Between the months of June and September each year, flocks of White-Faced Ibis (Plegadis chihi) converge on the ponds at the Woodland-Davis Clean Water Agency facility reachable from the corner of Road 102 and East Gibson Road in the city of Woodland, CA. No pets are allowed on the property. You can see the ibises build and settle into their nests, lay their bright turquoise-blue eggs, and rear their young.
• Easy to Locate? Yes
• Pet Friendly? No
• Easy to Walk? Relatively speaking, yes. The sides of the pond in which the rookery is situated are very steep and rocky in some places.
• Is there a Fee? No
• Are there Restrooms? No
• Is there Accessible Parking? Sort of. You’ll be parking on a levy with limited space, so carpooling may be a good idea.
• Other Notes: The rookery is in a settling basin on the Water Agency property. There’s a gate at the Road 102 end of the road to the rookery which may be closed and locked on holidays and the weekends. Don’t bother the employees working on the site.
See my FLICKR account for more albums of photos taken at this location throughout the last several years.
I strongly recommend bringing binoculars, a birding scope and/or a camera with a good telephoto lens to see the birds.
Along with the ibises, you may also see Canada Geese and their goslings, American Avocets, Common Gallinules, American Coots, Killdeer, Great-Tailed Grackles, Black-Necked Stilts and other shorebirds, along with Meadowlarks, Western Kingbirds, Black-Tailed Jackrabbits and Desert Cottontails.
To learn more about the White-Faced Ibis, you can CLICK HERE to read my article about the rookery from 2018.
How to Get to the Rookery
• From Sacramento, take Interstate 5 (I5) North to the City of Woodland, CA. and exit on County Road 102 (Exit 536).
• At the stop light, TURN LEFT onto Road 102
• Continue on Road 102 to the stop light at East Gibson Road. At this stop light TURN LEFT.
• NOTE: The left-hand turn is very difficult to see because there is a barrier in the way, but the turn is protected by a left-turn-only light. You’ll see a large dilapidated-looking hay barn on the corner.
• As you make the turn, you will pass through a large metal gate.
• NOTE: If the gate is not open, you can’t get in to where the rookery is, so you’ll need to make a tight turn around and leave.
• Once you get through the gate, continue on down the road until to get a T-intersection.
• TURN LEFT at this intersection and drive up onto the levy.
• The pool with the birds in it will be to your right.
There are no signs that mark the rookery, and no really specific place where the birds can be seen because they move in and nest where they feel most comfortable each year.
There are no specified parking spaces here, so park anywhere on the levy, but do not block traffic. You can get out of your car to view the birds, but do not go down near the water’s edge; stay up where your car is parked.