Rare and Notables – November 2020

  • Incredibly, the YELLOW-BILLED LOON (immature) found on Dickey Lake by Nikki M. on July 5th was present until Oct. 21st at the latest (Lewis Y.) Unsure if it is still around.
  • 10/19 – Surf Scoter found at the Creston wetland (Craig H.)
  • 10/23 – Mew Gull spotted at the Lakeside Marina among other gulls (Dan C.)
  • 10/28 – A Short-eared Owl was spotted flying near dusk over the West Valley ponds area (Cory D.)
  • 10/30 – 3 Rusty Blackbirds foraging at muddy margins on the pond on Clark Dr. (Josh C.)
  • 11/04 – An Iceland Gull was spotted at the Flathead Co Landfill (Craig H.)
  • 11/10 – One female Rusty Blackbird was found in the west valley at the pond on Clark Rd. (Josh C.)
  • 11/12 – A female Purple Finch came into feeders in Somers, was also spotted 10/21 (Dan C.)
  • 11/15 – White-winged Scoter present for 2 days on Rogers Lake near Kila (Tracy S. & Linda W.)
  • 11/16 – 4 Rusty Blackbirds continuing sporadically near Creston, along Riverside Rd (Craig H.)

What to Expect –December 2020

December, when true winter sets in, is when backyard birding can really take off. Winter finches like Pine Siskins, Evening Grosbeaks, and Common Redpolls can make surprise visits among the hoards of House Finches, American Goldfinches, and Dark-eyed Juncos. Chickadees, nuthatches, and woodpeckers feed all day from feeders during the cold winters. Bohemian Waxwings wander in search of berries, and Merlins know to follow them. Pine Grosbeaks sometimes flow into town to feed on Mountain Ash berries.

The open ag-land has both Red-tailed and Rough-legged Hawks hunting, and the occasional flock of Snow Buntings. Christmas Bird Counts in the Flathead usually turn up a lot of good species, which means there are still a lot of birds out there to see, even in the middle of winter!