TIME TO CLEAN THAT KESTREL BOX!
American Kestrels will be winging their way back soon, looking for nest sites and beginning to use the boxes we have put up around the valley. If you have a kestrel nest box out now is the time to check it and clean it before the birds are back. Remove any old dirty nesting materials. Often boxes are used by house wrens, tree swallows, and other species, even if a kestrel hasn’t taken advantage of the box. Throw out old nests and scrape out debris and whitewash. Then add 2 inches of clean softwood shavings for bedding (pine or aspen are good). Avoid cedar shavings as they are too strongly aromatic. Sacajawea Audubon will have bags of clean wood shavings available for free at the March 9th program. We will also have a few kestrel boxes available for sale if you are interested in installing one.
A sure cure for spring fever is lots of early spring birds! The primary focus of this trip will be the migrating waterfowl at Ennis Lake. At this time of year the ducks will be at their dazzling best in full breeding plumage, and usually in great abundance. This is also near the peak of migration for some of the larger waterfowl, such as Tundra Swans and Snow Geese. Along with the waterfowl, this trip will provide a good opportunity for finding other early migrants such as Sandhill Cranes, Tree Swallows, and Mountain Bluebirds. It is spring in Montana so be sure to be prepared for the weather, with plenty of warm layers of clothing for a day out in the elements. We will return to the museum mid afternoon, so bring a lunch and snacks.
This trip will meet at the Museum of the Rockies parking lot at 8 AM Saturday March, 28th. After arranging for carpooling, we will head for Ennis Lake at 8:15. There is a 15 person limit for the trip, so sign up early. Contact Vic Fesolowitz at 587-0221 or 539-8251 to reserve a spot.
**FIELD TRIP FULL WITH WAITING LIST**
Join Sacajawea Audubon for our annual Owl Prowl on Saturday, March 21st. MT State Park Naturalist and birder extraordinaire Tom Forwood, Jr. will lead the field trip. Some of the owl species we hope to hear, and possibly see, include Western Screech-Owl, Northern Pygmy-Owl, Northern Saw-Whet Owl and Great Horned Owl. This is an evening field trip, so please dress for cold weather, including warm boots. Snowshoes are not necessary, but grippers might be helpful if conditions are icy. The location of the Owl Prowl is TBD.
If you are interested in going on this field trip, please contact Tom Forwood to sign up at email@example.com or phone 406-570-6432. Field trip is limited to 10 participants. Registered participants will meet at the Museum of the Rockies parking lot at 7:30 p.m. for carpooling.