Firefighting jobs available

Washington’s Department of Natural Resources began accepting applications for seasonal firefighters.

Several positions in Yakima County and elsewhere throughout the state are open for the 2021 fire season. Recruiting will continue through April and applications can can be submitted at

Fly fishers meeting canceled

The Yakima Fly Fishers Association once again canceled its monthly meeting due to COVID-19 restrictions.


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The deep waters of the Columbia River attract a lot of sea ducks, loons, grebes and mergansers in the winter. This week a white-winged scoter was spotted along with several surf scoters at Getty’s Cove, just south of the Wanapum Recreation Area. Upstream of Priest Rapids Dam birders spotted common loon, eared, horned, and red-necked grebe and a female red-breasted merganser along with large rafts of scaup, ring-necked duck, ruddy duck and thousands of American coot, making for quite a spectacle.

A couple of subspecies of the large, chunky fox sparrow were recently photographed at the Yakima Area Arboretum bird blind. One was a more common, for our area, slate-colored fox sparrow and the other was a red fox sparrow, the northernmost subspecies that has been recorded passing through Washington, but only rarely. This is a great spot to study the many different species of sparrow found in Yakima County.

A Cherry Hill resident near Granger reported a calling, female, evening grosbeak that was investigating the cones of a large ponderosa pine. Some winters this heavyset finch of northern coniferous forests will show up in our area and can be a thrill to see at the feeder.

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Wednesday: The Hard Core Runners Club will meet for its weekly fun run at 6 p.m. at Franklin Park, where they run either on the track or the street. Runners must break into multiple groups if more than 10 people show up. Those wanting to run on the street should bring headlamps and reflective/illuminated clothing.