Lake Store, 1.3 miles north of Headquarters.

Motor vehicle access to major dike roads (Bullgate, Windbreak and Work Road) and now closed. The Wildlife Viewing Loop remains open, but please be aware, a detour is in place. The detour is well signed. However, On occasion, the Viewing Loop may be temporarily closed due to habitat management activities. Please be aware of other vehicles along the Loop road. It is too narrow to permit passing, but turnouts are spaced about ½ to ¾ of a mile apart. The Wildlife Viewing Loop will remain open into early fall.

Camping is permitted at four sites on the Wildlife Area. Campgrounds are primitive but each has vault toilets, trash barrels and a few picnic tables.

Habitat

The Area’s wetland units are fairly well flooded, although considerable adjustments are being made in preparation for the start of irrigation season (and declining water supply) in early May. This is resulting in considerable shallowly flooded areas for the returning migrant waterbirds to disperse to. Spring migrants are expected to continue to arrive and increase in number as mild temperatures and conditions continue. Arctic breeding species such as tundra swans and lesser snow geese have largely departed. Emergent marsh vegetation is actively growing at this time, especially along edges of open water. Muskrat houses are very prevalent at this time.

Summer Lake is beginning to decrease in size at this time, due to increased evaporation and declining inflow due to the onset of irrigation season.

Upland habitat remains in good condition, forbs and grasses are growing robustly at this time. Planted tree and shrub plots and the orchard are well into blossoming providing excellent sheltered sites and food resources for wildlife.

Please contact Summer Lake Wildlife Area at (541) 943-3152 or e-mail martin.j.stlouis@state.or.us for additional information.

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