Photos and information regarding the birds found in Montana will be updated as the photos become available, for now, July 29, 2010, I will be adding pages from my existing collection of bird photos as time permits. Since it is hiking season in Montana at this time, my time is more focused on

Montana is a major flyway for migratory birds with millions of birds making there way north to the arctic in early spring and returning south in the fall to their winter nesting grounds. For some birds Montana is there northern limit and in one case their eastern limit for the Harlequin duck.

Mating pair of Harlequin Ducks

harlequin duck mating pair, glacier national park, © Shawn Coggins'

Harlequin Ducks migratory habits are fairly unique for North American birds. The female Harlequin Duck winters on the Pacific Coast and migrates in early spring to nest in rapid, clear creeks in the Northern Rocky Mountains. The mating pair of Harlequin Ducks shown above was photographed in Glacier National Park. The male Harlequin Duck travels in early spring to the these same clear, cold, rapidly moving creeks of the Rocky Mountains. Unlike the female Harlequin Duck, the male Harlequin Duck returns to the coastal waters of the Pacific in early summer, leaving behind the female Harlequin Duck to incubate and raise the hatchlings.

Wild turkey strut

wild turkeys, whitefish, montana, © Shawn Coggins

The wild turkey strut is a powerful sight, especially when looking out my bedroom window just after sunrise.

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