Hawks Own The Skies – Bitterroot Outdoor Journal
On sunny days this fall, you can look up during mid-morning to mid-afternoon and see some migrating hawks. Bob Danley of the Bitterroot Outdoor Journal noticed some Sharp-shinned Hawks and Cooper's Hawks (photo above) in the air. He also saw some around area birdfeeders, since smaller songbirds are on the hawks' diet.
Up in the air, the silhouettes can help you identify which hawk you're seeing. The Sharp-shinned hawks have a small head and their narrow tail feathers are squared off on the tip. The Cooper's hawk has a large head that extends past the front straight wing edge and the tail is rounded. Both birds have a "flap-flap-flap- sail" wingbeat. The Cooper's wingbeat is slower than the Sharp-shinned and you might see them flying together.
Down on the ground, there are some butterflies around. Bob saw a Juba Skipper near some Rubber Rabbitbrush wildflowers. It's only an inch-and-a-half with orange color on upper wing and a black "toothed" margin (photo below). Only a few dragonflies are around. You might see a Saffron-winged Meadowhawk dragonfly along trails at mid-day in the sun. (photo below)
There's an interesting fungi out there, but it's not easy to find. The Coral Fungi (photo below) doesn't look like your regular mushroom. With a Coral name you'll see a series of vertical, spiked branches from a single base. There are 40 species in the Pacific Northwest with various colors - white, red, orange, pink and yellow-green. They're only about four inches tall and up to three inches wide. The Bitterroot Outdoor Journal is heard Wednesday mornings at 7:45 a.m. on 1240 AM KLYQ and at www.klyq.com. Get the app for your cellphone, too.