Old-timers in Idaho's Treasure Valley (the greater Boise area) recall with fondness the amount of Evening Grosbeaks that they used to get in their yards. For the last couple of decades Evening Grosbeaks have been few and far between in the valley. I personally had only seen them in the mountains around McCall, Idaho. It has been heartening to hear that several folks in Boise, all in the very mature landscape areas, were having Evening Grosbeaks show up in force at their feeders. I visited the homes of a couple birders, and as luck would have it, I dipped at both locations, having just missed them by minutes. A couple days later I tried the Henderson home again while on the way to check a nearby remodel I am working on and was rewarded with lots of Evening Grosbeaks and close-up views as these photos attest.
These mountain birds look like they could be tropical vagrants. These males really know how to sport an attractive unibrow! I enjoyed looking at these birds up close. The brown hue of the face; white, black, and yellow wings. The female is very distinct. If it wasn't for the striking males, we'd probably regard her more as the beauty that she is.
Photo-tip Request: How would I prevent that cool yellow uni-brow from being over-exposed and still get quality detail on the rest of the bird?
Thanks to Bob Whitlatch and Danette Henderson and both of your families for letting me invade your homes and yards for a couple of days to see these awesome birds in town.