A Travellerspoint blog

Idaho Day 8: City of Rocks

S. Idaho

semi-overcast 87 °F

Today, my birding friends Jean Seymour and Kathleen Cameron birded with me throughout a large swath of the state of Idaho. We were headed down to the City of Rocks area in search of two main target birds: Virginia’s Warbler and Pinyon Jay. We were also hoping to possibly find Black-throated Gray Warbler & Long-billed Curlew. The day started at 5:50am with my alarm, and in under an hour, Jean and I were on the way to pick up Kathleen!

Along the state highway heading east from Shoshone ID, we spotted a SAGE THRASHER, one of many:
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And a WESTERN MEADOWLARK:
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Then, we stopped by a fluddle alongside the road where in flew a LESSER YELLOWLEGS:
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A beautiful male BREWER’S BLACKBIRD was foraging there too — a common bird, but often under appreciated.
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Immature-type YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD:
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We also found a few SWAINSON’S HAWKS along the way:
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In the town of Elba ID, we spotted a young buck deer with his rack just growing in:
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Sometimes I find it incredibly important to find the beauty in the little things in life.
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I was surprised to see snow lingering in the mountains of southern Idaho this late in the summer, despite the harsh, hot, desert climate the valleys below experience for this portion of the year (though today was a pleasantly cool day).
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BARN SWALLOWS:
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BLACK-CHINNED HUMMINGBIRDS:
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Along our first proper birding stop on the road into Castle Rocks State Park, we spotted BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS, BUSHTIT, & these JUNIPER TITMICE — all specialties of the pinyon/juniper habitat found almost exclusively in this part of the state.
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Castle Rocks State Park is gorgeous.
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MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD:
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The next stop was the Circle Creek Overlook in the City of Rocks National Preserve, where we ran into my favorite set of birds of the day. Perhaps the most uncommon of these was this immature-type ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER, a very range-restricted bird in the state and a species I have only seen once before.
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Next, we spotted its also-uncommon cousin the OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER:
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TOWNSEND’S SOLITAIRE was also a great find here:
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A nice DUSKY FLYCATCHER:
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Then, I decided to play the recording of one of my possible life birds, the Virginia’s Warbler. It was great habitat for this species and there was a nice mixed flock of songbirds in the area, so I figured this was as good a place as any. Sure enough, a harsh “chip!” call started up as soon as I played the song, and the three of us soon tracked down two individuals of my life-bird VIRGINIA’S WARBLER! Too cool!!!
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City of Rocks National Preserve is an incredible place.
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Look at this face-like rock formation!
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PINE SISKIN:
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Then, we spotted a few fast-flying WHITE-THROATED SWIFTS, another bird I have only seen once before (also here at City of Rocks). They flew so fast that this was the only photo of which I was able to take:
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LARK SPARROW:
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At the Smoky Mountain Campground Trailhead, we found an impressive flock of 20+ BUSHTIT! Crazy cool!
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Also present was a gorgeous male BLACK-THROATED GRAY WARBLER, another target for the day!!!
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A buck deer with a picturesque background on the way out was just begging for a photo or two.
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NORTHERN HARRIER:
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Jean spotted this grasshopper impaled on a bush, a clear sign of LOGGERHEAD SHRIKES in the area — these ferocious songbirds often impale their insect prey on fences or dead shrubs, saving these tasty snacks for later.
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Sure enough, these shrikes were around and seemed to be begging for photos!
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As were a few HORNED LARKS — here is an adult and its young:
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Next, we headed into the Jim Sage Mountains to try our luck with Pinyon Jay and anything else that might be up there. It was terribly quiet, but we eventually managed to find a GRAY FLYCATCHER:
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And sure enough, we soon figured out why the birds were so quiet; we discovered not one, but two (!) immature NORTHERN GOSHAWKS! An amazing surprise and a wonderful piece of evidence for successful breeding of this species in the area this year. Great, great news of this uncommon bird of prey!
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My heart raced when we saw some bluish jays which we hoped were my long-awaited Pinyon Jays, but they turned out to be WOODHOUSE’S SCRUB-JAYS, which are still a great bird and a new year bird for all of us!
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On the way out, we saw over eighty BREWER’S SPARROWS in the grasslands below:
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And the day was capped off by some owling at the Rupert Cemetery where we picked up both GREAT HORNED & BARN OWLS! An amazing, amazing day of birding! HUGE thanks is due to Jean Seymour for driving us around for 16+ hours in her car today, and for Kathleen Cameron who also helped plan the trip. Love you guys!

