A 4.9-magnitude earthquake shook central Idaho, flinging items off walls and scaring residents but otherwise producing no reported damage or injuries in the sparsely populated mountain area.
USGS geophysicist Dale Grant says the earthquake was "kind of an unusual occurrence" being the first one of its strength in the area since 2005. But he said even minor damage is unlikely because of the remote location. It struck 8 miles northwest of Challis, a town of around 1,000 less than 200 miles northeast of Boise.
Idaho's Clearwater and Lochsa rivers have made it on a list of top 10 most endangered rivers in America. The list is put out every year by American Rivers, an advocacy group that works to protect and restore rivers in the U.S.
Three environmental groups plan to file a federal lawsuit if Idaho doesn't address incidental trapping of federally protected Canada lynx.
The groups sent a letter Monday to Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter as well as Idaho Department of Fish Game officials. The state has 60 days to respond.
Western Watersheds Project, the Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Clearwater contend that Idaho is violating the Endangered Species Act by allowing recreational trapping for bobcats that has led to the capture of three lynx in the last two years.
If you've hiked around Boise's foothills, you've likely come across a pile or two of dog poop. In February, there were 104 piles of waste at the Table Rock trailhead. Data show (yes, it's being tracked) those piles fluctuate from year to year, but the problem persists.
Idaho's wolf population is on the decline, heading toward 10 breeding pairs, or 150 wolves.
That's the goal set in the 2002 wolf management plan that will remain the state's official policy unless it is changed by the Legislature.
The Idaho Statesman reports that last week's legislation to establish an Idaho Wolf Control Board, along with efforts to expand and increase wolf hunting and trapping, has galvanized some national conservation groups.
Just four years ago, bobcat fur sold for about $200. Now, that same bobcat pelt can be sold for almost $2,000. Higher prices come from a rise in demand for fur in Asia, and it has led to more trappers in the field here in Idaho.
Patrick Carney, president of the Idaho Trappers Association, gets calls almost daily from folks who want advice on how to get into commercial trapping.
It's still at least three months away, but it looks as though Idaho’s wildfire season should be fairly normal in 2014. Ed Delgado manages predictive services at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise.
“We’ve got good snowpack right now and assuming it melts off fairly regularly over the next couple of months, that’s going to be good for the soils especially in the mountain areas,” Delgado says. “So that’s going to kind of prolong the wet period.”
Randy Julander measures snowpack for the U.S. government’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. It’s his job to tell water users what they can expect to see flowing down their streams and irrigation canals come spring.
When Julander answered my recent phone call, he was way up in Utah’s Wasatch Mountains. He was having some mixed feelings.
"Gosh, it’s clear skies and the sun is hotter than a two-dollar pistol. I’m sitting here at 8,500 feet and in shirt sleeves," Julander said.
Underneath all that snow, ice, and tree debris is Idaho's Highway 21. Somewhere. This dramatic image from the Idaho Department of Transportation shows just how much work is ahead for road crews in clearing off a 12-mile section of the scenic road south of Stanley. That orange dot near the middle of the image is an ITD crew member.
The latest map showing the water content of Idaho’s snowpack reveals the state continues to make up significant deficits seen early this winter.
Idaho has 21 basins where the Natural Resources Conservation Service measures snow accumulation and then assesses how the water content compares to that of a normal year. As of Thursday, all but five are at 80 percent of their average, or greater.
The Boise River basin is at 95 percent. The Payette River basin is 94. Most areas in central, northern and eastern Idaho are now above 100 percent of their normal snowpack levels.