subscribe: Posts | Comments

RMERF counts March 24 and 25

0 comments

Saturday, March 24 Mount Lorette [Day 21] 0715-1615 (Jim Davis, assisted by Rosemary Power and Cliff Hansen). The starting temperature was -7C and the high was 0C from 1300 to the end of observation. Ground winds were calm to 1400 after which they were E 10-15 and ridge winds could not be assessed as cloud cover was 100 stratus all day. The east ridges were 30% obscured to 0900, clear to 1200, 50% obscured to 1300 and 100% thereafter; the west was clear to 1000, 30% obscured to 1300 and 100% thereafter. Snow started at 1400 and the observers left for Lusk Creek where they found the same conditions and finally went to Lac des Arcs in the Bow Valley where the count was finally abandoned at 1615. A total of 32 migrant raptors of 5 species were seen between 0905 and 1521 comprising 6 Bald Eagles (2a, 2sa, 2j), 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 1 light morph Rough-legged Hawk, 21 Golden Eagles (10a, 11u) and 3 Gyrfalcons all of which flew from in front of Mount Kidd to Skogan Pass: a black morph bird at 1224 and 2 dark grey birds at 1232. Twenty-three of the birds moved between 1208 and 1254 with most birds flying for Mount Kidd to Skogan Pass and 6 birds were seen on the eastern route. Other birds seen in the Hay Meadow area were 8 Canada Geese, a pair of Common Goldeneye, 1 Killdeer, 12 Common Ravens, 1 American Dipper and 1 American Robin. The highlight of the day, however, was the sight of a Red-fox carrying an American Red Squirrel in its jaws near the Kananaskis River Bridge. There were 6 visitors to the Hay Meadow site.

 

9 hours (84) BAEA 6 (84), NOGO 1 (7), RLHA 1 (7), GOEA 21 (921) GYRF 3 (7) TOTAL 32 (1035)

 

Saturday, March 24 Beaver Mines [Day 28] 0715-1920 (Peter Sherrington to 1700, Denise Cocciolone-Amatto 1700-1920). There was 2 cm of fresh snow on the ground and the starting temperature was -5C, the high was briefly 4C at 1300 and it was -2C at the end of observation. Winds were mainly favourable WSW all day 10-15 km/h in the morning that increased to 20 gusting 40 km/h after 1500. Cloud cover was mainly70-100% stratus that briefly diminished on occasion to 20-40%. Snow flurries and periods of snow occurred throughout obscuring the ridge for periods of up to 40 minutes. Between the snow events, however, raptor movement was reasonably strong with a total of 91 birds of 4 species recorded between 1114 and 1910 that comprised 11 Bald Eagles (10a, 1j), 4 light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawks (3a, 1u), 1 unidentified dark Buteo, 72 Golden Eagles (66a, 1sa, 5j), 1 unidentified eagle, and 2 female Gyrfalcons (1 white morph and 1 grey morph). The busiest hours were 26 between 1200 and 1300, 25 between 1500 and 1600 and 16 between 1800 and 1900.

 

12.08 hours (262.2) BAEA 11 (162), RTHA 4 (16), UB 1 (3), GOEA 72 (747), UE 1 (3), GYRF 2 (3), TOTAL 91 (1016)

 

 

Saturday, March 24 Steeples (Vance Mattson). NO OBSERVATION (Weather). It snowed all day and the mountains were completely obscured.

 

 

