Mule deer, mallards and hawks can be seen on the grounds of the MK Nature Center in Boise, but think twice about trying to show them to your kids during windy, wet, wintry weather.
Dont grouse about the weather take them indoors to the displays at the Nature Centers visitor center. They are just as much fun and you can learn about critters with the thermostat at around 70 degrees.
The center has a large display of taxidermy with a bear, pronghorn, caribou, coyote and even a rattlesnake poised to strike.
There is more wildlife, including upland birds, eagles and a heron.
Whats new at the center is that the animals are displayed with murals on the walls depicting Idahos varied landscape from the deserts of southern Idaho to the mountains and woodlands of Central and northern Idaho.
It makes the wildlife displays come alive, said Dave Cannamela, supervisor of the center. Its all of Idahos wildlife in one place.
The taxidermy mounts used to be displayed in a room with plain walls and backgrounds, and the joke at the center was that it was the dead head room.
Now the displays come alive on the edge of cliffs, in a nest with sticks and in artificial vegetation that looks like their native habitat.
Its all part of sprucing up the center. If the weather allows, you can also check out new signs that have been installed in the 4.6-acre outdoor grounds. One of the stream walks is also being enhanced with murals.
During bad weather, visitors can enjoy wildlife lessons and also see aquariums with fish.
If youre there and the sun starts shining again, then head to the outdoor grounds with the kids and visit the pond with live ducks, deer and heron and the underway stream displays with trout and other fish.
Pete Zimowsky: 377-6445, Twitter: @Zimosoutdoors