Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge - Part II

After visiting the waterfall and dodging that pesky hare, we headed back down the trail. At sunny openings we noticed dozens of tiny blue butterflies flying about. They were difficult to get pictures of, but we managed a few. I decided that they were Spring Azure butterflies, part of a complex group. These tiny guys are no larger than a dime, but pretty when you see them flying.
Spring Azure - male
Spring Azure - male
The males are totally blue on top, while the females have darker borders on their wings.
Spring Azure - female
After the trail we drove the refuge's Auto Tour Loop. It followed Myrtle Creek and the Kootenai River, and passed numerous small ponds and wet meadows.
As cool as it has been here, it is hard to believe that Canada Geese already have young, but we saw a couple of families.
Canada Goose family
We saw several beautiful Wood Duck drakes and a few pair.
Wood Duck - drake
Wood Duck - pair
An Osprey fished over head, but for a change we didn't see it catch a fish.
We enjoyed seeing this lone Northern Painted Turtle sunning itself on a log.
Northern Painted Turtle
And a Western Meadowlark sang us his song.
Western Meadowlark
All-in-all, a very nice day in a special place.



  1. We visited there several years ago... were considering volunteering.. never did. I love your photos... especially the tiny butterflies. The blue azure is one of the first I learned (after the "big" ones and the sulfurs).... So nice!

  2. I just love the voice of the western meadowlark.