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RMERF counts, October 15

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Monday, October 15 Mount Lorette [Day 22] 0650-1945 (George Halmazna, assisted by Dan Parliament and Caroline Lambert). The starting temperature was -3C, the high was 10.5C at 1600 and it was still 9C at the end of observation. Ground winds were light SW all day apart from 1300-1600 when there were gusts up to 15 km/h, and ridge winds were SW light to moderate all day. Cloud cover was 30-90% cirrus and cumulus to 0900 and then averaged 60% cirrus for the rest of the day that provided excellent observing conditions. There was another strong raptor movement of 278 birds of 4 species between 0815 and 1902 that included the second-highest Golden Eagle count of the season. The count comprised 7 Bald Eagles (6a, 1j), 1 unidentified Accipiter, 5 Red-tailed Hawks (1j light morph calurus and 4 dark morph harlani: 1a. 2j, 1u) and 265 Golden Eagles (147a, 30sa, 77j, 11u). All eagles moved mainly at ridge level along the Fisher Range having again probably originated from Heart Mountain as none were seen at Mount Lorette. Movement was steady with 46 Golden Eagles moving up to 1300 when the rate increased with subsequent maximum hourly counts of 54 (1400-1500) and 48 (1700-1800). Other birds included first seasonal records of Bohemian Waxwings (25) and Harris’s Sparrow ( an adult male), and a late record of 2 Yellow Warblers; other species included 2 Ruby-crowned Kinglets, 1 American Robin, 3 White-winged Crossbills, 7 American Tree Sparrows and 3 Dark-eyed Juncos. The warm day also produced 2 Mourning Cloak butterflies on the wing. There were 26 visitors to the site including a party of 18 students and staff from Clearwater Academy in Calgary.

12.5 hours (226.8) BAEA 7 (51), UA 1 (6), RTHA 5 (24), GOEA 265 (1594) TOTAL 278 (1813)

 

Monday, October 15 Vicki Ridge [Day 19] 0830-1845 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Hilary Atkinson, Gord Petersen, Raymond Toal, Denise Cocciolone-Amatto and Pat Lucas, observing from the Waterton 61 wellsite). The temperature at 0830 was 3C, the high at 1600 was 11C and it was still 8C when the count closed at 1845. Winds were moderate to strong W-WSW 30-40 km/h regularly gusting to 50 km/h after 1330, and cloud cover was 70-100% thin cirrostratus and cirrus with minor altocumulus and cumulus throughout the day which gave hazy sunshine and excellent observing conditions. A site-record 675 migrant raptors of 7 species were recorded between 0910 and 1842 that included a record count of 611 Golden Eagles. The count was a season-high 17 Bald Eagles, 19 Sharp-shinned Hawks (2a, 17u), 2 adult Cooper’s Hawks, 1u Northern Goshawk, 1a dark morph calurus Red-tailed Hawk, 1 unidentified Buteo and 611 Golden Eagles (475a, 15sa, 73j, 48u). All birds moved high mainly above Vicki Ridge although there was an increasing use of Kyllo Ridge to the west in the late afternoon which resulted in a high number of unaged birds that were silhouetted against the lowering sun. Forty-six birds were seen before noon then 81 (79 Golden Eagles) moved between 1200 and 1300 and then peaked during the following hour when a remarkable 166 raptors moved of which 157 were Golden Eagles. The next 3 hours produced 122, 110 and 70 raptors respectively and then things calmed down with only 43 and 37 birds moving during the last 2 hours of observation. It was a busy day but thanks to the excellent assistants I just managed to keep on top of things.

10.25 hours (166.1) BAEA 17 (84), SSHA 19 (538), COHA 2 (69), NOGO 1 (31), RTHA 1 (149), RLHA 23 (82), UB 1 (23), GOEA 611 (1496) TOTAL 675 (2578)

 

Monday, October 15 Steeples [Day 23] 1530-1800 (Vance Mattson). It was another beautiful day with a temperature of 12C, calm conditions and 10-40% thin altostratus cloud cover, but only 5 migrant raptors were seen: 1 adult Bald Eagle, 1u Sharp-shinned Hawk, 1 adult intermediate morph harlani Red-tailed Hawk and 2 Golden Eagles (1a, 1j).

