Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Sage Grouse and migration day

I started early this morning looking for Sage grouse leks and about froze my tail off waiting to get enough light to take pictures of America's largest grouse.  I was parked near a ridge so the first pictures were silhouettes of the grouse in the frosty air.
Then as the sun came up, warming both the birds and I, the males started showing off to the ladies.  But the girls stayed only a minute or two and then flew off - a little too early for any serious relationship.

The boys did not stay long either, so off I went to Camas NWR to see if the water was in the ponds.  The Big Pond was about a fourth covered but most of the action was in the air.  Here a Short-eared owl was encouraging a Rough-legged hawk to go to the Artic Circle where most of the others had gone.

Two Northern harriers decided to play tag over the Big Pond.

I saw my first Sandhill cranes of the year.  There were several flocks that came in.
And the Snow and Ross's geese made their grand appearance off and on throughout the morning and early afternoon.

Just a slight breeze - warm sun - and many of God's creatures prepared me for meeting the taxman to settle up with Uncle Sam - and he treated me fairly good.
Oh, the Wildness of Idaho in the Great Outdoors.


Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Interesting. A few months ago I had never heard of Leks now I get concerned about Leks and how far our pipeline work is from them and hours of operation and all that.

Don't tell anybody at work but somehow I think it is all worth it.

Barb said...

Such fabulous bird captures. I really like seeing the sage grouse. The snow geese are wonderful, too.

Cloudia said...

Marvelous! You are so blessed to be there, as we are to see through your eyes

ALOHA from Honolulu

Monts said...

Love the first image Bill,you certainly get some great species over there.

Charlie Allen said...

Nice shots Bill. You are a great photographer.