Bird-of-the-day to the Virginia’s Warbler, with runners-up to Ash-throated Flycatcher, Black-throated Gray Warbler, & Northern Goshawk. So many quality, quality birds from which to choose! The full list of 75 species we identified today is attached below. Stay tuned!!!

Good birding,
Henry
World Life List: 972 Species (1 life bird today: Virginia’s Warbler!)

1. Canada Goose
2. Mallard
3. Rock Pigeon
4. Eurasian Collared-Dove
5. Mourning Dove
6. Common Nighthawk
7. White-throated Swift
8. Black-chinned Hummingbird
9. Rufous Hummingbird
10. Killdeer
11. Lesser Yellowlegs
12. Spotted Sandpiper
13. Ring-billed Gull
14. American White Pelican
15. White-faced Ibis
16. Turkey Vulture
17. Osprey
18. Northern Harrier
19. Northern Goshawk
20. Swainson’s Hawk
21. Red-tailed Hawk
22. Great Horned Owl
23. Barn Owl
24. Northern Flicker
25. American Kestrel
26. Ash-throated Flycatcher
27. Western Kingbird
28. Olive-sided Flycatcher
29. Western Wood-Pewee
30. Gray Flycatcher
31. Dusky Flycatcher
32. Loggerhead Shrike
33. Woodhouse’s Scrub-Jay
34. Black-billed Magpie
35. American Crow
36. Common Raven
37. Horned Lark
38. Tree Swallow
39. Northern Rough-winged Swallow
40. Barn Swallow
41. Mountain Chickadee
42. Juniper Titmouse
43. Bushtit
44. Red-breasted Nuthatch
45. Rock Wren
46. House Wren
47. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
48. Mountain Bluebird
49. Townsend’s Solitaire
50. American Robin
51. Gray Catbird
52. Sage Thrasher
53. European Starling
54. Cedar Waxwing
55. House Sparrow
56. House Finch
57. Pine Siskin
58. American Goldfinch
59. Yellow-headed Blackbird
60. Western Meadowlark
61. Red-winged Blackbird
62. Brewer’s Blackbird
63. Virginia’s Warbler
64. Yellow Warbler
65. Yellow-rumped Warbler
66. Black-throated Gray Warbler
67. Wilson’s Warbler
68. Western Tanager
69. Lazuli Bunting
70. Spotted Towhee
71. Brewer’s Sparrow
72. Vesper Sparrow
73. Lark Sparrow
74. Lincoln’s Sparrow
75. Dark-eyed Junco

Posted by skwclar 23:25 Archived in USA Comments (1)

