Top 10 Places to Find Birds in Pullman, Washington and Top 20 Birds To Find

If you are the type who is into birding, then I would recommend a trip to Pullman, Washington, as well as its surrounding parks.  You are going to find a lot of birds in and around the Pullman, Washington area, and there will be a lot of places to seek them out. 

Top 10 Places to Find Birds In or Around Pullman, Washington

Yes, birds can be found everywhere, just like people.  However, just as people like to meet in certain areas, birds will flock together in specific places too.  The question is, where are these bird hotspots?

For the most part, birds will seek areas where there is not a lot of noise, so they will avoid the freeway or any road with constant traffic.  So naturally, you will find them at city parks, but not if there are too many people about. 

Fortunately, Pullman, Washington has several refuges, parks, trails, and other various places away from the urban sprawl that are perfect for bird watching. 

1. Conservation Park

Conservation Park was created by the Phoenix Conservancy, with a formal agreement with the city of Pullman. Conservation Park is full of trails, views, and several types of plant species, and is located on Darrow Street, right in the middle of the Pullman suburbs. 

Since Conservation Park is away from most of Pullman’s downtown traffic, it is a very quiet and fertile place where birds can come to visit and stay.  Chances are, you are going to see a lot of species if you are on one of the many trails. 

2. Colfax Trail

The Colfax Trail follows the river northwest of the town of Colfax, along an abandoned rail corridor.  You will be able to see the river bottom as well as the Palouse Hills.

3. Steptoe Butte State Park

Steptoe Butte State Park rises high in the Inland Northwest, with a paved road leading all the way to the top.  It is worth going all the way up on foot, by bike, or in a car to see the magnificent view.  You will have to drive 20 miles from Pullman, but it is worth it to see the many diverse bird species, which include both grassland and even raptors. 

4. Kamiak Butte County Park

Kamiak Butte County Park, located 15 miles northwest of Pullman, is also full of trails and a view from the top. The open forest area makes it a perfect place to find all kinds of birds, and you will see many varieties here. 

5. Arboretum Perimeter Trail

You are going to find the Arboretum Perimeter Trail across the street from the Washington State University Bear Center, and the trail can be accomplished in about 45 minutes.  While you are on the trail, look for side paths like the pond, and you should be able to find many varieties of birds as well. 

6. Klemgard County Park

You will find Klemgard County Park halfway in between Pullman and Colfax, and it is only a slight detour off US 195.  At Klemgard Park, you will find many trails, gazebos for picnics, as well as some playground equipment.  You will also find a lot of great birds and quite a diverse population of them. 

7. Magpie Forest Trail

Located just off of Washington State University campus, right in the middle of the “apartment land” that houses so many WSU students, you will find the Magpie Forest Trail.  The Magpie Forest Trail branches off in many directions, with beautiful views of the wide open country of the Inland Northwest, along with trails through the woods.  You are going to find all kinds of birds here, so make sure to be looking. 

8. Sunnyside Park

Duck pond at Sunnyside Park in Pullman Washington

Sunnyside Park is one of the biggest parks in the Pullman City Limits, and it has all the amenities like a playground, covered picnic area, frisbee golf area, and small trails.  There are also duck ponds, so you are mostly likely going to see some waterfowl as you enter the park.  Ducks won’t be the only birds that you will see, as there are many other species here too. 

9. Bill Chipman Palouse Trail

Even though this trail runs parallel to the Moscow/Pullman highway, it is far enough from the road to still be considered both scenic and serene.  The Bill Chipman Palouse Trail is designed for both biking and walking, with many areas to stop and rest when needed.  This is also a good place to see some birds, who like to stay around this area. 

10 Rose Creek Nature Preserve

Another wooden bridge to help you savor the view of flourishing greens.

