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Mount Lorette (26 Sep 2023) 31 Raptors

Mount Lorette
Alberta, Canada

Daily Raptor Counts: Sep 26, 2023
Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
Turkey Vulture 0 1 1
Osprey 0 4 4
Bald Eagle 0 2 2
Northern Harrier 0 1 1
Sharp-shinned Hawk 6 24 24
Cooper’s Hawk 0 1 1
American Goshawk 0 4 4
Broad-winged Hawk 0 3 3
Swainson’s Hawk 0 0 0
Red-tailed Hawk 1 4 4
Ferruginous Hawk 0 0 0
Rough-legged Hawk 0 0 0
Golden Eagle 19 97 97
American Kestrel 0 0 0
Merlin 0 4 4
Gyrfalcon 0 0 0
Peregrine Falcon 0 1 1
Prairie Falcon 0 0 0
Unknown Accipiter 4 10 10
Unknown Buteo 1 5 5
Unknown Falcon 0 0 0
Unknown Eagle 0 0 0
Unknown Raptor 0 5 5
Total: 31 166 166
Observation start time: 08:00:00
Observation end time: 17:30:00
Total observation time: 9.5 hours
Official Counter Caroline Lambert
Observers: Glenn Webber

About 15 people stopped to chat.

The temperature was surprisingly warm at the start of the day, 12C, and stayed in a narrow range, going up to 15C and ending at 13C. The weather, though, was all over the place, with cloud cover coming and going, and rain (mostly over the west ridge), sprinkling us every now and then. The day started out with dark clouds on the east ridge. By mid-day there was rain to the south and west, and at the end of the day the rain had shifted to the north and west and was closing in. Mount Lorette was occasionally shrouded in clouds, while the rest of the Fisher Range remained clear. The west ridge was mostly clear until afternoon, when it disappeared in mist. A strong wind was blowing all day both at ground level and at ridge level. Initially the wind was from the south but it gradually shifted around more to the west.

Raptor Observations:
Until the clouds closed in late in the day, conditions were perfect for migrating raptors. However, not that many were taking advantage of it – on the other hand, it is early in the season still. Like yesterday, there was more movement in the morning than in the afternoon. All 24 migrant Golden Eagles (11a, 2ui, 11u) were seen gliding over the east ridge. The lighting conditions, particularly in the morning, plus the strong wind that allowed them to glide with folded wings and tail, made it difficult to age them. There was a good flight of accipiters, some flying high over the east ridge and impossible to ID to species, and 6 that were flying over the east valley and were ID’d as Sharp-shinned Hawks. There was one adult Broad-winged Hawk, two adult Red-tailed Hawks, and one unidentified buteo.
There were quite a few birds that were apparently not migrating – one adult Golden Eagle, two adult Bald Eagles, two adult Red-tailed Hawks (one light calurus and one intermediate calurus), and one adult American Goshawk.

Non-raptor Observations:
Unlike recent days, there were no flocks of migrating song birds, other than one small flock of what were probably starlings. The ravens were entertaining to watch. Frequently they would be chasing after the migrants – several of the accipiters flying along the ridge were discovered by checking out the raven activity. Other birds were: Ruffed Grouse 1, Black-billed Magpie 2, Common Raven 12, Black-capped Chickadee 2, Mountain Chickadee 2, Ruby-crowned Kinglet 1, American Robin 2, Bohemian Waxwing 4, Red Crossbill 1, Pine Siskin 1,

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More information at [Site Profile] [Day Summary] [Month Summary]
Count data submitted via Dunkadoo – [Project Details]