Virginia Rails, Bald Eagle, and a Milbert’s Tortoiseshell

Alex LamoreauxBird Finding Tips, Birding, Photography1 Comment

Yesterday afternoon, Anna and I visited a wetland south of Nampa, Idaho that is well-known for the Virginia Rails and Soras that call it home during the spring and summer. About 10 minutes after we arrived we heard two Virginia Rails calling and were able to call one out into the open. As one rail emerged out of the reeds, Anna was able to spot one of the bird’s little black chicks running behind it. We determined there were at least two adult rails, plus the chick (or chicks). We tried calling for Soras for quite a while with no responses of any kind from that species, so we gave up and drove over to nearby Deer Flats NWR. At the NWR we picked up a few new Idaho state birds including Clark’s Grebe and Lincoln’s Sparrow. A lone adult Bald Eagle was soaring low over one of the NWR parking lots (photo below) offering a good photo opportunity. A species of butterfly I have been wanting to see for a while, the Milbert’s Tortoiseshell, was also flying around near one of the parking lots (photo below). I wasn’t able to get a great photo, but I am still glad I finally got to see this strangely-patterned species!

Virginia Rail (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Virginia Rail (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Bald Eagle - adult (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Milbert's Tortoiseshell