This section covers the general area surrounding Tillamook, Oregon. The primary land use is dairy farming.
The areas described below are just a starting point. The general area is well served by low-volume county roads, small parks, and other public access.
Boquist Rd. (45.485126, -123.851013) is a general area served by county roads Suppress Rd. and Boquist Rd. To reach this area from the intersection of Highway 101 and 1st St. in Tillamook, travel north on Highway 101 for 2.0 miles to Suppress Rd. Turn left (west) to start birding the area.
Goodspeed Rd. (45.470667, -123.8631060) is the county road serving Tillamook Bay Wetlands Area (45.474051, -123.868937). To reach the area from the intersection of Highway 101 and 1st St. in Tillamook, travel north on Highway 101 for 0.7 mile to Goodspeed Rd on the left. Turn left (west), onto Goodspeed Rd. to start birding.
Tillamook Bay–Fenk Rd. (45.460089, -123.871555) Fenk Rd. provides access to this area. Fenk Rd. passes through an active dairy. To reach the area from the intersection of Highway 101 and 3rd St. in Tillamook, travel west on 3rd St./ Highway 131 for 0.7 miles to Fenk Rd. Turn right (north) to start birding.
Tillamook has many other birding areas that are not described here. A few are Olson Rd., Wilson River Loop Rd., and Long Prairie Rd. These are all eBird Hotspots, but any county road or park can be good.
Bay City to Tillamook – Oregon Birding Trail: Choose the Oregon Coast Birding Trail, click on the North Coast tab and go to section 31
Habitat and Birds
Boquist Rd. and nearby Suppress Rd. pass through dairy pastureland, willow thicket, and wetland habitats. Both can be birded from the road. A good area to park, then walk is located just south of the junction of Boquist and Squeedunk Rd. (private road no access). From here, walking north and south on Boquist Road has been good for raptors, passerines, and sparrows. Swamp, Lincoln’s, Savanah, (Sooty) Fox, White-throated, and Harris’s Sparrows have been seen in the area. Continue birding Boquist Rd. south for 0.8 miles to Highway 101.
Goodspeed Rd. passes through dairy pastureland, wetland, and slough habitats. Bird from the road on your way to Tillamook Bay Wetlands Area. A parking area is on the left at 0.9 mile from Highway 101, just past the Hall Slough crossing. From this parking area, there are views of recently restored wetlands to the south and west. There are also two walking access routes. To the southeast is a short dike trail and to the west is access to the gated Tillamook Bay Wetlands dike (described below). Continue birding Goodspeed Rd for 0.5 miles to the Tillamook Bay Wetlands Area parking area.
The Tillamook Bay Wetlands Area is a large area of restored wetlands that are outside of the dike. Inside the dike are willow thickets, coastal forest, and pastureland. The area can be birded by walking on the gated gravel-surfaced dike. It is possible to walk the dike for about 0.7 miles until it returns to Goodspeed Rd.
This is a good area for winter raptors including White-tailed Kite, Peregrine Falcons, Red-Shouldered Hawks, Rough-legged Hawks, Barn, Short-eared, and Great Horned Owls.
Winter passerines include Swamp, Harris’s, and White-throated Sparrows, Northern Shrike, and Western Meadowlark. Fall passerines include Palm Warbler and Tropical Kingbird. Black Phoebe is found year-round.
Tillamook Bay–Fenk Rd. is a county road that passes through an active dairy farm. To avoid conflict with the dairy operation park in the road right of way out of active areas. It is possible to park at the intersection of Fenk Rd. and Highway 131, space is limited to one vehicle, then walk in.
The end of the county road is located about 0.5 mile in at 45.463120, -123.871285. This is about 100 feet south of the first house (currently painted blue) on the left. From this point on the land and road are private property, do not enter. Birders have been tolerated along the county road, but there is potential for landowner conflict.
The road passes through pastureland and a slough/wetland. The pasturelands are good for wintering geese, gulls, and raptors including Red-shouldered Hawk, White-tailed Kite, and Peregrine Falcon. Stillwell Slough (east of the road) is good for winter ducks and Shorebirds in migration. Passerines include Palm Warbler in fall and winter. Black Phoebe is common here.