2.5 hours (101.5) BAEA 1 (83), SSHA 1 (71), RTHA 1 (75), GOEA 2 (114) TOTAL 5 (383)

 

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, FALL 2018
MOUNT LORETTE September 20-November 15 VICKI RIDGE September 20-November 15 STEEPLES September 20-November 15
DAYS 22 19 23
HOURS 226.8 166.1 101.5
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 1
OSPREY (OSPR) 3 8 2
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 51 84 83
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6 13 12
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 51 538 71
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 5 69 4
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 22 31 5
Accipiter sp. (UA) 6 5 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1 21 3
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 1 2 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 21 149 75
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 7 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 18 82 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 5 23 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1594 1496 114
Eagle sp. (UE) 16 3 2
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 11 3
MERLIN (MERL) 3 18 2
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 1 1
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 8 1
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3 3 0
Falco sp. (UF) 1 2 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 4 4 1
   
TOTALS 1813 2578 383

 


RMERF counts, October 14

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Sunday, October 14 Mount Lorette [Day 21] 0650-1945 (Bill Wilson, assisted by Lori Anderson and Patrick Farley). The temperature at the start was -8C, it reached a high of 6C at 1700 and was 0C at the end of observation. Ground winds were SW 0-5 gusting 8 km/h all day, and ridge winds were moderate SW. Cloud cover was altostratus all day, 90-100% to 1500 that diminished to 10% at 1700 and 1800 before increasing to 60% at the end of the day. The ridges were clear all day. Ideal migration conditions produced a strong raptor movement that saw the second-highest Golden Eagle count of the season with 230 birds of 6 species moving between 0948 and 1915. The count was 1 adult Bald Eagle, 1u Sharp-shinned Hawk, 3 Northern Goshawks (1a, 1u), 2 adult calurus Red-tailed Hawks (1light, 1 dark), 3 Rough-legged Hawks (1 light, 2u), 1 unidentified Buteo and 230 Golden Eagles (147a, 11sa, 27j, 45u). All the birds glided at ridge level or lower along the Fisher Range and appeared to have originated from the Heart Mountain area rather than from Mount Lorette. By 1400 only 13 Golden Eagles had been seen but the rate steadily increased and 185 birds moved after 1600 with hourly counts of 61 (1600-1700), 52 (1700-1800) and 64 (1800-1900), and 8 birds between 1900 and 1915 when it was almost too dark to see. Other birds included a pair of Great Horned Owls that duetted as the observers were preparing to leave at 1919, 12 migrating Clark’s Nutcrackers, 12 White-winged Crossbills, 3 Dark-eyed Juncos, and 1 Song Sparrow and 1 Palm Warbler that were seen at Lorette Ponds. A pair of Moose was in the Hay Meadow and about 3 wolves howled to the SE of the site at 1300. There was plenty to entertain the 42 visitors to the site today.

12.92 hours (214.3) BAEA 1 (44), SSHA 1 (51), NOGO 2 (22), RTHA 2 (16), RLHA 3 (18), UB 1 (5), GOEA 230 (1329) TOTAL 240 (1535)

 

Sunday, October 14 Vicki Ridge [Day 18] 0900-1830 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Hilary Atkinson and Raymond Toal, observing from the Waterton 61 wellsite). The forecast called for a relatively warm sunny day, but it turned out to be a mainly cold gloomy one. The temperature was -2C at 0900 and reached a high of 4C at 1300 which persisted to the end of observation but it felt much cooler with W winds that were 20-35 gusting to 50 km/h all day. There were a few sunny breaks in the 40-80% altostratus and cirrus cloud cover in the morning, but the afternoon saw mainly 100% altostratus and uniform grey stratus that thinned at 1800 to 70% altocumulus and altostratus and provided some welcome patches of blue sky at the end of the day. A total of 67 raptors of 7 species migrated between 0929 and 1822 that comprised 6 adult Bald Eagles, 4u Sharp-shinned Hawks, 1 adult probable female Northern Goshawk, 1 adult dark morph calurus Red-tailed Hawk, 6 light morph Rough-legged Hawks, 48 Golden Eagles (32a, 4sa, 11j, 1u) and the first Gyrfalcon of the season, a probable male grey morph bird. Most of the birds moved high above Vicki Ridge and the maximum hourly count was 13 (all Golden Eagles) between 1700 and 1800.

