Sacramento NWR Complex

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Over the past few weekends we have taken day trips to some refuges around the Sacramento area. We are lucky to have many great refuges that come alive every winter.

While officially not part of the Sac NWR Complex, Cosumnes River Preserve in Galt is worth a stop. Close to 1000 Sand hill Cranes winter here but our goal was to see some Short-eared Owls that had been spotted in the area. We did encounter an owl right off the bat, but to our surprise it was a Barn Owl:

Barn Owl

We did end up seeing 3 Short-Eared Owls, but none stayed still long enough for a photo.

The following weekend we headed up to the Sac NWR Complex to check out all the wintering snow geese:

Snow Geese

That flock was sent airborne due to a fly-by from this juvenile Bald Eagle:

Juvenile Bald Eagle

The driving tour is a great way to see the different wildlife at the refuge:

Great Egret in Flight

Ring-necked Pheasant

California Ground Squirrel


White Pelicans in Flight

On the way to Colusa NWR we stopped at Delevan NWR which turned out to be a good decision since we finally got a Short-eared Owl to stay still:

Short-eared Owl

The scenery at Colusa NWR was stunning. The evening light is great here and that coupled with the Sutter Buttes in the background makes for a great location to look for wildlife:

Colusa National Wildlife Refuge

Colusa National Wildlife Refuge

Colusa NWR is home to dozens of Black-crowned Night Herons. We counted over 50 roosting along the river:

Black-crowned Night Herons Roosting

We even had another Barn Owl to wrap up the trip:

Barn Owl Roosting

Here’s some video from Sac and Colusa NWR to give you an idea of the great sights and sounds:

Alan

Alan Dahl

Alan maintains a full time job in the software industry to fund his obsession for nature and wildlife photography. While he loves photographing all wildlife, mammals and herps are his favorites. If he could split his time between Yellowstone and Latin America, he would be a happy man.

Alan

Alan

Alan maintains a full time job in the software industry to fund his obsession for nature and wildlife photography. While he loves photographing all wildlife, mammals and herps are his favorites. If he could split his time between Yellowstone and Latin America, he would be a happy man.

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