A safe place for a porcupine is up a tree. Bob Danley saw one (see photo above) on the Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge in a tall cottonwood. Usually active at night, the mammal is not very social, which might have something to do with the quills. Other sights in the Bitterroot right now include waterfowl such as Barrow's Golden Eye (see photo below), raptors such as the Cooper's Hawk and smaller birds like the Red-winged Blackbird. The Cassin's Finch should be migrating back to the valley, too (see photo below).

Looking down, Bob spotted some Yellow Map Lichen (see photo below) on boulders up Bass Creek. This lichen has a long, long lifespan and is actually used to age geological events, with some species over a thousand years old. The Bitterroot Outdoor Journal is heard weekly during the Wednesday 7:30 a.m. Bitterroot Morning newscast on 1240 AM KLYQ and www.klyq.com.

Barrows Goldeneye on the Bitterroot River. (Bob Danley Photo
Cassin's Finch, soon to be seen in the valley. (Bob Danley Photo)
Yellow Map Lichen on a boulder in the Bitterroot. (Bob Danley Photo)