It's a fast-moving, low-flying bird that spends the winter in places like the Bitterroot Valley. The Northern Shrike has been seen, according to Bob Danley of KLYQ's Bitterroot Outdoor Journal this week. The bird is also known as the "butcherbird" because it eats small mammals, which it impales on barbed wire. Though the bird is only the size of a robin, it acts like a larger raptor and its flight path often takes it low to the ground with a quick swoop up to a higher perch. It heads farther north in the spring.

Bob noticed some mushrooms called Artist's Conk that are shelf-like on tree trunks and are a polypore type of plant. You can see them year-round. Lichen that you can find on rockfaces include Frosted Rock Tripe (see photos below). And Bob had information about a conifer tree, the Grand Fir, which has pinecones that are usually on the tree, unless a squirrel drops one to the ground. (see photos below). The Bitterroot Outdoor Journal is heard Wednesday mornings during the 7:30 a.m. Bitterroot Morning newscast. Check Bob's website for more updates.

Artist's conk. (Bob Danley Photo)
Two views of Frosted Rock Tripe lichen. (Bob Danley Photo)
Grand fir trunk and cone. (Bob Danley Photos)