Singing dickcissels, photo by Patti McNeal from Katy, TX, USA / Wikimedia

Idaho Bird Watching

Birding Idaho

Idaho: potatoes, right? Sure, spuds are a major commodity there, but there’s so much more to this gem of a state. Its nickname is the Gem State because of its beautiful scenery: Rocky Mountains, vast forests and wilderness areas, rugged, unspoiled natural landscapes, rivers, lakes, and rangeland—a paradise for outdoor recreation. The U.S. Forest Service administers about 38 percent of the state’s land, the highest proportion of any state. Idaho’s northern panhandle is rugged and wild. Southern Idaho—especially the Snake River Plain—is the state’s principal agricultural area. Avid birders realize that Idaho—south of Twin Falls—is the only place in the world to see the cassia crossbill, a recent split from red crossbill. The state boasts 434 bird species, according to eBird.