RMERF counts, April 14

Saturday, April 14 Mount Lorette [Day 41] 0715-1200 and 1300-1800 (Jim Davis, assisted by Ruth Morrow). The temperature at 0715 was 1C, the high was 5C at 1500 and it was 3C at the end of observation. Ground winds were SW 5-15 gusting 20 km/h and ridge winds were strong SW all day. Cloud cover was 100% stratus with minor cumulus all day with the exception of 0900-0930 when it briefly reduced to 80%. Heavy snow fell in the valley all day, the western ridges were completely obscured, but the east was 30% clear between 1100 and 1200. Remarkably 7 migrant raptors were seen in the Hay Meadow vicinity, all low over the valley, between 0808 and 1100 that comprised 1 adult Northern Harrier, 2u Sharp-shinned Hawks, 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 1 adult light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawk and 2 Golden Eagles (1a, 1u). A resident pair of goshawks and a non-migrant Red-tailed Hawk were also present. The observers took a break between 1200 and 1300 before returning to the Hay Meadow where conditions had not improved, and between 1500 and 1800 moved to the Lusk Creek site where the foothills ridge was clear, cloud cover was 50% that became 90% after 1730 that brought rain which finally ended the day’s count. Lusk Creek produced a further 23 migrants that comprised 4 Bald Eagles (3 adults and 1 late subadult), 5 Red-tailed Hawks (4 calurus: 3 adult light and 1 juvenile dark, and 1 juvenile “Krider’s Hawk”), 13 Golden Eagles (5a, 3j, 1u) and 1 large unidentified raptor. Thirteen migrants moved between 1600 and 1700. The final combined count was 4 Bald Eagles (3a, 1sa), 1 adult female Northern Harrier, 2u Sharp-shinned Hawk, 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 6 Red-tailed Hawks, 15 Golden Eagles (6a, 3j, 6u) and 1 large unidentified raptor. Other birds seen near the Hay Meadow site were 2 Canada Geese, a pair of Barrow’s Goldeneye on the river, 7 Common Mergansers, 5 Killdeer, 1 Downy Woodpecker, 1 Northern Flicker, 1 female Pileated Woodpecker, 1 Northern Shrike, 22 Common Ravens, 4 Black-capped Chickadees, 2 Mountain Chickadees, 1 American Dipper, 1 male Mountain Bluebird, 1 Varied Thrush, 30 American Robins, 1 cismontanus Dark-eyed Junco, 1 Western Meadowlark (the first of the season: a still-warm dead bird that had apparently flown into a tree!), 1 singing male Pine Grosbeak and 1 Pine Siskin. There were 10 visitors to the Hay Meadow site and 2 at Lusk Creek.

9.75 hours (459.3) BAEA 4 (159), NOHA 1 (1), SSHA 2 (12), NOGO 1 (11), RTHA 6 (20), GOEA 15 (2146), UU 1 (3) TOTAL 30 (2406)

 

Saturday, April 14 Beaver Mines [Day 47] 0700-2015 (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Connie Simmons and Phil Hazelton). It was a warm day with a starting temperature of 3C, a high of 10C between 1200 and 1600 and 6C at 2015. Winds were mainly W-WSW all day 30-50 gusting to 70 km/h that dropped to 20-35 km/h after 1700. It was cloudless to 0915 after which it was variable 30-90% altostratus, cumulus, altocumulus and cirrus to 1600 and then 0-20% cumulus and cirrostratus for the rest of the day. Both migration and observing conditions were excellent and produced a total of 102 migrants of 13 species between 0920 and 2006. The count was 16 Bald Eagles (11a, 1sa, 4j), 1 adult female Northern Harrier, 7 Sharp-shinned Hawks (2a, 1j, 4u), 1u Cooper’s Hawk, 1 adult Northern Goshawk, 2 light morph Broad-winged Hawks (1a, 1j), 11 adult calurus Red-tailed Hawks (10 light, 1 dark), 4 light morph Rough-legged Hawks, 1 unidentified dark morph Buteo, 52 Golden Eagles (33a, 4sa, 15j), 2 columbarius Merlins (1 adult female and 1u male), 1 adult female grey morph Gyrfalcon, 1 adult male Peregrine Falcon, 1 Prairie Falcon and 1 small unidentified raptor. Only 2 birds were seen before 1100 but then movement was steady for the rest of the day with a maximum hourly count of 25 between 1200 and 1300. A pair of Greater Sandhill Cranes finally arrived back in the valley, about a month later than average.

13.25 (483.2) BAEA 16 (332), NOHA 1 (6), SSHA 7 (31), COHA 1 (4), NOGO 1 (21), BWHA 2 (10), RTHA 11 (115), RLHA 4 (97), UB 1 (11), GOEA 52 (1434), MERL 2 (12), GYRF 1 (8), PEFA 1 (7), PRFA 1 (3), UU 1 (1) TOTAL 102 (2109)

 

Saturday, April 14 Steeples [Day 33] 1300-1830 (Vance Mattson). The temperature was 10C, winds were mainly strong SE and cloud cover was 70% cumulus that thickened to 100% dark cumulus and altostratus. Light rain fell between 1300 and 1315 and again between 1630 and 1635. The total of 10 migrants that moved between 1435 and 1745 comprised 5 Turkey Vultures that moved north at 1525, 1 juvenile Bald Eagle, 2 adult light morph calurus Red-tailed Hawks and 2 adult Golden Eagles. Non-migrant Turkey Vultures were widespread and 2 adult Bald Eagles were seen separately later in the day.

5.5 hours (142.5), TUVU 5 (9). BAEA 1 (148), RTHA 2 (21), GOEA 2 (575) TOTAL 10 (763)

 

 

 

 

 

 

SUMMARY COUNTS, SPRING 2018
MOUNT LORETTE March 1- BEAVER MINES   February 25- STEEPLES     March 1-
DAYS 41 47 33
HOURS 459.3 483.2 142.5
TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0 0 9
OSPREY (OSPR) 1 1 0
BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 159 332 148
NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 1 6 0
SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 12 31 3
COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 0 4 0
NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 11 21 2
Accipiter sp. (UA) 1 0 0
BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 2 10 0
SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0 0 0
RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 20 115 21
FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 0 6 0
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 13 97 3
Buteo sp. (UB) 1 11 0
GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 2146 1434 575
Eagle sp. (UE) 24 3 0
AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 1 5 2
MERLIN (MERL) 1 12 0
GYRFALCON (GYRF) 7 8 0
PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 1 7 0
PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 2 3 0
Falco sp. (UF) 0 0 0
Unidentified Raptor (UU) 3 3 0
   
TOTALS 2406 2109 763