Idaho Day 7: Sawtooth Lake

Sawtooth Wilderness, ID

semi-overcast 80 °F

Today, my family, a family friend named Tod, and I hiked to Alpine & Sawtooth Lakes in the Sawtooth Wilderness of central Idaho. As well as the beautiful scenery of the area, I was hoping to possibly find two life birds: Spruce Grouse in the conifer forest at the beginning of the trail, and Black Rosy-Finch at the snowfields at the top of the hike. The grouse has been reported from this location recently, so I was hopeful as I had tried and failed for both of these birds many times before. It was a beautiful drive from Sun Valley to the Iron Creek Trailhead for the hike. Here is the Smoky Range in the morning light:
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On the way to the hike, we briefly stopped at Galena Summit which I believe is the highest location of any Idaho state route. I made a quick scan for birds ad quickly found this MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD which unfortunately didn’t allow for stellar views:
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As well as a few finch species, including RED CROSSBILLS which I only heard, and this PINE SISKIN:
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After another hour on the road, we made it to the trailhead and started hiking soon after 8am. At the beginning of the hike, it was a teeth-chattering 38 degrees! (though this seemed balmy compared to 28 degrees at the start of last year’s hike to Goat Lake out of this same trailhead) I quickly found some CANADA JAYS (formerly called Gray Jays), the first I have seen in quite a while. This trail is one of the best places in the area to find this localized species.
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Another montane-nesting specialty found alongside the trail was a SWAINSON’S THRUSH:
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And I was pleasantly surprised to find a good number of GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLETS, the more uncommon of the two kinglets in this part of the state.
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Probably one of my favorite birds during the hike came in the form of this female WILLIAMSON’S SAPSUCKER, an uncommon and localized montane woodpecker species that can be hard to find in this part of the state:
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RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH — over thirty of these today!
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A few CLARK’S NUTCRACKERS also made brief appearances throughout the hike:
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The views of the Sawtooth Mountains during the hike got progressively better as we got higher and higher. It also got cooler and windier as we hiked up and up.
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Aster (?) wildflowers abounded alongside the trail:
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Male HAIRY WOODPECKER:
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My mom and sister posing in front of Alpine Lake. My dad and his friend Tod stopped at Alpine Lake to relax while my mom, sister, and I continued on the tougher climb to Sawtooth Lake.
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Female LAZULI BUNTING:
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A mammalian surprise was this Pika, the first I have ever seen in Idaho! These uncommon creatures abound in harsh, rocky, alpine climates in the Rocky Mountain West, though they are significantly tougher to find in central Idaho (possibly competing with Golden-mantled Ground-Squirrels, which were incredibly common throughout the hike).
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As we approached Sawtooth Lake, it got colder and colder and we passed by a patch of snow of which my sister took advantage to execute several snow-angels (in August!):
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Then, we arrived. Sawtooth Lake was a spectacular place, a mile-long alpine lake with beautiful views of the surrounding peaks, the highest in the Sawtooth Range. Glaciers decorated the cliffsides, wind howled through the lake basin, and the sun blazed above, providing only a measly force of heat at the impossibly high elevation.
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This is a disk cloud, typically caused by wind sheer in mountainous areas.
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Again, the wildflowers did not disappoint!
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Female CASSIN’S FINCH:
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Alas, I failed to find any Black Rosy-Finches in the alpine areas above Sawtooth Lake. Thankfully, I will have one more shot to find these birds this summer because my family and I will hike up to Pioneer Basin on the 19th. This is a known breeding location for Rosy Finches, so fingers crossed! The view of Alpine Lake on the way down was once again marvelous:
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VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOW:
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RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET:
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The Sawtooths.
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Near the end of the hike, I found a beautiful male WESTERN TANAGER which was obliging enough to pose for these photos very close to the trail.
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As my parents washed up at the trailhead after the hike, I walked through the Iron Creek Campground in hopes of stumbling upon a lone Spruce Grouse, which can be found there. I didn’t find the grouse, but instead I found this RED-NAPED SAPSUCKER:
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On the way home we made another brief stop at Galena Summit which was fairly quiet except for this female CASSIN’S FINCH:
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Well, I failed to find either of my target birds for the day, but I believe I will have other chances to look for them this trip, so all hope is not lost! Bird-of-the-day to the Williamson’s Sapsucker with runner-up to heard-only Northern Goshawk & Red Crossbill. The full list from the day is attached below. It was a wonderful hike with my family! Stay tuned — tomorrow I head down to the City of Rocks/Castle Rock area in southern Idaho in search of several life birds: Pinyon Jay, Virginia’s Warbler, and Long-billed Curlew.

Good birding,
Henry
World Life List: 971 Species

1. Canada Goose
2. Common Merganser
3. Rock Pigeon
4. Eurasian Collared-Dove
5. Northern Goshawk
6. Swainson’s Hawk
7. Red-tailed Hawk
8. Williamson’s Sapsucker
9. Red-naped Sapsucker
10. Hairy Woodpecker
11. Northern Flicker
12. Peregrine Falcon
13. Olive-sided Flycatcher
14. Western Wood-Pewee
15. Canada Jay
16. Steller’s Jay
17. Clark’s Nutcracker
18. Black-billed Magpie
19. Common Raven
20. Violet-green Swallow
21. Cliff Swallow
22. Mountain Chickadee
23. Red-breasted Nuthatch
24. Brown Creeper
25. Golden-crowned Kinglet
26. Ruby-crowned Kinglet
27. Mountain Bluebird
28. Swainson’s Thrush
29. American Robin
30. Cassin’s Finch
31. Red Crossbill
32. Pine Siskin
33. Brewer’s Blackbird
34. Yellow-rumped Warbler
35. Western Tanager
36. Lazuli Bunting
37. Chipping Sparrow
38. Dark-eyed Junco

Posted by skwclar 19:11 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Idaho Day 6: Searching in the Sage

Central Idaho

sunny 97 °F

Today, my wonderful birding friend Kathleen generously guided me around for the vast majority of the day. Our target was Greater Sage-Grouse which would be a life bird for me, but the other purpose of the day would also be to scout locations for our planned “big day” on August 21.

