Re: Some interesting birds


Hey all, RL here... again.
Jason Talbot and I birded Elmore and Owyhee Co.'s Wednesday on our Veteran's Day push. All along the river we noticed goldeneye most everywhere. A few clumps and smaller scatterings of them on the river from Grandview on up to about a mile below the dam but almost none from the island, where the recent Black Scoter was found, to the dam. Two good-sized rafts on the big water behind CJ dam but essentially none above that to Jack's Ck..
Possibly the really big numbers have yet to arrive.
My real curiosity is the numbers of Snow Geese that I have been seeing on the several trips I have made to the area recently. The over-swampingly number of them have been flyovers moving SE at altitude with only a relative few on land or the water. My curiosity is what is bringing them here to SW Idaho this time of year. We normally wouldn't see
these numbers until starting in January. Could one possibility be that the OR and CA fires are pushing them out of their normal flyway? I don't think it is the weather so much as might be expected with smaller birds?

----- Original Message -----
From: Elizabeth Medes <liz.medes@...>
Sent: Fri, 13 Nov 2020 14:19:24 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: [IBLE] Some interesting birds

They were frequent dependable visitors in winter on the north channel of Plantation Island, at least when we lived there in the 90s.

The day the pandemic was declared, March 11th to be exact, I was birding with two friends at the Shakespeare festival grounds.  We saw both species of goldeneyes.  That seems worlds away.  Did see one the other day, a single male Barrows, at the new F&G Dick Knox ponds due to open soon here in Emmett.  

Liz Medes

On Wed, Nov 11, 2020 at 9:12 PM bike4birds <tmccabe9@...> wrote:

The only Goldeneyes I have seen so far this season were all the way down river in the ponds at Laguna Point. I agree, I used to see them at the bridge by the stables every winter. Maybe they’re still on their way.

Tom [] On Behalf Of Elizabeth Medes
Sent: Wednesday, November 11, 2020 6:45 PM
Subject: Re: [IBLE] Some interesting birds


Have you seen either variety of goldeneyes there?  We lived by that bridge for a few years, and they were such a winter sight for sore eyes.



Emmett ID


On Wed, Nov 11, 2020 at 4:13 PM bike4birds <tmccabe9@...> wrote:

As I was crossing the bridge from Plantation Island to the stables at Les Bois, I heard the distinct sound of a Blue Jay. Since I hadn’t seen or heard any of the critters for at least a week, if not longer, I got focused immediately. He kept calling and calling, but remained hidden until finally flying up to the top of the trees on the other side of the river channel, still on the island. I got great looks before the bird flew off to the north side of the river.

And yesterday I again encountered the bird I originally called a Eurasian Wigeon. After getting better views, I’m leaning towards an American/Eurasian hybrid. While it has the red head of the Eurasian, it still has the green eye stripe of the American. It was in the same location as before, the pond between Lander St. and the greenbelt. I couldn’t find it today.

The immature Snow Goose continues to pop up at Esther Simplot Park (ESP) every few days. While I didn’t see it today, it has been there in the last couple of days.

In addition, a Merlin has started to show up at ESP. Again, I do not see it every day, but I pass through on my rides and don’t hang out there. He was there today, in a large dead tree by the artificial island they built in the river, but I have seen him all around the park.

Finally, I got a call from Dr. Koob, a local veterinarian, who told me that the Ruth Melichar Bird Center will be working at rehabbing a Surf Scoter that was found nearby. So keep your eyes peeled in case there are more around. I found one at Silver Lake years ago, and I was so shocked I almost dropped my binos. That bird hung out for a few days in Boise and a couple more days in Eagle.

Tom McCabe, Boise

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