Birds

Science

A study published this week in the journal Science found that the bird population in the U.S. and Canada has fallen by nearly 30%, or 3 billion birds, over the past 48 years.

 

Mick Thompson / Flickr

As residents of Nampa deal with thousands of crows turning the town into a scene from a Hitchcock film, a preserve in eastern Idaho is seeing avian visitors of a nobler sort.

With their graceful profiles and snow white feathers, thousands of trumpeter swans have taken up residence at the Deer Parks Wildlife Mitigation Unit.

Talayeh Saghatchian / Flickr

The Treasure Valley community of Nampa is again under siege by the birds. Thousands have descended on the town for the third year in a row.

Idaho Town Braces For Avian Invasion

Sep 20, 2018
Jarkko J / Flickr

The city of Nampa is bracing for what’s become something of an avian invasion. Thousands of crows will soon visit the Treasure Valley city and bring a mess of feathers and droppings. Nampa is trying to get ahead of the influx by building a volunteer corps.


Migratory Birds Poached In Idaho Conservation Area

Jun 18, 2018
Stephanie Coates / Intermountain Bird Observatory

An alarming number of migratory birds that spend springtime in Idaho raising their young are turning up dead. Researchers say humans are to blame for recent losses.


Mick Thompson / Flickr

A weekend storm is the suspected culprit behind a bizarre incident that saw more than 50 geese fall from the sky – dead.

Crows In Nampa Causing Scenes Akin To "The Birds"

Feb 9, 2018
Cineminweb / Youtube

While bird activity has abated thanks to the recent warm weather, countless crows continue to spend the winter in Nampa.  The migratory birds seasonally mass in the city much to the chagrin of residents and business owners.

This is an encore of the program which was originally broadcast in August of 2017.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is revered as an 18th century genius who composed some of the most sublime music ever written.  The fact that a starling became his beloved pet during one of the most creative and productive periods of his short life has perplexed historians and music lovers for years. Yet the unlikely story of the great composer and his common bird is a true one, and today’s guest, Lyanda Lynn Haupt, explores it in detail in her new book, titled “Mozart’s Starling.”

Kathy Lopez / Intermountain Bird Observatory

A study that started in Idaho is expanding across eight western states in an effort to help imperiled short-eared owls. Little is known about these unique birds.

The Peregrine Fund/Bosch WebCam

The Peregrine Fund announced this week that four American Kestrel eggs have hatched in the well-watched nest in Boise. It is the sixth year the birds have raised a family live on a webcam.

The female laid the first egg on March 27 and four other eggs slowly followed. Usually eggs are laid every other day but the Peregrine Fund says a storm slowed the process down this year. After some fits and starts, four of the five eggs hatched over the weekend.

Randy Watson / Flickr

More than 500 ducks and geese have died near Parma. And the Idaho Department of Fish and Game says it knows why.

Two weeks ago, someone found hundreds of dead birds on private land at Fort Boise. Fish and Game says between 500 and 600 birds were at the site. Canada geese, mallard ducks, even a red-tailed hawk died. Several of the birds were sent to the Department’s Wildlife Health Laboratory to be tested.

Daniel Gonzalez

Boise residents know there are a lot of birds that live or pass through the city. Now the city's Parks and Recreation department has published a field guide that highlights species commonly found around town.

Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

When a person loses their sight, everyday tasks become a challenge. Walking across the street, reading a book - even hobbies can seem nearly impossible.  But one Idaho man is working to introduce visually impaired individuals to a whole new world of sound. He’s teaching the blind how to identify birds, using only their calls.

Steve Bouffard has his eyes closed and he’s listening intently on the edge of Veterans Memorial Park. He quickly identifies a song sparrow, using only the sound of its call.

Alberto Garcia / Flickr

More mosquitoes, carrying the potentially deadly West Nile Virus, have popped up in traps in Canyon County. Two weeks ago, the disease was found between Parma and Notus. Now, mosquitoes at the Roswell Marsh near Parma have tested positive.