After being picked up bright and early at 7:30AM, Kathleen and I headed to Greenhorn Gulch where there have been two sightings of Sage Grouse recently. We were immediately greeted by a flurry of birds along the road — CLIFF SWALLOWS.
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Then, Kathleen spotted a hummer which turned out to be a female RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD.
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Next, I spotted a MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD:
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Here it is with an AMERICAN ROBIN, two thrush species in one photo:
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Male LAZULI BUNTING:
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BARN SWALLOWS:
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A nice find was when this ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER briefly flew into the area where we were keeping our eyes peeled for Sage Grouse. Notice its brood patch on its belly — super cool to confirm Orange-crowneds breeding in the area!
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Some screeching from a nearby hillside alerted us to the presence of an adult & immature RED-TAILED HAWK.
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CEDAR WAXWING:
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We were delighted to see a bird we had both been musing about during the early morning hours, a beautiful LEWIS’ WOODPECKER!
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Despite searching the reported area in Greenhorn Gulch, nada — no Sage Grouse. This WILLOW FLYCATCHER was somewhat of a consolation:
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Kathleen spotted some PINE SISKINS on the way out:
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As well as a male AMERICAN KESTREL:
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After an unsuccessful try for the Grouse at Apache Drive east of Hailey, the next stop was Rock Creek Ranch, where Kathleen has had Sage Grouse in the past. Suddenly, a huge bird burst out of the sage in front of us and Kathleen said its long tail, pale coloration, and barring on the tail pointed to it being a Northern Goshawk. Unfortunately, it flew away too quickly to really get a clinching identification.

A classic sage species, BREWER’S SPARROW, greeted us as we hiked into the habitat a bit:
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Then, a large accipiter (bird-eating hawk) circled a few times overhead, and sure enough, we had our juvenile NORTHERN GOSHAWK — too cool! I have only seen this bird once before, and this was such a surprising habitat in which to see it, sagebrush desert! Northern Goshawk is typically an apex predator of deep conifer forest.
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At an oasis in the desert, one of many at which we were hoping to scare off a random Sage Grouse, passerines greeted us such as this WESTERN WOOD-PEWEE:
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And a nice WILSON’S WARBLER, a bit of a surprise.
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LARK SPARROW was also great to see:
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As well as a SAY’S PHOEBE, my first this year!
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Yet another sage species appeared, a SAGE THRASHER. Cmon Sage Grouse, where are you???
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And we were treated to beautiful looks at a WESTERN MEADOWLARK.
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Alas, despite plenty of cruising through appropriate habitat, we failed to find any Sage Grouse in Rock Creek Ranch. Three strikes and you’re out? We had yet to see...
Next, we cruised down West Magic Desert Road because it goes through a fair amount of desert habitat in which it would be possible to find a grouse. At a desert pond, we found a pair of uncommon HOODED MERGANSERS, our only ones of the day:
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A red dragonfly was also a sweet find there:
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As well as the first frog I have ever seen in Idaho! Far out! I believe this is a Pacific Tree Frog, though it was in a completely unexpected habitat, a desert oasis with no trees.
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As we drove in closer to the town of Magic, we spotted another goal for the day, a LOGGERHEAD SHRIKE:
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The town of West Magic gently encourages safe driving.
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Then, it was of course obligatory to bird the Magic Reservoir since we were right in the area, and it indeed had a good amount of bird life. Though water levels were high meaning shorebirds were for the most part absent, waterfowl and other aquatic species certainly made up for them. WESTERN GREBES like this one abounded; I believe we spotted over fifty today. We even found a (probably abandoned) nest at one point!
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WESTERN KINGBIRD:
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WHITE-FACED IBIS, a bird I have only ever gotten here at the Magic Reservoir, with a CANADA GOOSE & a RING-BILLED GULL.
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NORTHERN SHOVELER — look at that bill!
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MALLARD family:
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AMERICAN WHITE PELICANS, another conspicuous species at Magic Reservoir with over forty individuals present today:
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A nice surprise were two BUFFLEHEADS:
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And throughout all of the many Western Grebes present, we managed to pick out three similar-looking CLARK’S GREBES including this one. Notice the large white face compared to the Western Grebe, with the clinching ID mark being white feathers surrounding the eye, as opposed to black on the Western.
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This photo from today shows a nice comparison between a CLARK’S (left) and WESTERN (right) GREBE. Notice the location of the eyes on the respective birds as noted in my identification description above.
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And yet another duck surprise was this CANVASBACK:
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PIED-BILLED GREBE, one of a number of these found in the Reservoir today. Unfortunately, we failed to find any Eared Grebes.
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NORTHERN SHOVELERS in flight:
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Much of the birding at the Magic Reservoir today looked like this. Dozens upon dozens of cormorants, gulls, and waterfowl to pick through at relatively far ranges for our cameras. Pictured here are DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS, CALIFORNIA & RING-BILLED GULLS, and MALLARDS.
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CALIFORNIA GULL.
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After the Magic Reservoir, we headed over to the nearby Richfield Diversion Dam to see what we could find in this desert oasis habitat. It would also be our last shot at the Sage Grouse for the day. An OSPREY landed nearby, fish in talons:
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Although it was overall quiet, we did find a number of WESTERN WOOD-PEWEES such as this one:
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EASTERN KINGBIRD was another neat find here, after seeing the Westerns earlier in the day:
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As well as a roosting COMMON NIGHTHAWK:
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Again, no Sage Grouse! We decided to give one last ditch attempt at a location along Highway 20 where the grouse were reported just the other day. We managed a brief look at a SWAINSON’S HAWK:
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A single NORTHERN HARRIER also cruised over the field in the distance. But despite another search, Sage Grouse were nowhere to be found. Well, we certainly gave it our best shot — just about ten hours worth of effort, driving & hiking through sagebrush habitat and finding 74 great bird species, but no Sage Grouse. The full list is attached below.

