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The Observer Paper 12/17/14

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Images of Ladd Marsh grace annual calendar

The 2010 calendar features 14 photos of wildlife and plant species at Ladd Marsh.
The 2010 calendar features 14 photos of wildlife and plant species at Ladd Marsh.
Looking through a viewing blind is not the only way to get a good look at the wonders of the Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area.

A new, full-color Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area calendar is another option. The 2010 calendar features 14 photos of wildlife and plant species at Ladd Marsh. Each was taken by an Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife staff member.

The calendar’s highlights include a striking photo of a black-crowned night heron, a common summer resident of Ladd Marsh. The calendar’s text notes that adult black-crowned night herons are unmistakable in appearance. Juveniles are less distinctive and may be confused with American bitterns due to their dull coloration and heavily streaked breast.

Reptiles shown in the calendar include the western painted turtle. The calendar lists it as the only turtle species native to Northeast Oregon.

Such illuminating information accompanies all of the 8 1/2- by 10-inch monthly photos in the calendar. It also has photos of pronghorn antelope, a northern harrier, a few-fired shooting star, a blue-winged teal, a yellow-headed blackbird, two Swainson’s hawks, a red-tailed hawk, a Pacific chorus frog, two ring-necked pheasants and a song sparrow.

Photos of wildlife and plants appear with the months they are most abundant or are easiest to spot at Ladd Marsh.

The calendar also has many dates pertinent to people planing to visit Ladd Marsh. They include Jan. 1, the day Ladd Marsh’s Glass Hill Unit closes to public entry. It will remain closed though April 10 to reduce disturbance to wintering elk. The Glass Hill Unit includes all of the Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area west of Foothill Road.

Other dates noted include March 1, the day Ladd Marsh’s Tule Lake Public Access Area opens and May 14-16, when the fifth annual Ladd Marsh Birdathon is scheduled.

Information about Ladd Marsh’s history, public access areas and wetlands is also contained in the calendar.

Readers of the calendar’s text will learn that Ladd Marsh is the definition of a wildlife oasis. It has more than 200 species of birds,  40 species of mammals and 13 species of reptiles and amphibians that either visit or live permanently at Ladd Marsh. In the summer nesting season more than 2,000 ducks and 400 Canada geese are produced each year.

The Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area’s rules are also listed. One rule is that trails are for walking only. No biking, jogging or running is allowed to minimize disturbances to wildlife.

The calendar, printed by Palmer Particular Printers, is available in

La Grande at Sunflower Books, The Bobolink, Red Cross Drug and Claudsen’s Sew and Soak and in Union at Union Market and the Rock Creek Nut Co.

All proceeds from the sale of the $10 calendars will go to Friends of Ladd Marsh. The organization uses all of the money it raises for restoration and preservation projects at Ladd Marsh.

 — Dick Mason

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