A Ross's Goose was reported by a UI student this AM and was still present mid-day at the UI Arboretum at the grassy edge of the lower pond. It appears a bit gimpy in one leg but seems to be able to fly. It was wary and hanging out w/ Canada Geese which were occasionally bossing it. A female Wood Duck was on the pond (a decent bird in town here). Otherwise fairly quiet as the Arb which is often the case here on a warm mid-day (but I didn't have much time to look around). I might have heard a brief snippet of Cassin's Vireo song.
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Hi All -
I found a female Black-backed Woodpecker (BBWO) this past Sunday (4/13) along the Potlatch Canyon Trail above the Potlatch R. This is a fairly tough species to find in Latah Co., only my third in the county (but also not a species I spend much time looking for!)
The area is a ~5 mile loop trail along the Potlatch R. southeast of the hamlet of Helmer (~40 minute drive east of Moscow). The trailhead is ~3 miles southeast of Helmer off Park Rd. (NF 1963) just on the north side of the Potlatch R. bridge. The specific location I found the BBWO was within a mile of the trailhead. Starting along a paved trail follow the loop trail (counter-clockwise) where it heads up within several hundred yards, pass through the fence/gate, and a bit farther beyond a small clearing to a stand of Lodgepole Pines. The female BBWO was just off the trail in this stand of Lodgepole. They tend to be fairly quiet foragers so you always need a bit of luck to find them. The coordinates were 46.7762, -116.4558 from my Birdlog app.
The whole loop trail is well worth hiking for a variety of typical conifer forest species. In addition to the BBWO I had Pileated, Hairy, Red-naped Sapsuckers, and flickers so it's a good area for woodpeckers. Within a month most of typical forest nesting vireos, warblers, flycatchers, etc. will also be in this area. The trail is non-motorized although nearby target shooting can sometimes be a bit annoying (but easy to get away from).
Wednesday, April 02, 2014
The Moscow ("minima") Cackling Goose is still present at the UI Dairy, usually w/ a small group of Canadas in the field well west of the ponds. There have been a few Brewer's Blackbirds mixed in with the large flock of starlings for several days in the fields behind (north) of the Dairy as well as a few Horned Larks. Brewer's are presumably recent arrivals and I'm expecting cowbirds and YH Blackbird at this location any day now. Also 3 migrating Tree Swallows went by here this AM.
The Moscow Harris's Sparrow is still being reported including yesterday in the main part of the UI Arboretum (presumably the same bird present in the area at least since January). Ruby-crowned Kinglets are being reported at the Arboretum since last week (I had 6 there on Sunday), as well as a few towhees, and a Fox Sparrow in the past few days (all gleaned from eBird).
Elsewhere around town Violet-green Swallows have been on UI Campus regularly for about a week now and Lesser Goldfinches are singing on campus, in the Arboretum, and various places around town (including my east Moscow neighborhood).