9.5 hours (155.8) BAEA 6 (67), SSHA 4 (519), NOGO 1 (30), RTHA 1 (148), RLHA 6 (59), GOEA 48 (885), GYRF 1 (1) TOTAL 67 (1903)

 

Sunday, October 13 Steeples [Day 22] 1200-1730 (Vance Mattson). It was a beautiful sunny day with a temperature of 3C rising to a high of 7C, calm conditions and an initial cloud cover of 60% altostratus that dwindled to 0% by 1500. Just 10 migrants of 4 species were seen, with 8 of the birds moving before 1432, and the last migrant, an unidentified small raptor, was seen at 1556. The count was 2 adult Bald Eagles, 1 adult female or juvenile Northern Harrier, 3 Sharp-shinned Hawks (1a, 2u), 3 Golden Eagles (2a, 1u) and 1 small raptor that was probably either a Sharp-shinned Hawk or a Merlin. Non-migrant or resident birds were 1adult Bald Eagle, 2 adult Northern Goshawks that soared together, 1 juvenile light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawk and 1 adult Golden Eagle.

5.5 hours (99) BAEA 2 (82), NOHA 1 (12), SSHA 3 (70), GOEA 3 (112), UU 1 (1) total 10 (378)

 

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, FALL 2018
MOUNT LORETTE September 20-November 15 VICKI RIDGE September 20-November 15 STEEPLES September 20-November 15
DAYS 21 18 22
HOURS 214.3 155.8 99
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 1
OSPREY (OSPR) 3 8 2
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 44 67 82
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6 13 12
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 51 519 70
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 5 67 4
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 22 30 5
Accipiter sp. (UA) 5 5 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1 21 3
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 1 2 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 16 148 74
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 7 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 18 59 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 5 22 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1329 885 112
Eagle sp. (UE) 16 3 2
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 11 3
MERLIN (MERL) 3 18 2
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 1 1
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 8 1
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3 3 0
Falco sp. (UF) 1 2 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 4 4 1
TOTALS 1535 1903 378

 


RMERF counts October 12 and 13

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Friday, October 12 Mount Lorette [Day 19] 0820-1900 (Caroline Lambert, assisted by Joel Duncan). The starting temperature was -6C but rose to a high at 1600 of 9C and fell to 3C at the end of observation. Ground winds were W-SW 5-10 gusting 20-40 km/h which diminished to 0-5 gusting 15 km/h by late afternoon, and finally strong NE winds at 1900 when a cold front arrived bringing snow and that ended observation for the day. Ridge winds were W, very strong to 1500 and then strong until the arrival of the front. The east was clear but the west was 20-80% obscured all day. A total of 85 migrants of 5 species moved between 0911 and 1750 comprising 5a Bald Eagles, 1u Cooper’s Hawk, 2 Northern Goshawks (1a, 1u), 1 light morph Rough-legged Hawk, 71 Golden Eagles (39a, 5sa, 4j, 23u), 4 unidentified eagles and 1 unidentified raptor. All birds were seen mainly very high above the Fisher Range, but none were seen at Mount Lorette. Movement was steady throughout the day with 37 of the birds recorded between 1500 and 1750. Other birds were 1 Hairy Woodpecker, 10 Common Ravens, 4 Black-capped Chickadees, 2 Boreal Chickadees, 1 Red-breasted Nuthatch, 1 American Dipper, 2 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 2 Red Crossbills, 4 White-winged Crossbills and 2 Pine Siskins. Two Grey Wolves, one of which was black, crossed the river north of the site at 0830, and a male Moose also made an appearance at the site. The 32 visitors included a home-schooling group of 19 students and parents.

