Birding

Plumas County offers rewarding bird-watching opportunities for both the novice and experienced birder. The best birding in the county is during the spring and fall, but interesting species can be found any month of the year.

Red head

Nearly 300 different bird species live in the surrounding national forest, which offers great habitat with its many lakes, meadows, marshes, streams and trees. The spots have easy access for those who wish to bird by vehicle as well as many developed hiking trails for more adventurous birders.  

For the latest bird sightings, visit the Plumas Audubon Society page here.

Sierra Valley, east of Portola, is an Audubon Society nationally designated Important Bird Area. This 130,000 acre valley, the largest in the Sierra Nevada, is home to over 260 bird species alone. Although most of the land in the valley is privately owned, county roads such as Marble Hot Springs Road, between County Roads A23 and A24,  will take you through the heart of the valley past wet meadows and remnant wetlands. 

Nesting osprey and bald eagle can be found at nearly all the county's major reservoirs, including the largest, Lake Almanor. The causeway, east of Chester on Hwy. 36, is the best place to see large numbers of waterfowl including tundra swan, double-crested cormorants, great blue heron, and American white pelicans.

Other lakes to visit are Antelope Lake, Bucks Lake, Little Grass Valley Reservoir, Frenchman Lake and Lake Davis, which all provide a diversity of bird species and habitats.

Plumas County's many rivers and streams also host populations of other riparian bird species: wood ducks, yellow warblers, lazuli buntings, American dippers, downey, Nuttall's and Lewis' woodpeckers and others can be found during a pleasant stroll along the waterways.