Much of the Reserve is covered by Monterey Pine forest. All of the interior trails, as well as the Carmelo Meadows and South Plateau trails meander through this forest. Dark-eyed Juncos, Chestnut-backed Chickadees, and Bushtits abound.
You may see Northern Flicker, Hairy Woodpeckers, Acorn Woodpeckers, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Bewick's Wrens, Pacific (Winter) Wrens, Brown Creepers, and Pygmy Nuthatches.
I always hear more birds than I see when walking the forest trails. Spotted Towhees, California Quail, and a number of warblers and thrushes can be heard if not seen.
In the spring, the swallows return to Point Lobos, and you can see Violet-Green Swallows nesting in woodpecker holes in the Pines along the Carmelo Meadows trail and Whaler's Knoll trail.
A couple of years ago, the Reserve was abuzz when a birder found a Northern Saw-whet Owl nest in a dead pine tree just off the Carmelo Meadows trail.
One highlight of the pine forest is the annual termite hatch, which happens on the day after the first rain in the fall. It is a great time to see warblers and wrens, who are usually hidden, out in the open being gluttons. The best spot in the reserve to witness this is on the Pine Ridge Trail about 500 ft SW of the Piney Woods trail-head (go up the trail and turn right on the Pine Ridge trail, walk to the bench and then go about 100 ft further). It is a once a year thing.