10.67 hours (192.7) BAEA 5 (43), COHA 1 (5), NOGO 2 (20), RLHA 1 (15), GOEA 71 (1099), UE 4 (16), UU 1 (4) TOTAL 85 (1295)

 

Friday, October 12 Vicki Ridge [Day 16] 0815-1820 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Trevor Lewis and Gord Petersen observing from Waterton 61 wellsite). The temperature at 0815 was 5C, the high at 1400 was 10C and it was 7C at the end of observation as light rain began to fall. Winds were strong W all day 50-60 gusting 90km/h which switched to N 15-25 km/h just before 1800 that brought light rain in advance of a rapidly advancing cold front. Cloud cover was cumulus all day, 0-30% to 1100 and 10-70% in the afternoon that gave excellent observing conditions. There was a fairly strong and persistent raptor movement of 140 birds of 9 species that were seen between 0851 and 1815 which comprised a season-high 14 Bald Eagles (4a, 2sa, 5j, 3u), 15 Sharp-shinned Hawks (4a, 11u), 1u Cooper’s Hawk, 1 adult female Northern Goshawk, 1 undifferentiated Accipiter, 1 adult light morph Broad-winged Hawk, 7 Red-tailed Hawks (5a calurus: 3 light, 2 dark, and 2j harlani: 1 light, 1 dark), 8 Rough-legged Hawks (6 light, 1 dark, 1u), 1 unidentified Buteo, 90 Golden Eagles (61a, 7sa, 9j, 13u) and 1 adult male Peregrine Falcon. Birds moved generally high above both ridges and the busiest hour was 1700-1800 when 30 birds moved ahead of the approaching front. The unusual light morph “Harlan’s Hawk” hunted the western flank of Vicki Ridge for a couple of hours before finally moving to the south. Also unusual was a Thirteen-lined Ground Squirrel that ran about on the snow in the early afternoon before returning to its hole.

10.08 hours (142.3) BAEA 14 (61), SSHA 15 (506). COHA 1 (66), NOGO 1 (29), UA 1 (5), BWHA 1 (21), RTHA 7 (147), RLHA 8 (48), GOEA 90 (820), PEFA 1 (8) TOTAL 140 (1804)

 

Friday, October 12 Steeples [Day 20] 1200-1730 (Vance Mattson). The temperature was 13C, winds were moderate S, then W and finally N at the end of the day and cloud cover was 40-60% mainly cumulus. Despite these apparently favourable conditions, however, no migrants were seen, although there were two sightings of resident Golden Eagles and 3 non-migrant Bald Eagles were observed.

5.5 hours (87.5) TOTAL 0 (342)

 

Saturday, October 13 Mount Lorette [Day 20] 0845-1800 (Blake Weis). The temperature was -1C at the start and rose to 0C after 1000, winds were N all day, cloud cover was 90-100% stratus which mainly obscured the ridges and light, moderate or heavy snow fell all day. Blake remained in the Hay Meadow until 1445 then moved to Barrier Lake and finally to Lusk Creek where the highest foothills ridge was clear but still no migrant raptors were seen. Other birds seen, however included 1 Brown Creeper, 5 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet, 1 American Robin, 1 Mountain Bluebird, 30 White-winged Crossbills, 3 Pine Siskins, 2 Lapland Longspurs, 5 American Tree Sparrows, 6 Dark-eyed Juncos and 1 Yellow-rumped Warbler. Ten visitors made it to the Hay Meadow site, and although they saw no migrant raptors most were able to observe a pair of Moose near the parking area.

