Oregon is an incredible state noted for incredible natural features such as Mount Hood, Crater Lake, and the Columbia River Gorge, as well as superb salmon, a thriving wine industry, and a plethora of ghost towns. What birders remember most about the Beaver State, though, are the state’s more than 500 bird species.
In a vote sponsored by the Oregon Audubon Society, the western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta) was chosen as the state bird of Oregon in 1927 by the state’s schoolchildren.
Numerous bird species call Oregon home. While some of these species spend the entire year in Oregon, others are migratory and only visit during the summer or winter.
Oregon birds of prey
A raptor, or bird of prey, is defined by superior vision, long, sharp talons, and a strong, rounded beak. Each is a carnivore, and the majority hunt live prey in some way. Hawks, eagles, falcons, owls, and vultures all fall under this categorization.
Oregon is home to a variety of raptors, from the small Sharp-shinned hawk to the Bald eagle, our nation’s symbol. While some of these birds of prey migrate, many remain year-round and can be observed hunting along rivers, around highway posts, and in fields.
In the section below, you may learn more about these birds of prey.
Eagles in Oregon
Eagles, being top predators, are accustomed to both hunting and scavenging. Their acute vision enables them to identify prey from the vantage point of a high perch or while soaring high in the sky.
Bald eagles frequently consume dead and dying fish, particularly spawning salmon, that they pick up along stream banks in Oregon. Additionally, they consume carrion and grab prey from other predators, perhaps directly out of the air.
Bald eagles nest in the following places in Oregon: the Columbia River below Portland, the Oregon coast and Coast Range, the High Cascades, the Klamath Basin, and the upper Willamette River Basin.
The section below contains other amazing information about these eagles.
Owls in Oregon
Owls in Oregon are mostly nocturnal hunters, hunting insects, fish, frogs, birds, mice, and other small mammals during the night. After dark or early in the morning, their hoots, screeches, and calls can be heard.
Owls do not construct nests; instead, they utilize tree cavities, nests constructed by other species, naturally occurring structures, and man-made nest platforms. The Western burrowing owl nests underground in squirrel, prairie dog, and badger-dug dens.
Oregon is home to 14 different owl species, five of which are Oregon Conservation Strategy Species in Need of Assistance.
Common backyard birds of Oregon
The state of Oregon is home to a variety of bird species. It is home to about 500 distinct bird species. Birds in Oregon range from the more common American Robin to the less common Bohemian Waxwing.
We’re going to delve into that issue and give you some background on some of the species you’ll see here, including what they like to eat and where they like to hide. Let’s discuss the popular backyard birds found in Oregon!
Woodpeckers in Oregon
Oregon is home to a sizable wildlife and bird population. Due to its unusual geography, which includes coniferous and mixed woods, as well as high elevations and coastal locations. This area is home to a broad array of woodpeckers, including sapsuckers and flickers.
Among the more common woodpecker species, there are a few unusual species that are not found in the majority of the country. Continue reading to learn everything about the woodpecker species found in Oregon.
Melanerpes Formicivorus – Acorn Woodpecker
Colaptes Auratus – Northern Flicker
Dryocopus Pileatus – Pileated Woodpecker
Dryobates Villosus – Hairy Woodpecker
Dryobates Pubescens – Downy Woodpecker
Best Birdwatching Spots in Oregon
Bird viewing is fantastic in a state as diversified in habitat and topography as Oregon. It’s a fun pastime that you can undertake at home or in one of the ODFW’s Wildlife Areas or National Wildlife Refuges situated around the state. Bird watching is also an accessible opportunity to connect with nature and learn about Oregon’s bird populations, which range from shorebirds to desert species.
- Audubon Society of Portland Sanctuary
- Boiler Bay Wayside
- Cape Meares State Park and National Wildlife Refuge
- Cottonwood Canyon
- Crater Lake National Park
Other Oregon birds
Oregon is an incredible area to watch birds. Between the shorebird communities along the coast, the species that survive high in the Cascade Mountains, and the numerous migratory birds that travel to high desert lakes, there is something for everyone. Other birds found in Oregon are included in the section below.
If you have encountered a bird in Oregon that is not yet on our list or that you cannot identify yourself, we’ll be happy to identify it for you. Simply take a picture of it and upload your picture, a quick description and the U.S. state where it was found here on our bird identification page.