Smith-Bybee Lakes Wildlife Area

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From I-5, take exit 307 onto Marine Drive and go west for 2.1 miles.  Turn left to enter the parking area.

Go to the Oregon Birding Trails Website.  Choose the Willamette Valley Birding Trail. Click on the Trail Guide and choose the Portland Loop Guide. Section P-1. From I-5, take exit 307 to Marine Drive West, go 0.9 miles and the entrance will be on your left. Though Red-eyed Vireo is mentioned in this guide, it is now rare at this location and should be reported should you come across one at Smith-Bybee.

Trail Map Smith-Bybee Wildlife Area


Habitat and Birds

The main access to the area is through the Interlakes Trail which is about 0.2 miles west of the main parking area.  This leads to blinds overlooking both lakes, with Smith Lake off a short loop trail on one’s left  ff the main interlakes trail.  In summer the riparian woods host nesting Yellow Warblers, Western Wood-Pewee, Swainson’s Thrush, Purple Finch, White-breasted Nuthatch, Red-breasted Sapsucker, Black-headed Grosbeak and a few Bullock’s Orioles.  In winter there are both kinglets, Black-capped Chickadees, mixed sparrow flocks and any of the possible woodpeckers in the area can be here.  East of the parking area is another viewing area, the canoe launch site.

Bybee Lake can be good for shorebirds in fall, and large number of ducks and geese appear in fall and early winter.  Also in fall, Great Egrets and American White Pelicans can show in large numbers.  Smith Lake has become mostly filled in with cottonwoods, but ducks can be seen in winter around the edges, and shorebirds are found in fall from the canoe launch site.


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