Ed Burnett, with the Canyon County Mosquito Abatement District, says they found hundreds of Tule mosquitoes in a trap on the marsh. Tules – which carry the virus – are rare for this area. Burnett says they’ve multiplied because of recent hot weather.

Wildlife officials are investigating after residents reported a large number of dead songbirds in Kuna, a city about 18 miles southwest of Boise.

The Idaho Statesman reports that the dead birds show no signs of physical injury and were not sickened by plague.

Idaho Department of Fish and Game regional conservation educator Evin Oneale says the cause of death appears to be a specific type of pathogen that has yet to be determined.

Terry R. Thomas / naturetrack.com

When more than 2,000 migrating snow geese were found dead at eastern Idaho’s Mud Lake in March, headlines all over the country said the birds had fallen dead from the sky. Idaho’s Department of Fish and Game says that did not actually happen, but the agency has revised its explanation of what did occur.

When the birds were found, fish and game biologists saw clear signs of avian cholera. And the department initially ascribed the whole die-off to cholera.

Robin Bjork

An Idaho woman is studying the migration patterns of a rare bird in Central America. The three-wattled bellbird makes bell-like calls, and those sounds can travel half a mile. Some experts believe it’s the loudest bird in the world.

Terry R. Thomas / naturetrack.com

If you Google "snow geese" here are some of the headlines you'll find right now...

  • “Thousands of Snow Geese Fall Dead From Sky in Idaho” - Yahoo News
  • “2,000 Snow Geese Drop Dead From the Sky in Idaho” CNN
  • “2,000 Snow Geese Fall Dead ‘Out of the Sky’ in Idaho” – USA Today
  • “Basically, They Just Fell Out of the Sky’: 2,000 Snow Geese Found Dead in Idaho” – Washington Post

Migratory Birds Brought Bird Flu To Idaho

Feb 9, 2015
USDA and Iowa State University

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the avian influenza found in a flock of chickens in Parma last month, came to Idaho from Southeast Asia.

Osprey nests are a common sight near rivers, lakes and bays in the Northwest. If you look closely with binoculars, you might notice some of these large raptors like to line their nests with discarded baling twine or fishing line. The problem is it can kill them.

Matthew Podolsky

For the last 35 years, Al Larson has been helping bluebirds thrive in Idaho. He loves bluebirds. He’s known around birding circles as Idaho’s “bluebird man.” “That’s what they call me. I haven’t sprouted wings yet,” Larson chuckles.

A plan to poison 3,500 ravens in Idaho won’t proceed this year as state wildlife managers had hoped. The idea is to stop the ravens from eating the eggs of the imperilled sage grouse.

Doug Brown / Flickr Creative Commons

A plan by state wildlife biologist to kill 4,000 ravens in three Idaho areas this spring by feeding them poisoned chicken eggs has been scrapped due to federal environmental permitting delays.

The Times-News reports in a story on Tuesday that Idaho Fish and Game officials won't start the two-year program this spring aimed at boosting sage grouse numbers.

State officials say Fish and Wildlife Services is the only entity in the state with permission to administer the poison.

columbia river
Shawn Kinkade / Flickr

The Army Corps of Engineers this spring will begin killing birds at some Snake and Columbia river dams to help protect juvenile salmon and steelhead.

The agency unveiled a plan Thursday that will allow as many as 1,200 California gulls, 650 ring-billed gulls and 150 double-crested cormorants to be killed.

The Lewiston Tribune says the action will occur at McNary Dam on the Columbia River and Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose and Lower Granite dams on the Snake River.

Neil Paprocki

People in Idaho are seeing more raptors because golden eagles and red-tailed hawks aren't flying as far south for winter. That's according to a new study from Boise State University. The study authors say the change in migration habits means fewer of the birds of prey are being spotted in southern states.

Pages