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Mount Lorette (13 Nov 2022) 9 Raptors

Mount Lorette
Alberta, Canada

Daily Raptor Counts: Nov 13, 2022
Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
Turkey Vulture 0 0 0
Osprey 0 0 4
Bald Eagle 2 46 131
Northern Harrier 0 0 8
Sharp-shinned Hawk 0 0 47
Cooper’s Hawk 0 0 24
Northern Goshawk 0 1 26
Broad-winged Hawk 0 0 4
Swainson’s Hawk 0 0 0
Red-tailed Hawk 0 0 31
Ferruginous Hawk 0 0 0
Rough-legged Hawk 0 5 16
Golden Eagle 7 130 2357
American Kestrel 0 0 0
Merlin 0 0 15
Gyrfalcon 0 0 0
Peregrine Falcon 0 0 3
Prairie Falcon 0 0 4
Unknown Accipiter 0 0 14
Unknown Buteo 0 0 12
Unknown Falcon 0 0 4
Unknown Eagle 0 6 27
Unknown Raptor 0 0 11
Total: 9 188 2738
Observation start time: 08:00:00
Observation end time: 17:00:00
Total observation time: 8.92 hours
Official Counter Caroline Lambert
Observers: Lynette MacCulloch

It was a beautiful day and there were quite a few people out enjoying the sun and gorgeous scenery. We intercepted about 30 people wanting to get to the parking lot along “our” trail after visiting Troll Falls. Several didn’t take our word for it that the flooded trail was impassable, and tried anyway, but only the very last person of the day, after 5:00pm, managed to make their way successfully across the ice.

It was an interesting day, to say the least. The last section of path through the forest to the count site was flooded. At the start of the day that section of the path had about 20cm of water on it with a crust of ice. The water apparently was a result of the river overflowing its banks. This was most likely a result of ice building up in the river due to the intermittent daily release of water from the Lower Kananaskis Lake dam, at a higher volume than normal, combined with unseasonably cold temperatures (according to one source, the Bow Valley/Kananaskis area was the second coldest area on the *entire planet* on Nov 8!). By the end of the day some of the water had drained away, leaving behind a thick layer of slick ice, and we were entertained all day long by the sounds of ice cracking in various places. Photos of the ice can be found on our Instagram account at .
Today the temperature started at -17C, reached a high of -2C, and dropped to -6C at the end of the count. An initial covering of about 70% cirrus clouds gave way to blue sky by 10:00am. There was almost no ground wind, and ridge winds were light from the northwest, swinging around to west-southwest and becoming ever-so-slightly stronger by the end of the day.

Raptor Observations:
The flooding and ice were quite a distraction, but in spite of that, observation continued, and a relatively normal number of migrating eagles were seen throughout the day – 7 Golden Eagles (5a, 2u) and 2 Bald Eagles (1a, 1j). Early in the day the light winds meant that few of the eagles seen reached above ridge level. They were coming in low to Patrick and disappearing behind the ridge. By the end of the day, the stronger southwest winds allowed them to glide just above ridge level.

Non-raptor Observations:
The American Dipper didn’t seem too happy with all the ice. Other than that, we had the following birds: Downy Woodpecker 1, Canada Jay 4, Black-billed Magpie 1, Common Raven 4, Mountain Chickadee 4, Red-breasted Nuthatch 1, Brown Creeper 2, Dark-eyed Junco 3, and a small flock of Red Crossbills.

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Mount Lorette information may be found at:
More information at [Site Profile] [Day Summary] [Month Summary]
Count data submitted via Dunkadoo – [Project Details]