If anyone has visited the shores of Merrill Creek Reservoir in the past few weeks you no doubt encountered swarms of non-biting midges.
These insects, as their name suggests, do not bite or sting, but do cause an annoyance with their shear numbers. They seem to have an innate ability to find your eyes and mouth as you hike but otherwise are quite harmless.
While they are enough to keep us from enjoying our outdoor pursuits, they do offer an incredible food source for our feathered friends. Many birds are just now arriving on their nesting grounds back from Central and South America. As you can well imaging the birds have depleted their fat reserves and are in need of a lot of high protein food.
If you stop by Merrill Creek in the next few weeks and encounter the swarms of midges, try to find comfort in knowing that these insects are providing a grand buffet for the birds!