February Photo of the Month: Winter Wildlife in Jackson Hole

Winter Wildlife in Jackson Hole


On a warm, sunny day in an unusually warm February, the Siren Song of the river beckoned. Kevin and I finished our camp chores early and headed to the Wilson Bridge. Winter floating is something we try to do when conditions are right. Once a month we take inventory of the river bottom critters.


In February, the Eagles are courting and nesting in earnest. We saw several pairs sitting close to their nests. Eggs will be laid soon and then constant incubating will begin. A pair of moose were sunbathing on the river bank. An unusually low valley snowpack is making it easy for these ungulates to munch on tender willow branches. Waterfowl were present around every bend. Large rafts of Barrows Goldeneye took to the air as we drifted by.


We also saw Mallards by the dozens and a pair of Common Mergansers, the drake already in his mating plumage. Water Ouzels are very common along the shore in the winter.


As we dragged the old Avon Raft out of the water at camp, the low angle sun was beginning bath the Tetons and our Tipis in Alpenglow. Another wonderful day in the amazing valley known as Jackson Hole…