You’ll find Rose Creek Nature Preserve located about 7.4 northwest of Pullman, Washington, near the city of Albion.  It is a 22-acre preserve with a few miles of trails and a lot of plant specimens under its protection.  You will be seeing a lot of birds if you are going on a short hike here, and it is part of the Great Washington State Birding Trail, the Palouse to Pines Loop.  

Top 20 Birds Found in Pullman, Washington

While these are not the only types of birds that can be found in Pullman, Washington, some of these birds are more common than others.  Keep a sharp lookout for these, and if you are quick with your camera, you might just catch them on film!

1. American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)

This migratory bird is most well-known for its outstanding yellow color. The American Goldfinch usually dwells in weedy fields and floodplains. 

2. Red-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta canadensis)

The red-breasted nuthatch is a small songbird, and the adults are most well-known for blue-gray, white, black, and cinnamon colors. 

3. Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens)

The Downy Woodpecker is the smallest in North America, living in forest areas of the United States and Canada.  The Downy Woodpecker nests in tree cavities and feeds on insects, as well as seeds and berries. 

4. California Quail (Callipepla californica)

You might not have to journey far to find the California Quail in Pullman, Washington, as they can easily be found in Pullman’s suburban areas.  These ground-dwelling birds have a curving crest/plume that droops forward on their face, with blue tint and brown on their flanks. 

5. Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)

You can often see these birds when you look up, and they will often be the largest birds above.  If you’re lucky, you can often find this bird perched atop a telephone pole or other high place for its vigil.  Get your smartphone camera in for a spectacular pinch-to-zoom shot. 

6. Black-billed Magpie (Pica hudsonia)

You will find many of these black, white, and blue birds all around Pullman, Washington, and this species is well-known for inhabiting the western half of North America. 

7. Red-Winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)

The Red-Winged Blackbird looks much like a crow, but it has a definite flair on its wings with a red and yellow color streak.  It is one of the most abundant birds in North America, and it can be found within the marshlands of Pullman, Washington rather easily. 

8. Dark-Eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)

The Dark-eyed Juncos are from the sparrow family, and they can be identified by their bright white tail feathers that can actually flash in light. 

9. Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)

Northern Flicker is part of the woodpecker family with speckled black feathers, and you can also identify them by their curved bill.   

10. European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)

European Starlings are one of the most numerous songbirds in North America, and they tend to be aggravated most of the time.  Still, they have quite a wonderful plumage, with white spots in the winter and glossy dark for the summer. 

11. Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

The Black-capped Chickadee can be identified by its small body and round head, not to mention its black cap and bib, along with its white cheeks, gray wings, and tail. 

12. Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)

The Spotted Towhee might resemble a robin, but the males have a black head and throat, while the females are grayish brown.  These birds can be spotted in open, shrubby habitats with a thick undergrowth.

13. American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)

American Kestrels are the most common and smallest falcons in North America, with the males having blue wings and the females having reddish-brown wings. 

14. Western Meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta)

In addition to the bright vibrant yellow feathers and their V-shaped band around their neck, Western Meadowlarks can be identified by their songs. 

15. Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus)

The Killdeer is known for its long and slender legs, as well as its round head, large eyes, small bill, along with a brownish back and white belly. 

16. American Robin (Turdus migratorius)

This bird really needs no introduction with its red breast and the first sign of spring. 

17. House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)

The House Sparrow is another very common bird in North America, with the males having brighter shades of brown than the female. 

18. Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)

The difference between the House Sparrow and Song Sparrow is very subtle, but they are just as plentiful as their related species. 

19. Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)

The Mourning Dove is a common sight not only in Pullman but across the United States and North America. Its wings make a distinct sound during takeoff, and its coo sound is unique as well. 

20. Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)

The Tree Swallow is a streamlined songbird with pointed wings and a notch of a tail.  The males are blue-green with white, and the females can be more brown in their underbelly. 

So that is 20 birds common to the Pullman and Palouse region, with 10 places within a short distance to find them.  If birds are not “for the birds” for you, then Pullman, Washington is a great place to visit and live to find great avian specimens.