ROSEBURG

Nighthawks migration due for arrival

The first common nighthawks are scheduled should be arriving from their wintering areas in South America within to Douglas County week, the Oregon Department of Fish an Wildlife said.

The nighthawk is a darkish colored bird 9.5-inches long with long pointed wings and white wing patches. Nighthawks are commonly seen flying high in the evening sky catching insects on the wing emitting a nasal peent call.

This migratory bird is one of the final birds to migrate to North America for nesting. It can be seen and heard in western Oregon from cities and towns to woodlands and forests.

Also, bird watchers are encouraged to watch for {span}goose and duck nestlings following adult waterfowl in the coming weeks as they learn to forage. Those driving next to watered ditches, bodies of water and fields where these young birds are hanging out are asked by the ODFW to use caution.

WINCHESTER BAY

Dungeness crab season pushed back

Commercial Dungeness crab season will have its opening day pushed back from Dec. 1 until at least Dec. 16, according to a press release from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The release said tests along the entire Oregon coast show crabs are too low in meat yield.

The target opening of the ocean commercial Dungeness crab season in Oregon remains at Dec. 1, but it too can be delayed. Crab quality testing in early November showed none of the test areas met the meat yield criteria for a Dec. 1 opening. The delayed opening will allow crabs to fill with more meat.

A second round of testing is set for late November or early December. Results will be used to determine if the season should open Dec. 16, be further delayed, or be split into areas with different opening dates.

Crab were also tested for domoic acid along the entire coast, and all samples were found to be safe for human consumption. However, due to elevated levels of domoic acid detected in razor clams in some areas, testing in Dungeness crab will continue regularly south of Heceta Head.

In conjunction with the delayed ocean commercial season, commercial harvest of Dungeness crab in Oregon bays that are currently open will close Dec. 1, but may reopen if the ocean commercial fishery opens in December.

The News-Review

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