Mount Lorette and Beaver Mines, March 13

March 13 [Day 12] (George Halmazna, assisted by Dan Parliament and Michael Woertman) 0730-1905. The starting temperature was 0C, the high was 6C at 1700 and it was 3C at 1900. Ground winds were SW 5-15 km/h and ridge winds were moderate SW all day. Cloud cover was 80-100% altostratus and cumulus that brought occasional light flurries, clearing after 1700 to 50% altostratus and cumulus. The eastern route was clear, but the west was up to 60% obscured during the morning. Raptor movement was again fairly strong with 89 eagles migrating between 0851 and 1741: 13 Bald Eagles (12a, 1j) and 76 Golden Eagles (73a, 1sa, 2u). Movement was initially from Wasootch Creek to the north ridge of Mount Lorette but in the afternoon birds flew from the Fisher Range to Lorette apart from the last 4 birds of the day which flew almost overhead above the centre of the valley. Maximum movement was 1100-1200 when 2 Bald Eagles and 25 Golden Eagles were counted. The highlight of the day was a Northern Pygmy-Owl catching and eating a European Starling just north of the site, an event captured by some excellent photographs by George. Apart from 2 starlings, other first records for the year were 3 American Robins and 1 Snow Bunting.

11.58 hours (118.7) BAEA 13 (56), GOEA 76 (252) TOTAL 89 (319)

 

Beaver Mines [Day 16] (Peter Sherrington) 0800-1830. The Chinook winds finally arrived overnight and by 0800 the temperature was already 3C. The high for the day was 6C at 1400 and it was 5C at the end of observation at 1830. Winds were W-WSW all day 40-50 gusting to 85 km/h in the morning and moderating in the afternoon to 25-45 gusting to 60 km/h. Cloud cover was 100% all day: altostratus and cumulus to 1200, altostratus with minor cumulus to 1500 and uniform stratus for the rest of the day. All ridges with the exception of the Continental Divide were clear all day. There was a fairly strong raptor movement with a season high total of 105 birds of 6 species moving between 0923 and 1811. The count was a season high 33 Bald Eagles (24a, 9j), the season’s first Sharp-shinned Hawk, an unaged bird at 1427, the season’s first 2 adult Red-tailed Hawks (1 light calurus and 1 dark harlani), 2 Rough-legged Hawks (1 light, 1 dark) and a season high 66 Golden Eagles (61a, 4sa, 1j). Movement was fairly steady after 1100 and peaked at 26 birds between 1500 and 1600, after which migration became more sporadic. Two American Robins were new for the year.

10.5 hours (109.1) BAEA 33 (73) SSHA 1 (1) NOGO 1 (7), RTHA 2 (2), RLHA 2 (11), GOEA 66 (162) TOTAL 105 (260)

 

Steeples (Vance Mattson) No observation.

 

 

 

MOUNT LORETTE SUMMARY COUNT (March 1 to April 22)

 

DAYS 12

HOURS 118.7

 

TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0

OSPREY (OSPR) 0

BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 56

NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 0

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 0

COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 0

NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 0

Accipiter sp. (UA) 0

BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 0

SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0

RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 1

FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0

ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 4

Buteo sp. (UB) 1

GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 252

Eagle sp. (UE) 4

AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0

MERLIN (MERL) 1

GYRFALCON (GYRF) 0

PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 0

PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 0

Falco sp. (UF) 0

Unidentified Raptor (UU) 0

 

TOTAL 319