Little Lake Valley - Beaver Pond at Outlet Creek
- 10 January,2012
Dear Fellow Birders: Dave Bengston and I went out to take a look at the pond created by the beaver dam on Outlet Creek just below the east side of the Hwy 101(Outlet Creek) bridge where 101 meets the Reynolds Hwy (about five minutes north of Willits). Among the dozens of usual suspects were a single Canvasback, a single Northern Pintail, and at least one Eurasion Wigeon. There were so many hidden waterfowl, that there must be other interesting birds there. The lighting is not too great because the only location for viewing much of the pond is a muddy turnout on the Reynolds Highway a few hundred yards east from Hwy. 101. From that vantage point, one must look in a southerly direction through a scope and so the glare can be difficult when the sun is out.
While we were scoping out the pond, a Sherrif's deputy (Brad?) stopped by for a friendly chat and mentioned another beaver dam on Outlet Creek. It is about 1.5 miles east up Highway 162 toward Covelo from Highway 101.
Dave and I went up to take a look (less than 10 minutes from the first pond), and the only notable birds there were a couple pair of Wood Ducks and a Red-tailed Hawk roosting in a tree above the pond. Of interest though, was a single beaver on the north side of the pond and a single river otter eating a salmon on the south side.
Dave mentioned to me that he used to go swimming in Outlet Creek when he was young, but I am pretty sure the creek isn't that old.