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Chandler Park

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From the 1986 edition of A Guide to Birding in Oklahoma published by the Tulsa Audubon Society. This account has been updated as of 2007.

The 270-acre county park can be reached from the east on 21 St., driving west from Tulsa across either the 11 St. bridge or the 21 St. bridge. Just beyond 59 West Ave. turn left up a steep hill to the entrance. The distance from the Arkansas River bridge to the park is just over 4 miles. To reach the park from Sand Springs, go east from SH 97 on 41 St. to 65 West Ave., then north two miles to the park entrance.

The park is close to Tulsa and not many people are there on week days or early in the morning. The park consists of wooded rocky bluffs, open areas, grassy meadows and woods. It provides an excellent view of the Arkansas River which is just below the park on the north. Updrafts bring Turkey Vultures and hawks directly overhead. The Mississippi Kite and the Bald Eagle have both been seen in the park. There are two levels to the park, the first devoted to picnic sites with grassy areas. The upper level has an open meadow and wooded areas of small oaks. Trails lead down among the large boulders of the bluff, once called "Lost City". These are well marked trails but are rather steep and narrow in places. Water is scarce in this habitat. In wet seasons a small drainage area attracts many birds. There is a fenced pond near the soccer complex where Green-backed Herons, Red-winged Blackbirds, kingbirds, and sparrows are found in summer. In the winter Mallards, Gadwall and Blue-winged Teal may use the pond.

In the spring look for Eastern Phoebes among the bluffs, Northern and Orchard orioles, Indigo and Painted buntings along the crest, Field and Chipping sparrows in the meadow, and vireos and warblers in the woods during migration. Eastern Bluebirds, Common Flickers, Red-bellied Wood­peckers, and Brown Thrashers are seen most of the year. In summer look for catbirds, both Eastern and Western kingbirds, and Scissor-tailed Flycatchers. Along the river the Belted Kingfisher and herons and egrets are easily seen. Winter birds to look for include the Northern Cardinal, Common Bobwhite, American Kestrel, Pine Siskin, and American Goldfinch. Winter sparrows are common along the brushy edges of the meadow and many Dark-eyed Juncos are present.

The eastern chipmunk and both the gray and red fox are known to call this area home. The columbine and the smoke tree are two unusual plants to be found in the area. Dog-toothed violets may be common in early spring on moist north-facing slopes in the upper section.



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Last modified: September 21, 2009




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