Bob Danley suggests that you visit the Bitterroot River riverbottoms this week to see some birds. And the odds are good that you will see some. In fact, an Audubon program has labeled the area north of Hamilton along the river to Florence as one of the 2,000 Important Bird Areas in the U.S. He says that 240 species have been spotted there. Of those, 115 species use the area for breeding. In this week's Bitterroot Outdoor Journal, he notes that the abundance of insects, fruits and seeds bring the birds in. For easy access, check out Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge trails, the Stevensville River Park and the Hamilton River Park.

The foothills have a different type of attraction for birds and other animals - native shrubs. Bob spotted a Painted Lady butterfly on a Rubber Rabbitbrush. Another popular shrub is the Sticky-leaf Rabbitbrush. (See photo below) There are less butterflies around as autumn comes on and many bird migrations have already kicked into gear. The Bitterroot Outdoor Journal is heard on 1240 AM KLYQ in Hamilton and on your smartphone with the KLYQ app Thursday mornings about 7:45 a.m. on the Bitterroot Morning newscast.

Sticky-leaf Rabbitbrush in the Bitterroot Valley. (Bob Danley photo)