After a rain shower in the Bitterroot, there's often a rainbow. But on hot, dry days you need to create your own - using different plants and animals from all around us.
Bob Danley has examples of each color -

  • Red - Cinnamon Teal duck, Brown Elfin butterfly, Harsh Indian Paintbrush.
  • Orange - Rufous Hummingbird, Hoary Comma butterfly, Miner's Lettuce (leaves).
  • Yellow - Yellow Warbler, Mourning Cloak butterfly (wing edge), Arrowleaf Balsamroot.
  • Green - Lewis Woodpecker (glossed green), Green Comma butterfly, Prairie Smoke.
  • Blue - Blue-winged Teal, Spring Azure butterfly, Sagebrush Bluebells (see photo below).
  • Indigo - Western Bluebird, Western White (body), Sand Violet.
  • Violet - Black-chinned Hummingbird, Hoary Elfin butterfly, Little Larkspur
  • So far this year in the area: 187 bird species in Missoula County and 159 bird species in the Bitterroot. Bob has identified 11 species of butterflies as the weather warms. And the wildflowers - they're all over the place!

    Sagebrush Bluebells. (Bob Danley photo)