RMERF counts, September 30 and September summaries

Saturday, September 30 [Day 10] (Jim Davis, assisted by Ruth Morrow) 0755-1945. The starting temperature was 5C, the high at 1700 was 14C and it was 12C at the end of observation. Ground winds were calm to light all day and ridge winds were light to moderate SW-SSW. Cloud cover was 90-100% stratocumulus and cumulus to 1600 when it became 80% cumulus that gradually reduced to 60% at the end of the day, finally allowing some sunshine. The western mountains were 10-20% obscured to 1000 but otherwise all ridges were clear. Conditions were favourable for migration and produced a season-high count of 106 birds of 9 species that moved between 0817 and 1915. The count was a season high 12 Bald Eagles (4a, 2sa, 6j), a season high 12 Sharp-shinned Hawks (4a, 8u), a season high 3 Cooper’s Hawks (1j, 2u), 2 Northern Goshawks (1a. 1j), the season’s first Broad-winged Hawk, an adult light morph bird, 3 light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawks (2a, 1j), a season high 2 Rough-legged Hawks (1 light, 1 dark), a season high 70 Golden Eagles (31a, 7sa, 7j, 25u), and 1u columbarius Merlin. Only 9 birds were seen to the W and the rest moved south along the Fisher Range. Only 1 bird was seen over Lorette and the rest were located at the northern end of the Fisher Range and probably originated from Heart Mountain to the north. The movement was steady all day and the highest hourly count was 18 between 1500 and 1600. Other migrant birds noted were 16 Snow Geese, 115 Canada Geese in 4 flocks, 37 American Robins, 1 Yellow-rumped Warbler, 1 Savannah Sparrow and 15 Pine Siskins. A Mountain Goat was atop the Fisher Range ridge and a single Elk was heard bugling. The 51 visitors to the site had plenty of opportunities to view migrating eagles. The strong movement of both raptors and other species was probably ahead of a weather system that is forecast to bring rain and snow to the area for the next two days.

11.67 hours (120.6) BAEA 12 (28), SSHA12 (44), COHA 3 (9), NOGO 2 (10), BWHA 1 (1), RTHA 3 (15), RLHA 2 (3), GOEA 70 (276), MERL 1 (2) TOTAL 106 (400)

Lorette September Summary (September 20-30), with variances to 1993-2015 averages (excluding 1997, 2002, 2006, 2007 and 2008) Days 10 (-7.3%), Hours 120.6 (+1.0%) Turkey Vulture 0, Osprey 1 (-53.7%), Bald Eagle 28 (+54.2%), Northern Harrier 2 (-59.6%), Sharp-shinned Hawk 44 (-23.0%), Cooper’s Hawk 9 (-20.8%), Northern Goshawk 10 (+31.0%), Broad-winged Hawk 1 (-55.8%), Swainson’s Hawk 0, Red-tailed Hawk 15 (-17.2%), Rough-legged Hawk 3 (+67.6%), Golden Eagle 270 (-25.0%), American Kestrel 0, Merlin 2 (-30.9%), Gyrfalcon 0, Peregrine Falcon 3 (+72.7%), Prairie Falcon 0, UA 1 (+69.8%), UB 2 (+100%), UE 2 (+375%), UF 0, UU 1 (-42.4%), TOTAL 400 (-20.9%)

 

Vicki Ridge [Day 11] (Peter Sherrington) 0900-1700. The temperature was 11C all day with only a brief rise to 12C at 1400. Winds were constant WSW28-40 gusting to 50km/h to 1700 when they became W 35-40 Km/h, and cloud cover was 100% altostratus and cumulus that began to break up only at 1700 to produce the first sunshine of the day just when I had to leave! There was a reasonably good raptor movement of 59 birds of 7 species between 0916 and 1631 that comprised 22 Sharp-shinned Hawks (7a, 15u), 1 adult Cooper’s Hawk, 3 Northern Goshawks (2a, 1u), 4 calurus Red-tailed Hawks (3a light morphs and 1j dark morph), 25 Golden Eagles (10a, 4sa, 8j, 3u), 3 American Kestrels (2 female, 1u) and 1 adult female columbarius Merlin. Twenty-nine birds moved before noon but the flow gradually dwindled throughout the afternoon. Other birds included a flock of 25 Snow Geese and 2 adult California Gulls that moved south west of the ridge, but migrant songbirds were rare in the windy conditions and comprised only 2 American Robins, 1 Yellow-rumped Warbler and 1 Pine Siskin. According to the forecast we are also going to get rain and snow for the next couple of days so migration prospects are poor.

8 hours (90.83) SSHA 22 (368), COHA 1 (48), NOGO 3 (33), RTHA 4 (70), GOEA 25 (112), AMKE 3 (16), MERL 1 (11) TOTAL 59 (716)

Vicki Ridge September Summary (September 23-28) 11 days (90.83 hours) Turkey Vulture 0, Osprey 7, Bald Eagle 11, Northern Harrier 9 Sharp-shinned Hawk 368, Cooper’s Hawk 48, Northern Goshawk 33, Broad-winged Hawk 14, Swainson’s Hawk 1, Red-tailed Hawk 70, Ferruginous Hawk 4, Rough-legged Hawk 1, Golden Eagle 112, American Kestrel 16, Merlin 11, Gyrfalcon 1, Peregrine Falcon 7, Prairie Falcon 0, UA 1, UB 2, UE 0, UU 0 TOTAL 716

 

Steeples [Day 7] (Vance Mattson) 1130-1700. The temperature was 16C at 1130 and reached a high of 18C before falling again to 16C at the end of observation. Winds were moderate S toW until 1600 when they became strong S, and cloud cover was 60-100% altostratus, cumulus and altocumulus that produced light rain from 1300 to 1330. Conditions for migration appeared favourable but only 4 birds were seen: 1 adult Bald Eagle, 1u Sharp-shinned Hawk, 1 light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawk and 1 adult Golden Eagle. Non-migrants were 2 juvenile Bald Eagles, 2 adult Sharp-shinned Hawks and a number of adult Red-tailed Hawks that were seen hunting throughout the observation period.

5.5 hours (32.5) BAEA 1 (31), SSHA 1 (61), RTHA 1 (39), GOEA 1 (16) TOTAL 4 (174)

Steeples September Summary (September 20-30) 7 days (32.5 hours) Turkey Vulture 1, Osprey 2, Bald Eagle 31, Northern Harrier 6, Sharp-shinned Hawk 61, Cooper’s Hawk 1, Northern Goshawk 5, Broad-winged Hawk 4, Swainson’s Hawk 0, Red-tailed Hawk 39, Ferruginous Hawk 0, Rough-legged Hawk 0, Golden Eagle 16, American Kestrel 6, Merlin 1, Gyrfalcon 0, Peregrine Falcon 9, Prairie Falcon 0, UA 0, UB 0, UE 0, UU 0 TOTAL 174

 

 

MOUNT LORETTE SUMMARY COUNT (September 20 to November 15)

 

DAYS 10

HOURS 120.6

TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0

OSPREY (OSPR) 1

BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 28

NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 2

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 44

COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 9

NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 10

Accipiter sp. (UA) 1

BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1

SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0

RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 15

FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0

ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 3

Buteo sp. (UB) 2

GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 276

Eagle sp. (UE) 2

AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 0

MERLIN (MERL) 2

GYRFALCON (GYRF) 0

PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 3

PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 0

Falco sp. (UF) 0

Unidentified Raptor (UU) 1

 

TOTAL 400