8.75 hours (201.4) TOTAL 0 (1295)

 

Saturday, October 13 Vicki Ridge [Day 17] 1245-1500 and 1615-1800 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Hilary Atkinson observing from the Waterton 61 wellsite). Steady snow fell to 1130 and the ridges were obscured until noon when they rapidly began to clear. There was 16 cm of fresh snow at the site, the ridges were clear, the temperature was 0C and it was calm when observation began at 1245. Seventeen raptors were counted between 1301 and 1427 after which heavy snow again began to fall which persisted to 1615 when the site was re-occupied with a further 4 cm of fresh snow on the ground, and the temperature remained at -2C with 100% stratocumulus cloud cover and light NE to SE winds for the rest of the day. The ridges remained clear, however, and a further 15 migrants were counted, the last being at 1737. The final count of 32 raptors of 4 species was 9 Sharp-shinned Hawks (2a, 7u), 1u Cooper’s Hawk, 5 Rough-legged Hawks (8a, 3sa, 6j) and 17 Golden Eagles (8a, 3sa, 6j). Fourteen birds were seen between 1300 and 1400 and 13 between 1700 and 1800.

4 hours (146.3) SSHA 9 (515), COHA 1 (67), RLHA 5 (53), GOEA 17 (837) TOTAL 32 (1836)

 

Saturday, October 13 Steeples [Day 21] 1200-1800 (Vance Mattson). The temperature was 8C, it was initially calm with 60% cumulus cloud cover which produced a slow soaring raptor movement; by1500, however winds were strong N and cloud cover was 100% altostratus and cumulus which reduced to 50% by 1630 which again gave partially sunny conditions. There was a varied raptor movement of 26 birds of 9 species which included the first ever record of a Gyrfalcon for the site: an adult light grey morph bird at 1353 which soared above and in front of the ridge before being chased south by 2 aggressive ravens,. Other migrants were 14 Bald Eagles (9a, 1sa, 4j), 2 Northern Harriers (1 adult female, 1j), 3 Sharp-shinned Hawks (1a, 2u), 1j Northern Goshawk, 1 juvenile light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawk, 3 Golden Eagles (2a, 1u) and 1u columbarius Merlin. Thirteen migrants moved between 1300 and 1400 after which the pace slowed and the last bird was a juvenile Bald Eagle at 1707. Non-migrants were 3 adult Bald Eagles and the resident pair of Golden Eagles that included display flights by both birds with that of the larger bird (female) being particularly vigorous.

6 hours (93.5) BAEA 14 (80), NOHA 2 (11), SSHA 3 (67), NOGO 1 (5), RTHA 1 (74), GOEA 3 (109), MERL 1 (2), GYRF 1 (1) TOTAL 26 (368)

 

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, FALL 2018
MOUNT LORETTE September 20-November 15 VICKI RIDGE September 20-November 15 STEEPLES September 20-November 15
DAYS 20 17 21
HOURS 201.4 146.3 93.5
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 1
OSPREY (OSPR) 3 8 2
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 43 61 80
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6 13 11
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 50 515 67
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 5 67 4
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 20 29 5
Accipiter sp. (UA) 5 5 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1 21 3
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 1 2 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 14 147 74
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 7 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 15 53 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 1 22 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1099 837 109
Eagle sp. (UE) 16 3 2
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 11 3
MERLIN (MERL) 3 18 2
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 0 1
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 8 1
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3 3 0
Falco sp. (UF) 1 2 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 4 4 0
TOTALS 1295 1836 368

 