Sunday, March 25 Mount Lorette [Day 22] 0605-2030 (Bill Wilson, assisted by Lori Anderson, Rosemary Power and Tiina Moore). The morning low temperature was -12C from 0800 and 0900, the high was 0C from 1500 to 1900 and it was -2C at the end of observation. Ground winds were initially light becoming SSE 2-20 gusting 30 km/h to 1300 after which they were S-SW 3-15 gusting 20 km/h to 1900 becoming light again at the end of the day; ridge winds were moderate SW all day. There was cumulus cloud cover all day, 10-20% to 1300 thickening to 80-100% for the rest of the day. The east was clear except for 1500-1800 when it was 20% obscured by light snow, and the west was 10-30% obscured by snow after 1500. Conditions were highly conducive to raptor migration with a season-high 312 birds of 3 species moving high above the Fisher Range to Mount Lorette between 0753 and 1942. The count was 3 Bald Eagles (2a, 1j), 2u Sharp-shinned Hawks and a season-high 307 Golden Eagles (159a, 15sa, 27j, 106u). The only significant soaring was a kettle of 10 eagles over Mount Lorette at 1211. Movement was strong and steady after 0900 with high hourly counts of 80 (1200-1300) and 85 (1400-1500) and there was a late movement of 22 birds between 1900 and 1942. Resident birds were an adult Northern Goshawk that flew south above the meadow and an adult Golden Eagle that hunted above Hummingbird Plume Hill, and 5 adult non-migrant Bald Eagles were also seen. Other birds were 2 Canada Geese, 45 California Gulls that flew north from the Fisher Range, 1 Downy Woodpecker, 11 Common Ravens and 1 Boreal Chickadee. There were 23 visitors to the site today.

 

14.42 hours (243.5) BAEA 3 (87), SSHA 2 (7), GOEA 307 (1228) TOTAL 312 (1347)

 

 

Sunday, March 25 Beaver Mines [Day 29] 0715-1900 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Phil Hazelton, Carl Simmons, and Doug and Teresa Dolmen). The temperature at 0715 was -4C, the high was 4C at 1300 and 1500 and it was -2C at 1900. Winds were W-WSW all day 25-35 gusting to 45 km/h, and cloud cover was 0-50% altocumulus and thin stratus to 1100, 50-90% cumulus and altostratus to 1700 and 100% stratus for the rest of the day that produced light snow and obscured the ridge after 1850. Observing conditions were generally good which enabled the locating of many very high-flying migrants. The count was 93 raptors of 7 species that were seen between 0830 and 1738 with 45 of the birds occurring between 1500 and 1700. The count comprised 9 adult Bald Eagles, the season’s first Cooper’s Hawk, an adult female, that was the last bird of the day, 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 5 adult light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawks, 1 unidentified dark Buteo, 72 Golden Eagles (55a, 1sa, 5j, 11u), 2u columbarius Merlins, 1u dark grey Gyrfalcon and 1 large unidentified raptor.

 

11.75 hours (274) BAEA 9 (171), COHA 1 (1), NOGO 1 (13), RTHA 5 (21), UB 1 (4), GOEA 72 (819), MERL 2 (3), GYRF 1 (4), UU 1 (2) TOTAL 93 (1109)

 

 

Sunday, March 25 Steeples [Day 19] 1100-1845 (Vance Mattson). The temperature was 0-4C, winds were moderate S and cloud cover was 50% altostratus and cumulus to 1100 that thickened to 100% altostratus by 1830. Snow fell between 1610 and 1700 but there were frequent periods of sunshine. After three days of poor weather a strong migration was expected but proved to be a disappointing 21 eagles, 7 Bald Eagles (4a, 3j) and 14 Golden Eagles (13a, 1j), between 1204 and 1824. Movement was sporadic and the highest hourly count was 7 between 1300 and 1400. Non-migrants were the first occurrence of an adult Turkey Vulture, 7 sightings of immature Bald Eagles that included a subadult that carried a stick in its talons and was continuously dive-bombed by a juvenile bird, an adult Red-tailed Hawk was near the site and there were 4 sightings of single resident adult Golden Eagles. Twenty-three California Gulls flew high to the north at 1237.

 

7.75 hours (89) BAEA 7 (116), GOEA 14 (516) TOTAL 21 (633)

 

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, SPRING 2018
MOUNT LORETTE March 1- BEAVER MINES   February 25- STEEPLES     March 1-
DAYS 22 29 19
HOURS 243.5 274 89
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 0
OSPREY (OSPR) 0 0 0
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 84 171 116
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 0 0 0
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 7 4 0
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 0 1 0
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 7 13 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) 1 21 0
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 1 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 7 63 0
Buteo sp. (UB) 0 4 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 1228 819 516
Eagle sp. (UE) 1 3 0
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 0 0
MERLIN (MERL) 0 3 0
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 7 4 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 0 0 0
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 2 0 0
Falco sp. (UF) 0 0 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 0 2 0
   
TOTALS 1347 1109 633