Birding and Wildlife Watching
Nature Happens Around Every Turn
With its magnificent forests, its flowing rivers and creeks, and lakes too numerous to mention, Trinity County is a birdwatcher’s paradise. Numerous bald eagles line Trinity Lake and the Trinity River, and some have been known to snatch a fish before an unsuspecting fisherman can get it fully reeled in and into his net.
The annual eagle count in February 2013 showed 79 bald eagles residing at Trinity Lake, and nine at Lewiston Lake. Additional nestings can be found at Ruth Lake and along the Trinity River.
Some 300-plus different species of birds either call Trinity home or spend a significant enough time here to get counted. Ospreys are plentiful along the river, and egrets and great blue herons can be seen daily. Redtail hawks and peregrine falcons are also seen regularly, as are Canada geese Ducks in the area include mallards, wood ducks and mergansers. Ravens and bluebirds are commonly seen around town. Many of these birds can be seen around Lewiston and Trinity Lake
Wildlife viewing is available just about anywhere in Trinity County and we have our own Trinity Bird and Wildlife Spotters Facebook page. Deer often cross the streets in Weaverville and other Trinity County towns; hikers in the Alps frequently cross paths with California black bears, which are generally not aggressive (but hikers should take care to secure their food supplies at night).
Other critters spotted around the county include bobcats, foxes, river otter, ring-tailed cats, elk, and (rarely) mountain lions. Bird-watching can be fun, too, especially near the rivers and lakes, where osprey and bald eagles frequently feed.
Another enjoyable past time is viewing native plants, such as the pitcher plant (which consumes insects) in the alpine meadows, as well as miner’s lettuce, which is edible.
The Trinity River Fish Hatchery which is a part of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, is located 1 mile north of Lewiston on the east side of the Trinity River. Visitors may view spring chinook from June to September and fall chinook from September to November. The Steelhead run is fair from January to March. Lewiston Lake is on the Trinity Heritage Scenic Byway.