Bird-of-the-day to the extreme surprise Northern Goshawk with runner-up to the Canvasback which is always a wonderful duck species to see. STAY TUNED: tomorrow my family & I will hike into the Sawtooth Mountains in search of my life bird Spruce Grouse (fingers crossed — it’s another long shot, lol)!

Good birding,
Henry
World Life List: 971 Species

1. Canada Goose
2. Cinnamon Teal
3. Northern Shoveler
4. Mallard
5. Canvasback
6. Bufflehead
7. Hooded Merganser
8. Common Merganser
9. Pied-billed Grebe
10. Western Grebe
11. Clark’s Grebe
12. Eurasian Collared-Dove
13. Mourning Dove
14. Common Nighthawk
15. Rufous Hummingbird
16. American Coot
17. Killdeer
18. Spotted Sandpiper
19. Ring-billed Gull
20. California Gull
21. Caspian Tern
22. Forster’s Tern
23. Double-crested Cormorant
24. American White Pelican
25. Great Blue Heron
26. White-faced Ibis
27. Black Vulture
28. Osprey
29. Northern Harrier
30. Northern Goshawk
31. Swainson’s Hawk
32. Red-tailed Hawk
33. Lewis’ Woodpecker
34. Northern Flicker
35. American Kestrel
36. Prairie Falcon
37. Western Kingbird
38. Eastern Kingbird
39. Western Wood-Pewee
40. Willow Flycatcher
41. Say’s Phoebe
42. Loggerhead Shrike
43. Steller’s Jay
44. Black-billed Magpie
45. Tree Swallow
46. Violet-green Swallow
47. Bank Swallow
48. Cliff Swallow
49. Barn Swallow
50. Black-capped Chickadee
51. House Wren
52. Mountain Bluebird
53. American Robin
54. Sage Thrasher
55. European Starling
56. Cedar Waxwing
57. House Sparrow
58. House Finch
59. Cassin’s Finch
60. Pine Siskin
61. American Goldfinch
62. Western Meadowlark
63. Red-winged Blackbird
64. Brewer’s Blackbird
65. Orange-crowned Warbler
66. Yellow Warbler
67. Wilson’s Warbler
68. Lazuli Bunting
69. Spotted Towhee
70. Chipping Sparrow
71. Brewer’s Sparrow
72. Vesper Sparrow
73. Lark Sparrow
74. Song Sparrow

Posted by skwclar 22:16 Archived in USA Comments (1)

Idaho Day 5: Redfish Lake!

