Seasons of Wildlife

Swans in field

Minidoka is one link in a chain of many Federal and State refuges in the Pacific Flyway that provide habitat for a variety of species during migration each year.

  • Spring

    Cormorant Rookery

    Resident Canada geese set up nesting territories on the Snake River islands in early March, and goslings hatch by mid-April. 

     Getting a slightly later start are great blue herons, black-crowned night herons, and double-crested cormorants that nest in large rookeries on some of the Snake River islands in April and May.

  • Summer

    Canada Goose with Brood

    In early summer, western grebes dance on Lake Walcott while resident bald eagles look for food for their young. Visitors can see large numbers of white pelicans on the lake and large broods of Canada geese on pastures and fields adjacent to the Snake River. 

    By late July and early August, mallards and other duck species begin to congregate on the lake, looking for food in flooded vegetation. As summer progresses and the lake is slowly drawn down for irrigation, large numbers of shorebirds come to feed on the exposed mudflats. Look for dowitchers, sandpipers, godwits, yellowlegs and plovers.

  • Fall

    Bald Eagle in Flight

    Bald Eagles can be seen regularly during the fall and winter. Whether perched in a tree, foraging for fish below the dam, or sitting on the ice feeding on waterfowl, they are always a majestic sight. Look for them in large trees around the park. It takes 4 to 5 years before bald eagles get their white heads, so look carefully to distinguish young bald eagles from golden eagles.  

  • Winter

    Pheasant in winter

    Winters at Minidoka are generally moderate but windy. Most of the 11 inches of precipitation Minidoka receives occurs in the winter in the form of snow.