RMERF counts, March 18

Sunday, March 18 Mount Lorette [Day 16] 0730-1930 (Bill Wilson, assisted by Heinz Unger). The starting temperature was -2C, dropped to -3C between 0900 and 1100, reached a high of -1C between 1400 and 1800 and was -2C at 1930. Ground winds were NW-N 5-15 gusting 20 km/h all day and ridge winds were probably similar. Cloud cover was 100% stratus all day with moderate snow falling to 1100, light snow to 1300 and very light snow for the rest of the day. The west was 100% obscured all day and the east cleared to 80-90% in the early afternoon. Despite these conditions there was again a small movement of eagles with 6 Bald Eagles (4a, 1sa, 1j) and 4 adult Golden Eagles migrating between 1029 and 1632. Birds moved low over the central or eastern part of the valley or, when conditions allowed, along the Fisher Range ridge. Other birds seen were 1 Grey Jay, 6 Common Ravens, 8 European Starlings, 4 Snow Buntings (appropriate to the conditions!) and 2 Common Redpolls. Eight visitors made it to the site.

 

12 hours (171.4) BAEA 6 (55), GOEA 4 (390) TOTAL 10 (463)

 

 

Sunday, March 18 Beaver Mines [Day 22] 0800-1130, 1400-1700 (Peter Sherrington). The temperature was -2C at 0800, fell to -4C at 1100, was -3C at 1400 and fell again to -4C at 1600 where it remained for the rest of the day. Winds were NE-ESE all day, calm to light to 1000 and then 15-18 km/h for the rest of the day. Fog filled the valley and obscured the ridge to 1000 when it briefly cleared and allowed the passage of an adult Bald Eagle at 1008, which proved to be the day’s only migrant as the dense fog returned immediately afterwards. The fog was replaced by freezing rain at 1130 which gradually turned to light snow which became heavier as the afternoon progressed, and the ridge never cleared again although it remained a ghostly outline. The forecast tomorrow calls for the snow to stop around noon, with moderate W winds developing in the afternoon which should finally be favourable for raptor movement: we shall see!

 

5.5 hours (197.1) BAEA 1 (76) TOTAL 1 (250)

 

 

Sunday, March 18 Steeples [Day 14] 1100-1800 (Vance Mattson). The temperature was -1C at 1100 and rose to a high of 5C, winds were light NE with calm periods and cloud was 100% altostratus and stratus throughout. The ridges to the north became obscured by 1600 and by 1700 the main ridges were also obscured and observation ceased at 1800. A total of 61 migrants moved steadily between 1258 and 1654 comprising 5 Bald Eagles (3a, 2j), 1 adult Northern Goshawk, which was the first non-eagle migrant of the season, and 55 Golden Eagles (45a, 2sa, 7j, 1u). The flight was slow and involved much soaring and flapping, but was steady with hourly counts after 1300 of 19, 14, 19 and 7 with the last bird, a juvenile Golden Eagle, moving north just as the ridge was being enveloped by cloud. Two migrant Golden Eagles were seen to briefly perch during a calm period between 1400 and 1500, and a third migrant interrupted its soaring by making a vertical hunting stoop, the result of which was hidden behind a ridge.Non-migrant eagles were also conspicuous and comprised 2 juvenile Bald Eagles, one of which interacted with a juvenile Golden Eagle, and 5 Golden Eagles (3a, 2j) with one of the adults performing the first display flight seen this season.

 

7 hours (64) BAEA 5 (89), NOGO 1 (1), GOEA 55 (440) TOTAL 61 (530)

 

 

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, SPRING 2018
MOUNT LORETTE March 1- BEAVER MINES   February 25- STEEPLES     March 1-
DAYS 16 21 14
HOURS 171.4 191.6 64
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 0
OSPREY (OSPR) 0 0 0
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 55 75 89
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 0 0 0
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 5 0 0
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 0 0 0
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 5 3 1
Accipiter sp. (UA) 0 0 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 0 0 0
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0 0 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 0 2 0
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 0 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 3 30 0
Buteo sp. (UB) 0 0 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 390 138 440
Eagle sp. (UE) 0 0 0
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 0 0
MERLIN (MERL) 0 0 0
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 4 1 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 0 0 0
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 1 0 0
Falco sp. (UF) 0 0 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 0 0 0
   
TOTALS 463 249 530