Spring Shore-birding in Idaho

Spring and fall shore-birding is one of my favorite activities; you never know what might show up in a flock of shorebirds on a mudflat! This spring I am in Idaho and so I had a bunch of new shorebird spots to check out. By far the best spot that I went to on a regular basis for shorebirds was Blacks Creek Reservoir. The water-level was high there but the bit of exposed mud on the southeastern corner and the muddy peninsula on the western corner were decent locations for migrant shorebirds to forage. Blacks Creek also produced the two most uncommon of all the shorebird species I have seen so far in Idaho; a Dunlin which was found by Cheryl Huizinga (more info); and a Semi-palmated Sandpiper which was found by Jay Carlisle. Other locations such as Mountain Home Reservoir have also been good places to find shorebirds in good numbers. On a birding trip up through Prairie, Idaho I found a Solitary Sandpiper, the only one I have seen in Idaho. All together I have seen 19 species of shorebird in Idaho; below are photos of some of the more cooperative individuals.

Western Sandpiper

American Avocet

Spotted Sandpiper

Red-necked Phalarope


'Western' Willet

Semipalmated Plover - photo by Anna Fasoli

Least Sandpiper

Wilson's Phalarope

Last but not least, a Killdeer...yea, I know its 'just a Killdeer' but I like this shot.