RMERF counts, November 14

Tuesday, November 14 [Day 50] (Blake Weis, assisted by Cliff Hansen) 0810-1645. The starting temperature was 0C and the high was 2C from 1500 to the end of observation. Ground winds were variable NW-NE 0-8 occasionally gusting 15 km/h to 1400, then SW 0-8 gusting 20 km/h for the rest of the day; ridge winds were WSW, moderate to 1200 and moderate to strong throughout the afternoon. Cloud cover was 90% altocumulus, altostratus and cirrostratus to 1200 and 80% altocumulus, altostratus, cirrostratus and cumulus in the afternoon that gradually diminished to 20% at the end of the day. The ridges were essentially clear all day, but despite the apparently favourable migration conditions the only migrant seen was an adult Bald Eagle that glided above the Fisher Range ridge at 1524. A non-migrant Bald Eagle also perched on a tree by the river near the site. Blake left the Hay Meadow to watch at Lusk Creek between 1500 and 1645 but saw no raptors. Other birds recorded included 1 male Green-winged Teal, 1 American Three-toed Woodpecker, 5 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 5 Bohemian Waxwings, 2 Pine Grosbeaks, 14 White-winged Crossbills, 4 Common Redpolls and 1 Pine Siskin. Two visitors were at the site today.

8.58 hours (523.7) BAEA 1 (190) TOTAL 1 (3670)

 

Vicki Ridge [Day 51] (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Gord Petersen) 0830-1715 (Observation from the Waterton 61 wellsite on the western flank of the ridge). The temperature was -1C both at the start and end of observation, and the high was 1C at 1200 and 1300. Winds were WSW all day and were fairly consistently 30-40 gusting to 55 km/h apart from the last half-hour when they became light. Cloud cover was 100-80% stratus and cumulus for most of the day apart from 1100-1300 when 50-60% cumulus cloud allowed sunny periods and comfortable viewing conditions for the only time in the day. There were frequent snow flurries and period of light snow after 1400. There was another fairly strong raptor movement for mid-November with 32 migrants of 4 species recorded between 1044 and 1657 comprising 15 Bald Eagles (8a, 3sa, 4j), 2 Northern Goshawks (1 adult male, 1u), 5 Rough-legged Hawks (4 light and 1 dark) and 10 Golden Eagles (6a, 1sa, 2j, 1u). Movement was very sporadic, however, with only 3 birds seen before 1238, then 11 birds were counted in the next 22 minutes, followed by 2 birds seen between 1300 and 1507, with the final 16 birds moving late in the day between 1507 and 1657. Apart from ravens other bird species were scarce and comprised a flock of 11 Canada Geese flying high to the west at 1515, a female Pileated Woodpecker that flew overhead towards the north at 1610, and a single flock of 25 Grey-crowned Rosy-Finches.

8.75 hours (409.6) BAEA 15 (321), NOGO 2 (109), RLHA 5 (511), GOEA 10 (1994) TOTAL 32 (4196)

 

Steeples [Day 42] (Vance Mattson) 1145-1700. The ridges at last cleared today but it did not translate into a strong movement of raptors as just 5 migrants were seen. The temperature was 6C, winds were moderate S-SW all day and it was sunny until 1430 when the 60% cumulus and altocumulus cloud cover transformed into 90% altostratus and cumulus which remained for the rest of the day. All but the highest peaks were free from cloud and light snow fell briefly at 1615. The first migrants were two adult Bald Eagles at 1333 and 1344, followed by adult Golden Eagles at 1432, 1526, and 1545. A non-migrant adult Golden Eagle was also seen at 1335.

5.25 hours (185.0) BAEA 2 (276), GOEA 3 (146) TOTAL 5 (625)

 

[NOTE: Tomorrow will be the final day for all three counts]

 

 

MOUNT LORETTE SUMMARY COUNT (September 20 to November 15)

 

DAYS 50

HOURS 523.76

TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0

OSPREY (OSPR) 2

BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 190

NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 82

COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 18

NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 30

Accipiter sp. (UA) 3

BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1

SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0

RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 29

FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 1

ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 29

Buteo sp. (UB) 10

GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 3231

Eagle sp. (UE) 8

AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 3

MERLIN (MERL) 5

GYRFALCON (GYRF) 4

PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 7

PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 6

Falco sp. (UF) 3

Unidentified Raptor (UU) 2

 

TOTAL 3670