Sawtooth National Recreation Area, ID

semi-overcast 72 °F

Today, Pearl and I were graciously invited to venture up to beautiful Redfish Lake with our friends Emma, Ashley, Gina, and Lucas. This is a popular day trip destination in central Idaho — and for a good reason — it is absolutely beautiful.
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Upon arriving and snapping the above photo, I immediately went birding along the northwestern shore of the lake. A female WESTERN TANAGER was nice:
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WARBLING VIREO:
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All smiles on a beautiful day!
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An OSPREY flew over:
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WHITE-CROWNED SPARROWS typically do not nest in large numbers within the Wood River Valley (Sun Valley area), but in the vicinity of Redfish Lake in the Salmon River drainage area, these are fairly common nesters.
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We had a lot of fun in the lake! Here is Pearl:
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Toward the end of our day, I went birding again, this time in the vicinity of the visitor center, and it was a bit more productive with regards to passerines. The best bird of the day was this female RED CROSSBILL, one of my favorite Idaho nesting birds:
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YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER (Audubon’s or western subspecies):
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Female CASSIN’S FINCH:
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It was an absolutely beautiful evening at Redfish Lake.
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On the way home, we spotted a few cars pulled over so we hit the breaks and admired a female Moose in the upper Wood River Valley across from the Boulder Mountains. It was a beautiful drive home. Thanks so much to our friends for taking us!
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Bird-of-the-day to the Red Crossbill with runner-up to the Osprey. The full list from today is attached below. Stay tuned: tomorrow I am headed out with my friend Kathleen Cameron in search of a nemesis of mine, the Greater Sage-Grouse!

Good birding,
Henry
World Life List: 971 Species

1. Sandhill Crane
2. Spotted Sandpiper
3. Osprey
4. Red-tailed Hawk
5. Warbling Vireo
6. Steller’s Jay
7. American Crow
8. Tree Swallow
9. Violet-green Swallow
10. Black-capped Chickadee
11. Mountain Chickadee
12. Red-breasted Nuthatch
13. Ruby-crowned Kinglet
14. Mountain Bluebird
15. Cassin’s Finch
16. Red Crossbill
17. Brewer’s Blackbird
18. Yellow-rumped Warbler
19. Western Tanager
20. Chipping Sparrow

Posted by skwclar 18:43 Archived in USA Comments (1)

Idaho Day 4: Up Bald Mountain

Ketchum, ID

sunny 70 °F

Today I hiked part of the way up Bald Mountain in Ketchum, Idaho on the Warm Springs Trail with my Dad. This trail passes through some nice stretches of conifer forests where in the past I have gotten Northern Pygmy-Owl, Townsend’s Solitaire, Black-backed Woodpecker, and other high-elevation conifer forest specialties here in Idaho.

The trail starts off by passing over Warm Springs Creek, where a SONG SPARROW or two can always reliably be found:
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Then it moves up the mountain through ski runs and stretches of conifer forests where many Pine Squirrels call it home:
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After quite a bit of searching, I finally got a view of the heard-only HAMMOND’S FLYCATCHER from the other day:
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BROWN CREEPERS were once again fairly numerous throughout the hike:
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And a few RUBY-CROWNED KINGLETS, such as this one, were seen:
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A high-elevation WARBLING VIREO was a surprise because these are usually found in lower riparian habitats:
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MOUNTAIN CHICKADEES abounded throughout the day but were too skittish for decent photos:
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I got a quick view of a decent migrant species, an ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER:
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Juvenile CHIPPING SPARROW, many of these breed up and down the ski runs on Bald Mountain:
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The surprise of the day was when a hummingbird flew over the trail, I played the recording of a CALLIOPE HUMMINGBIRD, and it came zooming back in! I have never tried playback with hummers before and this brief interaction was very interesting. Only the third time I have ever seen this uncommon species! It is the smallest hummer in the USA.
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A few raucous calls alerted me to the presence of a STELLER’S JAY:
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My first-of-the-year DUSKY FLYCATCHER was found in typical Dusky habitat: disturbed, dead conifer forest. It was again a quick sighting; tough to photograph.
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A female WESTERN TANAGER was also nice:
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And a juvenile:
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We called it a day after summiting one of the north ridges of Bald Mountain — it had a wonderful view west into the Warm Springs drainage area.
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Any ideas what this specimen is? My best guess is juvenile Western Tanager again, but the beak seems disproportionately large. Let me know in the comments what you think!
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A single CLARK’S NUTCRACKER, a classic high-elevation corvid species, flushed from the trail as we unknowingly passed by, and it posed for a photo:
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NORTERN FLICKER was also nice to see:
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Bird-of-the-day to the Calliope Hummingbird with runner-up to the Dusky Flycatcher. A slower morning, but some nice highlights.

Good birding,
Henry
World Life List: 971 Species

Posted by skwclar 13:04 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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