We continued scoping, and continued to see loons! We finished our circuit around the lake, and headed out on the road to check out some raptors. We saw lots of Red-tails and Rough-legs, adn then Jay spotted something unexpected in a field of grazing cattle. We turned around after passing it on the highway and got out the scope. It was a Cattle Egret! The only other Cattle Egrets I've seen were from a million miles away at the mud flats at American Falls, so it was a treat to see this guy strutting around in the field at such close range. We were surprised that this bird would still be in Idaho, but after our post to IBLE, we soon learned that there was a pattern of these guys showing up in the state around this time every year. I enjoyed hearing about many other egret sightings within just a few weeks of us seeing this one...it's cool what you'll learn when you pay attention!
After seeing the Cattle Egret, and a cool Harlan's Redtail, we headed to the shore again in hopes of a Scoter. We found a few more Loons, and also found some cute visitors in the trees....a flock of at least 11 Pygmy Nuthatches! They gave us some great looks, perched squeaking on the tips of the pine branches. It was cool to see them because they were a Lifer for Gary...not to mention they are just downright adorable, I don't care who you are! ;)
With just a few minutes of daylight left, we had two options: 1) make a quick run to a tiny reservoir nearby, or 2) start the long drive home....surprise, surprise, our motto prevailed once again: "well.....we're already here, so we might as well do it" :)
We jetted down the road to Davis Reservoir, and at sunset on the orange and purple water we could just make out two scoters!!....carefully watching through the scope, we were able to catch hints of a white wing patch on the birds when they turned just right or stretched their wings. Another Lifer for the day! a White-winged Scoter! Guess our motto paid off once again! We watched the Scoters until it really was too dark to see anything, and then made our trip home to Boise.
Running out of light at Davis Reservoir