RMERF counts, March 9

Friday, March 9 Mount Lorette [Day 8] 0710-1835 (Caroline Lambert, assisted by Rick Robb and Alan Hingston). It was 0C at 0710, the high was 5C at 1500 and it was still 3C at 1835. Ground winds were W mainly 0-10 km/h but occasionally gusting to 30 km/h, and ridge winds were also W, moderate in the morning and light to moderate in the afternoon. Cloud cover was mainly variable altostratus and altocumulus, 20-80% in the morning and 40-100% in the afternoon. The east ridges were up to 20% obscured to 0900 and the west 40-60% obscured to 0900, but subsequently both routes were clear for the rest of the day. A season-high total of 16 raptors moved between 0943 and 1710 comprising 2 adult Bald Eagles and a season-high total of 14 Golden Eagles (6a, 2sa, 1j, 5u). All birds moved high to very high above the Fisher Range or the eastern side of the valley and most appeared to continue to the north above the valley: none were seen at Mount Lorette. A resident adult Golden Eagle was seen hunting the slopes of Mount McDougall and 2 Northern Goshawks (1a, 1j) flying low were also considered to be residents. Other birds seen were 1 Pileated Woodpecker, 4 Grey Jays, 12 Common Ravens, 1 Black-capped Chickadee, 1 American Dipper, 20 Bohemian Waxwings and 4 Common Redpolls. The highlight of the day, however, was when the Kananaskis pack of 4 Grey Wolves (3 grey and 1 black morph) crossed the Kananaskis River just north of the site traveling to the east. Six visitors were at the site today.

11.42 hours (77.34) BAEA 2 (10), GOEA 14 (28) TOTAL 16 (40)

 

Friday, March 9 Beaver Mines [Day 13] 0730-1700 (Peter Sherrington). The temperature at 0730 was 1C, rose to a high of 6C from 1100 to 1300 and was -1C at 1700. Winds were WSW-W 25-35 gusting to 60 km/h to 1600 when the winds shifted to NNE-NE 18-25 gusting 40 km/h. Cloud cover was initially 100% very thin altostratus to 0830 that quickly burned off leaving cloudless skies or up to 10% cumulus cover to 1400 when it rapidly began to cloud over and reached 100% stratus at 1500 and at 1600 low stratocumulus cloud rolled in from the NE bringing steady snow that completely obscured the ridge; at 1700 the count was abandoned for the day. Only one raptor was seen in the morning, an adult Golden Eagle at 0954, but the afternoon saw a steady movement with a further 20 birds mainly gliding high to the NW between 1230 and 1524. The flight comprised 9 adult Bald Eagles, 1 light morph Rough-legged Hawk and 11 adult Golden Eagles.

9.5 hours (114) BAEA 9 (50), RLHA 1 (7), GOEA 11 (74) TOTAL 21 (136)

 

Friday, March 9 Steeples [Day 6] 1430-1730 (Vance Mattson). Rain started at 1100 that turned to wet snow that fell to 1330, after which the mountains slowly cleared. Vance arrived at the site at 1430 and by 1530 the ridges were mainly clear although the higher peaks remained cloud-covered. The temperature was 3C, it was calm and cloud cover ranged from 100% stratus to 80% altostratus, cumulus and altocumulus and, at 1700, reduced to 40% cumulus as the valley finally cleared. Despite the clearing not a single migrant or resident raptor was seen.

3 hours (20.75) TOTAL 0 (29)

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, SPRING 2018
MOUNT LORETTE March 1- BEAVER MINES   February 25- STEEPLES     March 1-
DAYS 8 13 6
HOURS 77.34 114 20.75
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 0
OSPREY (OSPR) 0 0 0
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 10 50 10
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 0 0 0
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 0 0 0
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 0 0 0
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 0 3 0
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 0 0
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 0 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 1 7 0
Buteo sp. (UB) 0 0 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 28 74 19
Eagle sp. (UE) 0 0 0
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0 0 0
MERLIN (MERL) 0 0 0
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 1 1 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 0 0 0
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 0 0 0
Falco sp. (UF) 0 0 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 0 0 0
   
TOTALS 40 135 29