RMERF counts October 31, and October summaries

Tuesday, October 31 [Day 39] (Blake Weis, assisted by Lori Anderson) 0830-1710. The temperature reached a high of 7C between 1300 and 1600 from a morning low of 2C, and it was 4C at the end of observation. Ground winds were mainly SW 0-5 gusting 15 km/h to 1300 after which they were SE-SW 5-15 gusting 25 km/h, while ridge winds were NW all day, light to 1300 then moderate. Cloud cover was 90-100% altostratus and cumulus with minor cirrus and altocumulus to 1200, then 100% altostratus and cumulus for the rest of the day that brought light rain after 1300 and moderate rain and snow as the observers were leaving. All ridges were clear to 1400 when the west rapidly disappeared in cloud but the east was 10% obscured that only gradually increased to 90% at the end of observation. There was a moderate raptor movement of 25 birds involving 3 species that migrated between 1042 and 1356 comprising 4 Bald Eagles (3a, 1j), 1 light morph Rough-legged Hawk and 20 adult Golden Eagles. Fifteen of the birds were seen between 1100 and 1500. Only 3 birds, 2 Bald and 1 Golden Eagle, moved on the western route, all between 1000 and 1100, and the rest moved from Mount Lorette to the Fisher Range with about half the birds arriving at the northern end of the range about one binocular width above the ridge. A northward-bound adult Bald Eagle was regarded as a non-migrant, and 2 adult Northern Goshawks soaring near the site at 1330 were probably the resident pair. There was a good variety of other bird species that included 1 male Belted Kingfisher, 2 Northern Shrikes (1j 1u), 1 male Mountain Bluebird, 4 Bohemian Waxwings, 5 Pine Grosbeaks, 4 Red Crossbills, 3 White-winged Crossbills, 73 Common Redpolls and 4 Pine Siskins. A female Moose with a calf crossed the river to the east bank and 32 Elk browsed on the bare slopes of the ski hill. The 17 visitors today included 14 from Robert Thirsk High School in Calgary.

9.67 hours (426.3) BAEA 4 (154), RLHA 1 (27), GOEA 20 (3172) TOTAL 25 (3567)

Lorette October Summary (October 01-31), with variances to 1993-2016 averages (excluding 1997, 2002, 2006, 2007 and 2008) Days 29 (-3.3%), Hours 305.7 (-3.7%) Turkey Vulture 0, Osprey 1 (+81.8%), Bald Eagle 126 (-12.01%), Northern Harrier 4 (-24.5%), Sharp-shinned Hawk 37 (-51.1%), Cooper’s Hawk 9 (-13.9%), Northern Goshawk 17 (-42.3%), Broad-winged Hawk 0 (-100%), Swainson’s Hawk 0 (-100%), Red-tailed Hawk 14 (-0.4%), Ferruginous Hawk 1 (+566.7%), Rough-legged Hawk 24 (-43%), Golden Eagle 2896 (+3.6%), American Kestrel 3 (+252.9%), Merlin 3 (-34.1%), Gyrfalcon 4 (+166.7%), Peregrine Falcon 4 (+17.6%), Prairie Falcon 6 (+400%), UA 2 (-36.5%), UB 8 (+240.3%), UE 4 (+40.4%), UF 3 (+140%), UU 1 (-56.5%), TOTAL 3167 (+0.69%)

 

Vicki Ridge [Day 40] (Peter Sherrington) 0930-1730 (Observation from the Waterton 61 wellsite on the western flank of the ridge). The temperature at 0930 was 2C, rose to a high of 6C at 1400 and 1500 and was 5C at the end of observation. Winds were W 30-50 gusting 60-70 km/h all day and cloud cover was 70-80% lenticular, altostratus, and cumulus to 1300 after which it was 100% altostratus with minor cumulus and lenticular for the rest of the day. There was a surprisingly strong raptor migration of 67 birds of 5 species between 0946 and 1722 that comprised 7 Bald Eagles (4a, 1sa, 2j), 3 Northern Goshawks (2a, 1u), 1 adult dark morph harlani Red-tailed Hawk, 2 light morph Rough-legged Hawks and 54 Golden Eagles (46a, 4sa, 4j). Movement was steady between 1000 and 1500 but became sporadic after 1500 when only a further 8 birds were counted. Maximum Golden Eagle movement was 13 birds between 1437 and 1505. Forty-six birds moved to the south high over Vicki Ridge and 21 were over the east arm of Kyllo Ridge. Other birds were scarce but included 46 Grey-crowned Rosy-Finches, 1 Pine Grosbeak and 3 Common Redpolls.

8 hours (332.8) BAEA 7 (197), NOGO 3 (98), RTHA 1 (234), RLHA 2 (487). GOEA 54 (1806) TOTAL 67 (3841)

Vicki Ridge October Summary (October 01-31), with 2016 totals in parenthesis. 29 days, (21 days), 242 hours (131 hours) Turkey Vulture 0 (0), Osprey 4 (0), Bald Eagle 186 (90), Northern Harrier 10 (7), Sharp-shinned Hawk 382 (229), Cooper’s Hawk 46 (13), Northern Goshawk 65 (45), Broad-winged Hawk 19 (4), Swainson’s Hawk 0 (0), Red-tailed Hawk 164 (64), Ferruginous Hawk 2 (1), Rough-legged Hawk 486 (203), Golden Eagle 1694 (790), American Kestrel 5 (1), Merlin 9 (12), Gyrfalcon 2 (0), Peregrine Falcon 10 (9), Prairie Falcon 4 (3), UA 5 (2), UB 16 (1), UE 14 (11), UF 2 (0), UU 0 (0) TOTAL 3125 (1476)

 

Steeples [Day 32] (Vance Mattson) 1130-1615. The temperature was -2C at 1130, warmed to 5C, but dropped to 3C by 1600. It was calm and the sky was a 90-100% blanket of altostratus and darker cumulus cloud.           It looks like it will snow for the next few days. The only raptor seen was a light morph Rough-legged Hawk at 1145 and no non-migrants were seen that added to the almost eerie quietness of the day.

4.75 hours (148) RLHA 1 (10) TOTAL 1 (509)

Steeples October Summary (October 01-31) 25 days (115.5 hours), (21 days) Turkey Vulture 0, Osprey 4, Bald Eagle 178, Northern Harrier 7, Sharp-shinned Hawk 17, Cooper’s Hawk 0, Northern Goshawk 7, Broad-winged Hawk 1, Swainson’s Hawk 0, Red-tailed Hawk 11, Ferruginous Hawk 0, Rough-legged Hawk 10, Golden Eagle 94, American Kestrel 2, Merlin 1, Gyrfalcon 0, Peregrine Falcon 1, Prairie Falcon 0, UA 0, UB 1, UE 1, UF 0, UU 0 TOTAL 509

 

MOUNT LORETTE SUMMARY COUNT (September 20 to November 15)

DAYS 38

HOURS 416.6

TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0

OSPREY (OSPR) 2

BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 150

NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 6

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 81

COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 18

NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 27

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) 26

Buteo sp. (UB) 10

GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 3152

Eagle sp. (UE) 6

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 3542