Digging through heavy soil and rock for room and board everyday can be exhaustive and rather harsh on one's toenails. Pedicures are very expensive. That's why Barney the badger was s-o-o happy to find a pre-made home in the form of an old road culvert. Badgers can be found throughout Northeast Oregon, but they move mostly at night. Their burrows can be a menace to ranchers and farmers, but they do prey heavily on ground squirrels and other noxious rodents. JIM WARD photo
Note: Wildlife viewers and anglers need a parking permit to park on the wildlife area. The $7 daily or $22 annual permit can be purchased online or at an ODFW office that sells licenses or at a license sales agent.
Tule Lake Public Access Area and the Auto Route are closed for the season. Tule Lake Public Access Area will be open to foot traffic only Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday and holidays during the pheasant and waterfowl seasons. The Glass Hill Unit is open to public access for foot
traffic only. Visitors are advised to carefully read posted signs and consult game bird regulations before entering the wildlife area.
Dogs are not permitted within the wildlife area, on or off leash except during authorized hunting seasons.
There are numerous quality-viewing opportunities from county roads that pass through the area. Binoculars or a spotting scope will help as many animals are best viewed from a distance.
Hot, dry weather has reduced most wetlands and dried many up completely. As a consequence, waterfowl use of the area is minimal. Most shorebirds have left the area as they continue their migration south.
For more information on access rules for Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area, consult the Oregon Game Bird Regulations or call the wildlife area at 541-963-4954.
Herons are common and can be observed throughout the Wallowa Valley feeding along creeks and rivers.
Waterfowl species such as Canada geese and mallards can be observed on Wallowa Lake and throughout the Wallowa Valley feeding in agricultural fields.
Prairie falcon, red-tailed hawk, northern harrier and Swainson’s and Ferruginous hawks, as well as a variety of owls can be observed throughout Wallowa Valley and Zumwalt Prairie. Most raptors can be easily observed from county roads. A good pair of binoculars will improve viewing opportunities.
A wide variety of songbirds can be observed from now through the summer in forested areas north of Enterprise, and along rivers and streams throughout Wallowa County.
Mule and white-tailed deer are common in agricultural areas adjacent to Highway 82. Animals can be observed during early morning and late evening hours.
Persons willing to drive down the rough Imnaha River Road will often observe bighorn sheep north of Cow Creek near Cactus Mountain.
Elk can often be observed along the Zumwalt Road near Findley Buttes. Another good location to observe elk during winter months is on the Wenaha Wildlife Area near Troy. A good place to look is along the Eden Bench Road during early morning or late afternoon hours.
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