RMERF counts, October 18 and 19

Wednesday, October 18 [Day 27] (Caroline Lambert) 0815-1900. The temperature at 0815 was 2C, rose to a high of 6C from 1300 to 1700 and was 4C at 1900. Ground winds were 0-5 km/h to 1000 and then SW 10-15 km/h reaching gusts of 35 km/h at the end of the day; ridge winds were moderate SW becoming strong after 1700. Cloud cover was 100% altostratus and cumulus to 1100 that reduced to 20% cumulus, cirrus and altostratus at noon before gradually increasing throughout the afternoon and reaching 100% stratus, altostratus and cumulus after 1800. The western ridges were 50% obscured around 1500 but the east was clear all day. A total of 36 migrants were tallied between 0949 and 1736 of which 34 were Golden Eagles (12a, 3j, 19u). The only other migrants were 1 adult Bald Eagle and 1 unaged Cooper’s Hawk. Movement was slow and steady throughout the day with a high hourly count of 7 birds between 1300 and 1400 and a late movement of 6 Golden Eagles between 1700 and 1736. All birds moved along the Fisher Range, some flying low but most gliding high above the ridge. Other birds seen included 5 Common Loons, 1 Ring-billed Gull, 1 adult Northern Shrike, 1 Steller’s Jay (a rare bird in the Kananskis Valley), 12 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 20 Bohemian Waxwings (the first of the season), 1 Oregon Junco and 4 Pine Siskins. Six visitors were at the site today.

9.75 hours (300.4) BAEA 1 (67), COHA 1 (16), GOEA 34 (2125) TOTAL 36 (2387)

 

Vicki Ridge [Day 27] (Peter Sherrington) 0900-1615. (Observation from the Waterton 61 wellsite on the western flank of the ridge). The temperature at 0900 was 4C, rose to a high of 11 at 1400 and 1500 and was 8C at 1615. Winds were WSW all day, 20-35 gusting to 50 km/h to 1400 but increasing after 1445 to 40-55 gusting 70 km/h. Cloud cover was 60-100% thin altostratus, altocumulus, cumulus and lenticular to 1600 that gave hazy sunshine and excellent viewing conditions. At 1545 dark altostratus and cumulus moved from the west and reached 90% at 1600 bringing light rain. There was a steady and varied raptor movement of 72 birds of 8 species between 0924 and 1551 that comprised a season-high 6 Bald Eagles (5a, 1sa), 11 Sharp-shinned Hawks (10a, 1u), 1 juvenile Northern Goshawk, 1 adult light morph Broad-winged Hawk, 3 adult Red-tailed Hawks (1 light calurus, 2 dark harlani), 9 Rough-legged Hawks (7 light, 2u), 40 Golden Eagles (22a, 3sa, 13j, 2u) and 1u columbarius Merlin. Forty-five of the 72 birds moved between 1100 and 1400. The return of more reasonable wind speeds also saw a good movement of non-raptor bird species that included 1 Common Loon, 5 American Robins, 965 Grey-crowned Rosy-Finches in 7 flocks, the largest of which was 400 birds, 3 Pine Grosbeaks and 7 Red Crossbills, and an adult Northern Shrike perched briefly at the site.

7.25 hours (223.3) BAEA 6 (57), SSHA 11 (645), NOGO 1 (61), BWHA 1 (32), RTHA 3 (213), RLHA 9 (150), GOEA 40 (1168), MERL 1 (17) TOTAL 72 (2510)

 

Steeples (Vance Mattson) NO OBSERVATION

 

Thursday, October 19 (Joel Duncan, assisted by Rick Robb) 0745-1630. NO OBSERVATION POSSIBLE. The temperature was 1C all day, winds were light SW and cloud cover was 100% low stratus that completely obscured the mountains and brought steady rain all day. At 1330 the observers moved to the Lusk Creek site where conditions were unfortunately the same.

Vicki Ridge [Day 28] (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Denise Cocciolone-Amatto and Raymond Toal) 1430-1800. (Observation from the Waterton 61 wellsite on the western flank of the ridge). Rain fell steadily and low cloud obscured the ridges to around 1400. When observation started at 1430 the temperature was 8C which briefly rose to 10C at 1600 but fell to 8C after 1700. Winds were W-WNW 20-35 gusting 45 km/h to 1800 when they became light NNE. Cloud cover was 70-90% altostratus, stratocumulus and cumulus with dark clouds to the north and west, and a persistent patch of clear blue sky to the south. Light rain still fell at 1500 but quickly ceased. Considering that the Livingstone Range to the north remained shrouded in low cloud there was a surprising movement of 21 birds of 5 species that were seen between 1500 and 1658, but the last 1.25 hours produced no birds at all. The count was 2u Sharp-shinned Hawks, 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 8 light morph Rough-legged Hawks, 9 Golden Eagles (7a, 1sa, 1j) and 1u light grey morph Gyrfalcon. The total includes 8 migrants (1 Sharp-shinned Hawk, 1 Northern Goshawk, 3 Rough-legged Hawks and 3 Golden Eagles) seen by Raymond between 1545 and 1645 from the west ridge of Kyllo Ridge near the Waterton 68 wellsite.

3.5 hours (226.8) SSHA 2 (647), NOGO 1 (62), RLHA 8 (158), GOEA 9 (1177), GYRF 1 (2) TOTAL 21 (2531)

 

Steeples (Vance Mattson) NO OBSERVATION (Weather)  Rain and low overcast conditions all day.

 

MOUNT LORETTE SUMMARY COUNT (September 20 to November 15)

 

DAYS 27

HOURS 300.4

TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0

OSPREY (OSPR) 1

BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 67

NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 5

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 71

COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 16

NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 18

Accipiter sp. (UA) 3

BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1

SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0

RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 28

FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 1

ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 19

Buteo sp. (UB) 9

GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 2125

Eagle sp. (UE) 3

AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 1

MERLIN (MERL) 4

GYRFALCON (GYRF) 2

PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 6

PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 3

Falco sp. (UF) 2

Unidentified Raptor (UU) 2

 

TOTAL 2387