American Dippers nearly always nest and are observed along swift flowing creeks
in the Cascade and Siskiyou mountains. They are an uncommon year-round
resident of the Upper Klamath Basin watershed.
Clark’s nutcrackers are commonly seen at Crater Lake National Park and less commonly
in other Upper Klamath Basin watershed locations in the Cascade and Siskiyou Mountains.
Common mergansers may be observed on high elevation lakes and streams. During the late fall
and winter they are commonly observed on rivers, lakes and wetlands at lower elevations.
Dark-eyed juncos are common in high elevation forest habitats during the
summer. In the winter juncos are more common at lower elevations where they
are readily attracted to bird feeders.
Evening grosbeaks are an uncommon year-round resident and are often seen
in loose flocks. In addition to coniferous forests, they may be seen in
residential areas in years when seed crops are scarce at higher elevations.
Evening grosbeaks feed on pine and fir seeds and breed in open conifer stands.
They move into the lower elevations some winters, apparently to search for food.
Great gray owls nest in mature trees near meadows where a supply of rodents are
available. They are a rare resident species that is found primarily in the
northern portion of the Upper Klamath Basin watershed.
Great gray owls lay two to five eggs in nests which are located in mixed stands
of Douglas fir, lodgepole and Ponderosa pine. Nearby meadows provide areas
for owls to hunt for rodents to feed nestlings.
Red crossbills are an uncommon year-round resident of the coniferous forests within
the upper Klamath and Tule Lake Basins. Other habitats include Ponderosa/lodgepole pine forests.
Rock wrens, as their name implies, are seldom seen far from rocky habitats
in the Upper Klamath Basin watershed. This uncommon species is seen in lava rock fields
and scree covered slopes in high elevations.
Spotted owls are a rare year-round resident in coniferous forests in the Klamath
Basin watershed. These owls are also found in Ponderosa and lodgepole pine forests.
Steller’s jays are common and seemingly, ubiquitous year-round residents
found throughout the Upper Klamath Basin watershed. Usually found where
conifers are the prevalent tree species.
Violet-green swallows are most often seen in high elevation mountain habitats
in the Upper Klamath and Tule Lake Basins. They are an uncommon spring and
summer nesting species in this area.
Williamson’s sapsuckers are an uncommon breeding species found in high
elevation forests of pine and other conifers in the Upper Klamath Basin watershed.
Their numbers decrease during the winter months.
Black Bears are are an uncommon, and mostly nocturnal, large mammal found primarily
at high elevation in forests and meadows in the Upper Klamath and Tule Lake Basins.
Elk are year-round residents in the forested areas in the Upper Klamath
Basin watershed. They prefer forests near meadows or marshes which serve
as prime feeding locations for these large browsing mammals.
Gray fox is an uncommon resident mammal. They may be observed in a variety
of wooded or brushy habitats in the Upper Klamath Basin watershed.
Mink are an uncommon small mammal found in a variety of wetland habitats
throughout the Upper Klamath Basin watershed including lakes, streams, seasonal
marshes, deep marshes and irrigation canals.
Pikas are found in high elevation locations on rocky mountain slopes in the Upper
Klamath Basin watershed. This species is most frequently observed at Crater Lake National Park.
Cropland and pasture habitat are found mostly at the lower elevations (4,100-4,200) within the central and southern portions of the Upper Klamath Basin watershed. This category includes diverse areas within the Upper Klamath and Tule Lake Basins such as towns, smaller communities, rural residential areas, farms and ranches. The wildlife associated with these habitats have adapted to living close to human development and activities.
Riparian Habitat is located along the shoreline of rivers, lakes and wetlands within the Upper Klamath Basin watershed. Vegetation found in riparian habitats includes deciduous trees such as willow, cottonwood and aspen which are found along the shore lines of these water bodies. Many bird species use riparian habitats as travel corridors during the spring and fall migrations. Other birds may use riparian locations as favored sites for nesting and breeding.
Deep water and permanent marshes are found in the Upper Klamath and Tule Lake Basins. Habitat includes Klamath, Williamson, Wood, Sprague, and Lost Rivers; Upper Klamath , Clear and Tule Lakes, many smaller deep wetlands
and permanent marshes. Fish eating species such as grebes, pelicans, gulls, terns and diving ducks use these wetlands. The vegetation growing in these wetlands
(primarily cattail and bulrush stands which are also called “tules”) provide habitat for rails, white-faced ibis, egrets, herons, yellow-headed black birds to name only a few.
Abundant shallow wetlands are found in the Upper Klamath and Tule Lake Basins. These wetlands have historically had water during the winter and spring, but tended to dry out during the summer and fall. Today, most wildlife areas and
refuges manage seasonal wetlands using water control structures to mimic this yearly wet and dry cycle. Wading shorebirds and dabbing ducks are among the diverse wildlife species commonly seen in seasonal marshes and wetlands.
Juniper/Sagebrush habitat is found most extensively in the southern and eastern portions of the Upper Klamath Basin watershed. Both the Clear Lake area and Lava Beds National Monument have large expanse of this habitat. Plants found here include Western Juniper and several plants collectively known as sagebrush and rabbit brush.
Ponderosa and Lodgepole Pine habitat are usually found above juniper/sagebrush vegetation and at a lower elevation than Douglas fir and true fir habitats within the Upper Klamath Basin watershed. Many cavity nesting bird species use the Ponderosa/lodgepole pine habitat, particularly where past fires have created openings and dead snags. Several species of woodpeckers, nuthatches and flycatchers are commonly observed within this habitat.
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