Earlier this week I spent a few days in Montana. Two highlights: locating #600 on my ABA life list, Baird’s Sparrow at the Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge just east of Malta; and taking the auto loop route on the western side of the Charles Russell National Wildlife Refuge and BEING THE ONLY PERSON THERE FOR THE ENTIRE THREE HOURS! We’re talking over a 100 square miles of some of most beautiful vistas in the country. Much to be said about visiting places on weekdays, and to protected spaces off the beaten path. Montana is very birdy in a lot of places, particularly in the northeastern plains; I now know where the sparrows, larks and buntings go to breed! And there’s a lot of waterfowl and shorebirds.

Here is a video of Charles Russell NWR: