Idaho Nature Notes

Welcome to The Nature Conservancy of Idaho's blog, your source for natural history, wildlife, conservation and outdoor recreation. The views represented here are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official views of The Nature Conservancy.


Survival of the Adaptable

The Sentinel Pika

Blog Post Archives


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  • Finding Nature All Around Us

    By Lisa Eller, Director of Communications
    April 25, 2017
    Where do we find nature in an increasingly urban world?

  • Diabla Blanca

    By Sunny Healey, Silver Creek Preserve Manager
    March 07, 2017
    A glimpse into one of the harshest winters in recent memory through the eyes of Silver Creek preserve manager Sunny Healey

  • The Dead of Winter in the North Idaho Forest

    By Kennon McClintock, Watershed Manager, Bonner's Ferry
    February 24, 2017
    The solitude of winter can be an ideal time for spotting wildlife in North Idaho's forests.

  • Exploring Our Relationship to Water

    By Mark Davidson, Director of Conservation Initiatives
    January 31, 2017
    Water is a complex issue in Idaho. Ensuring clean water is accessible for Idahoans, and our wildlife, requires building relationships and finding common ground.

  • Idaho’s U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree Symbolizes the Value of our National Forests

    By Will Whelan, Director of Government Relations
    January 13, 2017
    A majestic 80-foot Engelmann spruce from the Payette National Forest has graced the Capitol grounds in Washington, D.C. this holiday season.

  • Elk Gambit

    By Sunny Healey
    February 12, 2016
    Finding food during the winter season can be difficult for some animals. With a lot at stake for people and wildlife, Fish & Game is working with the community to find solutions.

  • Climate Change: Powerful Steps to a Smaller Footprint

    By Bas Hargrove, Senior Policy Representative
    September 27, 2016
    Getting past the doom & gloom & getting to practical solutions.

  • Rediscovering a Connection to a Special Place

    By Clark Shafer, Associate Director of Development
    November 29, 2016
    After a long hiatus, our Associate Director of Development rediscovers a connection with a very special landscape and the sagebrush steppe.

  • A Diverse and Inspiring Planet

    By Justin Petty
    November 19, 2015
    Traveling, exploring, and hiking - our Upper Salmon conservation manager shares his appreciation for the wonders of the planet.

  • My Backyard Ecosystem

    By Nancy Mendelsohn, Director of Operations
    July 14, 2016

    There is a lot of nature happening just outside the backdoor- our Director of Operations shares her story.

  • Sharing My Idaho

    By David Weskamp, Conservation Manager for Eastern Idaho
    September 02, 2016
    Our East Idaho Conservation Manager is reminded of the incredible conservation work happening around the state when he shares the beauty of Idaho's wild places with family.

  • The sound of a phantom road

    By Dayna Gross, Senior Conservation Manager
    August 05, 2016

    We spend a lot of time looking at the natural world but what if listening is just as important? New research is taking a closer look at the role of sound in animal and insect behavior.

  • Supporting Boise's Legacy of Open Space and Clean Water

    By Bas Hargrove
    October 22, 2015
    Boise for Clean Water and Open Space is a ballot measure campaign to protect areas like the Boise River and the Boise Foothills through property acquisition and improvement projects.

  • A Silver Creek Celebration

    By Valerie Connor, Board Liaison
    July 07, 2016
    Our flagship preserve delivers a very special connection to nature for one of our staff.

  • Famous Potatoes

    By Mark Davidson, Director of Conservation Initiatives
    May 27, 2016
    Producing food while striving to achieve lasting conservation for people and nature is a challenging balancing act but the opportunities are real.

  • If you build it, the sage grouse will come

    By Lisa Eller, Director of Communications
    February 23, 2016
    With a shrinking western range increasing the pressure on the greater sage grouse, the Crooked Creek Ranch is an area the birds can survive and thrive. This spring we are launching a project to build a healthier and more diverse sagebrush habitat.

  • Tracking Bats at Ball Creek

    By Kennon McClintock, Watershed Manager Bonner's Ferry
    April 12, 2016
    Bats play a critical role in a healthy ecosystem but colonies across North America are facing tremendous threats. To understand how to address these challenges our Bonner's Ferry Watershed Manager has started tracking the resident bat population.

  • Searching for Spring

    By Tess O'Sullivan, Protection Specialist
    April 20, 2016
    While waiting for spring with her children, our Protection Specialist delights in reconnecting with the natural world.

  • Appreciating Idaho's Sagebrush Sea

    By Melissa Masucci, Director of Development
    May 20, 2016
    The Rock Creek Ranch is vast sea of sagebrush and a refuge for wildlife. After visiting the ranch, our Director of Development reflects on her appreciation for this special place.

  • Path to Recovery is Complicated for Salmon

    By Justin Petty, Conservation Manager for Upper Salmon
    May 17, 2016
    Climate change and growing food demands are part of the complex set of challenges salmon face on the path to recovery. Our central Idaho conservation manager takes a look at threats and solutions for this iconic species.

  • The Sentinel Pika

    By Lou Lunte, Deputy Director of The Nature Conservancy in Idaho
    March 25, 2016
    What happens when a wilderness ranger and a sentinel pika develop a relationship of mutual respect? Our deputy director shares his heartwarming story.

  • Protecting the Pint-Sized Pika

    By Christine Peterson
    March 25, 2016
    The adorable American pika has quickly become a symbol of climate change’s collateral damage. A new study suggests there may be hope for this charming mammal in Idaho's Pioneer Mountains.

  • What makes Idaho special?

    By Megan Grover-Cereda
    January 25, 2016
    After traveling around the state for our 50th anniversary, Marketing Specialist, Megan Grover-Cereda, reflects on what makes Idaho's wild places so special.

  • Survival of the adaptable

    By Edna Rey-Vizgirdas, Boise National Forest botanist
    December 23, 2015

    Winter is the most stressful time of year for Idaho’s wildlife.  But animals have strategies for survival in winter -- hibernation, migration, or toughing it out. 

  • Anniversary Feature: Thousand Springs

    By Lou Lunte
    November 23, 2015
    The crystal clear water, unique geology, and rare invertebrates make the Thousand Springs area a special place worth visiting. To help us celebrate our 50th anniversary, Deputy State Director Lou Lunte shared a favorite memory from his time there.

  • An Acronym to Remember: LWCF

    By Clark Shafer
    November 10, 2015
    Acronyms are unavoidable these days but for our Associate Director of Development, LWCF is one he would like to stay with us forever.

  • Remembering Ken Pursley

    By All staff
    November 05, 2015
    The Nature Conservancy staff and trustees were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Ken Pursley, former trustee and long-time friend of conservation. Our thoughts are with his family.

  • Idahoans Speak Up for Nature on Capitol Hill

    By Will Whelan
    October 19, 2015
    Over 170 Nature Conservancy volunteers, representing all fifty states, took to Capitol Hill this October for meetings with members of Congress about the importance of nature in their communities. The Idaho group asked the Idaho congressional delegation to support two core priorities.

  • Managing beaver-human conflicts

    By Lisa Eller
    September 28, 2015
    Beaver-built structures are critical to healthy, functioning natural systems, yet they often cause water-related challenges for landowners. A new approach at the Flat Ranch Preserve might provide a solution.

  • Learning The Ropes

    By Maria Rachal and Alex Jones
    August 14, 2015
    Interns arrived at the Flat Ranch Preserve this summer from Virginia, armed with a basic understanding of The Nature Conservancy’s mission and an adventurous spirit for exploring the West.

  • Finding Better Ways To Fund Fire Suppression

    By  Will Whelan
    August 17, 2015
    The skyrocketing cost of firefighting threatens the ability of the Forest Service to manage the benefits that Americans derive from our public lands. The Wildfire Disaster Funding Act, a bi-partisan bill that would change how the federal government budgets for wildfire disasters, might be the solution.

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