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Spring brings many activities to wildlife refuge

April events at the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge

The Tualatin River Photo Society meets the first Thursday of each month from September through June. Photographers of all levels are welcome to participate in meetings, field trips and educational programs. The next meeting is Thursday, April 3, at 7:30 p.m. in the Riparian Room of the Wildlife Center.

The Second Saturday Work Party will meet on Saturday, April 12, at 8:45 am in front of the refuge Wildlife Center and work from 9 a.m. to noon. The project involves removing tree tubes from Garry Oaks on the Oleson Property.

Volunteers should wear work clothes, boots and gloves, and bring a water bottle. Water and all tools will be provided. For those who can't stay until noon, we appreciate whatever amount of time you can help. We go rain or shine. Please RSVP to Mary French at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Fifteen people turned out in March to plant 132 berry bushes to provide food for birds and other wildlife.

On May 10, we will be clearing invasive plants from the public trail. On June 14, we will be removing tree tubes from Garry Oaks on the Oleson property.

Sunday Nature Stroll is set for April 27 from 2 to 4 p.m. Meet at the Wildlife Center plaza for a family-friendly walk to see what is blooming and what birds and animals are out and about.

Annual native plant sale

It's plant sale time of year again. To find beautiful native plants, stop by the refuge Wildlife Center plaza Saturday, April 26, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Location is 19255 S.W. Pacific Highway. For more information, call 503-625-5944.

Native birds, bees, butterflies and other insects and animals love the taste of our native flowers, fruits and leaves. After all, they've lived together for about a million years.

People will love them, too, because they can cut back on or eliminate the use of pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, and a lot of watering in the landscape.

The plants will be supplied by Bosky Dell Nursery, which specializes in Oregon natives only. Native plants supply four times the nutrition to wildlife as non-native plants. Go to www.boskydellnatives.com and check their plant list.

Reappearing favorites include wood violets, pink checker mallow, wild ginger, star-flowered sedum, spring lilies, evergreen strawberry, purple penstemon, evergreen huckleberry, mock orange, low Oregon grape, and many others.

Cultural advice and plant identification will be available. Credit cards, cash and checks will be accepted.

Hear David Harrelson, historian of the Grand Ronde Tribe, speak about natives' uses of plants and ethnobotany in the Riparian Room at 10 a.m.

A nature stroll for all ages will begin at 11 a.m. led by volunteer naturalist Gary Fawver. Enjoy the wildflowers, but look out for those bugs and slugs! Meet Gary at the kiosk near the living plant wall by the parking lot.

Tualatin River Refuge Bird Festival

Saturday, May 17, is the date of the 19th annual Bird Festival at the Refuge, and everyone is invited to come for family-friendly activities celebrating wildlife, including Audubon of Portland's live bird show, archery clinic, early morning bird banding demonstration, fish casting clinic.

Build a bat house, bird house or bee board. There will be guided walks for adults and kids and hands on conservation activities for children. Food and beverages also will be for sale.

Shuttle buses will take people from offsite parking location to the festival. Buses will run from 5:30 am to 6:30 pm.

Internship position

available

The Friends of the Refuge is looking for an enthusiastic, motivated person to join our team for 12 months beginning in early- to mid-2014. The Wildlife Center Coordination Program focuses on connecting people to nature through general public visitation, education support, and informal family-oriented activities.

For more information and an application, contact the Friends of the Refuge at 503-625-5944 or go to www.friendsoftualatinrefuge.org.

Editor’s note: King City police Chief Chuck Fessler was on vacation when this issue of the Regal Courier was going to press so he does not have a column in this issue; his column will resume in the May issue.

New columnist Carolyn Uyemura is a longtime contributor to the Regal Courier’s sister publication, the Sherwood Gazette.