Valley county big day

Hi all, 
This past Monday, the 28th of August myself, my dad, Bruce, and my brother Andrew as well as a friend of ours did a valley county big day. I’m not aware of any previous attempts at a valley county big day, and this was mostly a trial run as we weren’t sure of the best route. (If anyone knows of any previous valley county big day records please let me know, I’d love to know of any.) We started by camping on the South fork of the salmon river, just barely in valley county and at the lowest elevation possible that I am aware of. On the way in the day before we had Red-Eyed Vireo and Canyon wren which were county birds for us. That night at Shiefer campground we heard a Western-Screech owl which as far as I am aware is a second county record of this species. The Big day went well, and we picked up many birds as we drove out of the backcountry. Three black bears were fun surprises on the drive. One surprise was the (very early) small flock of snow geese at old state hwy 55 where it runs into cascade lake. Also two Juvenile black-crowned herons were county birds for us. We struggled on shorebird numbers and missed several east birds we could have easily gotten with more time. We ended up short of time and daylight in long valley which didn’t help our numbers at all. Our last bird of the day was a Great horned owl near payette lake, the only owl of the day. Our ending number was 120 species in valley county that day. With a modified schedule I believe 130-40 species is very possible!!
Hope this is of interest to some. 

Eric Pratt

Re: Praise for the Saucer!

It appears to me that Idaho hummingbird migration started 2 wks earlier than usual & will probably be drawing to a close in the next 2 wks. At least for the majority of the hummers  through my area. Last year, I kept feeders up into early October. Suspect, will be done this year by mid-Sept. 

Yesterday’s Rufous was a surprise. As they were first to start through in early July & hadn’t seen any for past sev wks. My sister lives in NW WA & says the Rufous left earlier this yr than they’d ever witnessed. She usually sees juvies into Aug, but had cleared out by last of July. 

Brian Carrigan

Re: Mountain Chickadee

My platform feeder is a Duncraft brand & will hold 2 lb of black oil sunflower seeds. Has a metal screen base, plastic wood-appearance sides & 4-point chain wire hangers. Don’t know exact measurements, but approximately 1-1/2 ft square. 

Drains well, easy to just spray clean & has lasted 4 yrs, in every season, now & still looks new. Hope this helps. 

Brian Carrigan