Jewel Basin 2017 – Anything but Average

by Dan Casey The 10th annual hawk migration survey at the Jewel Basin got off to a roaring start; we recorded birds at record rates from late August through Sept. 22nd. But just as we hit our usual peak season, the snows started to fall. As much as we welcomed the early season snow following…

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Ninepipes CBC 2016 Report

by Brian Williams The Ninepipes Christmas Bird Count was held on Sunday, 18 December 2016.  Sixteen observers braved the single-digit weather and treacherous roads to count birds.  The deep cold made open water scarce and held our total species down a bit from 5 and 10 year averages, but we found some excellent birds.  Short-eared…

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Kalispell CBC 2016 Report

by Pete Fisher The 18th annual Kalispell Christmas Bird Count (CBC) was held on January 1, 2017.  Twenty-eight intrepid field observers braved wind and drifting snow to count 75 species of bird. Four feeder watchers contributed data as well. Major highlights were an Iceland Gull at the Flathead Dump and a Northern Saw-whet Owl at…

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An Unusual, but Successful Season at the Jewel Basin Hawk Watch

As 2016 comes to an end, Flathead Audubon volunteers and our funding partners have conducted nine years of season-long hawk migration surveys at the Jewel Basin Hawk Watch. After recording 60 birds over four surveys during the last week of August, we conducted 22 surveys in September, including a six-day stretch (Sept 25-30) where 1,129…

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Jewel Basin Hawk Watch 2016 – A Great First Half

By Dan Casey This fall season marks the 9th year of full-time surveys at the Jewel Basin Hawk Watch, and the second year with Flathead Audubon as the primary sponsor of the effort. Thursday, Oct. 13th marked the 31st survey of the 2016 season, bringing us to 2,417 birds counted. We were on a record…

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Field Trip Report: Wild Horse Island

by Laura Katzman Ten lucky participants enjoyed an amazing tour of spectacular Wild Horse Island led by Doug MacCarter of Flathead Audubon on June 22. We boated to the island and started the tour at Doug’s family cabin on the south central shore of the island. We then hiked to Skeeko Bay learning about the history of…

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Bigfork CBC Totals 2015

by Craig Hohenberger The 42nd annual Bigfork Christmas Bird Count was held Saturday, December 19th, under cloudy skies with snow late in the day, and temperatures of 27-35º.  Thirty volunteer participants counted 12,911 individual birds of 83 species, plus another three species seen count week but not on count day. While we found no species…

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American Kestrel

By Jeannie Marcure Although my years of bird watching have familiarized me with many of the beautiful birds in our area, I have to confess that when it comes to raptors I’m still often frustrated by my inability to make positive identifications. Most people tend to think of all the day-flying birds of prey with…

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Flicker

Northern Flicker

By Lisa Bate See a flash of red-orange from a flying bird, hear the familiar “flicka, flicka, flicka” call and I know that one of my favorite birds has just landed. It is the Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)! This species is unmistakable in the field because the lower surface of its wings and tail are…

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