RMERF counts, October 11

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Thursday, October 11 Mount Lorette [Day 18] 0710-1920 (Joel Duncan to 1730 and Caroline Lambert after 1730, assisted by Brian McBride). The temperature at 0800 was -8C, the high was 6C at 1500 and it was 3C at 1920. Ground winds were variable and light to 1400, then SW-W 5-15 gusting 20 km/h to 1730 after which it was calm; ridge winds were SW all day, light to 1900, moderate to 1400 and then strong for the rest of the day. It was cloudless to 1000 when 10% cirrus developed to 1400 after which it was 50-90% altostratus and cirrus for the rest of the day. Despite the favourable winds and viewing conditions there was a disappointing count of only 26 birds of 2 species between 0820 and 1735 that comprised 5 light morph Rough-legged Hawks, 20 Golden Eagles (11a, 5sa, 2j, 2u) and 1 unidentified eagle. All the birds glided on the eastern route between Mount Lorette and the Fisher Range and there was little soaring or flapping flight. The highest hourly counts were only 5 birds between 1300 and 1400 and again between 1600 and 1700. Other birds, however, were varied and included the long-staying juvenile Sora that today was seen on a gravel bar in the river, 10 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 1 Varied Thrush, 1 American Dipper, 1 Lapland Longspur, 5 White-winged Crossbills, 2 Purple Finches (2 females, 1 male), 1 Song Sparrow, 2 Swamp Sparrows and 2 Yellow-rumped Warblers. Sixteen visitors were at the site today.

11.5 hours (182) RLHA 5 (14), GOEA 20 (1028), UE 1 (12) TOTAL 26 (1210)

 

Thursday, October 11 Vicki Ridge [Day 15] 0845-1845 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Denise Cocciolone-Amatto, Raymond Toal and Gord Petersen observing from Waterton 61 wellsite, and Kyllo Ridge from the Waterton 68 wellsite, 1550-1630). Clear skies allowed the temperature to fall to -9C at 0845, but by 1000 it had risen to 0C, reached a high of 7C at 1400 and was still 5C at 1845. It was calm to 1030 when light W winds started that gradually increased in velocity throughout the afternoon reaching 20-30 gusting 50 km/h after 1600. It was cloudless to 1430 when lenticular clouds began to develop which became 60-80% lenticular and cirrus after 1600. A total of 138 migrant raptors of 10 species were counted between 1040 and 1832 that comprised 6 Bald Eagles (3a, 1j), 1 juvenile female Northern Harrier, 10 Sharp-shinned Hawks (7a, 12u), 1u Cooper’s Hawk, 2 light morph Broad-winged Hawks (1a, 1j), 11 Red-tailed Hawks (9 calurus: 6 light (5a, 1u) and 3a dark); and 2 (1a, 1j) dark harlani), 1a light morph Ferruginous Hawk, 8 light morph Rough-legged Hawks, 2 unidentified Buteos (1 dark, 1u), 84 Golden Eagles (37a, 12sa, 24j, 11u), 2 unidentified eagles and 1u columbarius Merlin. The totals include 9 birds (1 Bald Eagle, 2 Sharp-shinned Hawks and 6 Golden Eagles) moving above the western edge of Kyllo Ridge that were seen by Denise Cocciolone-Amatto, Raymond Toal between 1550 and 1630). Birds moved fairly steadily and generally high above both Vicki and Kyllo Ridges and peak movement was 27 including 16 Golden Eagles between 1500 and 1600, and 31 including 17 Golden Eagles between 1600 and 1700. Other birds were relatively scarce but a juvenile Swainson’s Thrush feeding with a Grey-cheeked Thrush on chokecherry berries at 0910 was remarkable; other birds included 1 Steller’s Jay, 9 Clark’s Nutcrackers, 2 Red-breasted Nuthatches and 13 Red Crossbills.

10 hours (132.3) BAEA 6 (47), NOHA 1 (13), SSHA 19 (491), COHA 1 (65), BWHA 2 (20), RTHA 11 (140), FEHA 1 (7), RLHA 8 (40), UB 2 (21), GOEA 84 (730), UE 2 (3), MERL 1 (18) TOTAL 138 (1664)

 

Thursday, October 11 Steeples [Day 19] 1300-1800 (Vance Mattson). It was another pleasant day with a temperature of 10C, calm conditions, and cloudless to 1300 after which 70% altocumulus cloud developed that reduced to 20% by 1730. A total of 12 migrants of 3 species moved between 1324 and 1621 comprising 10 Bald Eagles (5a, 5j), 1 juvenile Northern Harrier and 1u Sharp-shinned Hawk. Seven of the Bald Eagles were seen between 1324 and 1336, but no birds were seen between 1409 and 1621 when the last 3 birds, 1 Bald Eagle, 1 Northern Harrier and 1 Sharp-shinned Hawk, were seen. The only resident bird was an adult Golden Eagle that soared above the ridge at 1300.

