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Activities are aplenty in the fall at the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge

October is one of the best months to visit the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge in Sherwood. Fall is in full swing with its vibrant gold, orange and red colors. The weather is cooler, the days are usually sunny and dry, and the winter rains are still in the future.

This is your chance to see some beautiful dabbling ducks such as mallards, northern pintails, American wigeons and green-winged teals. Come later in the month and you're likely to see up to 10,000 cackling Canada geese. Most shorebirds have gone south for the winter but look for remaining killdeer. There is always wildlife to see, especially if you like to walk in the early morning. COURTESY PHOTO: PAM FARRIS - October is one of the best months to visit the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge in Sherwood.

The seasonal trail is closed until May 1. The trail closure provides protection for the arriving birds. The year-round trail to the river overlook and wetlands observation deck is always open and provides plenty of opportunities for seeing wildlife.

If you're looking for ways to contribute to the refuge, join us for bioswale restoration at our Second Saturday Work Party, set for 8 a.m. to noon Oct. 8. We will meet at the EE shelter. Families are welcome. Parking is available in front of the visitor center. Gloves, tools and light refreshments are provided and a volunteer service form is required. Register at friendsoftualatinrefuge.org/event-4951365

Mark your calendars for "Creatures of the Night" from 5 to 8 p.m. Oct. 29 at the refuge. Bats, coyotes, owls and more call the refuge home at night. Join us in exploring the night-time wonders with an animal costume contest, guided night walks and story time.

The visitor center needs volunteers. The center offers an enjoyable opportunity to meet and greet people from diverse places, share information about the refuge and sell merchandise. It's also a place to learn about the refuge and the birds and wildlife that the call it home. No specific experience is necessary as training will be provided. You must be a member of the Friends of the Refuge and we ask that you commit to working two three-hour shifts per month. All volunteers receive relevant training and benefits such as 10% off purchases, behind-the-scenes tours and workshops. If you are interested, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., stop by the visitor center or email Natalie Balkam, FWS park ranger, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. call her at 503-625-5944.

Pam Farris is a member of Friends of the Refuge


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