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Mount Lorette (13 Oct 2022) 112 Raptors

Mount Lorette
Alberta, Canada

Daily Raptor Counts: Oct 13, 2022
Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
Turkey Vulture 0 0 0
Osprey 0 4 4
Bald Eagle 3 39 52
Northern Harrier 0 1 4
Sharp-shinned Hawk 0 12 41
Cooper’s Hawk 0 8 19
Northern Goshawk 1 9 16
Broad-winged Hawk 0 0 4
Swainson’s Hawk 0 0 0
Red-tailed Hawk 0 18 27
Ferruginous Hawk 0 0 0
Rough-legged Hawk 0 7 7
Golden Eagle 106 1123 1278
American Kestrel 0 0 0
Merlin 0 11 13
Gyrfalcon 0 0 0
Peregrine Falcon 0 1 2
Prairie Falcon 0 2 3
Unknown Accipiter 1 8 14
Unknown Buteo 0 6 7
Unknown Falcon 0 1 3
Unknown Eagle 1 14 18
Unknown Raptor 0 4 7
Total: 112 1268 1519
Observation start time: 07:00:00
Observation end time: 18:00:00
Total observation time: 10.83 hours
Official Counter Caroline Lambert
Observers: Cliff Hansen, Lynette MacCulloch

Roughly 30 people stopped by to chat and learn about the count. Sadly, a few people with binoculars showed up around lunch hour, and left just before 2pm when we had the hour with the highest count of eagles.

It was yet another day that started with blue skies and light winds. It’s getting a little cooler too, with a starting temperature of -3C. However, it rose to 19C during the day, so it was quite comfortable temperature-wise after the sun rose over the east ridge. Cirrus clouds gradually built up, and while there was never more than 60% coverage of the sky, those clouds did help with spotting the migrants in the afternoon. The ridge winds also gradually built up from almost nothing to a more migration-friendly speed and direction.

Raptor Observations:
The first eagles were seen soon after arriving at the site, and there was a slow but steady movement until 2pm when the ridge winds starting picking up. Initially the migrants were coming in low on the east ridge and having to use powered flight. As thermals formed, less energy was needed for the eagles to move, but progress was slow. After 2pm most eagles were coming in at or above ridge level, soaring to gain height, and then gliding quickly to the south. The count was 106 Golden Eagles (79a, 8sa, 7j, 12u), 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 3 Bald Eagles (2a, 1sa3), 1 unid. eagle, and 1 unid. accipiter.

Non-raptor Observations:
Early in the morning a Northern Goshawk, the presumed local resident, was sitting in the trees by the pump houses. We don’t normally see them either perched or so close, so that was a treat. Other birds were: Common Loon 2, Sharp-shinned Hawk 1, Canada Jay 2, Black-billed Magpie 1, Common Raven 25, Black-capped Chickadee 3, American Dipper 1, Red Crossbill 11, Dark-eyed Junco 2

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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]