5 hours (82.5) BAEA 10 (66), NOHA 1 (9), SSHA 1 (64) TOTAL 12 (342)

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, FALL 2018
MOUNT LORETTE September 20-November 15 VICKI RIDGE September 20-November 15 STEEPLES September 20-November 15
DAYS 18 15 19
HOURS 182 132.3 82.5
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 1
OSPREY (OSPR) 3 8 2
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 38 47 66
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6 13 9
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 50 491 64
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 4 65 4
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 18 28 4
Accipiter sp. (UA) 5 4 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1 20 3
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 1 2 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 14 140 73
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 7 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 14 40 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 1 19 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1028 730 106
Eagle sp. (UE) 12 3 2
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 11 3
MERLIN (MERL) 3 18 1
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 0 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 7 1
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3 3 0
Falco sp. (UF) 1 2 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 3 4 0
   
TOTALS 1210 1664 342

 


RMERF counts, October 10

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Wednesday, October 10 Mount Lorette [Day 17] 0710-1920 (Caroline Lambert, assisted by Joel Duncan). The temperature was initially -7C, the high was 1C from 1400 to 1900 and it was 0C on departure. Ground winds were variable and light to 1400, NE 5-10 gusting 20 km/h to 1600 then N 0-5 gusting 15 km/h for the rest of the day.; ridge winds were light S to 1100, light west to 1400 after which they were moderate. Cloud cover was initially 50% altocumulus and altostratus that reduced to 20% cumulus and cirrocumulus at 1200-1500, and was then 100% stratus for the rest of the day. There were light snow flurries after 1600. The only migrant raptors were 8 Golden Eagles (4a, 1sa, 1j, 2u) that moved between 1250 and 1430, 6 of which occurred between 1400 and 1430. All birds moved on the eastern route with much soaring and flapping flight. A single adult resident Golden Eagle flew to the east from Hummingbird Plume Hill to beyond the Fisher Range ridge. The Sora was still present and other birds included 1 Belted Kingfisher, 1 Brown Creeper, 2 American Dippers, 10 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 3 American Pipits, 20 White-winged Crossbills, 6 Pine Siskins, 4 Lapland Longspurs, 8 cismontanus Dark-eyed Juncos, 2 White-throated Sparrows 1 male Rusty Blackbird and 1 Yellow-rumped Warbler. There were 16 visitors to the site including 1 school party.

10.25 (170.5) GOEA 8 (1008) TOTAL 8 (1184)

 

Wednesday, October 10 Vicki Ridge [Day 14] 1045-1715 (Peter Sherrington, observation from Waterton 61 wellsite). The snow finally stopped around 1000 and there was 6cm of fresh snow at the site. The temperature was -4C at 1100, rose to a high of -2 C at 1500 and was -3C at the end of observation. Winds were light SE-E all day and cloud cover was 100% stratus that was only occasionally and briefly broken giving gloomy conditions all day. East of the ridge after 1715, however, the skies were clear and it was sunny! There was only a light, sporadic migration of 18 raptors of 5 species between 1110 and 1626 that comprised 8 Sharp-shinned Hawks (4a, 4u), 1a Northern Goshawk, 7 Red-tailed Hawks (4a calurus: 3 light, 1 dark; 3 dark harlani: 2a, 1j), 1u columbarius Merlin and 1 Prairie Falcon. Ten birds moved before 1300 with 6 between 1100 and 1200, but 6 Sharp-shinned Hawks were the only migrants moving after 1330. Other birds included 1 Dusky Grouse, 1 Northern Pygmy-Owl that called briefly, 1 adult Northern Shrike, 5 Clark’s Nutcrackers, 8 American Robins and 8 Red Crossbills

