June 2017 Bird Observations

Bird List for May and June 2017 @handbookofnaturestudy

Moving to a new habitat has renewed my desire to learn more about birds. I now live right on a river that has a grassy meadow that leads up to my house. I also live on the edge of a pine forest and at a high altitude. In addition, I live in a place where I will see migratory birds that will only visit for brief periods of time or for a whole season.

It’s a whole new birding world here in Central Oregon.

I have been keeping track of the many birds that visit my yard or fly overhead during the past month and a half. It can be such a distraction to spot a new bird and feel the impulse to drop everything to grab my binoculars and field guide. But, this is part of the reason we moved here; to have our love of nature stimulated again with new and exciting nature experiences.

The people who lived in our house before us were birders as well so they had their binoculars and field guide at the window when we came to view the house. They also had a seed feeder and a hummingbird feeder set up in the backyard which made my heart happy. We have since added three more seed feeders (two sunflower and one nyjer seed), a suet feeder, an additional hummingbird feeder and two bird baths to the yard.

This list is in no way a list of EVERY bird we have had visit our yard. A few of the birds I am struggling with identifying and if I happen to capture a good image, I will share the photos in the hope that someone will know what they are and tell me.

May and June 2017 – First Bird List from Oregon!

  1. Black-headed grosbeak
  2. Mourning doves
  3. Canada goose
  4. Brewer’s blackbird
  5. Red-wing blackbird
  6. Tree swallow
  7. Cliff swallow
  8. Mountain chickadee
  9. American robin
  10. Mallard duck
  11. Osprey
  12. House finches
  13. Northern flicker
  14. Steller’s jay
  15. Common raven
  16. Turkey vulture
  17. Great blue heron
  18. Red-breasted sapsucker
  19. Rufous hummingbird
  20. Bull bat (common nighthawk) – heard early morning


You may be interested in reading this entry about keeping a bird “life list”. There are several suggestions for your family to get started with this satisfying project: Keeping a Bird Life List. It has a free printable list!

Birds of North America Notebooking Pages
If you are looking for a fantastic set of bird notebooking pages that includes all of the birds in the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford-Comstock, this is THE product to have on hand.


I have used these pages with my children and in my own nature journal over the years. Please note that I am an affiliate for NotebookingPages.com and will receive a small commission if you purchase any of their products. I highly recommend this set for your bird nature study. In fact, they go perfectly with my new Learning About Birds ebook challenges!

Learning About Birds ebook Bird List @handbookofnaturestudy

Nature Journal Examples – June 2017

Weekly Nature Journal Project

June 2017

I’m trying to keep up my nature journal page a week goal and some weeks it is not easy. This time of year I am spending lots of time outdoors both having adventures and working in the yard. I struggle to make myself sit down and actually pull out the nature journal. But once I have it out, I am eager to make a page. Discipline!


Buttercup Nature Journal

This was actually done on the last day of May but it didn’t make the May blog entry. I created this as a follow up for the Poppies and Buttercups Outdoor Hour Challenge. We have plenty of buttercups in our backyard to observe so this was part of my learning more about the things we have right outside our back door. I am a huge fan of learning as much as you can about your local area’s plants and animals. Since moving, I have a lot to learn!

Pea family nature journal page

As part of my on-going self-education, I am learning about plants according to their plant family. I created a page for the pea family this month and listed the outstanding features of plants in this family as well as a list of plants I have seen in the past and want to look for in the future.

New Oregon wildflower nature journal page

Wildflowers seem to be a focus for me right now as I explore my new habitat. Three flowers made it into the journal this week: Silverleaf phacelia, Meadow forget-me-not, and Rosy pussytoes. They are all so pretty in real life.

June nature journal recap example

I keep a spiral notebook with pretty much daily notes that record anything I observe of interest. This month I decided to put the highlights from those notes on a recap page in my actual nature journal, first crating colored boxes for some visual appeal.

Once a Month Nature Journal Project @handbookofnaturestudy

Some of the page ideas this month can be found on my Once a Month Nature Journal Project Pinterest Board. Pop over and get some inspiration!

Instagram OutdoorHourChallenge

Don’t forget that I am sharing a nature journal page each week on my Instagram account if you want to see the pages as they unfold. Follow me here: Instagram – outdoorhourchallenge. And, if you want to create a page and share it on your Instagram for me to see, use the hashtag #OHCnaturejournal


Nature Study Notebooking Pages

Please note that I am an affiliate for NotebookingPages.com. I have used these pages with my own family over many years. They are truly a simple way to get those nature journal pages done!






Outdoor Hour Challenge – Henbit Study

Outdoor Hour challenge henbit @handbookofnaturestudy

Image credit: Miltos Gikas

Outdoor Hour Challenge

Henbit Nature Study – Wildflower Set #2

Inside Preparation:

  • Henbit (Laminum amplexicaule) is a fairly common wildflower in North America. See the range map here: USDA Henbit.
  • You may wish to read this page: Henbit on Edible Wild Food. Please note that I do not encourage the eating of any plants covered in this ebook.
  • Use internet sources to research henbit. Ebook users look at page 7 for a list of suggestions.

Outdoor Hour Time:

Look for henbit alongside roads, in lawns, pastures, or gardens. Bloom time is early spring to late fall.

  • Observe henbit if possible but any of the related plants would be a wonderful alternative study, especially purple dead nettle. You can tell the difference between the plants by looking at the leaves. Henbit’s are heart shaped and dead nettle leaves are more triangular.
  • Make careful observations using the suggestions in this ebook if you have access to it.
  • Another name for henbit is giraffe head. Which name do you like better?

Follow-Up Activity:

  • Create a notebook page for henbit using the page provided in the ebook or in your nature journal. There is also a coloring page for henbit in the ebook.
  • Start a mint family notebook page. Keep a running list of flowers you observe and/or study in this plant family.
  • Advanced study: This website has a comparison of three similar plants that you may wish to consult: Identify That Plant. Create a nature journal page that includes descriptions of each of the featured plants: Creeping Charlie, purple dead nettle, and henbit.


OHC Wildflower Set 2 @handbookofnaturestudy

How do you get the new Wildflower Nature Study ebook?

Members of the Ultimate Naturalist and Journey levels have access to the new ebook in their library. You need to click the “Members Area” button at the top of the website, sign into your account, and the ebook is there to download and save for your family to use when desired. If you don’t have a membership yet, I am offering a $5 off discount code that will be good towards your Ultimate Naturalist membership.

Discount Code: Wildflower5