Road Work, Expect Delays
ODOT will be preparing highway 46 for asphalt patching. Please use caution when traveling between the monument and Grayback Campground. Various work will be from continue until July 31, 2014.
Watch for Wildlife
Please be on the lookout for fawns on the section of Caves Highway around Caves Campground! There is at least one very young one that is using the pavement as his transportation corridor.
On the Monument you can see and hear common birds as well as rare or federally threatened birds that need special protection to keep their populations secure. These include northern spotted owl, bald eagle, peregrine falcon.
You are most likely to see jays, ravens, juncos, woodpeckers, thrushes. Some of these are bold 'robbers' and 'beggars'. They will try to charm or steal some food from you. Please do not ever feed our birds or any other wildlife. It is safer for you, and healthier for them, if they keep foraging for food in the forest.
Visitors ask "Who is that punk?" when they spot our Steller's Jay. He sports wild blue colors, a fancy Mohawk, shouts loudly and likes to strut his stuff when everyone is watching.
Magic fans will have a special place in their hearts for our owls. Rarely seen by day visitors, the Oregon Caves is home to 5 species, Saw-Whet Owls, Spotted, Barred, Great Horned, and Screech Owls.
The biggest, Great Horned Owl, has ear tufts and is twice the size of a crow. They can lift up mammals as large as a skunk. They live in forest, woodlots, near streams, and open country. The male makes a series of hoots - Hoo! Hu-hu-hu, Hoo! Hoo! Female hoots are higher and shorter in sequence.
The smallest, Saw-Whet Owl, is a tiny, tuftless owl that is very hard to spot unless found roosting in dense young evergreens or low thickets. It feeds on small rodents and amphibians. Its call is usually a series of short sharp whistles.
Did You Know?
Dragonflies and damselflies are ancient creatures that have lived on Earth far longer than mammals. They have sophisticated eyes, over twenty to thirty thousand per head. Dragonflies are fast fliers; the blue-eyed darner can fly 48 feet per second while chasing prey. Most can fly far, even able to survive crossing a sea or ocean, if they have to.