Sunday, January 31, 2010

Bombing eagles

Fishing was great over the weekend.  On Friday while catching kokanee through the ice at Ririe Reservoir, we were visited by a pair of bald eagles looking for a meal.  Several trash fish had been caught by fishermen and left on the ice.  I was too far away for good pictures as they picked the fish off the ice.  But one kept flying over us looking for a handout.

Bald eagles are mostly scavangers while their cousin, Golden eagle, love to hunt and kill their meals.  This makes baiting balds, much easier than the goldens.  All you need is a dead fish laying on the ice to get them to come investigate you.

This eagle finally gives us a wave "good-bye" as we pick up our catch and head for home, closing another wild day in Idaho.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

SkyWatch Friday - Rexburg sunrise

Late last night we finally got a break from the snow and grey skies that have been with us all week.  This morning on my way to school there was enough fog in the air to create a beautiful sunrise.  I loved it.  Just hope it holds out until the weekend when I will take some boy scouts fishing.

Just the beginning of another wild day in Idaho.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Backyard birds

With the annual Great Backyard Bird Count coming up in February, I have been watching my backyard bird feeders with great interest.  Wind, fog, cold, snow, overcast skies and the occasional sunny and warm day, the birds keep coming.
Here are some Cedar Waxwings huddling on a branch with a few dead leaves hanging on.

Here a flicker gets out of the wind by huddling close to a tree trunk.

Both a Downy Woodpecker and a Hairy Woodpecker visits my feeder trees for a bite of suet.

Just another end of a wild day in my backyard in Idaho.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

SkyWatch Friday - Sunset over Ririe Reservoir

This week will ice fishing Ririe Reservoir, I caught the sun just after it set.  A great day of fishing and the end of another wild day in Idaho.

See other great sky pictures at :  Skywatch Friday

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Coyotes hunting

If you spend enough time doing things, the unexpected happens.  Both good and bad things, but I believe mostly good if you try to control situations.  By spending as much time out in the wilds, I have many great experiences.

Recently while birding, I noticed several coyotes hunting.  As I watched them I noticed they were working toward a pile of rocks near the road.  I drove down the road and hiked to the rocks where I hid.  Soon one coyote came up through some grass.


I let him come as close as I dared before I started taking pictures.  It heard the clicking of my camera and looked my way.

But then he was distracted by a gopher behind him under the snow.  So he whirled, raiseed his left foot as he located the gopher.

It then leaped into the air, caught the rodent, tossed it twice in the air, each time crushing it.  Then he swallowed it whole - a hot meal.

As I continued to take pictures, it tried to locate me, only to be distracted by another gopher under the snow.  Again he caught it, tossed it in the air twice and swallowed it whole.

It finally located me in the rocks, looked at me and head out.

Just another unexpected wild day in Idaho.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

SkyWatch Friday - Teton Sunrise

This picture was taken just seven minutes after the second picture of a sunrise over Rexburg.  It is amazing how quickly the light changes during a sunrise and sunset.  I was on my way to school when I encountered the beautiful sunrise.

Here are the Teton Peaks  peeking out from behind the Moody Mountains.

Just the beginning of another wild day in Idaho.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Backyard birds

This afternoon after I got home from church, filled the bird feeders and watched the fun and games. About 50 birds were fighting for the food.

I saw this single Hairy woodpecker working on the suet feeder and as I approached with my camera I was able to capture him on a limb.
A lot of American Goldfinch were working the niger seed sacks.

Black capped chickadees kept coming to the feeders, but the House finch and House sparrows kept chasing them away. So I stood by the feeders to allow the chickadees to feed. These little darters kept coming in and stealing a sunflower seed and flying off.

After the sparrows and finch had emptied the sunflower feeder, I went out to fill it again. The chickadees followed me to the shed where I keep the food. After filling the feeder, the chickadees followed me back to the feeder tree, flying down and taking a seed as I carried it back.

Just another wild day in the snow covered ground of Idaho.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

SkyWatch Friday - Sunrise Sunset.

Sunrise - Just before the sun rises, the fog created by below zero temperatures are colored by the sun rays before the sun has risen behind the low east clouds.

The same day the sun colors the west sky as it sets below the western horizon as I watch for eagles to fly into the large cottonwoods to perch for the night..

Just the end of another wild day in Idaho at Camas National Wildlife Refuge. Check out other beautiful sky pictures at SkyWatch Friday.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Eagles have Landed, Camas NWR

This afternoon I ran out to Camas National Wildlife Refuge to see if the eagles had showed up. Yesterday there were only 14 there and today the migration had begun with 38 showing up. I also saw Northern Harriers, Red-tailed hawks, Rough-legged hawks, Kestrels, Merlins, Northern Flickers and even a Golden eagle.

In this tree alone there are 8 mature Bald eagles and one immature Bald eagle.

Here two mature Bald eagles play tag in a very cold strong north wind.

As the sun set I located these six white-tailed deer as they came out of the cattails and started feeding.

Just another wild day in Idaho.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

White on white

Last Saturday I was involved in the Rexburg Christmas Bird Count. On New Year's Day, it had snowed eight inches and it was still snowing a little. So everything was covered with snow and was almost postcard like. I was with a group of five and we counted 38 species of birds.

Here are some white-on-white pictures I got during the count.

White berries covered with snow.

Here the trees and ground is covered with white snow.

And here are some Trumpeter swan flying against a foggy white sky.

Just another wild day in Idaho.

Friday, January 1, 2010

SkyWatch Friday - Happy New Year

Happy 2010 - May it be a very happy and joyous one for you and your families.

Snow is falling as I write this, so I will be late going fishing today. Only a couple of days before I am back in school trying to inspire kids beyond what they think they can do.

We did get a break in the gray skies earlier in the week and I stole this picture of the sunset as the sun was setting over the Henrys Fork of the Snake River near St. Anthony, Idaho.

Just the end of another wild day in Idaho. Happy New Year.