6.5 hours (122.3) SSHA 8 (472), NOGO 1 (28), RTHA 7 (129), MERL 1 (17), PRFA 1 (3) TOTAL 18 (1526)

 

Wednesday, October 10 Steeples [Day 18] 1530-1800 (Vance Mattson). It was a beautiful day with a temperature of 11C and sunny calm conditions with a cloud cover of 30% altostratus and cumulus that increased to 60% altocumulus. Only 2 migrants were seen, however: 1u Sharp-shinned Hawk and 1j Northern Goshawk that flew south together at 1722. The only other raptors were the resident Golden Eagles that interacted above the ridge including a playful stoop that produced a barrel-roll from the other bird followed by a brief display flight by one of the birds. The two then soared together over the flank of Bill Nye Mountain.

2.5 hours (77.5) SSHA 1 (63), NOGO 1 (4) TOTAL 2 (330)

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, FALL 2018
MOUNT LORETTE September 20-November 15 VICKI RIDGE September 20-November 15 STEEPLES September 20-November 15
DAYS 17 14 18
HOURS 170.5 122.3 77.5
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 1
OSPREY (OSPR) 3 8 2
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 38 41 56
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6 12 8
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 50 472 63
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 4 64 4
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 18 28 4
Accipiter sp. (UA) 5 4 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1 18 3
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 1 2 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 14 129 73
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 6 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 9 32 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 1 19 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1008 646 106
Eagle sp. (UE) 11 1 2
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 11 3
MERLIN (MERL) 3 17 1
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 0 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 7 1
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3 3 0
Falco sp. (UF) 1 2 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 3 4 0
   
TOTALS 1184 1526 330

 


RMERF counts, October 9

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Tuesday, October 09 Mount Lorette [NO OBSERVATION]. (Cliff Hansen and Rick Robb 0830-1650). The temperature was -4C to -1C, wind was N 5-10 gusting 15 km/h and cloud cover was 100% low stratus that produced light snow and obscured all mountains. The few birds identified were 1 Hairy Woodpecker, 2 Black-billed Magpies, 2 Ruby-crowned Kinglets and 1 Varied Thrush.

 

Tuesday, October 09 Vicki Ridge [NO OBSERVATION]. The temperature was -4C, winds were E-ENE 15-20 km/h and cloud cover was 100% low stratus that completely obscured the ridge. Light snow fell all day.

 

Tuesday, October 09 Steeples [Day 17] 1315-1745 (Vance Mattson). The precipitation that was forecast did not arrive although it was a cloudy day with 60-80% cumulus and altostratus, a temperature of 9C and NW and, later in the day, E winds. A total of 11 migrants of 4 species were seen up to 1702 which comprised 3 juvenile Bald Eagles, 3u Sharp-shinned Hawks, 2 Northern Goshawks (1j, 1u) and 3 Golden Eagles (1a, 1j, 1u). Four non-migrant Bald Eagles (3a, 1j) were seen but, unlike the last couple of days, they were not heading north. The last migrant was a juvenile Golden Eagle that soared low at length, then rose very high and joined 6 soaring ravens which immediately set about the eagle that quickly glided to the south after making a brief token rejoinder.

4.5 hours (75) BAEA 3 (56), SSHA 3 (62), NOGO 2 (3), GOEA 3 (106) TOTAL 11 (328)

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, FALL 2018
MOUNT LORETTE September 20-November 15 VICKI RIDGE September 20-November 15 STEEPLES September 20-November 15
DAYS 16 13 17
HOURS 160.2 115.8 75
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 1
OSPREY (OSPR) 3 8 2
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 38 41 56
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6 12 8
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 50 464 62
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 4 64 4
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 18 27 3
Accipiter sp. (UA) 5 4 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1 18 3
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 1 2 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 14 122 73
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 6 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 9 32 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 1 19 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1000 646 106
Eagle sp. (UE) 11 1 2
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 11 3
MERLIN (MERL) 3 16 1
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 0 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 7 1
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3 2 0
Falco sp. (UF) 1 2 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 3 4 0
TOTALS 1176 1508 328

 


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